When it comes to creating an ombre effect, there are many factors to consider. What colors you want, how smooth you want your transition to look, and the color of the original hair all come into play. Fear not! Here’s a list of dos and don’ts for working with ombre combinations to help you pull off the effect with flying colors (no pun intended)!
Match your skin tone - this goes for any hair coloring job, but try to avoid picking colors that will completely clash with the client’s skin tone. Brunettes may wish to try melting variations of a rich espresso to a light amber, blondes going buttery blonde to vanilla and redheads trying auburn to copper. This isn’t to say you can’t go off the beaten path in your color choices, just remember that in the end, if the client’s skin clashes with any of the colors contained within the ombre, it will have all been for naught!
Keep Hair Moisturized - Any time your hair goes through a color process it needs to be maintained afterwards. Though an ombre uses far less coloring than an all-over job (and even less if you use extensions!), the hair still needs all the help it can get when it comes to maintaining its moisture, sheen, and natural ability to repair itself when the client leaves the chair. Be sure to suggest a good moisturizer for the client after the fact and explain the benefits of regular upkeep.
Ensure Hair is Cut and Styled Beforehand - If you’re creating an ombre with extensions, it’s likely the stylist will cut and blend them in afterwards. Still, since the hair’s specific starting length will actually affect the placement of the colors and ombres during the process, it’s best to make sure that before you get an ombre effect, the hair is cut and styled to the appropriate length beforehand
Enlist the help of a professional - When all else fails, call a professional. Ombres are a popular hairstyle and one that has created a robust knowledge base of stylists across the internet. Accidents can still happen, though! A stylist will know the best course of action for your specific hair type, and can help point you in the direction of your best option. Don’t attempt to give yourself an ombre if you’re not a professional.
Change colors too abruptly - When creating an ombre, always strive to create a shift from lighter shades of the same hue, rather than shifting from a dark hue to a light color abruptly. Allow the color change to come gradually and subtly because a harsh line of demarcation from one color to the next is hardly flattering and will clash heavily.
Go for a Drastic Color Combination - Look, we’re never going to tell you not to experiment with colors! All we’re saying is that an ombre is tough to pull off in itself. If you’re not explicitly trying to pull off a brightly colored fashion ombre, opt for a subtle, natural looking, two (maybe three)-tone color combination. Throwing too many in the mix will overpower the ombre effect and might ruin the effect anyway.
Alter your natural base color - Always use the base color as your jumping off point when choosing other colors. This will ensure that your new tones will highlight the natural color the client already has in their hair. Additionally, if you wish to create ombres with custom root colors, we suggest using Donna Bella #60 straight and dying both the bottom and top section. Do not take a darker shade and attempt to create custom ombre color at the bottom of the extensions.
Remember, you want your ombre to showcase a smooth color transition and to highlight tones already present in the client’s hair. And if you get stuck, you can ALWAYS enlist the eye (or appointment book!) of a trusted salon professional. Stay tuned to the Donna Bella Color Takeover Portal for more hair coloring tips and tricks.