One night in late November, I found myself scrolling through my Instagram feed when I came across a photo posted by Euphoria actress Barbie Ferreria. The natural brunette had just posted a photo set showing off her new fiery red locks. Dyeing my hair would be fun, I thought. What I didn’t realize at the time was that pretty much all of Hollywood would follow Ferreria’s lead over the course of the next few months. Ferreria's co-star Sydney Sweeney is just the latest in a long line of actresses, musicians, and It-girls alike who have chosen to dye their hair red in 2022.
Let me start off by saying that I have never dyed my hair. There was one instance in middle school where my mother let me dye one single section a hot pink hue, but that was the beginning and end of my hair color journey. So going from my usual brunette hue to a shiny copper shade was a bit of a leap, but one that Hollywood quite literally convinced me to take.
Luckily enough, the very kind people at IGK (opens in new tab) reached out to me last month about a new line of permanent hair dyes that they were launching. And so I found myself in the salon chair in early March dying my hair what I would soon learn was referred to as “Zendaya Red,” a.k.a. the envy-worthy deep red hue that the actress dyed her own locks back in 2019, ahead of the press tour for the latest installment in the Spiderman franchise, and has since reprised on the red carpet at the Euphoria season two premiere back in January. Celebrities like Kendall Jenner, Sophie Turner, and even Gigi Hadid have followed suit, opting for similar copper shades.
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What made every fashionable woman in Hollywood see red in 2022? IGK’s co-founder and celebrity colorist Chase Kusero (opens in new tab) believes that the trend has been a long time coming. “I think a lot of women have always kind of wanted to be red at some point in their life,” he told Marie Claire. Kusero credits celebrities like Jenner and her ultra-shiny new hue as a key reason the trend took off so quickly, noting how healthy and shiny their hair looks after the transformation.
The hair dyes, which you can shop for $25 each at ULTA (opens in new tab)or on IGK’s website (opens in new tab), include 25 blended shades inspired by the company’s own staff of celebrity-adored stylists. All of the kits are vegan-, gluten-, and cruelty-free and are super easy to use (read: I’ve successfully touched up my color from the comfort of my own bathroom already). My color comes courtesy of two shades in the range, “Sunset Lover” and “Smoky Scarlet." The dyes also claim to leave your hair looking 15x shiner, which I can personally attest to; the shine lasted weeks after my initial dye.
If you're planning to use the IGK boxed dyes to get the oh-so-trendy hue for yourself, Kusero has a few tips. First, he recommends not to shampoo your hair for a few days after initially applying the color. Red dye tends to fade quickly, maximizing the time between washing is key. “You want the color to get a chance to set and the shine to settle into your hair,” he says.
Kusero also recommends touching up your color every four to six weeks, which won't make your hair feel brittle. The IGK at-home colors are formulated without ammonia, which means that they won’t be as drying on the hair as other, similar formulas. He says that clients will often buy two boxes at once: one to actually color the hair and another to touch up with.
“They’ll do one and then maybe three to four weeks later, they'll run the color through their ends as a little refresh, not even letting it sit on for the whole 30 to 35 minutes," he says. "They're putting up for 15 to 20 minutes just to refresh the red.”
If you're worried about at-home color maintenance, Marie Claire spoke to New York City-based hair colorist and stylist Giselle Luza to answer all of our burning questions.
Does porosity play a role in how your hair takes to at-home dye?
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“When your hair is dryer or has a higher porosity, it absorbs color more,” Luza says, noting that finer hair types tend to absorb color more quickly, too. Strand testing is key here: test a small section of your hair to see how well the color takes before diving in and dying your entire head.
To combat this from happening, Luza recommends a pre-dye routine that includes hydrating products like Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector or Leonor Greyl's Treatment Oil—a pre-wash hair oil—that will even out your hair's porosity. Equally important is to make sure that every section of your hair is evenly saturated during the dying process.
What shampoos or conditioners should I use after I dye my hair?
Luza recommends Pureology’s Hydrate shampoo and conditioner (which Marie Claire editors have raved about for weeks) to care for recently-colored hair because it "helps maintain a healthy baseline for all hair types," she says. The formula is both sulfate-free and vegan, and doesn't weigh down fine or thin hair.
Are there any products you should use after you dye your hair?
“You can get a red tinted conditioner or a semi-permanent gloss to refresh the red,” Luza says. She recommends working either the gloss or the conditioner into your routine roughly once a month in order to keep your red looking vibrant as possible.
If it's a shot of shine that you're after, Kusero recommends using IGK's Expensive Amla Oil Hi-Shine Top Coat. "It's like a topcoat for your nails, but for your hair," he says. Use it in place of your normal conditioner for hair that looks and feels its healthiest. I've been incorporating it into my own routine since I got my hair dyed and it makes it look, well, expensive.
Julia Marzovilla is the E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.
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