From the Beauty Closet

To Ombré, or Not to Ombré?

8 years ago by

I have this fantasy where I am one of those cool, super laid back girls when it comes to hair, who is like:

“Chop my hair off? Yeah, whatever.”
“Dye it pink? Sure, why not? It’s just hair…”

Unfortunately, I am quite the opposite of that cool, laid back girl. If I cut off more than an inch of my hair, I think the world is over. Once I got straight across bangs and then had a year long identity crisis (they grew out and now I am doing much better–just so you know). I even had a body wave in high school and to say that was a life altering mistake is an understatement. Lately though, I’ve wanted to live out that cool, super laid back fantasy a little. And I’ve also been thinking about ombré hair a lot. I know, who thinks about ombré hair, let alone thinks about it a lot? This girl.

So, when I read about L’Oréal coming out with an at home ombré kit, I took it as a sign from the hair gods that this was my moment. My time to shine. My time to be bold and cool and laid back. And I did it.

The kit is super easy to use (I did have some help from supportive friends, but could’ve done it myself). The trick is in the applicator brush you use to apply the dye. It helps you get even color but keeps the ombré looking natural. My biggest fear was having a straight line through my hair between my natural color and the ombré but that wasn’t the case at all. I started a little above my collar bone, since I don’t have super long hair, and left the dye on for about 25 minutes (you can go for up to 45 for a more dramatic look, but still check the color after 25 minutes). My one tip for anyone trying this is to keep hair well moisturized afterwards. I’ve been applying a few drops of Argan Oil to my locks to keep my ends from feeling dry!

It’s day three of my new life as a cool, super laid back girl and so far, I love it.

PS: You can get the kit here!
PPS: It comes in three shades so you can pick one to best match your natural color.


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  • Cute! Similar effect from wearing a hat in the field for 1-2 months: only the ends of your hair get sunbleached. Wouldn’t recommend it though, my poor hair ends get so dry. But now I’ll tell people my hair isn’t sun damaged- it’s ombre’d!

  • I love it! It looks super laid back as you say ;-)

    THE DEEP BLUE CORY Fashion blog
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    Xoxo Cory

  • Totally one of those “cut it off it’ll grow back girls” This side is cherry red ombre. (The other side is gone!)

  • Cela fait longtemps que je réfléchis à me faire un ombré hair. Comme toi, je n’aime pas le dégradé trop contrastant quand on est brune. Tu m’as donné envie de tester ce kit. Merci!

  • Cool that you can do it on your own!!!

  • sometimes it’s good to let go of your inhibitions and just go for it!! glad it worked out well!!

    january, x

  • aaaaargh… such a great idea! alas. i am too much of a chicken shit to try this. the most drastic thing i ve ever done to my hair was last week when i curled it with a curling iron. i am 26! and that was a radical decision for me!

  • Ça vous va très bien!!

  • I am obsessed with getting ombre. My friends are sick of me talking about it and now I feel like the girl who cried wolf because I still haven’t made the leap. Truth, I am waiting for my bangs to grow out (total identity crisis) AND I’m jumping back and forth between ombre or body wave (which would be my 5th), so I feel ya and love this post. One thing that has helped my damaged hair and I know will save my hair if I finally decide on perm or ombre is this amazing shampoo by Shiseido. Check it out here, I did a full review: Hope that helps and thanks again for you post! I am not alone :)


  • You have to do it Tina! I swear, you will like it!! Send us a photo when you do!

  • Manon Dame February, 20 2013, 6:48 / Reply

    Je suis comme toi ! Une vraie flippée des cheveux …
    J’ai envie de tester tellement de choses (brun, roux) mais j’adore ma couleur de base et j’ai trop peur de la “gâcher” !
    Du coup j’ai essayé l’ombré hair et je suis convaincue, je m’en refais après chaque passage chez le coiffeur ! Ca change les cheveux mais ça reste naturel … parfait !

  • I am an ombre girl through and through. Mine is really dramatic think Drew Barrymore with the super dark roots and the very light blonde ends(it kinda looks dirty and I love it). My hair is sooo long, for me ombre is the answer to that cool laid back hair looks amazing straight, curly and super messy. I love your new ombre hair. xx

  • I might have to get more adventurous next time! Thank you!!

