As COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, quickly spread through our communities, shuttering salons and putting stylists at a distance from their clients, a debate emerged around providing at-home haircolor kits for clients.  We asked stylists and salon owners to weigh-in, asking,

"Are you providing haircolor for your clients to use while they wait for salons to reopen? And, if so, why?  If not, why not?"


"I’m doing them for my grey coverage clients. I feel it’s keeping them in my chair by doing it,  instead of them buying a box. Many of my grey clients are working in the medical industry or just still working. So they don’t have the option to stay home and quarantine like I do. With all the bad in the world right now at least they done have to look in the mirror and see an inch of grey roots. I give them just enough for the hair line and part line and to go a couple inches in so it looks all done. I also did this for myself so when I finally go back I’m I don’t have to worry about getting them in ASAP as they have 3/4 appointments booked out and they’ll just come at their next scheduled appointment. My clients have been soooo appreciative and I think has made them more loyal.   These are NOT normal times. Nor would I ever do this for any other situation. But it’s what I’m doing for my guests."—Kimberly Bruce @themisfitblonde

"I think we need to be a little more understanding of our clients. If they want to touch up their roots let them, help them get something you can be okay with. I bet they’ll still come back to you. They could have been putting color on their hair themselves always but they choose to come to us for our knowledge, skills, advice and the whole experience. That doesn’t come in a bottle of dye. I know I’m not going to be charging someone for a full-on color correction after this is all over if they come to me with something on their new growth. Cause I guarantee they’re going through a hard time right now too. Aren’t we in the business of helping people feel good?" —Casey Powell @updoguru

"I am 100% against this. The only way to purchase professional color is with a license. What makes that right selling it to clients WITH NO LICENSE. And then AFTER this is all over, who’s to say they won’t get comfortable doing their own hair at home and ask you for that every time and never come back and spend the money and time getting it done in the salon. Loss of profit and loss of trust to other stylists in the salon. Just my opinion!"- Megan Moran @megahairmaniac

"Under a normal circumstance I would never do this. We are going thru a time when everyone’s emotions are all over the place on a daily basis. I feel strongly that we need to be compassionate to their needs. I do have loyal clients who have been with me for  years coming every 3-4 weeks to get their greys touched up. I have made an instructional video for them and have premixed their color and developer in airtight bags so all they do is mix 1 & 2, including gloves and a brush.

"I thought long and hard over this but when we can go back to work none of us are going to have the time for extensive color corrections as all of our clients will be wanting in immediately. At least we know what is on their head rather than box color.

"Highlighted clients aren’t so easy so they must wait but I have offered them at home blonde maintenance products such as masks and toning sprays at 15% off and I sold out. We boost people’s confidences and they trust us and our opinions. Just because the salons are closed doesn’t mean they should be abandoned by us... that’s what leads to at home color disasters and loss of clients.

"I am also a suite renter so I am not dealing with an entire salon of clients, only my own. I had to be out of work for two months a year and a half ago and Redken had their at- home touch up kits at the time. I put those together for my clients and they were so grateful because they didn’t want to see anybody else while I was out recovering from a major surgery. I’m just saying Redken had a product that was marketed specifically for this I think we all should be a bit more understanding for those clients who fit into that category."—Jessica Domoney @jessicandomoney

"I honestly am kind of baffled by why people are against this. We’re in the service industry and right now we can’t service our clients. By providing this service we are not only continuing to service some of our clients but we are also easing anxieties. I’d rather give my regular, loyal client their color and instructions on how to apply it and keep them in the long term. I emailed California State Board and they have no regulations on the sales of products, I have liability insurance and would have the client sign an acknowledgment that it is at their own risk. The likelihood that this virus will last well into summer or that we will have a resurgence of it again at some point is high. I’d suggest shifting your mindset and adjusting to the current circumstances."-- Caroline Guiney @caroline.anythingbutbasic 

"So during this whole craziness and the possibility of not servicing clients for 8 weeks plus I signed up with DPHUE to send out clients touch up kits along with an instructional video. It only takes care of their part and hairline- just to get them through these uncertain times ( I have a lot of clients who are essential and want to look and feel their best). I’d rather they use something from me that I’ve tried and like vs guessing a box color from the grocery store. My clients have been so appreciative that I can offer this for them and it gives me the opportunity to make a little pocket change while I’m not working."  --Debora Salvina Coles @styledby_debbe

"I’m 100% into this! I have been providing it for two weeks now (started after I quarantined for two weeks to assure I was virus free). My clients have been so, so grateful💓 Even delivered to one of my nurse clients who is in the ICU 70 hours a week on the frontline, she felt so good to have some sense of normalcy.

