Who doesn’t like makeovers? But coloring your hair for the first-time can be pretty intimidating right? We know many questions will be roaming around your head. So, we curated 15 popular hair colors especially for first-timers.
Choosing the right color for your hair is not an easy task for beginners. It takes quite a few trials to get it right. Perfect hair color can elevate your look, but at the same time a wrong hair color can ruin your whole appearance.
Don’t worry! There are a variety of temporary colors, permanent colors, semi-permanent colors, pre-lighteners, and ammonia-free organic colors available in the market. So, according to your preferences and how long you want your hair color to last, you can choose the right type of color.
The most important factor to be considered before dying your hair is your skin complexion. In fact, the best hair colors are chosen based on your skin undertones. So before we begin with our list of top hair colors, let’s see what an undertone is and how to find yours.
How to Choose Hair Color According to Skin Tone
Skin tone is an important factor to be considered before coloring your hair. Professional hair stylists usually choose a hair color based on your undertones. Undertone is nothing but the hue underneath our skin. The common undertones are: warm, cool, and neutral.
There is a myth that pale or light skin colors have cool undertones, deep or dusky skin colors have warm undertones. So how to find out your undertone? Here are some tricks to find out if you have cool, warm, or neutral undertone.
Does your skin turn red under the sun? Then you have a cool undertone. Check your wrist veins under sunlight. If the veins look blue, you have a cool undertone. Persons with a cool undertone look great in shades of blue, pink, and red hair colors. Preferable hair colors for cool undertones include burgundy, blonde, ginger, taupe, ash brown, and honey. Some of the most popular celebrities with cool undertones include Lucy Liu, Anne Hathaway, and Jamie Chung.
Does your skin turn tan under the sun? Then you probably have a warm undertone. Check your wrist veins under sunlight. If the veins look green, you have a warm undertone. Persons with warm undertones look great in shades of warm colors, brown, gold, and peach hues. Preferable hair colors for warm tones are chocolate brown, chestnut, auburn, golden brown, and mahogany. Some of the most popular celebrities with warm undertones include Jessica Alba, Beyoncé, and Claire Danes.
Neutral tones are the combination of both warm and cool tones. If your wrist veins look purple and green, then you have a neutral undertone. People with neutral undertones look amazing in shades of neutral, and warm colors. Neutral tones are blessed in a way that they can carry off both warm and cool colors well. Deep violet, golden brown, red auburn, and copper brown are the preferred shades for neutral undertones. Celebrities like Kerry Washington, Selena Gomez, and Drew Barrymore fall in neutral undertones.
Popular Hair Colors
The most popular hair colors to be considered for the first-time coloring are honey, caramel, bold cherry, auburn, iced chocolate, and burgundy. These colors never let you down and are suitable for almost all skin tones. The hair color virgins who are unsure about the colors and don’t want to take any risk can go for these colors. Let’s go over some of these and more.
1. Chestnut Brown
Chestnut brown comes under neutral to cool colors. Neutral colors are suitable for all three skin complexion – fair, medium, deep. People who want to dye their hair but don’t want any big difference can go for chestnut brown. It’s one of the most popular hair colors among celebrities.
2. Caramel Brown
Caramel brown is a warm, pleasant hue. You can achieve a soft and elegant makeover effortlessly with this shade. First-timers please put caramel brown as the top priority. This is an evergreen color. It’s one color that is suitable for all types of hair textures. “Caramel brown never let you down!”
3. Iced Chocolate
Iced chocolate is suitable for brown to deep brown hair. It gives a natural glossy look to your hair and helps to enhance your hair texture better. So, I highly recommend iced chocolate brown color for the beginners with cool undertones.
4. Honey Brown
Honey brown is also one of the most popular hair colors. The golden hue of honey brown gives a beautiful warm shade to the hair. This color looks good in both global coloring and highlights. Honey brown never goes out of style. So, regardless of trends and seasons, you can do this hair color. It suits both warm and cool undertones.
5. Brown Auburn
Auburn is a combination of red and brown tints. Auburn brown has rich color pigments and this shade has a dominant brown tone in it. It helps to give dark shades to your hair, and is suitable for almost all skin tones.
6. Dark Auburn
Dark auburn is one of the popular auburn shades. It’s a reddish chocolate brown color. This shade naturally enhances your face and is suitable for dusky and light skin tones. Dark auburn gives better results on brown and dark brown hair.
