Dye Hair The File

The Colour Correction That Saved My Hair

Working in the beauty industry means there are certain things I’ve had to learn the hard way. I’ve mistaken rose body cream for lip balm, dealt with my colleagues’ side eyes while spritzing my way through the fragrance shelf, and faced the wrath of my fiery rosacea after one too many serum trials. This might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s not hard to become overwhelmed and want to trial every product under the sun when they’re constantly staring you in the face — something I recently made the mistake of doing.

Let me explain.

I’d been frustrated with my hair colour for months. You know when you finally come to terms with the fact that you can’t grow out your regrowth forever? I caved and booked a colour appointment at one of my favourite salons, emerged post-appointment with the colour of my ~dreams~, and carried on living my life, a much happier version of my former self.

A week later, I went to my cabinet and pulled out a clarifying shampoo I’d been wanting to try for weeks, but had only just got my hands on. I washed my hair, went out for dinner and, naturally, didn’t think about it for the rest of the night. It was only the next day that I realised what I’d done to my colour – my then-ash blonde had been stripped down to a murky green (something my boss didn’t hesitate to ~lovingly~ point out when I turned up to the office. Thanks, Carlie!).

While I was slicking my hair back daily to cover up my green-tinged balayage, luckily The Boss had a bang-up colour correction suggestion up her sleeve, which brings me to one of the perks of working in beauty — knowing the best people in the biz for each different beauty-related dilemma.

If you’ve ever been to Edwards and Co, you might know Michael Kelly as the colourist with hair so good, you forget he’s not just in there for a mid-week blow dry. He introduces himself, and he’s bouncing around in his Saint Laurent sneakers with the best hair I’ve ever seen. Without a shred of concern, I put my fate (and hair) in his hands. It helped knowing he’s the Master Colour Director and Internal Education Leader for Edwards and Co.

After showing him my colour references, we landed on taking my hair to a Nordic brunette. You know that cool, mushroom, I’ve-never-touched-my-hair-colour look? I was in for a lengthy visit.

The process went a little something like this: Michael ran a semi-permanent dark blonde colour with cool undertones through my brassy root and mid area, his reason for using a semi-permanent being that it would avoid the colour looking too dense and artificial. He then moved on to textual mid-lightening through my (bright green) ends, a process that lasted for twenty minutes, before using an Olaplex water treatment to repair the broken bonds of my hair. This was followed by an overall glaze to tone down the remaining colour, which was left to process until he saw fit. From here, he did some basin balayage to lighten the new mushroom-hued base, before finishing it all off with a soft ash glaze. I bid adieu to my formerly Shrek-like locks.

Michael far exceeded my expectations — what he did was akin to witchcraft in my books. I honestly can’t remember my hair looking this good since my pre-bleach era. I almost cried in the chair, and not for the usual reasons people cry in hairdresser’s chairs. Many a thank-you was said.

For maintenance, he suggested I wash with Kevin Murphy’s Re.Store and Repair Me shampoo and conditioner, air-drying with a soft beach spray by Eleven Australia, and using Oribe’s Dry Texturizing Spray once dry. Weekly at-home Olaplex treatments were also advised.

If it’s colour correction you want, I can’t recommend Edwards and Co enough. Michael is exceptional, as are all of his colleagues. It was nothing short of mesmerising to watch the colour jobs happening around me, and I truly can’t wait to go back. Thank you, Michael!

Words, Betsy Greaves. With thanks to Michael Kelly at Edwards and Co Alexandria.