So about a week ago, I decided I wanted to sombré my hair. Sombré is a more up-to-date variant on the ombré trend, where the s stands for ‘subtle’ or ‘soft’. Instead of a harsh brown-to-blond transition, sombré entails brown-to-lighter-brown. I’m cheap and crafty, so I figured I’d do it myself.
Hair background: my hair was unprocessed. I had dyed the underside of my hair purple (and later, blue) before I chopped it all off about four years ago. That was the only time I dyed my hair, and then, I got it done in a salon.
To decide whether I really could do this or not, I watched approximately 42 million YouTube videos (approximately) of girls ombréing their hair with the L’Oréal Wild Ombré kit. (The most helpful one was this one.) From these videos I concluded that I could probably do it and achieve the result I wanted, which was chocolatey/caramely brown tips that fade into my nearly-black natural hair.
Now, the photo on this kit is absolutely terrifying. I didn’t want that result. Her hair looks scary. It’s all orangey and there’s a line where the ombréness stops and her natural hair starts. No. Bad. This is what I wanted to avoid.
First, I mixed up the bleachy solution (that’s the technical term, ya know). Then I grabbed a random curl hidden at the back of my head and snipped it off. I taped that curl to my desk and applied the bleachy solution. I let it sit there for 25 minutes while I watched YouTube videos. I washed it off of the curl. I checked the result. It looked cool. If you’re using this kit at home, I would hiiiiighly recommend doing a test like this! From there you can adjust the time you plan to leave the bleach on your own hair.
Next, I started applying the bleach to my hair. It smelled like death, so I cracked a window. Then I left it on for about 25 minutes. When I washed it off, my hair looked exactly the same as when I started… I should’ve left it in longer, but I was afraid I’d end up with orange hair. Better safe than sorry I guess, but boy was I sorry. I was frustrated and tired, but still determined to get some kind of result. I blowdried my hair and, once it was completely dry, went back in and applied the bleach again. I let it sit for another 25 minutes while watching more ombré videos to console myself. Then I rinsed and hoped for the best…
When I first looked in the mirror, I wanted to cry. Some bits were showing up quite orange at first. But I have to say, a week later, either it’s grown on me or it’s settled down. I absolutely love it! It’s subtle, but it’s a change.
The only thing I’ve noticed is that my ends are drier — but that’s to be expected. I make sure that I’m careful with them when detangling and styling to minimize breakage, and I scrunch coconut oil into them every single day. That’s helped to keep them from splitting (and the fact that I had a trim a short while ago helps too!).
All in all, this is a pretty great kit for when you’re feeling brave and have $12 to spare!