7. Light Auburn
It’s a smooth pale rusty color. Combination of both ginger red and brown. This color is a refreshing one and is incredibly suitable for both warm and cool complexions. It helps to brighten up your appearance.
8. Red Auburn
Red auburn is a luxurious color that can go well with both warm and dark skin tones. This shade has a playful feminine look to it. You don’t need any pre-lightening treatment for this color. This shade will add more detail to your hair and look great on wavy dark brown hair, especially as highlights or balayage.
9. Dark Mahogany
It’s a gorgeous red-brown shade with a small amount of purple added to the base color. Dark mahogany is a deep color that goes well with black hair. This shade has a gentle and classic look. Suitable for textured hair like a perm or curls.
10. Wine Mahogany
It’s a rich eye-popping shade. Wine mahogany is an over-the-top hair color. So go for it if you are looking for a noticeable change. This shade will give a vibrant look to your hair and elevate your appearance instantly. It is suitable for neutral and warm skin tones.
11. Classic Light Mahogany
The soft mahogany looks flawless on almost every skin tone. It is a subtle shade of mahogany, not too outgoing but beautiful. Light-mahogany is one of the popular hair colors that look great on pale or light skin tones.
12. Golden Brown
Are you looking for a charming hair color? Then golden brown is the best choice. The color will be warm and vibrant. And has a light glimmer tone to it. This shade complements all skin undertones. Golden brown goes well with multi-layer cuts or in balayage with medium or deep brown hues.
13. Deep Violet
Deep violet does not require any pre-lightening treatment. It’s one of the popular hair colors that blends well with your hair and looks like your natural hair. The beauty of the color can be seen only under the sunlight. It’s perfectly suited for cool undertones. It’s a great choice for those who are looking for a subtle yet stylish makeover.
14. Chocolate Mauve
It’s a hybrid hair color. This shade blends two different hues and forms a glamorous deep violet-brown color. Chocolate mauve is a fabulous shade that helps to enhance your natural look. Any first-timer who wants a touch of femininity can try chocolate mauve shade. It’s suitable for long smooth wavy hair.
15. Black Cherry
Black cherry is a mixture of brown and violet shades. This shade is suitable for almost all hair textures like curly, wavy, and straight. You can achieve a deep violet with a black cherry shade. And the best thing about this color is that it is a low-maintenance hair color. So, beginners don’t need to worry about the maintenance.
Tips to Maintain Color-Treated Hair
After hair coloring, maintaining your color-treated hair is a also an important task. So, use sulfate-free hair products which are specially formulated for colored hair. Color-treated hair may have added problems like dryness, hair damage, split-ends, and hair breakage. To prevent dryness, deep hair conditioning treatment is required every month or so.
Heat is the biggest enemy of hair color. So, avoid hot showers and wash your hair only with lukewarm water. It helps to prevent color fading out. Blow-dry may seem easy but the possibility of hair damage and hair breakage is high. Instead of blow-drying, just let it dry naturally and avoid ironing your hair too. This will embrace your natural hair texture and prevent hair from being damaged.
So, these were the popular hair colors to be considered for first-timers. You can go for either global coloring, balayage, or streaks highlighting. Before going to the salon, you can collect a few reference images and discuss them with your hairstylist. Customize your hair color according to your skin undertones.
If you’re unsure about colors I advise you to do test trials on the lower ends of your hair. If you’re not satisfied with the color you can easily trim them. For hair color virgins, it’s best to go to a professional hairstylist and discuss your color preferences, temporary or permanent color, before hair treatment, and after hair treatment.
We’d love to hear your experiences with getting your hair colored for the first-time and your favorite hair color. So, let us know in the comments below. Also, please share your beautiful hair color pictures by tagging us on Instagram @shilpaahujadotcom.
Sowndarya Gopala Krishnan is a Fashion Journalist Intern at ShilpaAhuja.com. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Fashion Technology from Sona College of Technology, Salem. Before ShilpaAhuja.com, she did her internship as an Assistant Costume Designer in Kollywood movies. She also works as a freelance stylist for product/brand photo-shoots. Her hobbies are playing piano, writing haikus, watching documentaries about different countries to know their lifestyle, fashion, technology and culture. Her life motto is, “Never stop exploring yourself; feel the new you every day.”