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Box Dye: A quick fix that comes at a price!

Updated: Dec 28, 2023

Happy Friday everyone!

Itchy fingers, a bold moment, a quick decision and voilà, you end up with a brand-new box dye hair colour. It might seem as a quick and easy fix from your local drug store, but box dye is harmful to your hair when all we want is glossy, shiny and healthy hair strands.

It might not come as a surprise to you: Stylists and box dye don´t go well together, some stylists even say that box dye comes at a price. We are all for DIY and expressing your full creativity, but your hair´s health is simply more important. Plus, once you invest time, effort and money in your hair, let´s make sure you get the best possible result.

Why is Box Dye bad for your hair?

(1) Its Ingredients: A mix of harsh, unknown and hard-to-pronounce chemicals are the main reason to shy away from box colour. These chemicals are extremely damaging, change your hair shaft, leaving it dry and porous. Sometimes they might even irritate your scalp.

The highlight of it all: Especially high ratios of ammonia can cause allergic reactions. To some degree ammonia is also part of salon-grade colours but that's why patch testing is so important! Recent pastel hair colour trends might draw you to box dye that promises to lighten or even to bleach your hair. These kits are very aggressive, they strip away the protective layer of your hair shaft, expose and weaken it. Bleaching your hair at home is very damaging, risky and we strictly advise against it!

(2) Standard colours Box dyes are (harshly) formulated to work on a broad range of hair, not taking into account your individual hair structure, type, colour, your hair´s history, its general health or current condition.

Usually there is no option to change their pigmentation, so you get what you see on the box - or at least sometimes, which brings us to the next point:

(3) Uneven application - be prepared to be surprised To a non-trained eye it is very difficult to see when the hair is saturated with colour. Too much product and overprocessing (leaving the colour on for too long) can lead to dull, damaged and porous hair. Your hair's texture will also determine how even the application will be.

(4) Build-up

Think of box dye colours as a coat around your hair shaft, which can only be removed by chopping it off - long roots & pixie cut, hello! The more often you apply it, the thicker the layer (i.e. the build-up) and the more damage to your hair. When reapplying box colour, you can also end up with different shades of the colour, as you will reapply the colour on some parts but apply it for the first time on the regrowth of your hair.

Your hair, and your hair colour is as individual as you are - so give it the treatment it deserves: When deciding on the right colour shade licensed professionals consider your hair type, your virgin hair colour, possible former hair colours, your hair's condition and overall health, the degree of aftercare, your lifestyle and many more factors. Plus, our stylists are trained and experienced in applying and mixing the colour to create the right degree of colour saturation and protection for your hair.

Sometimes it might also take multiple sittings to achieve your ideal hair colour shade, that´s why we always talk about a hair (colour) journey!

In case a box dye project went south for you, a colour correction is what you and your hair need:


Colour Corrections: From Box Dye to Balayage

Our client Louise came to our salon with a mix of hair colours, green box dye and long roots growing in. After an initial consultation, our colour director Rachel mixed different formulas taking into consideration Louise´s hair history, the hair´s current condition and the desired outcome and transformed Louise´s hair into a full-head balayage in purple tones. She used a vibrant purple from Goldwell's Elumen Play Colour range and conditioning treatments to restore the hair's health. The result is a fun, trendy and low maintenance look.

Here is a before & after:


Do you have any questions left? Please reach out to us anytime!

Or in case you can relate and would like to start your own hair journey, we'd love to help! You can book a free consultation with one of our stylists now and start your hair journey tomorrow!

We cannot wait to see you!


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