19 answers

Store Bought Hair color...best and Worst?

I'm thinking about doing my own color to save a little money. Wondering what brands everyone recommends. There are so many out there! Especially wondering if there is a brand that I should stay away from. Thanks for any and all advice!!!

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I have been coloring about 5 years and have always used Garnier Nutriesse - the girl at Ulta recommended it and it's great.

A., it's cheap but I've used Colorsilk since I was in college and have never had a problem. You can get it anywhere (CVS, Target, Jewel, etc.), it doesn't stink up the place and super easy to use. You go girl!

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A., it's cheap but I've used Colorsilk since I was in college and have never had a problem. You can get it anywhere (CVS, Target, Jewel, etc.), it doesn't stink up the place and super easy to use. You go girl!

I have been coloring about 5 years and have always used Garnier Nutriesse - the girl at Ulta recommended it and it's great.

I haven't tried it, but a friend uses hair color from whole foods and loves it.

I like Loreal the no-drip formula. I have been coloring my hair at home now for a year and a half and had no problems with it at all. The color is always consistant.

S. T.

I did the same thing and colored by hair at home. The bottle spilled putting the color all over by bathroom - so my husband had to repaint it.

I now opt to go to beauty school - there's quite a few around - I'm not sure where you live. But they are more reasonably price but take a little longer time - since it's students and then the teacher has to check at certain points. Try tricocci school or pivot point.

my girlfriend has tried a few - mostly l'oreal, i think - and has been happy. but one word of caution no matter which brand you use: don't do it too often. you might try to alternate between doing it at home and at a salon. apparently the home brands are much stronger and harsher on your hair and after doing it time and again, my friend really damaged her hair. you might try a place like pivot point or somewhere like that where they have supervised students performing the task for a reduced fee. if you have a person that normally colors your hair (or your stylist) mention your situation and ask their advice. they won't be offended - everyone is feeling the pinch these days. they might have a great suggestion of where to get a discounted service, they might offer to do it for less on the side, or they might recommend a great box color for your hair type. good luck!

BEen there, done that. I personally would find a different way to save money, The color is drab, harsh, not natural looking. Leaves stuff on your hair so when you decide that it just isn't looking that great, the hair designer has a difficult time making it look good. So basically, you do it once, you aren't satisfied and then takes 6 months to get it back to normal with the hair designer anyway.

I discovered there is a reason why you need to be a licenced cosmotologist. The chemicals are different and look different.

I don't have any experience, but I saved this post because I thought maybe one day I'd try it:


I have been using Preference by L'Oreal with good results for about 3 years now. To compensate for using store bought color I try to limit the amount of heat I use on my hair which is fine and thin. Everyone is always surprised to learn I use store color. One tip: I occasionally put highlights in after the overall color. That gives you a more professional look. The highlights product I have used is Color Breaks (I have red hair). You need to follow the directions on these products but you can mix colors together to get the shade you want. Have fun!

I was told by 2 different stylists to stay away from Feria!! It is very very harsh on the hair and the color is hard to remove later if you want to change colors (or get hightlights) because it has done so much damage.

I use Perfect 10 - its permanent, has great color and works fast (10 mins). Two of my friends also use it and love it as well. I think its by Revlon. I used to use Loreal Preference too and I loved it, but they discontinued my color (go figure) and then I tried the Perfect 10 and loved it.

Hope this helps!!

Hi, A.. I have been coloring my hair for years, and it has been my experience that none of the store bought color lasts as long as the color from a salon. My best color experience was at an Aveda salon, my hair felt fabulous and my color lasted close to 3 months. Unfortunately, the price was still way more than 3 months worth of store bought color. I use Preference Creme by Loreal because it is very easy to apply and not as messy as regular Prefernce liquid. Grey hair is especially hard to cover and I can see mine starting to come through after 3 or 4 washings. Good luck to you.

I've used many different kinds of haircolor as I've been dying my hair since I was 10, with the exception of the year I was pregnant. I've found that Garnier is my fav, it doesn't make your hair smell bad or fade. Feria has some great colors but fades quickly.

Good for you for wanting to find out about hair coloring. A good source to find out how "toxic" any product that you use for hair or personal use is www.cosmeticdatabase.com. There you can look up any brand or just look up "hair color". You'll find the ones that are the better for your health! Good luck and have a great day.

Wellness Consultant

feria in my opinion is the worst, the permanent faded from my hair in about 2 weeks.

I've used "Nice 'n Easy" by Clairol forever. The color stays permanently, never fades. I have to color quite often (4 wks) because of very gray roots, and have never had any issues with hair damage.

I wouldn't worry about anything toxic, I believe that is an issue of the past with old-fashioned dyes. Even when I was pregnant, the doc told me it was OK to color.

If a certain brand does not "stick" to your hair well, just try another one.

For I don't know how many years it's been now but I only use Clairol Natural Instincts. It works grear And my hair dresser said she has never seen such healthy hair before, considering that it's colored, washed every day, gets heat from things like dryers, curling irons, etc. I color my hair about every 6 to 8 weeks, and everybody always tells me how nice my hair looks and what do I do to keep that way. Go figure, I do alot of stuff to my hair but you wouldn't know it by looking at it.But the most important thing that I do to it is never,never, change the brand of hair color I use. Try that one on for size. D.J. Chavez California

I've used a lot of store bought color and the one I find gives the best color is Feria.

I'm a natural blonde and color my hair once and while when it gets dishwatery, but I also dye my eyebrows (I know, people always cringe, but I've been doing it for years and have the process perfected). I have used Feria for my blonde hair, close to a color match and I have fine hair and it was not harsh at all, after one wash the color was perfect, slightly gold to start with before the first wash. I used nice and easy/permanent color for 'gray hair' on my brows, because they literally would glow in the dark, they are that light, and the color lasts a long time and colors evenly. I was told by a stylist a few years ago it is best to get the permanent coloring for gray hair becuase it will cover more evenly and last longer, I took her advice and it worked for me. I was a big chicken to try it, but found the right products and now it is cheap and simple. Good luck to you.

Hi A.,
I have used L'Oreal Feria which is really good for a store bought brand. It gives a nice, rich color with a little shimmer to it. If you have any sort of skin allergies, I would be very careful about which brand you choose and, actually, doing it by yourself other than a professional. Feria is usually around $10 depending where you get it. Good luck!

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