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Hair Color: Box vs Salon

Color Correction!

As much as we love seeing these on our appointment book, it breaks our hearts when we see the bathroom color mistakes caused by the desire to save a dollar.  In this world, companies are out to make money and use famous faces in commercials to make their product seem more appealing and trustworthy. I am here to tell you now, my reader, that Beyonce does not use that box dye which she get paid millions to promote. Rita Hazan, based out of  New York, is her hair stylist and definitely does not use Feria.

One of the biggest questions people have about color is, “what’s the difference between your color and box color?”… and if you’ve asked this question, you may have heard many different answers which were unimpressive or they were too technical for you to understand.

Let’s break it down!



Here we have a teenage client who has been seen by Savannah for quite a few years. Typically, a medium highlight service is preformed… but one morning, our said guest wanted to go lighter all over. A friend of hers exclaimed that she had gone to hair school and could help her get to her desired color  for much cheaper than if she came into the salon. A box of  “lightest blonde” was purchased, and applied with a bottle. When it came time to rinse, her scalp was burning (later found that the box color had caused bleeding) and she was now sporting  a color we call “blorange”… also known as the most undesirable tone of blonde.

What really makes salon grade color any different from box dyes?

If you’ve been in our salon, you’ve noticed how extensive our color bar is; we have MASK, MASK Lite, A New Colour, L’Art lightners, as well as MASK’s lightner and A New Colour’s lightner (all Davines). Each line has special talents, and when were evaluating your hair, asking you questions as well as feeling, we’re determining which line you would benefit from the most. If a guest brings us a picture and tells us “I WANT THIS COLOR”, there are *s e v e r a l * formulations which can be used to achieve that color– it all depends on the hair it’s being used on.

Box dye’s are not customizable. They show you a picture of what color is in the box, and that’s what you’ll get… right? If you’ve colored your hair at home, you know this only holds true MAYBE the first time you apply it. But why? Think of your hair as a sponge; if some spots are drier than others, those spots will absorb more. Metallic salts have been used in hair color since the 1800’s, and are an agent that assists the color in attaching itself to the hair. Not only that, but it causes the hair to become dry… but not evenly. The end result is usually lighter at the roots, fading to dark.

Why does this happen?

Without giving any of our professional secrets away, application is key; as you can see in the picture, the closest to the scalp is lighter than the rest of it. When dealing with the desire to achieve any color, you must take many factors into account; porosity (remember the sponge analogy?), condition, medications, etc etc. The head also expels heat, so the color closest to the scalp will typically process faster and cause a myriad of extra fun tones (we call these “hot roots”).



Hair color should be respected. For something that is changing the entire molecular structure of your hair, it is more than just the goop you can apply in your bathroom to give you that bombshell red you’ve been wanting. When used improperly, such as the above guest, it can cause burns and abrasions to your skin. Have you ever felt like your ‘root’ area is growing faster than you think your hair is? That’s because your hair is breaking off. The mixture of dehydrating metallic salts, as well as the high amounts of ammonia create the perfect cocktail of hair destruction. Not to mention the destruction of your bank account if something were to go terribly wrong!



I truly hope that this has helped answer any questions you may have had! Salon Zellanova likes to stay up to date on hair technology, and we’re always here to help educate our guests. If you have any more questions, please comment below and we’ll respond quickly.




We LOVE transformations!

Happy Friday!
We’ve been super busy changing the lives of our guests, that we’ve neglected the blog for a bit… but we’re back!
Last week, we had quite a few of you come in for some fall change… but we also had a couple who just needed a complete transformation.


Tis the season to break away from summer blonde! A nice strawberry blonde works well with fair skin and blue eyes.




A new client, searching for something that would make her look refreshed. Look at that shine!