Beauty

How to cover up outgrown roots at home, according to a hair colour expert

Noticed regrowth at your roots? Here, a colour expert explains how to hide your roots during lockdown.

Have you debated changing your hair during lockdown? Maybe it’s cutting your own hair. Perhaps you’ve been inspired by Normal People’s Marianne and decided to give yourself a fringe. Or maybe you’re reaching for a bottle of hair dye to refresh your colour. But what about outgrown roots?

As the days tick by and our hair slowly grows, those with coloured hair will notice their natural colour peeking out at the roots. For some, it’s a time to embrace their natural hair colour but others are in search of ways to cover up their roots. 

If you fall into the latter group, we asked Seniz Alkan, senior colourist at Neville Hair and Beauty, for her tips on dealing with outgrown roots. Her first piece of advice? Don’t assume you need box dye. 

“Attempting to apply colour at home could be dangerous as you may accidentally overlap colour resulting in serious breakage and damage,” says Alkan. “Home colour can take months to repair.”

Changing the colour of your hair permanently isn’t a decision that should be taken lightly, because it changes the physical structure of your hair.”

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Alkan also stresses that used incorrectly, the chemicals involved in colouring hair can have damaging effects. “Hair colour, for example, contains allergens that can cause a wide variety of allergic reactions, from cases of rashes and hives, to hospitalisation and even fatalities,” she explains.

“The most common allergen is paraphenylenediamine or PPD and is found in over 99% of permanent hair dyes. You may or may not be aware that it has been a legal requirement for all hairdressers to carry out patch tests prior to colour services.”

So, if you’d rather skip hair colour and chemicals, Alkan says there are a number of alternatives you can rely on.

“Look at other products such as L’Oréal Professionnel’s Root Touch Up Spray or Color Wow’s Root Cover Up. Even coloured dry shampoo will blend your regrowth.”

“You could also adopt a nifty new parting,” says Alkan. “Side partings are better than centre partings to disguise regrowth. Pick yours depending on where most of your roots are.

“If you want to tie your hair up, a loose ponytail with volume is better than tight so the roots are less visible. Or simply sweep your hair into a top knot or put on a lovely chunky Alice band or elegant silk scarf.”

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