Kristy Lage (@KristyLStylist), an independent stylist of Salon Karma, Omaha, Nebraska, shares the details of this transformation that took 12 hours and cost the client $600:
"Earlier in the year a very sweet girl with an inch of level 7 outgrowth walked in off of the street and requested hair color," says Lage. "I was happy to accommodate her. I asked her what color she was looking for as she had an inch of natural growth, but her mid shaft and ends were very clearly a slightly faded unknown color line in an RV. She told me at that point that she still wanted the RV color but in the spring wanted to transition into rose gold." The client then showed Lage the inspiration picture. "I knew that I needed to take this process slow as the client then told me she was also growing her very fine hair longer. So, knowing that in a month to six weeks I would need to be pulling out whatever color I put on today, I put just on her new growth Redken gels 5RV +10 volume and let her process at room temperature for only 30 minutes. This was just to blend her new growth with her previously colored mid shaft and ends. I did not want to add any extra color on the midshaft and ends knowing that would make pulling it out more difficult when we began the journey to rose gold."
When the client returned 2 months later, "Our road to rose gold began," says Lage. "I chose to highlight as my method because of the many colors throughout the model's hair in the inspiration picture and for more control of the end product. Basing my formulation on the inspiration photo, I knew that the 5RV I had applied to her new growth almost 10 weeks earlier would come out easily (it was still noticeable but had faded perfectly) plus she had new growth of about an inch and a half. My concern was the previously colored (and unknown color line used) RV on her midshaft and ends as it didn't seem to have faded since I saw her many weeks before."
Here Lage shares the HOW TO:
Step 1: Highlight in back to back fine weaves on the previously RV midshaft and ends using Redken Up to 7 lightener and 40 volume (with Olaplex mixed in).
Step 2: Place under very mild (level 2) infrared heat and process for 30 minutes. (NOTE: "The old RV barely budged. At this point I then decided to use Pravana color extractor and did 2 consecutive treatments under the dryer followed by a stand alone Olaplex treatment. The RV Color was slightly lighter but still hanging tough.")
Step 3: Dry the hair re-highlight (fine weave in back to back foils) selecting strands that had not been highlighted the first time around. (NOTE: "This time the highlight application was scalp to ends in the foils and once again with Redken Up to 7 with 40 volume and Olaplex but this time no heat was used.")
Step 4: Process at room temperature for 45 minutes. Rinse, towel dry.
Step 5: Tone scalp to ends using Redken Shades 9RB. Process for 20 minutes and treat with
Olaplex. Shampoo, condition and dry.
FOUR WEEKS LATER:
Step 6: Treat again with Olaplex and re-tone to keep the color looking nice through the transitional stages.
FOUR WEEKS AFTER THAT:
Step 7: Time to highlight again. (NOTE: "I spent time studying the inspiration picture trying to figure out just how to get that color since I found out the picture had been photoshopped. During her last visit I started thinking about adding 5RV back into the toner somehow but wanted to wait until I saw today's highlighting results.")
Step 8: Apply very fine back to back highlights (scalp to ends inside of the foils) starting in the nape and being careful to select the previously un-highlighted strands. Color used: Redken Flash Lift and 30 volume blended with Olaplex.
Step 9: Process at room temperature and rinse sections one by one as they lifted to a golden-like color with residual hints of the remaining RV. (NOTE: "At this point I had lightened that unknown RV color on the midshaft and ends enough that they could actually contribute to a rose gold finished product. Now I needed the roughly 3 inches of highlighted hair at the scalp that was a light blonde (color of the inside of a banana) to have enough RV added into them but still not overpower a gold toner. I also wanted this toner to deposit a little deeper into the hair shaft for some longevity if possible.") Shampoo, condition and dry.
Step 10: Blend 2 ounces of Redken Shades 9RB + 3/8 oz Redken Gels 5RV + 1 oz 10 volume + 1 ounce Redken Processing solution. (NOTE: This is bending the rules but made an effective toner as it drove the pigment deeper into the hair shaft while also diluting the 10 volume.") Apply toner to scalp and work down the hair shaft to where the very blonde highlights meet the midshaft highlights with the hint of the remaining RV.
Step 11: Once scalp application is complete, take the remaining toner mixture (about an ounce and a half left in the bottle) and add one and a half ounces of Redken Crystal Clear to dilute the remaining toner to blend and enhance the midshaft and ends. Apply this diluted mixture to the midshaft and ends, melting the two together slightly to avoid any line of demarcation and process at room temperature from the time of completing the application for 12 minutes. Shampoo, condition and dry the hair.
NOTE: "End photo was taken outside on a slightly overcast day with my phone. No flash, no filters, no editing."