May 6, 2013

Tonal Qualities in the Level System of Hair Color (yes, finally)

 Level and Tone are the basis of the Level System of Hair coloring and understanding the difference between the 2 must be clear, before proceeding. I missed teaching this in all these years. I should have taught the difference between "Level" and "Tone" and reviewed the entire category of Tonal qualities, but somehow I didn't and am sorry. It is a hard subject to teach online for 2 reasons :
  1. each hair color company has different tones.............remember no one regulates the billion dollar hair color world, they just fly by the seat of their pants ( & you know... men run all of these companies...which is ridiculous, don't get me wrong I love me some men - but what do they know about hair color or for that matter, what do they care?)  
  2. color settings & quality on computer monitors..........sometimes the difference between 2 tones are slight and it would be almost impossible to show the difference because we all have different brands and different monitors of computers. Which doesn't mean I'm not going to try, I just want you to be aware of that fact.
In the last 17 years, I have watched companies jump from 6 to sometimes over 20 various tones...and again each hair color line is different. A great example of 'Tone' is to look at a black white photograph:

you are seeing only LEVELS of Color not tones.If you were to wash this image with Gold, then you have a Tonal Series. It would show light gold, medium gold. dark gold..etc. 

Level simply refers to the lightness or darkness of a haircolor. Words such as light, medium, dark, palest, darkest and very light tell you about a colors LEVEL. Level, is how light or dark a color is.

TONE
Refers to the hue of a haircolor...the main tones and where haircolor started : Neutral, Ash, Gold & Red. So they began with the letters for Tones A-Ash...etc..., but then later came the numbers which correlate with Tones as well which go like this:
  • A. Ash : 1 stands for Ash so 8/1 is a level 8 Ash or 8/1A is how you'll see it as well.
  • G. Gold :  3 stands for Gold so 10/3 is a Level 10 Gold or 10/3G
  • N: Neutral : 0 for Neutral or Natural so 4/0 is a Level 4 Natural or 4/0N
  • R: Red : 4 in most lines stand for Red so 6/4 is a Level 6 Red or 6/4R
Any color really, haircolor or not can be described in terms of Level & Tone. Say you are painting a wall and you are trying to decide which color to paint it.... you choose Blue. You go and look at paint chips and they range from lightest powder blue to deepest navy ink  and all of the shades in between- those all could be called Levels of Blue!


Any Questions leave them in Comments section below...they will be answered shortly. We carry a Color wheel and a Peroxide wheel to help once you get the basics down...I love them and still glance at them occasionally.
  
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 End of Part 1, Part 2 shortly

thank you
KC




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