longest lasting un-natural color hair dye
August 13, 2011 10:44 AM   Subscribe

Any reviews/comparisons between hair dye brands "Crazy Color", "Directions" and "Punky Color" Specifically which lasts the longest

I am going for a deep burgundy/blood red color. I know there is a lot of info about punky color vs. manic panic but have heard that crazy color and directions might last longer. I know most of the tricks to keeping color vibrant but would rather use the brand with the least upkeep
posted by let444 to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
My roommate dyed her hair Manic Panic's Vampire Red about a month ago, decided it was too red for her taste, and has been having a hell of a time trying to deredify it. She's tried to cover it up with some box burgundy from the store (Herbal Essences, I think?), but the crazy red is still shining through, a month later.

I don't know if that helps. I've never dyed my hair before.
posted by phunniemee at 11:00 AM on August 13, 2011

I would recommend Special Effects over all of the above. Directions washes out pretty quick and I've never got a decent colour I liked from Crazy Colour.
posted by corvine at 11:25 AM on August 13, 2011 [1 favorite]

I've been dyeing my hair red since I was sixteen. Granted, I've been going for a more subdued and natural look, but you can get some pretty insane red colours from a box of Garnier or L'Oreal. For Garnier, go for the 100% Colour box that has a picture of red powder on it and leave the dye in for about ten minutes longer than recommended to get that blood red colour.

Things to note: I have naturally dark brown hair, not sure what colour hair you have. Also, red is a colour that fades the fastest, not matter what you do. I have to dye my hair about once a month to maintain it. I use Garnier 100% Colour or their Creme Colour because it fries my hair the least.
posted by dustpatterns at 11:29 AM on August 13, 2011

I'm going to second the recommendation for Special Effects. I spent a good portion of the last two years bleaching out my hair and dyeing it obnoxious colors. Special Effects, in my opinion, definitely stays vibrant the longest (caveat: I have not tried Directions). Also, I found that as it fades, a Special Effects dye job just generally looks less awful to my eye than those of other brands. It seems like they have at least a couple of colors that might fit your requirements.
posted by LittleKnitting at 12:30 PM on August 13, 2011

Directions washes out in a few weeks, even on bleached hair.
posted by Coobeastie at 1:02 PM on August 13, 2011

Try Goldwell Elumen. It's truly semi-permanent (I'm talking months of colour!), and the Elumen line does have a colour remover if you go too red or green or pink. I'm using GN@all over severely bleached hair, and have the most deliciously astroturf colour right now.
posted by soft and hardcore taters at 1:03 PM on August 13, 2011

I've been dying my hair for a decade or so, and the best results I've gotten have been from Special Effects, though I don't think I've ever tried Directions, and I've never tried any salon-only stuff. While the colors fade, as all semi-permanent dyes do, Special Effects remains reasonably vivid in my hair for the longest time. I probably dye my hair every two or sometimes three months, and while the colors have definitely faded by the end of that time period, they're still very visible.

In my (unbleached, light brown) hair, Candy Apple Red comes out close to the shade you're looking for, but you probably want to go with one of the darker colors (Blood Red or Burgundy Wine) if you're bleaching. However, whichever company you decide on, you might want to try several of their reds: while dying over unbleached hair means that I may get similar initial results from several shades of dye (e.g. Blue-Haired Freak vs. Blue Mayhem), they do not necessarily fade similarly (Blue Mayhem lasts much longer in my hair.)
posted by ubersturm at 1:16 PM on August 13, 2011

I used Punky Colours with great results. I also tended to put a fingerfull or so into a bottle of conditioner, as well- that certainly made it last longer.

The sad fact is that red pigments are going to fade faster than a blue or brown- I have naturally red hair that goes dishwater blonde if I'm not careful in the summer.
posted by Hwin at 3:12 PM on August 13, 2011

I've used Punky Color, Manic Panic and Special Effects and have found that Special Effects is the best in terms of color payoff and lack of fading.
I used Manic Panic Vampire Red on my light brown hair that was highlighted blonde. I had a mixture of deep blood red with fire engine red highlights that lasted about a month before fading to pinkish highlights and no noticeable red in my hair. A mixture of Vampire Red and Pillarbox Red on unbleached hair darkened my hair and gave me auburn-ish tones.
Most recently I used S.E. Atomic Pink on bleached hair. I had hot pink hair for six weeks without any fading, so long enough for noticeable roots to grow in that required re-dying. About two years later now and I still have noticeable pink tones on my ends when my Feria dye over starts to fade.
Punky Color had really bad color payoff, medium red was pink in bleached hair.
posted by blueskiesinside at 4:26 PM on August 13, 2011

Another vote for Special Effects. Every time I've dyed my hair a weird color, I used it. Several colors mixed together to make the color I wanted, actually.
posted by dithmer at 5:14 PM on August 13, 2011

I really love punky color - it lasts longer the longer you leave it in, so I will apply it in the evening and sleep with in my hair - it smells like grape candy, so you can do that and it's not gross. I tried leaving manic panic in for a long time once and couldn't do it because the chemically smell was making me queasy.

I got an unbelievable red by mixing punky color flame and rubine together - it was gorgeous and lasted a long time.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:30 AM on August 14, 2011

Vegetable dyes are far, far brighter than drugstore dyes, but what i did was dye with a drugstore dye as a 'base' then apply Directions colour on top. This seemed to work better than bleaching/dying 9you NEED to chemically treat the hair somehow beforehand if you want it to take) as the roots didn't come in so black. You might want to try Dark Tulip for the colour you want. Leave it in overnight (old pillowcase + carrier bag over the hair) comb it every half hour or so to keep it going.

Manic Panic was crap IME.
posted by mippy at 10:48 AM on August 14, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks guys, I wouldn't have guessed special effects, but that seems to be the consensus. I got the color I wanted by putting manic panic vampire red over my auburn hair (because that's what the stores had) but it just fades so fast and every time I have to dye my hair is another chance for me to stain my entire bathroom. I'm gonna order a couple of SE colors and see which ones give me the color I want.
posted by let444 at 12:28 PM on September 12, 2011

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