A Short Guide to Using Coloring Aids

The ASK team guide you through the best techniques for color application in this short guide to coloring aids.

Deciding on which coloring technique to use will be influenced by many things, for example client wishes and client hair type. Use the guidelines below to decide on a suitable course of action.

Aluminium Foil

Aluminium foil provides the ultimate control over color application. Foil is mainly used when applying permanent oxidative colors on to hair that is mid-length to long. Foil can be cut to measure or bought in ready-to-use strips, using highlifting shades and lighteners to create subtle or radical effects. In addition, foil enables the hairdresser to isolate areas of treated hair, enabling more than one color or technique to be applied at the same time; different colored foils are available to avoid confusion once a product has been applied.

Suitable for:

  • Multiple color application
  • Techniques requiring contrasts between light and dark
  • Color, highlights or lowlights in one application
  • Targeted color
  • Application on very fine hair
  • Creative work
  • Highlights or lowlights on the root

Not suitable for:

  • Short hair

Other foil types available include ‘easy meche’ foil. This is a white plastic foil with a transparent cover on top and a glue strip for effective adhesion close to the roots. Easy meche is not suitable for two-in-one application, as the foil is not sealed at the sides.

Comb / Effect Styler
A combing technique is often used to equalise color applied to re-growth by using a comb to distribute diluted color cream throughout the lengths. A comb can also be used to apply color directly on to the hair instead of using the normal applicator brush. An effect styler is similar to a comb or brush but is shaped in order to apply more or less product throughout the hair. This can create a streaky, highlighted effect.

Suitable for:

  • Highlights
  • Soft lightening effect
  • Natural results
  • Fast application
  • Soft lowlights

Not suitable for:

  • Color highlights or lowlights
  • Highlights or lowlights applied directly to the roots
  • Strong lightening
  • Working with very thin strands
  • Very long or very short hair 

Plastic Cap
The plastic cap provides a safe, easy way to apply highlights to short hair. Where high peroxide strength is required to create maximum lift, the cap protects the scalp from irritation.

Suitable for:

  • Very short hair
  • Single-colored highlights or lowlights
  • Fast application
  • Highlights or lowlights applied directly to the roots