Saturday, April 9, 2011

I spent 20 minutes trying to wash away my disappointment.

Today I used Loreal's Sublime Mousse Permanent Haircolor. I wasn't planning on dyeing my hair immediately soon, but I was considering giving a try in the future. The site custom blends the color for each customer and asks a lot of helpful questions, like how resistant your hair is to color, and what hair type you are. It also comes with tools such as a cape, an applicator brush, and a bunch of other cool gadgets. This runs around $25.

However, Loreal had to ruin my plan by coming out with a new hair dye innovation, one in which haircolor is applied by simply lathering your hair with mousse. It is supposedly a "luscious mousse as easy to apply as shampoo." So of course I had to try it, plus it retails at only $9.99.

I was so excited I ran to the drugstore with my boyfriend and bought a box immediately. I bought a super light brown shade (in my opinion), and the number was 53 (there are twelve shades). I rethought it on the train home, and returned it at the Duane Reade near my house and bought shade 41 instead, Iced Dark Brown.

That was a mistake. I should have known from my previous experiences that if you have really dark hair then you need to buy several shades lighter then what you want. However I figured that they put the shade on the box for a reason, and it was designed to be used the way it is, so why would I mess with that? So I bought this gorgeous shade (or so I thought).

I went home and the next day I went into the bathroom armed with my box of Sublime Mousse. I cautiously took out the contents and read the instructions carefully.

 Not carefully enough however, because I missed the section in which an application video is mentioned on Loreal's website, with a model specifically applying Sublime Mousse to her hair to show you how to do it. 

Needless to say I didn't do anything wrong necessarily, but I did certain steps differently then the model did. For example, when rotating the bottle of dye I rotated it the way it was shown in the picture (at least that's what I thought she was doing to it) instead of the way the model did it. I rotated it on its side, sort of like if the bottle was rolling down a hill. She rotated it by holding the top and moving the bottle straight up, in a wide circular motion. Check out my review video if you want more details. I neglected to mention in the video that the contents really are very clearly laid out (a plus). Each bottle is numbered, and the process goes in chronological order. For example, you mix 2 with 1 to apply the color, and then when rinsing out the color you condition with 3. There is one tall bottle with a portion of it filled with chemicals. There is one small bottle filled with the color. The small bottle is poured into the tall bottle, and then topped with the mousse pump. The other tube is creme conditioner. Simple.

I didn't like the application the way I thought I would. The reason I bought this dye is because it looked so easy to apply and so foamy and thick like a luscious shampoo lather. In my hand it was thick but when I applied it, the product got so flat and thin. Also it wasn't this beautiful white foam, it was tinged with hideous brown/blackness (which is normal I guess, it is dye, what do you expect?). I wasn't sure how to apply it to my hair. The instructions said to start working the products in at your roots and then go down the entire length of your hair. I went straight down my strands. You're supposed to work it backwards, towards the back of your head. Once again, watch my video if you have no clue what I mean.

So I kept reapplying the mousse to my hair. I probably coated my entire head 2-3 times with the mousse because it kept disappearing. When I finally decided I was finished, I spent my 30 minutes waiting anxiously as I watched my mirror with a frown. My hair seemed to be turning this black color, and not the gradual change from what I had to the dark brown shade I bought. Once again I should have realized that drugstore dyes are not good at making subtle but definite changes. Either they don't make changes at all (but your hair still ends up reaping the damages of the dye) or it changes a completely non-accurate color to what's on the box.

I spent 20 minutes in the shower trying to wash away my disappointment. I stared at my hair and held a wad in front of me to examine it, and sure enough it was black. I stepped out of the shower and blow dried my hair. This made it look silky smooth but there was still no denying the darkness of my new color, which in my opinion does nothing to bring out the color in my face. One friend remarked that I looked like a vampire (lovingly of course). Another told me it made me look more exotic. I don't know about that, but leave a comment if you feel like sharing your opinion. 

Here's a before/after picture of my hair. I wasn't wearing the hipster glasses in my review video but I decided to for the before/after to give it a more consistent look and it makes things easier for comparison purposes.

Here's a picture of what my hair looked like back in July, when I dyed it at an Aveda Salon. I really liked the color. It was natural and pretty. I was not trying to get that color back with the Loreal Sublime Mousse, I did want to try a darker brown, so it's not like I expected to get this color from the bottle. Still, looking back on things, this was a very nice color.

Fast forward eight months... this is how my hair looked right before dyeing it with Loreal Sublime Mousse. Who waits eight months to dye their hair? Crazy person. Oh well, I waited that long, and this is how it looked.  

And hair after:

This is a picture of my original hair color, back in high school when I was a baby and had virgin hair! :)

Pretty similar huh? For some reason I still prefer my natural hair color a little more then this new color. Maybe because it looks way more natural (being that it is natural). Of course my ultimate color of choice is a nice, rich, dark brown.

Overall, I really regret trying this hair dye. The application was ridiculously simple (a huge plus) but it left me with not at all the results I wanted. I hate the color and it's really taken a toll on the health of my hair which feels much drier now. I have static flyaways and my hair's texture is much more coarse and rough. I do like this hair dye for the fact that it creates EVEN color. My hair looks very even, and the color is very pronounced. If I wanted black hair I would be raving about this, but it advertised dark brown hair and that's not what I got. 

I look so much more washed out in the second picture! Either way, I had closer to the color I wanted before. The only reason I bought the dye was because really, I wanted a color refresher and I wanted to even out my roots and faded areas. Fail.

This is the TV advertisement for Loreal Sublime Mousse featuring Evangeline Lily. It's the UK version, but it's the same one playing in the US (only with a british accent). She's wearing the exact shade I bought. I know this because in the advertisement I saw in my magazine it shows her and the shade she's wearing, and it's number 41, the shade I bought.

Her color looks brown. Mine does not. Oh well. More luck to all you beauty lovers out there who try the dye!


  1. your hair looks red pictures? it is really that?

  2. Hi just a question!
    Did you try to dye your color inti another color after you dyed your hair with iced brown?
    I dyed my hair also with 41 but i am afraid my hair won't be dyed brighter cuz 41 was just too dark :'(

  3. I recommend not to dye your hair again after dying it already with the iced brown. I now have a friend who trained at the Aveda institute and she told me (and I was told this when I did go to a salon myself as well) that once dark hair is dyed, it doesn't dye lighter, only darker. I don't know why. But apparently it requires bleach :(

  4. I don't think the mousse is the problem. It is the shade you choose. You already had brown hair so if you wanted to get lighter you should get a blonde shade. The images in the bottle aren't accurate. It would be if you would bleach your hair or if you were blonde. It is hard to go lighter on your own you should had picked several shades lighter for example if you wanted to go from dark brown to medium brown you should choose a dark blonde shade if you wanted to go to light brown then choose a light blonde shade. Don't worry you won't come out as blonde even if you choose the lighter blonde color if you start with a dark base. In fact it is very hard to go blonde even when you are lighter

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  6. I love that colour on you. I think it really suites your skin tone! It looks beautiful on you 👍