Beauty Without Fuss

Tuesday 2 November 2010

John Frieda Precision Foam Colour

I'm a little paranoid about home hair colour.  One too many colouring disasters has left me totally unable, these days, to even think about using a box dye myself.

I've lost count of the towels I've ruined, the ears I've dyed to match my hair (and scalp), the grouting I've spattered with various shades of black, red and blue - long story, don't ask - and, the patchy results always but always drive me nuts.  When you have long, dark hair that has been greying since your 18th birthday (as mine has) it can be difficult to use, particularly on the roots around the back of the head, as I'm not a contortionist!

So, when I was invited to preview a range of home hair dyes from John Frieda I was somewhat sceptical, particularly when we were told that this was something "entirely new" in the field, then found out it was a foam.  I remember foam dyes when they were first introduced in the 80's.  Invariably a shade of red, the only thing they coloured in any way was your skin.  Certainly, they never made any difference whatsoever to my hair!

However, having watched a model use the product live in front of my eyes, I have to say I was impressed with the results I saw recently, so much so that I inveigled a member of my own family to try my sample box.  Essentially, the colourant is a mousse, you mix a dye and accelerant together in a bottle, then add a nozzle applicator and squeeze it to release the contents. 

The bottle:

This is actually after it had been in use - these were the dregs!

Here's the hair we started off with:

Some serious rootage there.  I know that feeling well ...

In progress:

And after:

I have to say, I'm very impressed.  Major points in the colour's favour:

Low smell - it barely smells of anything at all.
Ease of use - my model was packed off to the bathroom with just the box and a 7-yr old "helper" and left to fend for herself, she soon figured it out!
Non-drip - once this stuff is on your hair, it doesn't budge.  Maison Lippie is a palace of white, floors, walls, seats and surfaces (it's beautiful, but not the most practical place to dye your hair, really) and there wasn't a single drip anywhere at the end of the process.  No marks in the bathroom, and no trace of her progress anywhere else in the place, either.
Non-staining - any dye that got on skin (my model was determined to dye her ears black for some reason) was very easily removed with just a baby-wipe.  There were no stains left on skin anywhere.
Short developing time - the entire process was done and dusted in less than an hour.  45 minutes if you don't include drying time.
Good results - Now, whilst the results weren't perfect (we didn't leave the dye on the roots alone for quite long enough, so even though the grey was entirely covered, it was a tiny bit lighter than the ends - this was pure operator error), they were much better than expected.

So, even though the John Frieda Precision Foam Colour is a tiny bit more expensive than most box dyes - it retails at £9.99 from the likes of Boots and Superdrug - my model was impressed enough to change her regular box dye for it.  My mum has one of the blonde ones, I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to seeing how she gets along with with it!  I've dyed her hair for years, and find it such a boring chore, this foam may be the one to change all that!

The Fine Print: PR Sample - but a very welcome one.


  1. That looks good. I like the sound of a non-splattered bathroom. I tend to cover mine with towels at the moment. I'm less nervous about trying it now. Goodness knows I have plenty of grey to cover!
    Jane x

  2. Was interested to hear how you got on with this - sounds great.

  3. I've got a box of it waiting for a willing volunteer. My dad better be very afraid!

  4. I used the chocolate brown shade 5.3, and it was easy to apply giving excellent coverage. However it didn't turn out chocolate brown - more dark ruby which was very disappointing, as it is far too dark for me. I did the timings as shown on the packet, so I won't be using this again. The foamer stops working and leaves a lot of the product at the end, so anyone with long hair would struggle to get full coverage

  5. Just used Dark Golden Blonde to cover my grey. I am no colour expert but I am now a brunette - NOT what I wanted at my age!!!! I hope it fades soon.

  6. I used 9A, an ash blonde, my usual shade and unfortunately it came out very dark and dull grey. Will not be changing from my usual L'Oreal Recital 9A (Tip: To lighten unwanted, very dark, newly dyed hair, soak hair for as long as you can stand, in the hottest water you can stand...i.e. in a sink, or bath. Hot water opens the hair to allow the surface dye to wash away. This is why hairdressers always wash your newly coloured hair in cool water. If you have hydrogen peroxide in the house (mouthwash, gargle) mix some with your normal shampoo and leave on for ten mins then rinse and condition. If no peroxide, just repeat the hot soaks until your hair loses the depth of colour.

  7. Hi can you tell me what colour this was, I quite like the shade it tuened out.

  8. I should have read this before blogging about it! Thanks for info.

  9. Just used this in light golden brown and have turned out dark chocolate brown. There is no hint of gold through it at all. Very disappointed and to be honest a little angry that it is nothing like what's on the box. been using Nice n Easy for years and the colours on their boxes are far more accurate. Wouldn't recommend at all.

  10. Hi, I love this product. I used dark natural brown and that's exactly how it looks. Natural. It covered all the grey and left my hair feeling very soft. It was also super easy to use. I will definitely use this again.It'll save me a fortune at the hairdressers and look good too.

  11. I used a 9A today (3 Jan 2011). I did a strand test first, and it seemed ok for colour match. I used as per the instructions included.
    Colour - good match
    Grey coverage - not great 5/10
    Total even coverage - about 6/10. I was disappointed with the coverage, I used exactly as instructions. Unfortunately the areas around the hairline next to face have not picked up the colour at all, and are still grey. I will need to buy my usual Loreal Preference colour this week to touch up the areas that did not take the colour. What I did find, is that after about 15 min in the hair, the foam colour started to dry up a bit in the hair, so I added a bit more to keep it moist. It is these areas that dried up a bit that have failed to take the colour.
    If you use this product, I would suggest doing a strand test first for colour. Be aware you may not get even colour throughout your hair, especially at the roots or in grey areas.

  12. I also tried the chocolate brown to match the colour i had , but ended up with black with a red finish...least to say not very nice and very unhappy.

  13. OMG I used the Medium blonde on my already blonde hair last night and it turned out charcoal !!!! I have never been so dark ! Did the strand test too which was ok. I had to go to supermarket at 10pm to buy a Nice and Easy baby blonde to cover it and it didnt even touch it. I have given it about 10 washes this morning and it is slightly lighter - I am mortified will never touch this product again ! Be very careful - needless to say i am getting another baby blonde hair colour today and getting my haircut on saturday !!!

  14. Strange...used L'Oreal forever when I was young (blondes), but now even the lightest ash looks brassy. So...went the other way.
    Haven't been able to find the right color (Light brown to dark, looks blah - Feria; Dark blonde turns really red in a week or so). Just got thru with the John Frieda light brown. I was happily surprised. At this moment it is exactly the color I've been looking for...light/medium brown with just a hint of red, shiny. I hope it holds!! If not.....I'm just going to have to bite the dust and go to a hair dresser and back to light ash blonde (Schwartzcroft).


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