Monday, 9 September 2013


I'd been wanting to ombré my hair for about a year when I finally plucked up the courage to buy a DIY ombré kit. Even once I had bought it, I didn't actually use it for a couple of months, until I just thought "Right. I might as well just go for it!" I had decided not to get it done professionally, firstly because it would have cost about £50, and secondly because I just wanted to experiment with it. If I'd ended up disliking it I wouldn't have wanted to ask my mum to get it dyed back straight away - she would have gone mental!

The kit that I ended up buying was the L'Oréal Paris Wild Ombrés Préférence kit in no.1 for light brown to dark brown hair. It cost £6.99 from Boots; there's a link to it on the Boots website here. I basically just walked into the shop and chose this kit because it was the only one on the shelf that was advertised as being a product to create an ombré hairstyle; the other kits there were just for getting completely blonde hair or blonde highlights. Another reason I picked this one is because the packaging said that it came with an "expert brush" to comb the dye into the hair for a more natural gradient.

So when the time came to actually doing it, I mixed the different brightening products together and squirted the dye from the applicator bottle onto the brush, following the instructions closely. I started applying the dye the way the instructions said: starting at the top and combing down through the hair towards the ends. This seemed a bit strange to me; I thought that you would have had to begin at the bottom and work upwards to where you wanted it, but I fought the urge to defy the instructions because I believed that they would give me the best result.

The instructions provided also only show you what to do if you are dyeing your hair alone, with nobody to help. They tell you to part your hair in the middle and bring each side over your shoulders. Then, apply the dye on your hair at the back and work your way towards the hair around your face, which would mean that you would end up with a line that dips down at the back when you put all your hair behind your shoulders again. At this point, I got my mum to make sure the dye was vaguely level with a point just under my chin all the way round my head.

Okay, before we go on any further, it has to be said: the smell of the dye was horrific. If you are thinking of dyeing your hair at home, and with this kit especially, make sure you don't have a sensitive gag reflex because it was pretty smelly. The "expert brush" included in the kit was extremely useful and did give more natural results, however I found it difficult to get the product to stay in the very ends of my hair, so some strands of hair are still my natural brown colour at the tips.

The instructions said to only leave the dye on for between 25 and 45 minutes; I would say I left it on my hair for about 40 minutes. The following photos are before and after using the kit.


Because this was the first time I had ever dyed my hair myself, I was quite pleased with the end result. It didn't end up with a really obvious line dividing my hair colour from the lighter colour, but it isn't the most natural gradient either. Because this ombré kit uses brightening products, the end result basically depends on your natural hair colour. In some lights my hair appears to have some ginger tones in it, which is weird but kinda cool!

Taking into account the price, the accuracy of the instructions for the best result, the tools provided and the final outcome, I would give this kit a rating of 3 stars out of 5.

If you were to try this too, I would recommend working from the bottom up to make sure that the ends of your hair are the lightest and get increasingly darker as you go up towards the point where you want to leave it your natural hair colour.

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