How to Dye Dark Hair to Burgundy

by Rob Kemmett ; Updated September 28, 2017

Hair dying is the process of coloring your hair, most commonly used to cover graying hair. You can dye hair of all colors, whether light or dark, but treat darker hair with a little more caution. When dying your darker hair, one of many new colors can be applied, including blonde, brunette and even more specific colors such as burgundy. Most beauty salons offer hair coloring services, but it can also be done at home.

Testing Your Hair Dye

Purchase burgundy hair color and choose your commitment. A hair dye’s commitment is the level of the color’s strength and permanency. Most major brands use the following ranking system—highlighting (subtle color change), semi-permanent color (washes out after about a dozen shampoos), demi-permanent color (washes out after about two dozen shampoos) and permanent color (does not wash out of your hair with shampoo). Do not purchase a semi-permanent color or demi-permanent color hair dye product. Neither contains ammonia and only demi-permanent color contains a trace of peroxide, so you can not lighten your hair color with these products. Choose either highlights for a subtle burgundy color which will quickly fade or permanent color which will boldly change your hair color and last until your roots grow out.

Perform an allergy test to determine if your scalp will have a bad reaction to your hair dye. Most hair dye products come with an allergy test. Mix a small amount of the hair dye in a small plastic cup and smear some of it on the inside of your eyebrow, near your nose. Leave the dye on your eyebrow for at least 48 hours, being sure to cover it with a band-aid when you take a shower to prevent it from washing away. If you do not have an allergic reaction, it is safe to use the hair dye on your scalp.

Perform a strand test at the same time you are performing your allergy test. While wearing a rubber glove, apply a small amount of hair dye to a strand of your hair. Completely coat the strand of hair and leave it sit for at least 48 hours. After 48 hours, wash your hair. If the color is not what you expected or if your hair turns an off color, such as blue or green, consult a hair care professional for treatment options. If the color is what you desire, use the product to dye all of your hair.

Coloring Your Hair

Dress yourself in clothes you have no problem getting dirty. Cover as much skin as possible, as hair dye can be unpleasant when it makes contact with your skin. Put on your rubber gloves while working with your hair dye.

Read the instructions on your hair dye product. Different products have different instructions, so review the instructions and follow them precisely. Making a mistake can result in unpleasant consequences, so it is best to double check the directions before dying your hair. Although the details of directions vary from product to product, the process of dying your hair is usually the same.

Mix your hair dye by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Mix to the precise amounts given by your hair dye’s instructions. Do not estimate—be exact.

Put some dye in your hands and gently massage it into your hair, working from the roots out. Evenly coat and evenly saturate your hair. Leaving excess dye in your hair may result in uneven coloring.

Comb your hair to remove any excess dye. Combing your hair also helps to evenly distribute the dye. The dye will stain your comb, so use a comb that is not your regular comb.

Put the plastic bag over your head, being sure to completely cover all of your hair, and secure it with your hair clip. DO NOT put the plastic bag over your face, as it will suffocate you. Only cover your hair.

Set your timer for the exact amount of time instructed by your hair dye product. Hair dye is made of chemicals and, if left in your hair for a period of time that is longer than instructed, the chemicals may damage your hair and/or burn your scalp. Do not estimate—be exact.

Remove the plastic bag and take a shower when your timer rings, being sure to follow the instructions provided by your hair dye product. Some products require you to shampoo your hair until the water runs clear and others require you to use an after-dye conditioner, so follow your hair dye’s individual washing instructions.

Our Everyday Video

Brought to you by LEAFtv
Brought to you by LEAFtv

Photo Credits

  • Dale Davidson/Demand Media

About the Author

Rob Kemmett began writing professionally in 2010 and specializes in writing about food and hospitality. Kemmett has worked in various fine-dining restaurants throughout his career and holds an Associate of Applied Science in Le Cordon Bleu culinary arts from the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago.