The Rainbow Connection

Many ladies (and even a few men) are walking around with color in their hair.  It may not be natural; but why limit ourselves?

There’s a whole rainbow of possibilities out there! Fun, funky colors are, at last, becoming a popular trend.

And there are quite a few ways to add some technicolor to your strands, ranging widely in levels of commitment and application time.

Here’s how:

Spray in Color
The technique is kind of messy, offers less precision and an imperfect end result.  But it’s ideal for Halloween or just for fun. And if you can operate hair spray, you can do this!

Anna’s Picks:  Jerome Russell Team Colors (specially formulated to not sweat off), Beyond the Zone Color Bombz


Colored Gels/Creams
This procedure provides more precision and is better for streaking versus all-over color. Plus it’s fairly easy to do. But this is not recommended if you need a soft, touchable style.

Anna’s Picks:  Rusk Scream Color Gel, Manic Panic Dye Hard Temporary Color Styling Gel


Color Chalking
Though slightly messy, this method is very easy, offers great precision and is great for creating color streaks. You can also do an all-over application; however, it would be extremely time consuming.

See makeup artist Kandee Johnson’s tutorial video for the specific how-to’s!

Anna’s Picks:  Kevin Murphy’s Color Bug, Pastel Chalks from an art store


Clip-In color
Want beautiful, vibrant and touchable color without any commitment or mess?  This is the way to go!  Just clip it in and you’re all set!

Anna’s Picks:  Snap It! Designer Lengths Clip In Human Hair Extensions (each pack comes with two clip-in pieces, roughly an inch to an inch and a half wide and 14 inches long), HairUWear POP Clip In-Color


Semi-Permanent Dye*
These products fade quickly, allowing you to change color more often if you so choose. Also, as these colors do not containing drying, damaging agents like peroxide or ammonia, you are free to color again and again without having to worry about doing damage to your locks!

Anna’s Picks:  Manic Panic, Beyond the Zone Color Jamz

*Technically, all “rainbow” dyes are semi-permanent or demi-permanent.  They are formulated differently from “regular” colored dye, acting as heavy duty strand stains as opposed to depositing color into the actual cortex of the hair.

However, some are MUCH longer lasting than others.  I’m separating them into two categories based on how long they last (Semi-Permanent Dye, above, and Long-lasting Semi-Permanent Dye, below).

Long Lasting Semi-Permanent Dye
For all intensive purposes, some of these products might as well be called permanent.  These products are longer lasting and will give you much brighter and more vibrant colors. Anna’s Picks:  Special Effects Hair Dye, Pravana ChromaSilk Vivid Colors (this is the one I use), Ion Color Brights

Attention Brunettes:
If you decide to take the plunge and dye your hair with a rainbow inspired hue, do know that these colors won’t show up true to shade on dark hair.

To achieve one of these colors on dark hair, the hair will need to be pre-lightened.

However, you can achieve some lovely tint effects by applying them over dark hair, giving dark brown hair streaks with a purple cast in the light.


After Care:
Most of these color products act as a strong stain on the outer layer of the hair.  They can be faded far more easily than standard dyes.  Thus, it is essential that you use an after-color sealer and sulfate free shampoo!

These groovy color options can give you a fresh look and a beautiful boost; and they look absolutely lovely in curls, updos and braids.  Whatever route you choose, have fun and feel fabulous!

Happy coloring!  And may you always feel beautiful when you look in the mirror.  ♥

 Anna is a colorful girl with a nomadic spirit and a love of all things “up.”

An extremely knowledgeable hair enthusiast, she has worked at a beauty supply store for two years and hopes to begin cosmetology school in the coming year.

An aspiring bush pilot, she plans on financing her flying dreams by capitalizing on her hair stylin’ skills.

Until then, Anna spends most of her free time chasing adventures — whether it be hiking, kayaking, camping, flying, concert going or traveling to see outer space related things.


  1. Gabrielle says

    I took the color plunge (as far as I was willing to…) with a bit of crimson highlights on my dark brown hair earlier this year. I was completely surprised at how much I loved it! Such a transformation with just a little color!! Loving your blog!

  2. Hi Anna, fascinating article, made me think about hair style and dying in a different way. I can see how this will appeal to younger women. Do you have any views or experience of this style of hair dying by older ladies? I rarely go beyond one colour and never more than one at a time! 🙂

  3. Anna says

    Joanna- I think it can work fabulously on all ages! In fact, I saw a lady a few weeks ago with short silver-y hair where she had about a two inch section of turquoise in her bangs, and about a month or two ago, I met a lady with shoulder length curly white hair with strands of grey, and she had a thin streak of teal and purple in the front on one side. These both looked tremendous! It’s really all about finding what works best for you- what colors work well with your existing hair color/what colors appeal to you/what makes you feel beautiful when you look in the mirror. Execution is also key; make sure to go to someone who knows what they’re doing for application!
    It might be wise to “test drive” a color (or different colors!) using the chalking technique or clip-in streaks. Once you get a feel for what color(s) you like best, then you can take the plunge for something a little more permanent 😀

  4. BfloAnonChick says

    Nice to see this post! I took the plunge a few months ago, and put a blue streak back in my (dark brown) hair. Unlike previous times where I’ve done it myself, I had my stylist do it. She bleached a strip down to yellow, dyed it purpley-blue with Tigi to counteract the yellow, and put Manic Panic over it. It looks great, but still fades way too quick, so I’m going to look into the Special Effects line. If their website is any indication, they give results similar to Manic Panic, but last longer. Thanks for the heads-up! 🙂

  5. Me says

    This is nice 🙂 I’ve dyed my hair nearly every color out there. I do enjoy Manic Panic, but Jerome Russell keeps your hair super healthy ! Doing blue next week 🙂

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