Haircolor Terms DemystifiedKate Bryan
Unless it’s been explained to you by a previous stylist, you may have no idea what the difference is between a gloss and a glaze.
So to help you better understand exactly what is happening when she starts coloring your strands, I thought I would break down the three most common kinds of haircolor and explain what each does. As a hairstylist, these terms are an everyday part of my vocabulary now!
Permanent haircolor is just that: permanent until it grows out. It’s typically used to cover grey, to lift your hair to a lighter shade, or to color your hair a new tone. The chemicals within permanent haircolor will alter the interior part of your hair shaft. This is what makes it “permanent.”
Bleach, or lightener, is a permanent type of color, but its only use is to remove color from the hair. It’s permanent because it alters the interior, but it won’t add tone or color.
Typically referred to as a gloss or glaze, this color can darken, change tone, and fill lost tones in hair. It doesn’t use ammonia, so you won’t be able to lighten hair with this product. It can provide a really vibrant and shiny finish, so many women who don’t need the coverage of permanent hair color will opt for this kind of color. It can also be used to fill tones in hair that have been lost through excessive lightening.
Demi-permanent haircolor will not cover grey completely, but it will soften the contrast between grey hair and your natural hair color.
Often confused as demi-permanent, semi-permanent would be a temporary color spray or wash. It typically only lasts until the next time the hair is washed, but can sometimes stain and last a bit longer.
So, if your stylist starts talking about a glaze, she probably means demi-permanent. Don’t hesitate to ask her what kind of color she is going to use either. Your maintenance and new growth will vary depending on what kind of color is used to achieve the look you are going for.