Guest Blogger! Ombre Hair for Brunettes!

10 November 2011

picture courtesy Make Up To Make Out

I generally don’t envy blondes, I love being a sultry brunette and think it works well for me. But there has been one trend that does turn me a little green with envy and resentful of my naturally jet black locks. Ombre hair. Dip dye, call it what you want but this style is pretty much exclusive to our lighter haired sisters. I’ve seen many a disaster of DIY Ombre jobs on naturally dark haired ladies – it appeared they simply bought some bleach, slapped it on the ends of their barnet and hey presto! Yucky dried orange ends. I do like the natural orange colour in lots of hair types, not quite red but certainly not yellow, however there’s definitely something less pleasant about the brassy orange that comes from naturally dark/black hair – to put it simply, it’s just not a good look.

So what can us darker haired ladies do then? If you’re of Asian colouring, like me, you have to face facts that anything too blonde, or even blonde, will probably not work with your skintone in the slightest. Natural hair colour, eye colour and skin tone are huge factors to take into account whenever dying hair, but even more so with Ombre as it can so easily run the risk of looking scarily garish. If garish is what you’re after, go for it! But if you want a more subtle, understated look along the lines of Alexa Chung, pioneer of the trend, but just tailored for your much darker mane, read on..

From my jet black roots and washed out reddish previously dyed hair, I got this...

Ombre. A fading of dark to light, for brunettes.

We made the roots longer, lightened the ends and toned down the redness of the remainder colour. I admit, I was tempted to go lighter at the ends but after speaking with The Chapel Salon Director, Billie Crago, who created this colour on me, we all agreed any blonder and it would clash horribly with my skin tone.  We instead opted for a lovely toffee colour was a much better fit.

‘This technique is all about creating natural, healthy looking locks so you need to stick within three shades of your natural colour to achieve the desired effect - anything more than that will appear unnatural and will be a bit too much of a statement.’ Billie advised, ” I wouldn’t recommend trying this at home  - it’s definitely one for the professionals (and even some experienced hairdressers might be scared by the challenge!).The overall look should be seamless and balanced – you would need eyes at the back of your head to do it!’.

My colour is inevitably going to fade a little, but because of the yummy toffee colours Billie put in, it will fade deliciously into softer caramel hues. No horrid orangey brassy blonde tones for me! 

Love my naturally inspired Ombre hair; a lovely seamless lifting effect which will definitely improve with time as the roots get even longer, and the mahogany starts to fade (me likes low maintenance)... What do you guys think?

For more information on The Chapel hair salon, visit

- Lina Rahman, Make Up to Make Out


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