Now, we all know that DIY hair dyes aren’t new in the beauty aisles — they’ve existed for years, mainly as a more affordable alternative to going to a proper salon, but they’re pretty safe aren’t they? Shades of black and brown and copper, with the most exciting ones being a variation of some magenta-toned red that only shows up under bright sunlight. These are definitely not the case with the L’Oreal Paris’ Colorista range though, just look at how exciting everything looks.
From pastels to super vivid shades, the options are way more varied than what we’re used to, and very on-trend too, what with the phenomenon of unicorn or mermaid hair sweeping across our generation — see, pastel pink hair is totally socially acceptable, even admirable in the millennial circles, as a bold way to set ourselves apart from a sea of boring blacks.
The innovative thing is that there are three ways to achieve your #hairgoals — a more traditional hair dye they’re calling Permanent Paints, if you’d like something more long-lasting with the same great colour payoff, 1-Day Sprays for an instant hairdo that claims to disappear after one wash (fun!), and the most intriguing Temporary Washouts for bold hair colours that gradually fade in 1 or 2 weeks, probably for those of us with hair commitment issues. You can even mix and match the shades for a unique look of your own!
Sounds too good to be true? Maybe. So with this slew of trendy hair colours landing right on our desks, it’s time we put them to the test and see how true they hold to their claims — just in time for CNY too right? Here’s what we think:
1 DAY SPRAY
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 1-Day Hair Colour Spray in Hot Pink, $15.90
“I’ve let my hair grow out after dyeing the ends, so only my ends are brown. I chose the hot pink as I’ve been eyeing the colour for quite a while, but don’t have the guts to commit to. I had to get a colleague to spray it on, but it wasn’t hard to get the colour to show up on my dark hair. I was loving the colour and even took a few selfies to show off.”
“But it went downhill from there — the drizzling skies made the colour run, and I reached home to find my forehead, bare back (I was wearing a backless shirt), bag straps, and even my bra (yes, it was under my shirt) stained pink. Washing it out was a bit of a nightmare as well, and it took a good 6 washes to get most of the colour out. Would recommend this for photo or video shoots for quick hair colour fixes, but avoid it if you’re thinking of hitting a festival or a really crowded place.” — Michelle Ng, Writer
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 1-Day Hair Colour Spray in Turquoise, $15.90
“I’ve always entertained the idea of going bold with my hair colour, but being the indecisive creature that I am, settling on a colour takes me aeons. So when I was introduced to the Colorista range at the re-opening of Watsons Bugis Junction, it piqued my interest.
A few weeks after the event, the brand sent over a selection and I was psyched to try out the 1-Day Colour Spray in Turquoise. For a line that specialises in hair colour, you’d think they’d at least get their shades right, right? Wrong. Instead of turquoise, what I got was a bright cobalt blue. No hint of green in there, just straight up blue. I imagine it’d be pretty disappointing for someone who had bought this without trying it out. The one thing that saved this experience was that I got compliments around the office about the colour. If only it matched the shade promised on the can… So close, yet so far.”
“We used up the entire can to up the intensity, but that was a big mistake. Not only did it transfer and stain everything even when it’s dry, this stuff did not wash out easily too. I lost count, but I must’ve shampooed my hair at least 6 times that night, and I still noticed a tinge of blue in the lather a couple days after. To wrap things up, I did like how high-impact the colour was, but if testers are available at the store, I’d recommend checking the colour out on some tissue first before purchasing. It’s a fun novelty product plenty of serial hair experimenters will enjoy, but this one’s not for me.” — Jade Yeo, Writer
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 1-Day Hair Colour Spray in Grey, $15.90
“My hair was already bleached prior to trying this, so I was excited to see the results since I had the lightest hair in the office. Unfortunately, it left me pretty bummed.”
“At first spray, there was only a hint of what appeared to be glitter on my hair, and no pigment. It took many layers of product — resulting in using up the entire can — to obtain the result in the picture shown. While it did manage to reduce the brassy tones in my hair, it certainly did not end up being as dramatic as the can had promised. There were also instructions to brush out the sprayed hair, so I did…only to have most of the colour come off in the process. In the end, my hair didn’t look very different at all, and nobody could even tell that I had tested out the spray, save for a faint hint of ashy tone when my hair was under the light. The texture of my hair was also quite dry and displeasing, and seeing as how I’m someone who regularly conditions and cares for her hair, I couldn’t wait to get home to wash it out.” — Patrene Mathieu, Designer
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 2-Week Washout Colour in Burgundy, $16.90
“I’ve been sporting brightly-coloured hair for a long time now, especially along the warmer end of the spectrum with red/pink/purple tones, so I was excited to try this out! My hair had already been bleached prior at a salon, towards the ends for an ombré effect, just that the original ash purple had faded into an orange-toned blonde shade. Still cool, but not entirely preferable. So one fateful evening, I put on a totally flattering thrash bag (still the best way to prevent stains minus the clean-up) and set about dye-ing my hair — the first time I did it on my own, by the way.
