I love to dye my hair. I prefer to do it these days with the least amount of damage possible. I rarely lighten (bleach) it but when I do it’s at a salon. When I say red head I mean Royal Mail red there’s nothing natural about it. I’ve worked my way through many variations of red. I have my hair dyed red then as it fades I top the colour back up myself. These semi-permanent shades act like stains & don’t cause damage. In a splurge about 6 weeks ago I picked up Manic Panic’s Amplified Vampire Red? Same as Directions but are supposed to last 30% longer. Also a treat as they’re more than double the price, so are they worth it?
Manic Panic – Vampire Red
Faded & Ginger
Nobody really aims for their hair to look like this for long but the more faded it is the better. Even though my ends faded more it’s pretty even with more colour at the roots where my hair is less damaged. I did this process over a few weeks, hot showers & foamy SLS (Sodium Laurel Sulfate) shampoos strip the colour. I try to do this until the water runs clear or until the hair dye itch gets me!
Dying Is A Messy-ish Job
If you’re contemplating a bright hair dye like this you will likely get dye in many places other than your hair. Many people swear by Vaseline (petroleum jelly) for your hair-line but I don’t like it on my face. Even after 10 years of doing this I still get it on my face, ears, arms & even sometimes my legs. You won’t be the only victim either your bath tiles will get splattered but you grout will stay that shade although someone faded by time. My favourite is the few hairs that make it to your bathroom floor. If they’re wet then assume your floor will be stained too. This isn’t me saying don’t do it but if you have a perfect white bathroom it won’t last for long. That being said I’ve gotten so good at applying dye I trust myself to sit on a towel on a cream carpet & do it.
When it comes to dying hair wear old clothes & use old towels as they will inevitably get marked too. A big problem with most dyes is that one pot is never enough. You can either buy multiple pots which for my length hair is 2-3 pots. My other method is keep any from the last time you did your hair & keep topping this up in a spare jar so you don’t waste it. Last but not least add some conditioner to it to bulk it out add a bit at a time, no more than a third of what you started with. Just think you get an intensive hair treatment at the same time. I’ve been loving the John Freida Frizz-Ease Flawlessly Straight Conditioner mixed in as it even tames my coarse thick hair.
The Longer You Leave It The Better
This confused look on Ally McBeals face simply explains two hair dye thoughts you may have. Mmmm, how long do I leave it on my hair for? I say as long as you can manage, either when you need to scratch an itch or your back hurts. Secondly, what do I do for those hours? That’s where Ally McBeal comes in handy. I can waste time watching 3-4 episodes before washing my hair.
Vampire Red Hair?
Vampire Red? I’m guessing blood-red was the thought behind the name but on my hair it was a bright red with a pink undertone. This is probably my most favourite dye to use up to now as this Amplified version held colour for about 3-4 weeks where it was as bright as it is above. After that point it has faded but it’s still quite red over the length but I can see where the orange shade was left from before. Usually Directions lasts around 2 weeks then it drops out much faster, a big part of colour loss is how you treat your hair after it’s been coloured.
However for the cost it wasn’t quite a perfect experience. For some odd reason the Manic Panic Amplified come in a bottle rather than a pot with a screw lid like the original formula. This means you will always have waste & the bottle it quite hard to squeeze making it harder to work with. I poured mine out into a bowl so I could see how much I had.
Keep Colour Bright
- When washing your dye out use water as cold as you can handle even luke warm is better than hot.
- Heat will fade hair faster, I let my hair dry over night then leave it natural or on weekends straighten it fortnightly at the most.
- Dry shampoo is your friend, you really can make hair last longer than you think. Just apply it & leave it between doing other things. 3-5 minutes is perfect before you give it a rub to clear any white patches. I use either Batiste or Urban Fudge they don’t have to be anything expensive.
- When you decided enough is enough & those greasy roots need a clean go sulphate free with your shampoo, your colour will thank you for it.
- Conditioner is great way to repair hair but also improve you shade. Mix any left over dye into your favourite to top up your colour each time you wash it. If you add a lot of dye that’s better but remember to wear gloves you don’t want the equivalent of fake tan hands!
Manic Panic isn’t cheap & I don’t think you have to use this to expect to get good results. When you pay for Manic Panic in the original formula is the brand name & the shade range. When you buy the Amplified your helping to reduce how often you have to dye your hair to keep it the shade you want. If you can get the same shade in say Directions, Crazy Colors & Directions then why pay more.
I’ve already purchased a new colour from Crazy Colors called Bordeaux for just £2! So we will see how that one fairs next? What beautiful shades do you like to dye your hair? What’s your favourite brand?