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I’m Sam, and I’ve been experimenting with the perfect red hair for many years! I’ve recently updated my hair method, and my hair is brighter than ever! CLICK HERE to see the new one! If your heart is set on a darker red that glistens in the sunlight, continue along the tour. 🙂
A little birdie told me you’re wanting to go red, or you’re looking to improve your red hair routine. I’ve been at it for many years and I’ve found a system that helps me achieve exactly the red I want all by my little lonesome at home. I’m not a professional, but I’ve always been a little bold—anything I can do to skip the salon, sign me up!
Please keep in mind that your results may be a lot different than mine depending on the color you start out with! My routine does not involve bleach. If you’re ready to grab life by the horns and tackle this yourself, let’s get right into it.
What You’ll Need
- a box or two of Feria R68 in Ruby Rush depending on the length of your hair
- a jar of Manic Panic in Vampire Red
- bottle of conditioner of your choice (I use Pantene)
- a bowl
- something to mix with
What You’ll Do
[Prep your area if you need to, you may make a mess here. Slap some vaseline on your ears and hairline if you’re wanting to avoid coloring your skin. It happens!]
The first thing I do is dye my hair with the Feria R68 boxed dye, following all the instructions on the box. Feria’s line of Power Reds is exactly that–powerful reds. They each contain a packet of a color booster, that acts as a stain or semi-permanent dye. This is why your hair looks shockingly bright after using a product from their Power Reds line until slowly begins to fade. GOAL: We’re going to hold onto that shocking shade.
Time to make red conditioner:
Next, while your boxed dye is working is magic, or sometime later, grab your jar of Manic Panic and scoop it out into a bigger bowl. Squeeze the contents of your conditioner bottle into the bowl with the Manic Panic and mix, mix, mix! I have a whole page dedicated to making red conditioner, click here to teleport.
How It Works
The box dye is excellent to use as a base, and while their color booster is a great idea, it tends to fade way too fast! We are going to be re-charging our red a couple of times a week with the homemade red conditioner we just made. Genius!
[Side note: Manic Panic is a vegetable dye that doesn’t contain harsh chemicals. It’s very gentle and perfect for use a couple times a week. It will not damage your hair!]
Tips to Prevent Red Hair From Fading
Red hair is the color that tends to fade the most. Here are some things you can do to prevent that:
- Use the red conditioner at least once a week
- Wash and rinse your hair with cold water
- Change up your hair washing routine and try to only wash once or twice a week
- Use color-friendly hair products
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Do you think _______ boxed dye will work?
A. I only have experience using Feria’s Ruby Rush because their Power Reds line is the only boxed dye I’m aware of that has the color booster packet. I can’t guarantee it’ll work the same. Life is short, so experiment away!
Q. How often should I use the red conditioner?
A. As often as you’d like, really. I only need to use it once a week. It depends on how often you wash your hair.
Q. Where can I buy Manic Panic in stores?
A. Beauty supply stores, like Sally Beauty. You may want to try a Hot Topic store as well, they’re known to sell it too.
Q. Can I use different shades of red from Manic Panic?
A. Yes, although each red will give you a different result! Have some fun and play around with the shades, they’ve got Pillarbox Red, Wildfire, Rock N’ Roll Red and Red Passion. You can even play around with the pinks and see how it turns out!
Q. Can I use another semi-permanent or temporary instead of Manic Panic?
A. Absolutely! As long as it’s a temporary or semi-permanent dye. The temporary dye brands I know of are Manic Panic, RAW, Splat, Special Effects, and Arctic Fox.
Q. Will this colored conditioner method work to extend the life of other fashion colors, such as green or blue?
A. Yes! My hair is currently blue and I’ve made a blue conditioner! 🙂 You can also make a toning conditioner by taking a little bit of purple Manic Panic and adding it to white conditioner!
Q. How do you get your eyebrows to match your hair so well?
A. I got lucky and found the perfect pencil to fill my brows in on the first try! I mix both Rimmel London Professional’s eyebrow pencil in 002 Hazel with Jordana Easyliner for Lips in Tawny. 🙂
Also if bright ruby-colored hair is what you’re going for, you may want to check out these related red hair posts as well:
Show me on Instagram if you’ve recently done your hair using this method! I’d love to see any color experiments, as well. You can find me at @hauntedhousewife!