August 19, 2017

Become LLLEVEL Headed, Knowing the ''Level System of Hair Coloring" Can Prevent Disasters

Back to the Books
 If you plan on trying to learn the CRIB COLORIST method you must review the entire blog.
 Please, read through the entire Blog, take a week to do it - if it seems overwhelming or 'too much' ... it doesn't take that long and everyone I ask to do that - 'Thanks me' - when they are finished.... they really do! Absorb and learn it so you have the advantage/knowledge for the rest of your life.


I want to go back and review some of the Level System. Of course in this small arena, I have not covered it all. I tried to focus on the important parts, but I realize there are additional areas I must cover so the education is more thorough.

What I'd like to do is to get everyone on Killerstrands talking in 'Levels and Tones', as a Sassoon Colorist that's how we roll. Everyone is known by their hair color level & tone, every single person has one, even if they have never colored their hair. So as you go through your day, as you stand in the line at the post office - start guessing everyone's Level and Tone - practice makes perfect

The first task in learning hair color theory is to understand the difference between LEVEL and TONE. These 2 characteristics of Color are the most important and vital to understanding the concept.

Level, I thought I felt confidant that most everyone understands this concept, it simply refers to the lightness or darkness of hair color be it natural or artificial............. but over the course of this last week........I am realizing there will always be brand new people showing up and my teaching will never be done.  If anyone out there is having a difficult time with the concept of "Level" I want you to post a comment at the end of this post OR email me so I know. Everyone here needs to be able to name every person in your life's Level/Tone of hair. Think about that. . can you?

 Everyone is one level between  LEVEL 1 & 12 .

The amount of Tones is a whole different story. Especially in 2017. Because now it is normal to have a Rose-Gold in your line and if you don't you better get back to the Lab and invent one ! Because that was the single most desired tone in Salons  in 2016 ! and I don't see it doing away anytime soon. I guess the confusing part comes from the fact that as soon as the major hair color manufacturers decide on a basic 8 Tones, one of the companies decides to add a new tone or two, for Pizzazz! As colorists we are never more thrilled when we hear of a new tone coming down the pike. They call that a Lab-Rat, and sadly I may fit well into that category -- what a loser.

Manufacturers Level Systems vary somewhat from one another. Some products have ten levels, some 11, some 12. Regardless of the variations the lowest number will be the darkest color in any given system - highest number the lightest color.

Levels are precise degrees of lightness standardized across the manufacturer's tonal groups. All colors of the same level will have the same degree of lightness or depth, whether natural (neutral), ash, gold, matte, Pearl, Brown-Red-Violet, or any other tone.
To illustrate this, visualize a tall building, black is the basement and white is the penthouse, graduating from dark to light each story a grade lighter than the one beneath it. 
That is the International Level System, with numbers identifying those grades of dark to light. 
If you wash this image with a hue, such as gold, then you have a tonal series. 
 Imagine a "black and White" photograph - in that you are only seeing 'Levels" of color. Before color in our TV's and in our photographs we only had this "tonal" look. Its taking one color and going from the dark to light in each.

Tone refers to the hue of a hair color, be it natural or artificial. The main tones, or hues, of hair coloring are natural, ash, beige, gold & red...although I like to add, matt, pearl, brown-red and a few others. 

Another point I know I didn't clarify was the labeling of hair color, so when you go to buy that first tube of color you won't be thoroughly confused by what's printed on the end of the box. Manufacturers usually indicate the tones of their colors with letters: 'A' for Ash ....'N' for Neutral and so on. Numbers are also used to designate 'tone', for instance, if ".1" means ASH , then a Level 6 ASH would be a 6.1. That's the method, my European based WELLA line uses and to make it easier on the end of the box it says : 6/01A, so you get both.

Any color can be described in level and tone. If the sky is blue and darkest blue almost navy along the horizon and then graduates up as you look into the sky. Those are also distinctions in "levels". The level system pertains specifically and only to hair coloring.
If you are having problem distinguishing between level and tone, give it some more time. It will come to you. Its just foreign lingo.

FYI: the painters use of these words are totally different than the hair colorists and should not be related -- each has different vernaculars, but it is still all COLOR THEORY !
Be First to Post Comment !
Post a Comment

All comments are moderated. Please do not include: references to personal information, or any profane, inflammatory or copyrighted comments. We would appreciate it if we all stick to the subject of HAIR . Have a wonderful day.