If you’re visiting a new stylist, having your hair colored (or cut, for that matter!) can be a pretty stressful experience. What if she doesn’t understand what you want? What if she isn’t talented? What if she gets your hair too light or too dark?

Don’t worry! With these tips, you can help ensure your stylist gets your hair color right the first time (and every time):

Have an idea (and a visual)

Instead of trying to describe a color and your colorist trying to read your mind, bring in several pictures of women – whether they’re celebrities, your friends or even you at another time in your life – that have the hair color you are aiming for. Show these to the colorist and ask her opinion – would that shade work on my hair? Does it work with my skintone? My eyes and eyebrows?

Don’t be too stuck on one picture, though. Lighting, time of day and even the quality of the photo could create a color that is not achievable in real life. Plus, if your colorist tells you that shade won’t work on you, you’ll want to have a backup. Showing her several similar shades will give her a better idea of the range to start with for you.

Go for a consultation

Many salons will schedule a consultation appointment before you come in for the actual dyeing so you can discuss exactly what you are looking for. Even if your “consultation” is just a short chat at the beginning of your appointment, there are ways to make the most of it.

Ask for color swatches when you’re at the salon, so you and your colorist can have a tangible visual to discuss. This will also give you a better idea of how colors look in real life.

To learn more, visit Keranique, on Amazon.

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