Many men are now opting to dye their locks, choosing between bleached, pretty-much-platinum tones or technicolor hues. But coloring your hair can be costly and time-consuming, potentially even damage-inducing if done the wrong way. What not to do: leave the dye in for longer than the box tells you to; touch everything in sight (dye is so damn messy); forget to moisturize or condition your do afterward; freak out if the tone turns out a tad brassy (purple shampoos can fix this); pick some sub-$10 kit at your local convenience store.
Whatever your reasoning for desiring a dye — maybe you've been met, either prematurely or at long last, by a few grays; perhaps you've always wanted to try blonde for a summer; maybe you're just an adventurous person in search of their next statement — doing so in 2021 proves far easier than even a few years ago. Kits abound and handy guides, like this one, are a dime a dozen. (Cautionary tales are, too.)
Our best advice is to trust yourself — after spot testing, of course. Here are six kits for coloring your hair from the comfort of your own home.
Lime Crime Bleach Party Kit
If you have darker hair but are trying to go blonde, or have recently dyed hair you want to redo, bleach is your best bet for landing your desired look. But you can't just any kind; there are dozens of options ranging from archaic to ammonia-overload, but Lime Crime's kit — cleverly called Bleach Party — lifts up to six levels. Also, it does so without PPD, resorcinol, parabens, phthalates and product testing on animals. Infused Aloe vera aids in moisture retention, too.
Colorsmith Custom Hair Color
Colorsmith customizes your chosen color to best cover any grays. The brand promises natural-looking coverage ranging from grays blended in to grays full covered. One can use the kit to address fleeting tones up top or in facial hair, and a single session lasts through 24 washes. This is the go-to, at-home kit for those (rightfully) fearful of looking downright dreadful after a store-bought box dye experiment.
Color&Co by L'Oreal Personalized Color Kit
Gray-free? Good for you. Not only does Color&Co by L'Oréal offer personalized dyes for those merely experimenting, but the consultation process can be done via video chat — it's a salon-quality experience that's included with every order. Talk through your goals, even pull up a photo reference and end it feeling confident you'll make the right choices. Custom kits — with all of the tools for application and touch-ups — last about three weeks and can help you achieve an array of colors: black, brown, blonde, red and even pastels and vivids.
Good Dye Young Semi-Permanent Dye
Founded by Paramore frontwoman Hayley Williams and her longtime makeup artist, Brian O'Connor, Good Dye Young does an array of colors inspired by the singer's signature looks. There's Riot named after her red days; the Lighter Daze line that references how they'd fade; and a few others. If you're feeling ambitious — be warned: these are bold — pick a shade and send it. However, they're safe for all hair textures and tones and are both vegan and cruelty-free. A conditioning sunflower extract base prevents damage, too.
True Sons Grey Hair Coverup Dye
The process for applying True Sons' coverup dye proves to be the most natural — by far. Simply pump the foaming agent in your hands (while wearing gloves) and massage it into your mane, beard or mustache. Leave it in for 15-25 minutes, wipe off your edges with the dye removal wipe and then wash it out. The kit also comes with a dye booster for touch ups between sessions. That process remains the same, but you only leave it in for 5 minutes instead. For the newbies or the "I would never dye my hair" camp, this kit is quick and discreet — albeit less personalized, though. Colors range from dark brown to dusty blonde.
Cleverman Rewind Dye
Cleverman is another DTC brand proclaiming to be a cure-all for incoming, and already arrived, grays. "Rewind the clock in less than 10 minutes," their newest campaign explains, as if dyeing your hair equates to insuring your car. The four-step process promises to cover grays from root to tip, all with instructions personalized to your particular...situation. A consultation prior to purchasing informs your custom color, coverage percentage, included tools, timing and technique.