Home Hair Colour 101: The Pro Secret to Avoiding those Dreaded Hot Roots

by Janine on 22 August 2013 · 11 comments

Saks Fifth Avenue Unveils First Shoe Floor With Its Own Zip Code 10022-SHOESkunk stripes, hot roots — if you’re a novice home hair colourist, you’re at risk, especially if you’re using an applicator bottle to apply your dye. But there’s good news: that weirdly patchy, bleachy-at-the-roots effect is easy to avoid. All you need is this video tip from Luis Pacheco, Clairol consulting colourist and owner of Hair on the Avenue in Toronto.

Note: it’s not just about keeping your dye a respectful distance from your scalp. (Secondary hot-zone tip: the warmth from your head can intensify colour results nearest your roots.)

Such a simple chemistry thing, but key. Please spread the news to help others avoid a DIY colour oopsie.

Angie Harmon_hot roots or maybe root-touch-up mishapWhether Debra Messing and Angie Harmon (#Iwanttobeher) are examples of hot roots or root-touch-up mishaps is debatable, but you get the idea. Don’t let it happen to you, ’k?

Saks Fifth Avenue Unveils First Shoe Floor With Its Own Zip Code 10022-SHOEUPDATE Celebrity stylist Charles Baker Strahan spotted Debra Messing’s photo in this post and weighed in with the following info and advice: “Almost all over-the-counter colors us 20 vol developer. If you are covering minimal gray and using the same tonal quality you should be fine. If you have advanced gray and are trying to match color from a salon you will find trouble like Debra Messing in this photo.”

For the scoop on home hair colour today — fool-proof technology, formulas, conditioning ingredients — download the August 15th print edition of The Kit for my story, “The Bathroom-Sink Salon.”

Photo of Debra Messing in 2007 by Evan Agostini/Getty Images. Photo of Angie Harmon in 2010 by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.

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Hair on the Avenue: Clairol Colour Consultant Luis Pacheco: Tips for At-Home Colour — Hair On The Avenue - Blog
23 August 2013 at 11:25 am
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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Icaria 22 August 2013 at 8:26 am

Oooh thank you Janine for this!!! This makes so much sense! I think this happened to me 1 or 2x but now I’ll avoid… forever!!!


Janine 22 August 2013 at 10:49 am

Love the “forever!!!” bit, Icaria! xo


Christina 22 August 2013 at 8:46 am

Hilarious that you illustrated this with Debra Messing. I always feel terribly sorry for her. (Am I just being bitchy?)


Janine 22 August 2013 at 10:54 am

Well… I do like Debra Messing (liked her “Starter Wife” series very much). But she’s had a few unfortunate red-carpet moments, like this one. And that lipstick. No.

I envy her athletic physique. I’ll admit that.


Christina 22 August 2013 at 6:16 pm

Oh god. That lipstick. You’re right. I didn’t even notice the specifics, just that something was wrong.


Luisa 22 August 2013 at 9:29 am

Hi! Do you have any twitter account? :)


Janine 22 August 2013 at 10:48 am

Hi Luisa,

Yes, we’re on Twitter as the following:




Luisa 22 August 2013 at 3:33 pm

Thank you!


Cathi Graham 26 August 2013 at 10:13 am

Thanks for sharing this video tip on how to avoid roots that will stand out and make for embarrassing photos! This is especially useful for aging women who are trying to keep their grey roots hidden.


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