Help: I Dyed My Hair at Home but Couldn’t Cover All of My Grays!

April 16, 2020
Jessica Harrington
By: Jessica Harrington | by L'Oréal
Help: I Dyed My Hair at Home but Couldn’t Cover All of My Grays!

Covering your gray hair at home is simple in theory — you select the correct color of boxed hair dye, apply and voilà. However, we all know it’s never that easy. There are always a few gray hairs that fly under the radar and then show up at the very end, just when you thought your job was done. According to Matrix celebrity colorist and all-around hair guru George Papanikolas, your hair-dye formulation or your method of application could be to blame. Ahead, he explains what you could be doing wrong and shares his tips for covering your gray hair at home

Why Your Hair Dye Isn’t Covering All of Your Gray Hair

“The most likely cause is your formulation,” says Papanikolas. “Neutral shades give the best coverage unless you are predominantly gray, then you will need 1/2 neutral and 1/2 golden — it sounds complicated because it is.” Alternatively, your application method could be the issue. “When you go to the salon, we take fine slices and go section by section through the hair to make sure every regrowth strand is fully saturated with color,” says Papanikolas. 

“We also put a lot on. If you are skimpy with your application, then you won't get good coverage.” It’s a myth that the more hair dye you apply, the darker the color will get. In fact, the more product you put on your head, the better your success rate will be for covering all of your gray hair. 

For the best color, we like the L’Oréal Paris Fade-Defying + Shine Permanent Hair Color. 



How to Cover Gray Hair at Home, According to the Expert

To allow for better saturation of the dye (and therefore better coverage), Papanikolas recommends that you separate your hair into quadrants, just like they do in the salon. “You can also leave dye on the hair for the maximum time (50 minutes unless otherwise directed).”

If you need to touch up the roots, the L’Oréal Paris Magic Root Cover Up spray makes it easy — just shake, spray and blend.

His Best Tip for Covering Gray Hair at Home

Aside from getting the application and formulation down, Papanikolas’ number one tip for covering gray hair at home is simple: Get a friend or family member who you're social distancing with to help apply the dye for best results.  

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