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First Time Dyeing Your Hair? Here’s What You Need To Know

Changing your hair color can be a great way to express yourself or experiment with your style. Whether you choose to stay with natural colors, cover up gray hair, or want to play around with pinks and blues, there are some facts you should know if you are dyeing your hair for the first time to make sure you end up with results that make you happy.

These steps can change depending on what style, color, or process you are considering while dyeing your hair at home or employing a stylist. Being aware of what you want and how hair dye works will help keep your expectations from becoming unattainable.

Making The Change: Tips For Dyeing Hair For The First Time

If you are coloring your hair for the first time, you may want some information to ease any concerns or help you make a decision.

#1. Permanent Dye Won’t Fade Away Completely.

Things to Know When First Time Dyeing Hair - Permanent Dye Won’t Fade Completely

Permanent hair dye uses chemicals to open the hair shaft and deposit or remove the color. This change in your hair color may not even be noticeable unless you compare your tips and roots side-by-side. Of course, new hair growth isn’t affected by this.

#2. Permanent Dye Damages Hair.

Permanent hair dyes damage the hair shaft as it deposits the color that gives you that vibrant hue, though this damage is minimal.

The horrible damage you may worry about getting comes from compounded and repeated dyeing. Repeated dyeing over time without any care to prevent drying will likely cause noticeable damage.

If you are worried about this, consult an experienced hairstylist. These people know how to get you the desired results while keeping your hair as healthy as possible.

#3. Semi-permanent And Temporary Dye

Semi-permanent and temporary dyes do not last nearly as long as permanent dyes, but they come with fewer risks. Suppose it’s the first time you are dyeing your hair and are very nervous about liking a color or even enjoying having dyed hair. In that case, you may want to try something temporary before jumping into a several-month commitment.

These dyes do not damage the hair shaft to deposit color, so the hair color washes away without causing lasting discoloration.

#4. Different Hair Types Need Different Attention

Things to Know When Dyeing Curls for The First Time

Afro hair and curly hair textures may need different care than the standard procedures. Afro-textured hair, often being very darkly colored, may need more time and care to get the desired color results – especially when lifting the color is required.

If you have a different hair texture, you may want to consult a stylist even if you plan on dyeing your hair at home. They can help you choose quality dyes and know what products will be best to keep your hair from being too damaged.

Your stylist can help you decide what will be best for you and your hair.

#5. Approach DIY Hair Coloring With Caution

You can dye your hair at home, but box dyes are more damaging to your hair and can be less forgiving if you make a mistake. If you feel like your hair can take it and want to have some fun, dyeing hair yourself may be an okay option.

You must do a tolerance test before dyeing your hair for the first time to discard any allergies. Every box includes instructions on how to perform this test on your skin.

#6. Consultations Are There To Help

Things to Know When First Time Dyeing Hair - Consultation

Booking a consultation can help your stylist get a good idea of what hair color you want and determine the best route to get you there. A consultation can also help inform you on hair preparation steps and how much time and maintenance your desired style will need.

#7. Have a Detailed Idea of What You Want

If you are going to a hairstylist for the first time to dye your hair, have some inspiration pictures showing the color and style you want. Pictures can help your stylist better grasp your vision and get realistic results.

#8. Know What’s in the Dye

know hair color ingredients before dyeing

If you are dyeing your hair at home, carefully read the ingredients for potential allergens. You should do a patch test (Often suggested in the instructions for the dye) before going all in to test that you are not allergic to any of the chemicals the dye contains.

When having your hair dyed at the salon, let your stylist know about any allergies so they can discuss alternatives with you.

#9. Hair Color Maintenance

If you want to keep your new color for a while, invest in new products that protect colored hair and make appointments with your stylist for touch-ups to keep the color vibrant and uniform. Remember that dyeing your hair too often can cause damage, so it is best to talk with a professional about how best to maintain your new hair color after the first time.

#10. Hair Grows Back

Even if everything goes wrong, it’ll be okay. Colors can be corrected and altered if need be. Your stylist wants you to be happy with your results, and they will want to help fix things if your hairstyle has not turned out as you hoped.

What to Expect

When we see other people with stunning hair colors, we may develop unrealistic expectations of how colors look and which steps are required to achieve the color in the first place. Managing expectations before dyeing your hair is crucial.

Dark to Light

dyeing hair first time expectation

Drastic color changes take a lot of time and care to prevent damaging the hair too much. Someone going from dark brown to blonde will need several treatments to lighten the hair, and even then, there is only so much bleaching that is safe.

Color Results

With at-home hair color, the results you see on the box are not a guarantee. Box dyes generally come with a chart on the back that helps you figure out how the color will come out depending on your hair color. While these charts help, you shouldn’t expect your results to look exactly like what you see on the box.


Hair color is going to look different as it fades. If you go to a stylist or plan on seeing a professional for upkeep after coloring, they can help you manage the color as it fades.


hair color maintenance

If you want your new color to last as long as possible, you will need to purchase color-friendly shampoos and conditioners that help maintain hair color as time goes on. These products can also help keep hair from becoming too dry or damaged after dyeing.

Instagram VS Reality

Another thing to know is that most pictures you see online are altered to some degree to showcase the hair color more intensely. Remember that because of how our hair naturally looks, not all colors can be used on it.

You can dye your hair any color you desire, but your stylist can only do so much. Try to keep your expectations reasonable, and discuss with a stylist what is realistic for you and your hair.

Dyeing your hair for the first time should be fun and exciting. It is a great way to express yourself and experiment with different styles and colors.

But coloring hair takes knowledge and care before you start, so if you have any questions, it’s best to talk to a professional.