How to find your hair colour level
In this article, we unravel some of the mysteries of the hair colour chart and explain why it’s essential to know what shades will blend most brilliantly to create your desired colour.
So, you’ve got your eye on a vibrant new shade that’s going to revolutionise your look. Fantastic! But before you go ahead and apply liberally to your locks, it’s vital to take your current colour into account. Diving straight in could result in all kinds of colour conflicts, or end in a dull tinge that just doesn't do your hair justice.
Getting your shade accurate
We’ve provided our own colour chart guide below that you can use to get a grasp on your current shade. As you can see, this is done on a scale of 1 to 10; 10 representing the lightest possible shades, and 1 the darker end of the scale.
In order to get the most accurate results for your own hair, follow these top tips:
Stand under natural lighting
Choose several strands of hair that start from your crown
Hold the strands at full-length away from your head
Focus on the colour that’s closest to your hair’s roots
Match this against our 1-10 shade guide
What does it mean for your new look?
Now that you know your current shade, you might need to make some adjustments to make sure you achieve the results you want from your new hair colour.
This is because Directions’ vibrant range works best on hair that is a 9 or 10 on the colour shade scale. As a general rule, the lighter your hair’s shade, the more likely the colour you apply will be as bright and vivid as you intend it to be, particularly for lighter/softer colours.
If you have blonde hair (8 to 10 on the colour scale):
The lighter your current shade, the brighter our hair colour will shine. At this range, your hair will be more welcoming of a broader selection of colours.
For extra vibrancy, our White Toner removes those yellowish strands that bleaching can leave behind. If you want to go darker and infuse your hair with deep mysterious tones, we recommend taking it one shade at a time — and always asking a professional before making any dramatic leaps from light to dark.
If you have dirty blonde/brown hair (4 to 7 on the colour scale):
At this mid-range, it is still possible to achieve an all-over colour change without lightening your hair further. However, the range of colours for which this is possible is restricted to our darker colours, such as:
To get the very best results from bright vibrant colours, like our zesty Fluorescent Lime, you’ll need your hair to be at the lighter end of the scale. If that is your goal, we always recommend using our Lightening Kit or going to a professional salon.
If you have dark hair (1 to 3 on the colour scale):
At the darker end of the scale, the choice of colours that will stand out in your hair without any pre-lightening will be very limited, as the natural shade of your hair will compete with the new colour.
At this range, we would highly recommend using our Lightening Kit or visiting a professional salon to get the best possible base for amazing results.
What if you already have colour in your hair?
As long as you intend to colour your hair darker, you can use Directions over most existing colours, however make note of the colour wheel beforehand; as opposite tones may end up in your colour being neutralised. For brighter shades, you’ll need to take into account the base colour of your current hair colour to avoid any colour conflicts.
Even if you bleach your hair first, leftover yellow tones can affect your results — blue is one to watch especially, as it can mix with the yellows and turn green. Our Lightening Kit and White Toner are just the things for turning your hair into a perfect canvas for new colours. However, always seek professional salon advice if you’re not absolutely certain.
Time to shine
Understanding the ins-and-outs of hair colour can get a little overwhelming. But with the tips above and our helpful colour shading guide at your disposal, you’ll have everything you need to make the right decisions, get the best from your new shade and keep those shimmering strands healthy.
Happy hair colouring!