Nato VanDine (@re_nato_v) of Bardo Salon and Spa, Boca Raton, FL (also a Brand Educator for Wella Professionals) had a fun opportunity with a friend.

"She recently had a child and was dealing with some regrowth and brassy ends," VanDine says. "She has always been a fan of reds in every tonal family but acknowledged that the maintenance and upkeep on reds for a new mom could be daunting. Luckily, I am also a HUGE fan of reds and we both decided to go for it, taking into consideration her new lifestyle."

Both VanDine and the new mom decided that a sombre would be best for maintenance and time. "Her ends were already close a to a level 7 (and 8 in some areas) so I just needed to go in and blend her root and mid-shaft to her ends," VanDine says. "For this to be achieved with the softest results, I chose to use the balayage technique."

Get the color: Balayaged red

STEP 1: Using Wella Blondor Soft Blonde Cream and 3% (10 volume) Koleston Creme Developer in a 1:1 ratio, take 2-inch wide sections that were 1-inch deep starting at the nape up into the occipital in a very loose bricklayer pattern. "On most sections, I created a V-shape with the corner of my brush from the mid-shaft to ends, only saturating the very ends on every other section, and feathered up into the root from the mid-shaft using any excess lighter left on the brush," VanDine says. "Wherever there was too much negative space, I would turn the brush horizontal and feather the lightener up to blend. Above the occipital, I took larger partings and feathered the lightener to about 2.5 inches from her root."

Step 2: Process for 35 minutes in open air with no heat. "That resulted in very coppery highlights, creating a perfect canvas for our end result," VanDine says. "This was largely made possible by the density of her hair and the fact that I only saturated the top of each section, using tension from pulling on her ends to place the lightener."

Step 3: Shampoo with Wella Brilliance for Color Treated Fine/Normal Hair. Follow with Wella Color Post Treatment for 5 minutes. Towel dry.

Step 4: On towel-dry (damp; not soaking wet) hair apply Wella Color Touch 66/45 (6/Red Violet) with 4% (13 volume) Color Touch Emulsion (developer) from root to newly lightened mid-shaft. (All Color Touch in 1:2 ratio.) "This gently softened and saturated her root without changing her level drastically," VanDine says. Process for 10 minutes before applying second formula.

Step 5: Leaving an inch between the newly lightened hair and ends, apply Color Touch with 77/44 (7/Red Red) 1.9% (6 volume) Color Touch Emulsion, pulling through to the ends. After this is complete, turn the brush vertically and feather the second formula into the first to blend. (Total processing time: 25 minutes from start.)

Step 6: Wet and emulsify for 5 minutes. Rinse until water is clear. Do not shampoo. Finish with Wella Color Post Treatment for 5 minutes. Rinse, towel dry, trim and blowdry with Wella Velvet Amplifier and finish with Wella Mirror Polish Serum.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, Click here.