Rainbow Hair for Grown-Ups – The New York Times


Layer in Color

Ms. Bodt used Redken Shades EQ, a demi-permanent gloss — “meaning it has both ammonia and dye so it deposits the color inside the hair shaft,” she said. It’s not as durable as regular permanent color, lasting a few weeks at best. “The colors are also dusty, which helps the overall look be more muted,” she said. “And since I’m using real hair color, not Manic Panic, which is just pigment, the colors are more natural rather than cartoonish.”

Ms. Bodt painted rose onto the roots and pulled the color through to the ends of pieces scattered throughout the hair. “The key to this look is leaving a lot of the blond visible,” she said. “That way the pastels don’t hide or distract from the beautiful blond. It’s a complement.”

After rinsing the rose gloss, Ms. Bodt added diulted rose and violet glosses all over. The effect of this step is more transparent, leaving a light tint to the hair. This “ties everything together, so it’s not just pink roots and then suddenly blond hair,” she said. She finished the look by painting on ribbons of violet throughout.

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The look is finished by painting on ribbons of violet throughout.

Credit
Isak Tiner for The New York Times

“If you really want to go for it, you can do a semi-permanent rose or violet all over the hair,” Ms. Bodt said. “If your hair is highlighted, the dusty pastel shade will pick up more the palest blond hair, but your whole head will have a beautiful dusty pastel cast.”

In very curly hair, the roots aren’t always visible. So Ms. Bodt takes a more customized approach. “You have to look at how the curls fall around the face and paint those that are most flattering — perhaps around the cheekbones or at the ends of some curls,” she said.

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“Seashell hair is actually the perfect summer color,” the colorist Rachel Bodt said. “It’s like jewelry for the hair — sparkle without commitment.”

Credit
Isak Tiner for The New York Times

Style With Texture

Leave the hair textured, Ms. Bodt advises. Don’t use a flat iron or blow-dry it pin straight. Since the color is woven throughout, it will be hidden if the hair has no movement and volume.

“Seashell hair is actually the perfect summer color,” Ms. Bodt said, since we’re all straightening and blow-drying less anyway. “And you don’t have to maintain it. The color just washes out, so you can do it once or twice and then let your blond base color come through. It’s like jewelry for the hair — sparkle without commitment.”

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