Anyone else show a picture at hairdressers and end up with it nothing like it!

(47 Posts)
Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 20:07:39

So fed up with trying to get my hair right. I am naturally dark mousey brown with increasing number of greys.
I’ve always had some highlights & then as the grey became more I added a tint aswell. The tint always looked okish until it started growing out & then it looked orangey.

This summer i had a full head of highlights & the tint as the hairdresser said alot of people do as they go greyer. I found it bit much and after a few more weeks it looked awful as it went from really blonde on the bottom to orange to dark/grey roots. The cost of this was extortionate so I went somewhere else a couple of weeks back.

I showed the new hairdresser various pictures, basically aiming more at a browny blonde look with caramel, honey colours. She said yes fine we’ll make the tint darker so closer to natural and then have some nice light bits. I said I’d like the light bits to be golden/honey tones & she agreed.
It’s awful. Really dark brown splodge of roots with chunks of almost white blonde bits. It looks dreadful.

I feel like every time I ask for highlights they just do one shade which is the lightest blonde there is. How do you get the a golden, caramel almost golden brown shades? Are they classed as lowlights not highlights?

I’m now looking at going somewhere else. I don’t get why it never looks remotely like the pictures I show. I wouldn’t mind at all if they were honest and said your hair won’t do that or that won’t suit you. But why do they say ok and then just do something that looks nothing like it?
I’ve wasted so much money. All I want is to cover my greys in a colour that suits my skin tone which is olivey, can be a bit sallow, with brown eyes. Orangey/yellow hair is washing me out & I just don’t know what to ask for next!

Any help appreciated please!

OP’s posts: |
Preech Wed 13-Oct-21 20:29:26

I had an experience like that with a haircut. I couldn't even go back in to ask it to be fixed, it went that wrong. Best advice I got for finding a new stylist was to carefully study their portfolio online, whether that's on the salon website or their business Instagram. And then book with the one who's portfolio I liked best and had some of what I was after.

When I get colour done, I have highlights bleached in first, and then a warmer colour painted onto those. The stylist usually shows me the shade they're thinking of using in a big book full of samples, and we discuss before any mixing begins.

Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 20:43:26

@Preech thank you - can I ask why do you need to have them bleached in first & not just have the warmer colour straight off? I think it doesn’t help that I don’t understand the colouring process or what is required to get my hair to look like the pictures. But that’s what I’m hoping they will do and explain what would be possible and what wouldn’t. But it never seems to happen, they just seem to do something quite different to the look I’m after.

OP’s posts: |
EmmaGrundyForPM Wed 13-Oct-21 20:50:19

Have you seen this?

youtu.be/q97iIDx-b7U

Howshouldibehave Wed 13-Oct-21 21:11:19

EmmaGrundyForPM

Have you seen this?

youtu.be/q97iIDx-b7U

That’s exactly what I was thinking grin

BrilloPaddy Wed 13-Oct-21 21:20:32

I'm quite dark cool brown naturally, but my grey was making me feel really old. Having had years of root growth from all over dyeing, I wanted something more natural. So I have a full head of highlights - they do 3 colours which is the brown to match my own base colour, then golden/caramel colour and ash blonde.

It's taken me years to get it right, and it somehow grows through as dark at the roots and not grey. I'm really pleased with it but it's not cheap......... it's around £140 every 10 weeks. You need a really good colourist to get the right colours........ they use Olaplex with the colours, and a toner afterwards.

Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 21:21:28

@EmmaGrundyForPM😂😂

OP’s posts: |

Advertisement

BrilloPaddy Wed 13-Oct-21 21:24:55

This is a google image, but mine's this colour to give you some idea.

Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 21:27:02

@BrilloPaddy that sounds lovely, is there any chance you would post a pic just of your hair so I could see the different colours? I think the bit that’s been wrong for me is that they’ve never used the brown to match my natural colour as part of the colour, it’s just a full head of bleach highlights and then a too light tint making me altogether far too light against my skin. My skin & hair look the same colour, there is no contrast. My brown eyes used to stand out so nicely but not any more. I look so washed out.