"I called and checked with my state board (Nevada) and they said it did not go against regulations. I also had Framar put together color tool kits we can buy to provide and completely sanitary and strategic service with no contact."—Shelley Gregory @shelleygregoryhair

"So I know it’s wildly unpopular to be giving clients color to manage their gray on their own during this pandemic; because of this I was hesitant to speak up. But it’s not about me, it’s about my guests who I love, and this is why I’ve decided to provide them with some color.

"My guests are feeling just as terrible as we are emotionally during this time. Like it or not some of our mental health and how we feel about ourselves is tied to how we feel when we glance in the mirror. Seeing gray hair just makes us feel worse about everything.

"Think about how much better you feel about life when your having a good hair day. I would do almost anything for my guests and if there is something I can do to help lighten the mood I want to do it. I am hoping it will only amount to one delivery to bridge the gap between when they saw me last and our next appointment, hopefully in May (crossing my fingers)." –Stephanie Hodges @stephhstyles

"During this time of uncertainty, it really has affected our industry greatly. I do believe we do not get the respect that we deserve. This current trend of  home color kits and teaching our guests how to cut their own hair devalues us as professionals. We understand that stylists have created these home kits as a solution for their clients, because we had no solution from the manufacturers . Product companies must and should behave professionally if they are stating they don’t endorse color kits and we should not be shipping color at this time. This has created society to think that all of these actions are ok, which will potentially hurt our industry in the future more than it already has. We are deemed non essential, as our industry is perceived as a luxury, although I think politicians and media are continuing to receive services--which contradicts us being 'non essential.' As a stylist who has had covid-19, I understand the severity of the virus and the risk factors. I just believe we should all be united and a team at this time in our industry and receive the respect that we deserve."-- Dominique De Francesco @colorbydd 


Owners have been discussing this issue long before a global pandemic brought it to the fore. Here's one for and one against providing at-home color kits:


"My take is wait for your stylist even if you have a couple inches of outgrowth. I feel like whatever we do now will somehow become our new normal. And will the new normal end up being pre-packaged kits, even after we reopen?  

I don’t want to be responsible for a client destroying her hair or burning her scalp or ruining her luxury bath towel or shower curtain.  Clients don’t know all the things they have to consider because they have never used a professional product at home.  They may have used box color and think it’s the same thing but we know it’s not.

If I jump now, just to get some money in the drawer, the results of doing that without thinking things through might have a negative impact on the future of our business. I hope that my clients stay loyal not just to my stylists but also my brand."-- Bonnie Conte, owner of Avalon, an AVEDA Salon Spa in Deer Park, Illinois.


 Progressions Salon and Spa in North Bethesda, MD is owned by Cindy Feldman.  She has offered custom-color kits, mixed based on the client's formula, at Progressions. They are not a "one size fits all." They are directed to a Facebook tutorial as well as receiving step-by-step directions in the kit, which is accompanied by this note: 

“Thank you for purchasing the hairline root touch-up color kit. This includes everything you need to apply the color and is enough for your hairline and part. The custom hairline color kit needs to be used within 24 hours of drop off." 

 The kit comes with: 

  • Color and developer
  • Spatula to mix
  • Gloves
  • Brush to apply 
  • Goldwell Serum
  • Samples of shampoo
  • Instruction card 

 It is enough for the hairline and part - not for a full head and no glaze is needed.


CosmoProf, a division of Beauty Systems Group, shared an eblast today with the subject line:  "DIY Root Touch Up Kits for Your Clients." Visit their options for root touch-up products here



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