My Hair Color FAQs! My Half Real Auburn Color + Red Hair Dye Tips

You know, you’d think that meeting the Devil would be interesting enough but no. All people want to know about is Him. Like He’s so bloody fascinating! Yeah, most men think they’re God, this one just happens to be right.
— Elizabeth Hurley's character in "Bedazzled"

How I feel whenever I go out and people don’t ask me about filmmaking or composing music. I get asked about my hair. HAHA! ;)

My hair color is half real. Sort of.


Why is my hair color better than a standard salon’s hair dye job? Simple! I don’t dye my hair a drastically different color. I dye my hair a touch more brilliant and a smidge lighter with L'Oreal Paris Excellence Creme Permanent Hair Color in the shade Light Auburn 6R!

“What advice do you have for me?”

I dye my hair a better, lighter, highlighted version of my virgin hair! You should also, and if you want to go redder, stick to a product like this!

My hair gets to be a better version of itself because I select something a smidge lighter and highlighted. Benefits: undetectable roots in my regrowth, loads of strawberry blonde highlights I haven’t had since childhood, I can go months if I want without a really bad ratchet chick fade and do monthly if I want more auburn Barbie highlights on the regular, it photographs well, and, is there anything wrong with this color? Everything is awesome! Everything is cool when you’re part of–OK, the Lego Movie theme song was written about this hair dye.

No, your hair color will not look like the box when it’s done. Ignore the box photo. Your end result will depend on your hair, if you ever bleached or darkened it, your virgin hair color, and the state of your hair. Below is the box I use. The box dye image is almost a Jessica Chastain meets vibrant Ariel the little mermaid strawberry blonde.

The results I will be sharing with you are on virgin hair. Most of my hair was all virgin, the last of ends with Elvis-dark black hair dye lifted up. A few months after switching to a more natural looking color, I chopped out all the old ends because the box dye didn’t match the nice part of the virgin hair dyed area. Everything you see photographed is dye over 100 percent virgin hair. Posting because on the web, every Google search I found in my wary dilemma selecting this color was done on people with bleached out blonde or previously highlighted hair! If I had photos and details like this, it would have saved me time.

“You’re saying, to have a natural looking hair dye result I should keep my dye close to my natural hair color? But a little lighter?”


“How does it photograph on you?”

I took photos all in the same day for you. Like teeth, eyes, skin, and anything else pigmented, my hair color changes drastically with the light.

medium auburn – flash, indoors, daytime

dark strawberry blonde copper with lots of light strawberry blonde highlights – anytime outdoors, or indoors if near lots of sunlight

“Isla Fisher light auburn” – selfie lighting indoors facing a window in daytime, no flash

subtle medium auburn – indoors, night, flash

This seems subtle, almost warm brunette, until I stand beside a person with cool or neutral toned hair. You really see the difference beside a non-reddish haired person.

“Are you paid to endorse this product?”

No. People bomb me with questions sliding into my DMs and whenever I leave home. Pointing people towards my website diary entry makes this easier. When debating with myself on which color to get at Walgreens, every Google search returned women with bleached out blonde hair going auburn for the first time. I had natural dark auburn hair with previously dyed black ends, the ends then lifted up to a reddish chocolate for my hair dye process. Ultimately, for me to have my hair now, I had to chop off all of my natural, non-extension long hair. The lovely photos you see on this page are all of the dye on 100 percent virgin hair.

“How do I care for my red hair?”

Shampoo and condition your hair with cooler water. Wait three days after the hair dye process to wash it. You might have to chop the parts of your hair that are previously bleached lighter or dyed brunette for a uniform color. I did.

“What does the hair dye box look like?”

Here you go. You may be interested in the box one shade lighter or one shade darker. For people jumping from naturally cooler tones, you might need to dye your hair several times for the color to achieve the right warmth. And, to stick. Red hair dye fades faster if someone has a cool tone.

Your hair dye will not look like this Photoshopped box. Results vary according to what you start with.

“What is your hair color without dye?”

People ask me whenever I leave home about my hair color, meaning I must be doing something right. First, if it is my natural color, followed by someone saying they want a hair color like mine and could not find anything out there. Everything was an unnatural red tone. Agreed.

If you read my diary, you may recall an entry I wrote called “How Marilyn Monroe’s Hairdresser Told Me Not To Dye My Hair So Black (And I’m Now Going To Follow His Advice On Two Things!).” Wow, does that title make me sound like Derek Zoolander with his Center for Kids Who Can’t Read Good and Want to Do Other Stuff Good Too. Cringe. I am so ditzy sometimes.

I’ll save you the trouble of finding the last photo of my virgin hair color from the link by pasting it here. Coppery, only in the sun. Drab elsewhere. See what I mean? I had to pose in the sun to get this.

my virgin hair color in sunshine.jpeg

My beef with my virgin hair color: for me to get any highlights going, or it to look auburn, I need to stand in the sun. The rest of the time, I don’t know if it’s a dark chocolate auburn, black auburn, or light auburn brown. I don’t know. Wherever I stand in a different light, my hair color looks so different. It was photographing too brunette for my liking.

In childhood, my hair was a splendid natural strawberry blonde orange.

If life were a roulette table, I might gamble on the majority of reddish and red haired people enhancing their color with color depositing shampoos and/or subtle dye jobs. I tried both. The subtle dye job works best for me. Your hair darkens and fades out. For you to get those childhood highlights, that doll-like hair, you won’t have it by age 25 anymore without chemical interventions. Your hair may be looking auburn or strawberry blonde, and a neutral blonde or brunette in some lighting.

“What do you mean when you say this dye looks natural?”

Natural red toned hair isn’t fire engine red in any lighting. Virgin hair color children have is based on strawberry blondes or copper shades. Few kids have hair like the girl from Pixar’s Brave. You have red-blondes or red-brunettes, or the shade like a bronde with lots of red in it.

Years ago, I went to salons asking for natural looking strawberry blonde or auburn. The stylists highlighted me and made my base too different. Once, a stylist darkened my base into a weird almost purple plum. All led to roots! Horrendous roots like the girls wore to prom at the start of Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion, or bizarro roots where the regrowth was a smidge lighter and the hair ends looked like a bad wig fight.

For hair to photograph red-red-RED-REEEDDDDDD like Christina Hendricks when she’s gone red, the hair in reality looks electric orange or like red velvet cake. Nobody ever in their lives has hair like that. Not knocking it. Bright hair is very high fashion. For people like me or maybe you, a more natural copper tone is desired and harder to come by. Look at the Feria line. Nothing there caters to people seeking natural reds. Feria only makes high fashion runway reds and one unnatural, beautiful but unnatural, copper.

“What if I want blonde or brunette hair but I like being a redhead?”

Use a wig if having a fling with peroxide or black dye. YOU WILL DESTROY YOUR HAIR. YOU WILL NEED A PIXIE AND REGROWTH TO GET IT TO NORMAL. Film set actresses, Beyoncé, Cleopatra, who hasn’t worn wigs? Synthetic or human hair, a good wig looks really good!

“Why do you recommend auburn or strawberry blonde versus neutral or cool blondes and brunettes?”

With the exception of jet black Elvis hair, everything fades right away into ugly-ville. Or goes brassy. On me, both! A week out of the salon, my new platinum blonde has roots and an orange tint. I’m sick of it. Give me a lower maintenance color any day.