After years of applying hair dye my colour now comes out patchy

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My hair is naturally dark brown and just below shoulder length, and I have been dying it probably for about 15 years to cover the grey. I'm only really grey around the front, but it's slowing starting to spread.

Over the years I have used both home dyes and salon dyes. Due to colour build-up I had my hair stripped about nine months ago. Despite this it's in good condition, and I have been looking after my hair by having regular trims and conditioning it well.

My problem now is when colouring my hair, whether it be in a salon or at home, I can't seem to get an even colour. The hair that was stripped and the re-growth never seems to match and my hair is looking quite patchy. I'd like it to be as close to my natural dark brown as possible so I can just get the grey hair and roots redone every few weeks.

Ideally I'd like to be able to colour my hair myself - should I strip it again and start from scratch or is there an easier way? It's not too bad but when the sun or light shines on it, it's very noticeable.

Thank you in advance,

Anon, Ireland


There are two ways of working around this problem. The first is you can go to your local salon to get highlights to break up the patchiness, or the second option is to strip your hair again and apply a color that is closest to your natural color.

Joseph Koniak, Artistic Director at Eleven Hair and Joseph Koniak, London

This is quite a common problem when people tend to mix home hair colouring and in-salon colour appointments. Retouching your roots at home is not that simple, and it is also very difficult to get an even colour due to not being able to see the back and overlapping areas etc.

I don’t recommend having the hair stripped again as this will just cause damage and might make the shade more uneven in the future. I can only really recommend putting yourself in the hands of a colour specialist who can prescribe a plan of action and then have them colour your hair. This, over time should rectify the patchy hair and get it looking even from root to tip.

John Clark, Head of Colour at Brooks+Brooks, London

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