Almost every day, for many years, hundreds of salon colorists have attempted to
lighten hair to a "creamy, never-brassy" level eight (light blonde) using a single
process hair color application. In too many cases, this is less than successful, and
might look like "taxi cab yellow", D.I.Y. hair color.
As we all know, lighter shades of hair color do not contain a high percentage of
color deposit. Shades lighter than level eight tend to chiefly lighten (bleach) the hair.
As my famous hair color friend, Randy Rick shared with me over a wonderful
lunch several years ago: "A level eight permanent hair color is about eighty
percent "lift", and twenty percent deposit".
When attempting to lighten lightest brown (level 5) or dark blonde (level 6) hair to a
level eight, we FAIL when we think applying a level 8 shade to either of these natural
hair colors will achieve a level 8 result. As you know, applying a level 8 permanent hair
color shade to level six hair will result in a level 7 final level.. a place where natural
golden or golden/orange tones LOVE to LIVE! .. Even using an ash shade does not assue
us of a neutral color result.
Other colorists attempt to create a neutral level 8 by applying a level 10 or a level 12
shade to the level 5 or 6 hair. The tonal contribution of these shades is rather weak,
so, this can create a result that is between a level 7 and 8..
again, transitioning to a rather "brassy" golden shade soon after that salon appointment.
Without resorting to pre-bleaching the hair, I prefer to lift level 5 or 6 hair.. with control,
to about a level 7, rather than to a level 8. During processing at the root, I pick up selected strands around the face, and through the crown... I highlight them, using lightener,
thereby creating a "blonde-on-blonde" effect. And, those "roots" do not fade to an
undesirable "too warm, too yellow" tone.
Right now, I enjoy using a formula I create using Beauty Fusion Phyto Tech Color:
1 1/2 ounces of 8.0 (8N) mixed with 1/2 ounce of 9.11 (9Blue). That small percentabe
of 9.11 effectively DRABS unwanted warm tone, and does not measurably lighten
the level 8 formula. I'm using 20 volume Oxymilk and 2 teaspoons of Color Booster.
When we apply a level 8 formula to level5 hair, we create a level
between level 6 and 7... PERFECT BASE for highlights. When we apply a level 8
formula to level 6 hair, we create a lovely level 7 which does not reflect a weak, warm
or brassy tone.. again, perfect for highlighting.
Here's the easy thing to remember: When the hair is more than 80% gray (white), we
can, of course, use a level 8 shade. The gray (white) hair will process precisely to
a level 8! Exactly what so many of us are looking for.
Please feel free to share YOUR favorite "create an eight" hair color formula. Learning
from one another here is one of the very BEST ways to grow! I look forward to seeing
you in class. Are YOU joining me in Pa? NJ? or Florida? if so, Do let me know.