OP’s posts: |
Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 21:33:44

@BrilloPaddy oh wow that is lovely and I think that
would really suit my natural hair colouring. The thing is the cost as you say, it’s so expensive and I just couldn’t afford to keep having the highlights done so often which is why I started having the tint as the root touch up every 6 weeks was more
reasonable.
Can I ask, how do they do it when you go every 10 weeks as I imagine you don’t have to have a full head each time? If I wanted to go for the same as you should I ask for a mixture of highlights and lowlights? I’m assuming the brown shade is considered a lowlight? I really don’t know why I’ve never had anything like this suggested for me. It’s as if the only thing they can do is white bleach highlights and no other colours..

OP’s posts: |
howsteenhappy Wed 13-Oct-21 21:37:15

I'm having exactly the same problem as you OP. I have been having my hair highlighted for years, 3 colours alternated in foils. I was getting a bit tired of the colours and wanted a change, plus I'm starting to go grey so need change to try and blend that in a bit, but for some reason hairdressers have moved over to this system of highlighting using bleach, then adding various toner, rather than actually just starting with the colours I want in.

The toner seems to last about 3 washes in my hair and I'm back to orangey blonde - complete waste of money.

Went to the hairdresser last week and expressly asked to do it the previous way - apparently that would never work but he could make my hair into what I wanted with the toner. Ended up with purple hair at the front, looked awful, can still see my roots coming in, and now the whole toner has washed out again. £140 down the drain. Not going back there and on the hunt for someone who will do it the old way, not this nonsense toner rubbish!

BrilloPaddy Wed 13-Oct-21 21:41:47

They call it "colour blending" I think where I go - I had a consultation 1st with a colourist, and explained the look I wanted. They suggested using the brown to match my base, then pulling out the two highlights. After the initial set of highlights, they just touch the roots up each time using a brush rather than taking the colour all the way down the hair to protect it. I could probably go longer, to be honest, but I get the cut done at the same time. It's in amazing condition too, which I've never had with highlights before I must admit. They gave me some colour charts to choose the colours from - I think there were about 4 pages of blondes to go for. I like gold/copper tones over the winter to add warmth.

Littlemiss74 Wed 13-Oct-21 22:08:26

@BrilloPaddy thank you that’s really helpful to have it explained. I definitely need some of my natural brown put back in. Just hope the next place I try gets what it is I want!

@howsteenhappy yes that’s right, I’ve been given a toner now for a couple of years. I’ve never really understood what it does as you say, why can’t they just use the right colours instead of bleaching it and then adding a toner which doesn’t last very long!

OP’s posts: |
MistySkiesAfterRain Wed 13-Oct-21 22:25:21

Is is balayage you had? That is more blended. It sounds like this is what you want. It looks like you have had a cool blonde put in, whereas you have warm skintone.

Honestly I would make a fuss and go back and getit fixed. My friend was a hairdresser for years and had one fussy client but there were other normal clients who complained and went back in. You'd probably have someone more senior sort it out, or at least supervise. Agree with Pp about seeing the hair samples in their book to choose what you want.

MilduraS Wed 13-Oct-21 22:31:02

My hairdressers does a lot of people's hair with a root melt, root smudge or shadow root(I don't know the difference, only know there are different names from her Instagramgrin). It really helps you go longer without colouring. I go every 12 weeks and I'm dark brown with very blonde ends and highlights.

wtfisgoingonhere21 Wed 13-Oct-21 22:32:49

If your a dark colour naturally tint won't lift tint so you need a higher developer to get lift (lift natural colour out)
Unfortunately what happens with a normal hinlift bleach is it's just lifted as light as it can go and then a toner gets put on it in the caramel gold honey tones etc which washes out v quickly hence why your left with brassy hair.

Using a mid lift developer with tint will give a few levels of lift and get it to the shade wanted rather than too light and then toned.

When going for a consult somewhere ask for an experienced colourist op.

I know you say price is a problem but you really do get a much better look with someone that's spent years gaining the knowledge and experience.

A full head of weaved foils using three or even four different tones would work and then a root touch up with your base colour in between the more expensive treatments is the way to go.

The more tones the less the regrow than shows and the more subtle/natural it will look

Preech Wed 13-Oct-21 23:37:06

Littlemiss74

*@Preech* thank you - can I ask why do you need to have them bleached in first & not just have the warmer colour straight off? I think it doesn’t help that I don’t understand the colouring process or what is required to get my hair to look like the pictures. But that’s what I’m hoping they will do and explain what would be possible and what wouldn’t. But it never seems to happen, they just seem to do something quite different to the look I’m after.


