Martina Neal took this client’s daughter from Level 4 to intense red in one step.

Color pro and Solo Artist Martina Neal has been a hairdresser for nearly 30 years—for 13 of them she owned a salon in the San Francisco area. For the past eight years, she has owned Artisan Salon in Tucson, Arizona, which is home to eight renters. The Framesi educator has extensive training from Vidal Sassoon, as well as Jean Louis De Forges’ Paris academy and Redken, and says that despite modern pre-mixes, she still likes to mix her own tones the old-fashioned way.

“My color approach is always to keep the integrity of the hair in mind and focus on what best suits the client’s skin tone and hair texture,” notes Neal.

When she’s working at her own chair, her secret weapon for color fixes is Therapeutic Mediceutical Strength protein treatment. For all other colors, she relies on Framesi. Here’s how she satisfied one girl’s need for a sizzling red:

1. Starting with virgin hair and a Level 4 base, Neal mixed Framesi Framcolor 2001

5HR (5.56) + equal parts 6mp (6.65) with 25-volume proxima developer, and applied it first to the root area, then through the next 2-3 inches.

2. Next, she mixed 6rp (6.56) + equal parts 6mp (6.65) with 35-volume proxima. This formula was applied from the midshaft through to the cold ends; processing time was 45 minutes. Explains Neal, “She had very thick, virgin hair, but it was slightly damaged on the ends from flat ironing and not trimming often enough. I custom-mixed to create 35 volume, because I did not want to use 40 volume on the ends.”

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