The process was undeniably idiot-proof; for all my paranoid re-reading of the instructions, all I had to do was put on some gloves, squeeze the creamy colour out of the tube, and massage it into my hair in no particularly precise manner. Then leave it on for 30 minutes. My hair’s quite thick so I left it on for slightly longer — say, 40 minutes for the entire colouring process. After that, it’s just a matter of rinsing out the colour, and you’re done!”
“Here’s how it looks the day after. I was very pleased with the results obviously, the colour was true and as vivid as promised (maybe a little too vivid for my liking), though I’d say that it looks more faded in natural sunlight than it looks here. It definitely helped that it went on already bleached hair though, so it showed up more, and that I didn’t have to think of which places I wanted the colour to be — the bleaching was previously done by a professional so I just concentrated the colour on those same areas. I know it looks pretty uneven, but I actually like that it isn’t perfect. Another surprise: my hair felt soft immediately after, not hard and stiff, so I’m grateful for the conditioning elements in the tube. Lots to love, but you’ll have to bear in mind that my hair was kind of in the perfect condition for this.
What I had issues with though is how fast the colour faded after just 2 or 3 washes — it became significantly less vibrant, about 50% of the original effect, though with a lighter, pink-ashy tone that I guess I didn’t quite mind. It might help to leave the dye on longer then if you’d like the colour to last longer. Then again, I’d still recommend this for people who want to touch up the colour on their already bleached tresses, without the hassle and expense of going to a salon.” — Amelia Tan, Associate Editor
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 2-Week Washout Colour in Red, $16.90
“This was the first time dyeing my hair by myself; previously I’ve always gotten friends to help DIY my hair. The process was pretty straightforward — mix two tubes of colour and brush it onto your hair. The box said that the colour would show up on dark hair as a sheen of burgundy.”
“I have bleached tips, so the colour showed up best on the ends of my hair. My hair pretty much looked the same indoors, with the colour only showing up in the sun. It’s been a week, and the colour still looks good!” — Michelle Ng, Writer
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 2-Week Washout Colour in Turquoise, $16.90
“I’m in the process of bleaching my hair to silver, so this hair dye is a life-saver from the ugly yellowish-brown hair I already had. The process of dyeing my hair took longer than 20 minutes — it says on the box “leave it on longer for a more vibrant look”, and I was hopeful, though it turned out darker than expected. The outcome? More of a dark moss green. Kind of wish the colour was a bit more vibrant though, but I’m loving the Heath Ledger Joker look as well. Still, it’s an easy-to-use DIY dye and way cheaper than going to a salon.”
“Here’s a piece of advice: use thicker gloves than the ones given, at least for this particular shade, because my hands were stained green (and so was my forehead) by the end of the process, and this lasted for days after! Would I recommend this? Yes, but only to those with very light/bleached hair.” — Eimran Jumahat, Designer
L’Oreal Paris Permanent Paint in Violet, $18.90
“There are two sides to every coin, and this side offers to counter my previous negative review from before. I’m no stranger to dyeing my hair, and as I’ve mentioned previously, it had already been bleached for quite a while before I attempted this.
The process itself isn’t very intuitive for those that are dyeing their hair for the first time as the instructions aren’t very clear, but once you get past that small hurdle, the angled brush makes it easy enough to apply. I had left mine for about half an hour before washing it off, and the generous amount of conditioner given left my hair feeling softer than it was before.”
“As you can see from the pictures, the colour payoff is fantastic, and very true to what was promised, albeit a bit darker than I would have liked. However, it’s been three weeks since I dyed my hair now, and the violet hue is still very much present. In fact, my colleagues have been commenting that it seems to have gotten lighter over time while maintaining the same shade (yay!). I’m very pleased.” — Patrene Mathieu, Designer
L’Oreal Paris Colorista 1-Day Hair Colour Spray, $15.90; L’Oreal Paris Colorista 2-Week Washout Colour, $16.90; L’Oreal Paris Colorista Permanent Paint, $18.90. Available at all Watsons, Guardian, Fairprice, Cold Storage, Giant, SaSa, & selected department stores.