How To Use Redken Color Gel Lacquers For Grays

Latest Color Techniques Used By Your Stylist

How To Color Every Last Gray Hair, According To An Expert

23 August 2018
photo of woman with gray hair how to cover gray hair

Emily Arata

Senior Editor,

As an employee of L’Oréal, Emily works with celebrity stylists to make finding the right cut, color, or style easier than ever before. She's previously written for Allure, Elite Daily, and First We Feast.

Depending on who you ask, gray hair is either the best thing to ever happen or the absolute worst. Sometimes, it seems like grays can’t do anything right—either those pesky hairs show up too early or not soon enough (if you covet a salt-and-pepper look). If you’re in the market to hide those grays, well, you’re in for a different battle altogether.

Have no fear! To adequately understand how Redken Color Gel Lacquers cover gray hair, you need to know your options and what makes gray hair different than its pigmented counterpart. Sean Godard, Redken artist, is here to make gray hair coverage easy.

What makes gray hair unique?

Whether you have a whole head of grays or just a few strands, you’ve probably noticed that they seem different than the texture you’re used to. Gray hairs can feel wiry, stiff, and curl in ways your other hair may not.

According to Godard, that’s only half the challenge. Your hair professional faces an entirely different range of issues when it comes to the color service.

Gray hair often has a thicker, coarser texture than natural hair and it’s lacking it’s going to also accept color differently than the virgin natural hair

Sean Godard

That change in consistency can also contribute to difficulty covering grays, a problem often reported by women we know.

What’s the right way to cover gray hair?

First off, you should know that fully covering your grays with fresh color isn’t the only way to move forward. Many women embrace their new color, working on maintaining hair that looks visibly healthy rather than investing in color services.

If you do choose to cover up your newfound grays, however, there’s a range of options available to suit every maintenance level. Godard recommends starting by covering only the grays, not the entire head.

“Start by just coloring the gray areas with a Redken Color Gel Lacquer shade that matches the natural shade,” he says. “This is a very low commitment and a great way to test the waters of coloring hair without doing the entire head.”

While Godard works with all of Redken’s products, he recommends the Color Gel Lacquer line for the rich, saturated results it provides. The gel-like consistency allows colorists to color up to 100 percent of grays in 30 minutes when using 20 volume developer.

“You can truly turn every hair on the head the same super-saturated color with a reflective shine. It’s also a quicker application and processing time, so it’s a win for the guest and the stylist,” Godard adds.

You can also consider a hair color application that’s more about blending the grays into the rest of your hair then covering them up entirely.

“Most important is upkeep and desired end result,” Godard says. “Redken Shades EQ Gloss can blend gray away for a more low commitment coverage, where Color Gel can completely cover every gray hair but it will be required to be retouched as the hair grows out in four to six weeks."

Not sure which way to go? The best person to determine the color choice that fits into your schedule and budget is your stylist. Be honest about with him or her about how much time you want to spend in the salon and he or she can provide a customized recommendation.

What kind of maintenance does gray hair coverage require?

Whether you’re a total salon newbie or a color service veteran, the at-home routine is the same. Pick up a salon quality shampoo and conditioner system (from the L’Oréal portfolio of products, we’re obsessed with Pureology’s Smooth Perfection duo).

It’s also essential to establish a regular touch-up schedule. The frequency of your appointments will depend on your hair length and how dramatically different your color is from your natural shade.

“Some clients with shorter hair come every two to three weeks—average is four to six weeks,” Godard explains. “Sometimes waiting longer than six weeks can turn it into more of a correction because the hair responds differently to hair color when it grows past where the heat naturally radiates off the head.”

If you’re in doubt, ask your stylist for their recommendation—and enjoy that gray coverage!

For personalized color consultations about gray coverage, use our salon locator to book an appointment with a stylist near you.

I like this article
Be the first to like this article

Oops, something went wrong! Please try again later...

More to discover

photo of woman with gray-blue hair
18 July 2018

How To Wear The Blue-Gray Hair Trend—No Matter Your Skin Tone

A certain mega popstar recently debuted a new blue-gray hair color. If you're considering trying the gray-blue hair trend for yourself, we've gathered some of our favorite looks that work with any skin tone.

photo of woman's scalp with gray hair strands
19 April 2018

3 Easy Ways To Cover Gray Hair In No Time

Stumped on how to cover gray hair? Don’t panic. Refresh your strands with these three simple steps and product recommendations straight from an expert.

Girl with short grey hair
14 December 2017

13 Shades Of Grey Hair That Prove Silver Is Still In Style

Grey hair isn't just for old ladies any more. This gorgeous, silvery hair color is everything, and we're sharing how to get silver hair.

Salon Locator

Salon Locator

Find the nearest professional stylist using our salon locator. Experience the latest in cuts, colors, techniques, and styles from experts you trust. Visit a salon for tips, tricks, and product recommendations to help create and maintain beautiful hair. It's time to get pampered!