  • I’m glad it worked out well…but I would leave it to the professionals. This seems like something that might work out for someone or can go horribly wrong for others…

  • Quand c’est naturel et qu’il n’y a justement pas de trop grande démarcation j’adore les cheveux ombrés, et tu as bien fait de te décider seulement maintenant car ça te revient 10€ la teinture plutôt que 150€ chez le coiffeur!

  • So cool that you went for it and the result was totally worth it. It looks great on you and how awesome that you could pretty much do it yourself.


  • Contente que ca ai reussi sur toi ;)
    De ma propre experience (qui m’a obliger a me couper 20 cm de cheveux NDLR) C’ETAIT UN FOIRÉ TOTAL ! J’avais deja un ombre que je souhaitais rafraichir a l’aide ce kit … Et bien la couleur était jaune, j’avais une démarcation affreuse et j’ai trouver ca vraiment pas pratique a faire seule :(
    Je conseillerais donc a celles qui souhaitent quand meme le tester, de faire comme toi en faisait appel a une tierce personne pour eviter toute mésaventure .
    Xo Mand .

  • I totally get what you are talking about, alex. I had the same dilemma when summer started ( here in argentina it started on november) but I got so excited about blond hair after watching the voctoria’s secret fashion show that I decided to go pretty much the beachy laid back surfer style kind of blond.
    I had an appointment with my hairdresser ( this man deserves a gold medal o n patience) and when I told him my new idea his reaction was ‘have you hit your hair with someting or what!!?’ But I wanted to have my hair like rosie huntingtom whiteley or candice swanepoel (yeah yeah too much girl crush on vs models… I actually would like to be a vs model….ok, stop!!)
    Story is I totally went for it and it turned out a veeery cool summery colour, I felt like an angel!!!
    Hair dying always requires a good deal of bravery.
    Anyway! Tomorrow my blond dear hair will go back to its normal color and the tips, which are a MESS, will be cut off…. It is starting to look a bit disheveled and I don’t like it!!

    If you want a picture of the unknown vs angel aka me, just tell me and I will email it to you!!

    Your ombre is gorgeous!!!!! Big kisss

  • Love this look! Glad you took the plunge.

  • Ive been having the same issue lately also! Ive never died my hair ever besides carmel highlights in middle grade, its really long ( think kylee jenner) same color also… but i really want to try something new, due to my job modeling i can’t dye my hair so easly. Maybe i will have to get a wig and try it out that way first to see if I would be able to live with it lol. I love your hair with it though, id keep doing!!


  • I’m glad that you like it so much! I also think it’s good to change things like hair every once in awhile. Back in the 80’s I had black tips on my blonde hair like Terri Nunn of Berlin. I doubt I’ll do ombre, for some reason it just doesn’t call out to me. I do like the pastel colored hair, though. I might give that a try this summer. For now I’m just letting it grow longer than I’ve had it in over 15 years.

  • I think I know exactly what you mean. I’ve always wanted that super cool kid hair where it looks effortless but so full of texture. My hair has always remained disgustingly straight and silky, HA- I would rather slightly messy and textured.

    I guess we all want what we can’t have.

    x karen

  • cute ! and really really cool !

  • Tu es très jolie ! Bravo !
    Tiens “mini vague” ça faisait des lustres que je n’avais pas “entendu” ce mot (en même temps….).
    En plus d’être mannequin main, tu sais ce qu’il te reste à faire. Oui parce que tu le vaux bien.

  • Je me prends la tête avec mes cheveux depuis quelques temps car je suis blonde naturelle et mon beau blond bébé d’il y a quelques années n’est plus (RIP), il a laissé place à un blond foncé avec parfois des reflets presque roux (enfin léger quoi mais on m’a fait la remarque donc ça doit se voir un peu…grrrr), la faute à QUI??? merci PARIS, toi et ton soleil qui brille toute l’année :-/
    Bref du coup, tu me donnes une idée pour raviver sans trop y toucher car je ne veux pas me teindre les cheveux, on me répète assez que mon blond naturel aussi foncé soit il, sera toujours mieux que de se lancer dans des couleurs interminables… donc je mets une option sur l’ombré! maintenant la question est : “coiffeur or not coiffeur?” bisous

  • Garance tu ne peux pas nous raconter l’histoire de ton nouvel ombré en nous laissant sans aucune photo (de toi) à nous mettre sous la dent! That´s just mean!