In my case, it's because my natural color is very dark brown, so just about any colour besides black needs to be painted onto lightened hair. I started getting salon colouring done once I noticed the greys too much, and I went for the highlights because when they're done right, I can have subtle regrowth and go longer between appointments (better for my hair and sensitive scalp).

Red color IME does wash out really quickly. The stylist I get on with spends several minutes chatting with me and confirming what style and color I'd like to go for before getting on with it. She's also been great about explaining what she plans to do next before proceeding, and gives me a chance to veto anything if it's not what I want.

Funkypickle Wed 13-Oct-21 23:47:42

Hairdresser here and very experienced at colour. There sounds like there may be a few different issues going on that have not been communicated properly to you. Or they are just misunderstanding what your desired result is. Achieving a colour change can take several applications and it can cost a fair amount. It all comes down to how much you are willing to pay and follow advice and your time frames.

Colouring and prelightening (bleach) do have their limits as a pp has pointed out. For example a tint will not lift previously tinted hair. When colouring we do not only look at your natural base but also what was previously done. Dark hair often will/may throw out excessive warmth if lifted more than 2 levels. This is true even if your hair may look 'mousey' when lifted your under lying pigment will surface. This can be counter acted by using tones that neutralise the lifted tone. This may not last the full 6-8 weeks between appts due to many different factors. (product choice, lifestyle, heat styling, hair condition/type etc)

When working with a tint plus previously lifted hair (bleach highlights) you are limited by how light the hair already is and it's present tone and condition. As rule I try not to ever bleach over bleach. Toners are vital to achieving your final result. And may need to be applied more than once or for the full 20 mins development time rather than 5 mins at the basins. And if it fades quickly between services I'd want to find why. Often until the colour is built up you may need to go in between for a top on the toner to refresh the colour.

I could go on and on.

Moving forward book in for a consultation. Take pics of what you like and don't like. Take pics of when you liked your hair and when you haven't. Be realistic based on your time frame and price point. Ask for all of the alternatives.

I feel like without seeing your hair I'd want to take you back to one colour. Get that colour stabilised and work on condition before adding secondary tones. Once you have a blank canvas you like it's easy to add to depth and lightness. It's also probably the most cost effective way without getting too complicated. Sometimes the simplest method is the best.

Sorry if I've rambled

FanGirlX Wed 13-Oct-21 23:53:37

Littlemiss74

So fed up with trying to get my hair right. I am naturally dark mousey brown with increasing number of greys.
I’ve always had some highlights & then as the grey became more I added a tint aswell. The tint always looked okish until it started growing out & then it looked orangey.

This summer i had a full head of highlights & the tint as the hairdresser said alot of people do as they go greyer. I found it bit much and after a few more weeks it looked awful as it went from really blonde on the bottom to orange to dark/grey roots. The cost of this was extortionate so I went somewhere else a couple of weeks back.

I showed the new hairdresser various pictures, basically aiming more at a browny blonde look with caramel, honey colours. She said yes fine we’ll make the tint darker so closer to natural and then have some nice light bits. I said I’d like the light bits to be golden/honey tones & she agreed.
It’s awful. Really dark brown splodge of roots with chunks of almost white blonde bits. It looks dreadful.

I feel like every time I ask for highlights they just do one shade which is the lightest blonde there is. How do you get the a golden, caramel almost golden brown shades? Are they classed as lowlights not highlights?

I’m now looking at going somewhere else. I don’t get why it never looks remotely like the pictures I show. I wouldn’t mind at all if they were honest and said your hair won’t do that or that won’t suit you. But why do they say ok and then just do something that looks nothing like it?
I’ve wasted so much money. All I want is to cover my greys in a colour that suits my skin tone which is olivey, can be a bit sallow, with brown eyes. Orangey/yellow hair is washing me out & I just don’t know what to ask for next!

Any help appreciated please!


I went to a hairdresser in manchester asking for similar. I came out with black base with white stripes through it. Some hairdressers are truly incompetent. Many don't listen. I think it's perhaps because they have just a few colours and cuts that they know how to do, so matter what you ask for, they just do one of those.

It's an industry in which professional standards need to be raised.

Funkypickle Thu 14-Oct-21 00:52:58

It's an industry where you get what you pay for.

howsteenhappy Thu 14-Oct-21 07:52:38

@Funkypickle that's what my hairdresser said about the tone too. I have naturally blonde hair, but it's not as light as I'd like it.

