Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Beauty Review: Naturtint Permanent Hair Color
I have been dying my hair for years and years…ever since I started using that awful Sun-In and lemon juice on my hair back in high school. Except that after high school I didn't want my naturally strawberry hair lighter, I wanted it darker. So all through college and beyond I dyed it progressively darker and darker until one summer (a year or two after I got out of college) I finally dyed it black. I love love love my hair black and dyed it that way for YEARS, but this past summer I decided I needed to make the transition back to a red and had it bleached. Before then I had used Wella hair dye (the kind you buy at a salon and mix with developer yourself) for years…and it was decidedly NOT vegan. Hair dye has been one of the hardest products for me to “veganize” and is pretty much the only product that I knowingly (and begrudgingly) used even though it wasn't vegan.
However, after getting my hair bleached, I decided that I could not continue using non-vegan hair dye. I just felt too guilty and awful about using products with animal-derived ingredients in them so, I went on a quest to find a vegan hair dye.
Originally, I wanted to use Manic Panic, which is completely vegan and cruelty-free. I dream of having purple or blue hair, alas my jobby job frowns upon “unnaturally” colored hair. I thought I would be able to get away with using one of their reds, but after looking at photos online I just felt that it might turn out too “unnatural” for me to get away with at work. So that was sadly out the window.
I also thought about trying henna, but after talking to a friend that had used it I decided I was just too lazy to go through the whole process. And I didn't really want to deal with the stinkiness or mess.
My roots were growing out and I knew I had to find something fast, so after a little researching online I came across Naturtint. Various online sources list this as “vegan-friendly”, but I couldn't find any definitive information from the company’s website as to whether the dye is 100% vegan. I decided to give it a go since it was the closest I could find to vegan-friendly dye.
Naturtint uses vegetable-based ingredients and is ammonia-free. It isn't completely free of chemicals, but much better than standard hair dye.
I've used Naturtint several times now and am amazed by this hair dye! First off, it doesn't reek like other dyes, but has a very subtle scent. It comes in a box with everything you will need for mixing and applying the dye – developer, dye, applicator bottle, gloves, plus shampoo and conditioner. The instructions are easy to follow and similar to most other box hair dyes.
I choose reds that were similar to my own hair color (I've used both 9R Fire Red [what I'm using now] and 7C Terracotta Blonde) and am happy to report that the color is vibrant and lasts quite a while (I use color-safe vegan shampoo and conditioner [currently Desert Essence Italian Red Grape], which helps prolong the color).
The dye also helps improve the texture of my hair and makes it so silky! In all my days of using hair dye, this is the only dye I've ever used that actually makes my hair smooth! In the past regular old dyes have left my hair stinky and damaged, but Naturtint leaves it feeling so healthy!
I’m pretty happy to have found a hair dye that is permanent, vegetable-based, eco-friendly, easy to apply and leaves my hair healthy. And at long last I will actually be using a brand that is vegan-friendly (and I’m hoping is 100% vegan, though I have not been able to verify this).
The only downside is that it is more expensive than regular hair dye…a box is around $18 at my local health food store, but it can be found online for cheaper. I will say that despite the steep price I can usually just buy one box and that will suffice for one application. When I used to buy regular old box dyes they were $10 a pop, but I would have to buy two to ensure they covered all my hair (I have thick, coarse hair and it takes a lotta dye to cover it all). So really I am definitely getting bang for my buck with Naturtint.
If you are looking for a healthier dye, I would definitely recommend Naturtint! You can find it at Whole Foods, at your local health food store or online.