  • Oops je n’avais pas lu que c’était un post d’Alex, sorry!

  • C’est tout joli :)

    J’ai moi aussi testé l’ombré hair, mais chez le coiffeur, et l’essayer c’est l’adopter. J’en suis fan !


  • I saw the Ombre Kits here in Paris as well and thought immediately: maybe this is something I could try. I am such a wuss when it comes to my hair. I have the same hairdresser for all my life now and thankfully he was trained by his father (who first chopped my hair, but he was always around learning) and he’s not very old so I am hoping he will keep on cutting my hair for a loooooong time :)
    Only because I had a bad experience once and if your hair looks terrible, you feel terrible. And please be aware I am no cool girl, I don’t know what to do with my hair and just occassionally I try something else than just a ponytail or hang it loose on my shoulders. The life of a woman… in my case… isn’t always that simple coming to hair and if you’re not a girly-girl. Especially here in Paris every woman looks so good – with just a red lipstick on or out-of-bed hair, they always seem to manage to look great. I am sure it’s something in the water so I started to drink water from the tap :P


  • I have recently been thinking of doing something like this with my hair, your results look so beautiful, so now i am intrigued, since you say it’s easy…! I always wish i was more spontaneous with my hair, i always get stuck in a rut of wearing it a certain style – i wish i could just chop it off and not care. I have been growing out my former blunt bangs for months now, I know exactly – such an identity crisis!

  • J’adore le ombré hair !
    Nouvel article:

  • Love ombre hair and so cool you did it at home! Unfortunately I’m not that great with dying my own hair so I go to the salon for it ;) xx

  • Looks really cool, Alex! Well done! xx

  • I’m also still deciding if I should go for ombre or not. It looks so damn cool, but I’m so damn scared of anything that even touches my hair :)!
    Thanks for sharing this, it’s good to know :).


  • top! C’est une réussite! Tu as bien fait de te jeter à l’eau!
    A plus!


  • The minute I saw those kits I knew ombre was OVER – besides it looks like you don’t have the money to get your hair done. I think it is a horrible trend but possibly fine if you are going through some late teen skate punk / grunge phase

  • I love it, I think I will try it. But I have a bob, would it look nice? mariaxx

  • Désolée d’être si terre-à-terre mais cet ombré dont tu parles… c’est pas ce qu’on appelait dans le temps “OMG cette fille essaie de récupérer sa couleur naturelle après une teinture ou un été à la plage et elle ‘na pas eu le temps de passer chez le coiffeur ?” juste comme ça je me demande. Je sais que la mode nous fait aimer ce que l’on trouvait impensable avant d’où l’ouverture d’esprit qu’elle procure mais en même temps c’est un peu un gag non ?

  • Thanks for this post, Alex. I have been thinking about ombre hair for almost a year. Now I feel that I’m not alone ;)
    Of course, I still don’t have ombre hair. I will dare the day ombre hair is out of fashion, that’s for sure!
    This kit sounds good but I’m quite clumsy… I’m afraid my hair would look orange or like a hippy tie-dye sort of thing… Not that I have anything agains hippy tie-dye… it’s just not my thing. I’m more like OCD kind of girl. What about the mess of colouring your hair at home??

    Um.. decisions, decisions…

  • Oh Alex, I love your posts! So real! And you have the cutest nose :)

    Keep us posted ;)

  • C’est canon! Mais j’ai une (bête) question: est-ce que ça part après un certain temps, où est-ce qu’il faut attendre que les cheveux poussent (dans mon cas je suis bonne à attendre 2025… pas sûre d’encore aimer l’ombré à ce moment là..)
    Merci de m’éclairer! xx

  • I made the big step too and I am loving my ombre hair! Congrats girl, you look stunning! This is what I did:

  • Prochaine étape un article sponsor Crazy color pour passer du côté rose de la force. (Ou bien platinium ça m’a l’air pas mal…!)