The thing is, I personally don't want to have 'work in progress' hair, while we work out whats going on with it. I've now been sticking with this bleach plus toner thing for about 6 months, each time it's washed out after 2 washes and I'm left with hair that looks like it's in need of a trip to the hairdresser!

I want what @BrilloPaddy has - I've had this before for years, it works, I just want to change the shade of the highlights a bit. Why aren't people doing this any more? Happy to pay whatever it costs, money isn't the issue. Bleach plus toner seems to take ages to do as well, just for the same result.

Frustrating. Is it a change in how people are being taught to do colour?

BrilloPaddy Thu 14-Oct-21 10:38:36

If you're looking for another salon, OP, try having a browse through local salon FB and Instagram pages. I found the salon I go to purely by chance, and their Instagram just showed that it was the look I wanted. And ask on local SM pages for recommendations.

Funkypickle Thu 14-Oct-21 12:01:14

Sounds like one of three things going on if the toner isnt lasting at least 3/4 weeks depending.

1. Highlights are being lifted too pale
2. Wrong toner choice
3.or not left on long enough

Toners deposit depth and neutralise depending on the desired result. A good choice for you would be one that does both. You hair should only be lifted to a yellow if you are looking for a caramel/ fudge blonde

Littlemiss74 Thu 14-Oct-21 12:57:57

@Funkypickle can I ask your advice please before I make any more consultation appointments. If I want to have different shades of blonde in my hair, for example, caramel, gold, honey, golden brown (all things I’ve seen online), how is that achieved? When I used to have it done years ago they would get the book out with the different shades & we would agree on a few colours. Is this still what happens or are you saying that it is the toner that makes the blonde the desired shade? I find it really hard to visualise what the outcome of the colours is going to be which is why I like to take pictures that I like. I just don’t understand why the end result never looks anything like the picture. I feel like I must be communicating what I would like really badly. I’m going to go somewhere else to correct the latest attempt but I can’t afford to keep getting it wrong. Grateful for any advice please before I go to next consultation.

OP’s posts: |
Funkypickle Thu 14-Oct-21 14:00:39

Happy to help. The toner only affects the prelightened hair. So your lightest colour. The other shades will depend on what has previously been done to your hair. If you have foils and then a global tint applied around the foils and taken through, you will be unable to achieve a colour in between the two because the tint can not lift previously tinted hair. You maybe able to achieve another tone if careful balayage is applied between the foils and lightened slightly using a low level prelightener or paste.

If it is only foiled it is easier to add additional tones.

Alternatively, you could go for a full colour change/correction. This is extremely expensive and you would need a top colourist who knows their stuff. You would have to have your base colour cleansed (stripped) and then everything done again. This is highly risky. And not something even I would attempt if the condition would be compromised. Previously highlighted/bleached hair will be more prone to breaking and depending on the condition will not hold the colour due to the porosity of the hair. It can also cause patchy results if done badly. But in the right professional hands the results will be ideal. You may also have to invest in olaplex or treatments to correct any damage done.

This sounds like it may take awhile to get right for you. If that is the case I would suggest you try and go with it.

Ask lots of questions, get a couple of consultations.

Be wary of anyone who will promise results in one go. Get an action plan and ask about condition and how often you'd have to rebook. What other alternatives are there. Just because you've always had foils and a tint doesn't mean that you should necessarily continue. Ask about the condition of your hair and how to maintain or improve. Explain how you feel about your hair and that your main goal is to be a multitonal brunette with soft blonde pieces to break up regrowth. Also, ask about their redo policy. What happens if you don't like it, or it doesn't come out as planned? This will show them that you are serious about achieving the right results. Any decent salon worth their salt will have a no quibble gaurentee for a couple weeks post treatment.

Where in the country are you I may be able help point you in the right direction or possibly even recommend somewhere.

Be wary of Instagram pics. Only their best work is ever shown. The back story and procedures may not be demonstrated. And stylists will always use a ring light when photographing hair. This will throw the results out. By all means have a look but keep in mind it has been shot to show. For example I do not use social media, my clientèle are mostly from recommendations and having been in the industry for nearly 18 years. So not having a social media presence can also be misleading.

Please feel free to ask me any other questions.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in