Color Cues: Tips From Celebrity Colorist Sarah Conner at Neil George Salon, Beverly Hills

Q: I want to change my hair color, but am afraid of doing something that will look weird against my skin tone. What should I consider before deciding on a new look? Any rules of thumb I should keep in mind?

A: Three things to consider:

  1.  Look at your eye color closely. Do you see specks of yellow or gold? If you do, it’s a safe bet that warm-toned hair color will look good on you. If you don’t, opt for cool tones.
  2. Generally speaking, you should be safe if you stay two tones away from your natural color (two shades darker or two shades lighter).
  3. It could be helpful to look at photos of yourself as a child. What did your hair look like when you were between the ages of 8-10? You won’t go wrong if you try to recreate that look!

 Q: I’m really interested in red hair but not sure I can keep up with the commitment. Realistically, how often does a vibrant red, a la Christina Hendricks  or Karen Elson, need to be touched up? And will the red get all over my sheets?

Photo Credit: Janet Mayer / PR Photos

 A: Well, it depends. If your hair has been over processed pre-red, you might fade more quickly. In that case, you can keep the “pop” alive by stopping into the salon every 2 weeks for a refreshing color gloss. Otherwise, your roots should be touched up about every four weeks to maintain the color you want—and a color gloss can keep the ends looking vibrant. Red sheets shouldn’t be anything to worry about, as long as a professional permanent color is used and proper rinsing takes place.

Q: I can’t afford to go to the salon. Any words of wisdom for successfully accomplishing at home hair color? Anything I absolutely must leave up to a professional?

A: Yes … bleach! Leave anything and everything requiring bleach to a professional for sure. And DON’T attempt to go from light blond to brunette, either. You’ll risk turning your hair green! At home hair color is fine only if you’re sticking within the two-shade range (again, that’s two shades lighter OR darker than your natural color).

Q: The ombre hair trend is everywhere these days. Do you think it’s losing its momentum? What do you think the next “big thing” is?

A: Believe it or not, I’ve already had a request for “reverse ombre”… fading to a darker tone on the ends.  I’ve also been doing a lot of what I like to call “Technicolor ombre,” where the ends fade to a vibrant funky color such as tones of pink or purple. Other than that, I think we’ll be seeing a lot more classic highlighting and solid tones in the coming months.

Q: What are your favorite makeup looks to complement blond hair? How about red? Brown?

A: I feel like most make up looks can complement any hair color if the makeup is complimenting your eye color and skin tone. Eyes, skin, and hair tones should all be fluid. Red is the only hair color that can make things tricky.  In fact, the only clients I really encourage to check out new makeup are those who are newly red. With red hair, it’s important to avoid purples and mauves. But forest greens, rusts, or peachy tones are great. A good general rule for keeping your makeup on-trend, regardless of your hair color: less is more!


One Response to “Color Cues: Tips From Celebrity Colorist Sarah Conner at Neil George Salon, Beverly Hills”

  1. Marie says:

    Just a note: My hair is a reverse ombre now. It was a mistake, but we liked the result do much I will be keeping it. Touch ups will be a breeze. It’s subtle, but fun. Goes from a lighter cognac to a darker chestnut.

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