Whether you splurge every few weeks at the salon, or purchase drugstore kits to maintain your tresses, those pesky roots will rear their unwanted heads eventually. Instead of spending time and money on unnecessary trips to the salon, camouflage your roots at home. Root touch-up kits are available in a variety of colors at drug and beauty supply stores and are not only affordable, but are fairly easy to use.
Brush out any tangles or snarls with a wide-tooth comb. If possible, skip washing your hair the morning you plan to dye your roots. This allows the scalp's natural oils to accumulate, protecting the delicate skin from the dye.
Slip on the gloves provided in the root touch-up kit and mix the developer according to the package directions in a plastic bowl you don't mind ruining. Some manufacturers provide a bowl. If not, grab a plastic bowl, never metal. Metal can modify the chemical's structure, altering the shade.
Divide your hair into 1- to 2-inch sections and secure each with a plastic clip. Remove one of the clips at the front of your hair and apply the color to the regrowth with gloved fingers or a small brush, if one is provided in the kit. Continue to remove each clip and apply the product to your roots, from the front of your head toward the back.
Allow the color to develop according to the package directions. Work a medium- tooth comb through your hair, from root to tip, to distribute the dye. Allow the dye to sit for an additional five minutes. Rinse the hair dye out until the water runs clear.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions concerning aftercare. Some manufacturers will advise you to shampoo after touching up your roots, while others will advise you to towel dry your hair and style as usual.
Many touch-up kits provide darker-than-expected results, Sandra Roca, professional colorist in New York City, tells "Cosmopolitan," so she recommends purchasing a product one shade lighter than your dyed hair.