How easy will it be to transition to my natural grey hair colour?

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I recently went to a hair salon to have a consultation about letting my grey hair grow in naturally. I had red coloured hair when my grey and dark brown started growing at the roots.

The salon applied L'Oreal Effaser colour remover to strip the hair - which then turned yellow/orange - she then applied an ash demi-permanent. I didn't realize how hombre coloured my hair was until I got into better lighting.

I am supposed to go back to the salon to correct this problem. What should the hairdresser do to correct the problem. My hair doesn't look very natural and I'm scared it will turn orange when the colour begins to fade.

Tracey, Edmonton

Hi Tracey,

I am sorry to hear about that. I'd suggest you go back to the salon and have a bleach bath, which is a mixture of bleach (scoop) part 1 peroxide (6%) and 1 part water to get rid of the yellow and orange. This makes the colour even. I would then apply a toner on the hair, 8/81 light pearl ash blonde, and then put lowlights of your natural colour through, this will make it more natural looking.

Use Elasticizer by Philip Kingsley as a deep treatment along with a moisture balancing shampoo and conditioner - this will put the condition back into your hair.

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

The transition from coloured hair to natural grey locks isn't an easy one. It takes an enormous amount of patience, but if you keep at it you should get there in the end.

Because you had red colours applied to the hair, they will have stained the cuticle and it will be very tricky to fully remove. Your stylist was correct in their choice of colour removal method. But the warm orange and yellow pigments that are still present in the hair will need to be periodically toned down with an ash based shade. This is why the transition is so high maintenance.

I would seriously consider having a good hair cut, removing as much of the heavily coloured hair as possible. Then leave your hair maybe for a few months and revaluate where to go from there.

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

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