  • Ombre hair is something that looks great on somebody and so tacky on somebody else… I like ombre hair if they’re “colored”, like pink. I love Rodarte’s FW 2013 hair! They’re so cool.
    Sorry, Alex, is that you in the photo? How old are you? You look like a teenager!
    Ombre hair looks good on you, by the way.

  • My sister and I have been wanting to do this for our summer hair-do and i had the same fear about the straight-line thing. im totally going to do this (im thinking like Rihanna’s shade for the Grammy’s) Thanks for the tip :)

  • Lectrice fidèle February, 24 2013, 1:56 / Reply

    Garance, je lis ton blog depuis le début, je commente rarement, mais là, je peux plus m’empêcher. Qu’est-ce que tu as fait avec ton blog ? Pourquoi il commence à ressembler à une magazine “filles” bas de gamme avec toutes ces publicités qui – ce qui est PIRE – sont écrites par tes assistantes adolescentes (avec tout mon respect) dans un pauvre style et ton naïf ?
    Ton blog était excellent, avec ta personnalité si gracieusement mis en avant mais très artistique. Je m’intéresse moyennement à la mode ou “la beauté” mais ce que j’aimais bien, c’était ton approche personnelle et décomplexée. Maintenant, ta vie a changé, tes projets aussi et ça me dérange pas du tout, j’aime toujours ton point de vu, tes nouveaux projets, surtout tes photos et tes dessins. Mais je trouve ça insupportable, qu’à chaque fois quand j’ouvre un nouveau billet je ne suis plus sûre au début QUI ÉCRIT, tellement bien tes assistantes copient ton style pour ensuite me rendre compte que je lis un texte sponsorisé sur la colorisation des cheveux de quelqu’un qui ne m’intéresse absolument pas !
    Je ne comprends pas, maintenant, quand tu est au sommet, tu préfères la quantité (dans un large sens) sur la qualité de ton blog.
    Pourquoi, qu’est-ce qui se passe ?
    Lectrice fidèle mais récemment un peu triste

  • Bonjour,

    désolée d’écrire ceci à la suite de ce post, rien à voir avec Alex (que j’aime bien aussi) ni les cheveux, mais je n’ai pas trouvé de meilleure place (la rubrique “contact” ne semble pas non plus destinée à ce type de feedback). Bref.
    Est-ce qu’il serait possible de mieux identifier l’auteur des posts, dès le début du post? C’est très perturbant de lire un post à la première personne, en entier, pour se rendre compte à la fin que c’est signé “xo Alex”.
    Pendant la lecture, on sent bien confusément que le style d’écriture est different, les goûts aussi, on essaie tant bien que mal de coller les morceaux à l’image qu’on s’est construit de Garance au fil du temps, et là, bam, en fait non, c’était pas Garance.
    C’est encore pire quand je lis les posts depuis mon feed RSS, ils sont tous indiqués comme “by Garance” du coup, maintenant, je dois toujours commencer par la fin pour vérifier la signature… j’en ai un peu marre à force.
    Sinon, quand même, très jolis cheveux Alex :-)

  • Pareil, j’ai beaucoup hesité, et puis j’ai sauté le pas, enfin meme deux ^^

    J’ai d’abord fait un ombré hair et au bout de trois semaines, je me suis “habituée” et j’avais l’impression qu’on ne voyait strictement rien en réalité, donc j’ai sauté un deuxieme pas, mais là c’est trop !

    Alors un conseil ne le faites pas une deuxieme fois, sinon le resultat ne sera plus naturel. Je regrette et compte reprendre rdv avec mon coiffure préféré pour qu’il me fonce le dégradé :-/ C’est balo …

    J’aime beaucoup ton blog ;-)

  • Well I have this sort of “accidental ombre” myself. I’m black haired, and I used to have my hair super short, as in pixie short. Then I dyed my hair red-brown-ish, and since I’ve gotten too tired to re-dye my hair every &*%$ing month (and too lazy to go to the salon as well), my hair grew out and now I have black top and red brown undertones on. Some of my friends say my hair look weird and messy, the others love it. A matter of taste, really. I love it on you by the way! Ever consider light purple or cotton pink? Would be super cool and mega laid back!

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