Posted by All-Nutrient Professional on Aug 19, 2017

 All-Nutrient Designer Andrea Harbison answers how to get the best vivid color results.

Fantasy and magical creatures like unicorns, mermaids, and fairies are taking over the beauty industry. The result has inspired people to step outside their comfort zone and experiment with vibrant and pastel haircolors. With more than 428,000 hashtags on Instagram there is no shortage of inspiration for unicorn hair. However, many people are usually unsure as to what kind of haircolor service to ask for and how to get that ethereal, sparkling esthetic they see online.All-Nutrient Designer Andrea Harbison paints the entire col

or spectrum at her salon La Dolce Vita in Franklin, TN. When it comes to pursuing one of the hottest trends of 2017, Harbison shares advice on how to get the right color the first time.

Q: If someone is considering trying a trend like unicorn, mermaid or rainbow hair, what is your advice?

A: “When considering some if these trendy fashion colors maintenance is always a factor. These kinds of colors are heavy on the upkeep."

Keep a budget in mind when deciding on the style you want to maintain. Depending on your natural haircolor and length, getting a bright, bold all-over color often requires lifting multiple levels before color is applied. The strength of color should also be considered. If deep blues, purples, and pinks are the colors you want, plan for more frequent trips to the salon and to purchase color-protective shampoos and styling products for your new hue.

Q: Some clients might shy away from these trends because they aren't sure how it will look on them, how do you make it work for each client?

 A: “These colors are not for everyone. We want to make 

sure they are educated on what it takes to get their hair light in order to even do the application so we are not damaging the hair and then they decide it doesn't look great on them.  I typically dye a few extensions in the fashion colors as well and put it around their face so they know what to expect.”

Another great tip is to experiment with hair chalk and color sprays that can be washed out in the shower the same day. Using temporary products can help determine which color complements your skin tone best. Do you want cotton-candy pink or Gwen Stefani circa 2000 hot pink?


If you have fair skin with cool and pink undertones light pink and “sunset” colors are the shades for you. Peach is perfect complementary color for those with freckles! Fair skin with warm undertones should embrace their golden glow with colors like lavender, baby blue and aqua. Medium and cool skin tones should dive deeper into vibrant colors like ruby, fuchsia, and magenta. For medium skin with warm undertones, jewel colors like sapphire and emerald will give you bold mermaid hair. Still craving pastel tones? Start with a color like sapphire and fade into a pastel periwinkle. Dark cool skin tones should try vivid violets. Bright purples melt together beautifully on curly and textured hair. Sultry shades like dark plums and ruby should be saved for dark skin with warm undertones. 

 Q: For those who don’t want an all-over color, what are some other ways to add a pop of color without all the drama?

 A: “Coloring peek-a-boo highlights throughout the hair and coloring them with fashion colors is a great way to give them a taste of color but not too dramatic.”

The trick to getting that ever-so-coveted unicorn hair is keeping the colors and placement light and airy. Harbison recommends using a brush to paint the color on and blending multiple colors to create a gradient effect. Keep the peek-a-boo sections small and gradually build intensity over the next few appointments.

Below: Harbison applying and blending multiple colors.


Q: What’s the most important thing a colorist should keep in mind when prepping the hair for bright colors?

 A: “I think keeping the condition of the hair looking great is most important. We all know you have to lift the hair to get these colors to apply and look right. When doing the lifting process make sure Lightener Control™ and All-Nutrient Pure Oil are used in each session!”

Damage can happen with any color process, but one requiring bleach and multiple steps can be especially stressing. To avoid damage and breakage stylists should use a bonding agent when lightening. Clients should prepare the hair by restoring and strengthening before getting to a salon. Always perform a consultation before application to make sure a client’s hair is healthy enough and is clarified of any mineral and product buildup that could alter the clients technicolor request.

Q: When it comes to getting a certain shade, what are some quick tips for diluting and mixing colors?

 A: “Using 0/00 Clear to dilute is a great way to dull down some of the brightness of the fashion colors. If they want it vibrant but not so bright, I will also add in a few grams of Elevare [All-Nutrient color intensifier and ammonia booster]. Doing some of these colors on swatches is a great way to sample colors and use as an example for clients to see”

More often than not, the magic behind these sparkling, metallic, pastel looks is science and math! Testing different formulas ahead of time will help you get the right color for your client the first time. You may find out that you need to mix up more than one color to create a custom shade.

Q: When it comes to brights & vivids, do you have any tips on how to keep color from fading fast?

A: “Using color-depositing and color-protective shampoos are a must! We have to remember these colors are literally sitting on the surface so we know they won't last forever.”

Be sure to prep hair with thermal protectants before blow drying and heat styling and always use UV color-protective products (Yes, the sun also fades color!). Another tip is to prep hair before showering or swimming with an oil-based product so color stays locked in against extended time in the water. Invest in a dry shampoo and make it your BFF, limiting the number of washes to as low as one a week will help keep color from fading. Just like your laundry, washing vivid, colored hair in cold water is also good practice, as when the hair cuticle is exposed to hot water, it opens.


Check out some of Andreas color creations! For more follow her on instagram

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Harbison's favorite color combo right now (shown above) is mixing All-Nutrient's Fashionizers colors Crimson ( 40 g ), and Hot Pink ( 30 g ), Elevare and 30 volume to create a beautiful vibrant color!!

Topics: haircolor