How To Get Gray Hair To Cover At The Roots

March 19, 2016
Gray Hair

The following are a few tricks to help get gray hair to take better at the roots. If you are having this problem you are not alone, more women complain about this one problem than any other hair color problem…other than breakage.  First, you will see a few problems, then you will see just how easy it is to get gray root coverage.

Why Gray Roots Don’t Take:

The re-growth is too long. The scalp is too oily or the hair is soiled. The hair color formula has too much water in it. The hair color formula was not mixed correctly. The product was not processed long enough. The hair was not shampooed before the color application. The hair has too much product build up.

Most women I know have this happen every time they have hair color, and just don’t know how to solve this problem…and I am sorry to say some hairdressers are also unclear about just how to correct this lack of coverage.  As some of you may have found gray roots often won’t even cover with only 10% gray so follow the same steps below to correct the problem.

Eliminate Gray Roots:

If your hair is oily or soiled from working out or if you have not shampooed for two days… shampoo before hair color service. Don’t use a conditioner until after hair color.If you want full gray coverage don’t ever go longer than 4 weeks for your re-touch. The roots will be too long to get full coverage, the formula needs heat and the scalp supplies this. You also need to apply the formula well so the roots will cover whether they are natural or gray. Most people that use hair color don’t use enough formula on the roots for full color deposit. Your formula doesn’t need to run down the face; it just needs to cover the roots thoroughly so the gray hair will take. If you are coloring your hair at home be sure to buy two boxes if you need to cover a big re-growth.


Hair color formulas need the exact hair color and developers when mixing them together. Often those mixing the formulas are a bit careless. If you are using liquid peroxide you can also use about ¼ less and get better coverage. Also make sure you measure correctly. Cream developers do hold the formula closer to the scalp which will help the formula develop better because of the heat from the scalp.


Read the directions and make sure you follow them If the formula is weak it will not cover the gray. If you add too much peroxide the formula will be watered down so it will weaken the final results.


If you have a lot of gray hair you might need to process the hair color for 10-15 minutes longer. Also, make sure you’re in a warm place the color will take better …you can even place a baggie over your hair to keep the heat in while the hair processes.


This will cover the last two problems…ALWAYS shampoo your hair before the service.  If you haven’t shampooed after the gym, if your scalp is oily from a workout, or if you have hair product build up; gray hair will not take at the roots. When you do shampoo wait until after the color processes…then rinse only and condition. Hair Color does not make your hair dirty so just rinse it and then condition.


Good luck with this, and remember if you have a problem please contact me with your questions.

Ms. Hill has devoted her impressive career to the essence of hair colour, working on the corporate level as the International Training Director for Beauty Industry giants Clairol Inc., L’Oreal and Vidal Sassoon. As a result, she has developed hair colour products that are streamlined to state-of-the-art and wishes to share her extensive knowledge and research directly with the consumer.

While refining hair colour techniques to an art form, her reputation created high demands in the Fashion and Entertainment Industries where nothing but the best will suffice. Her stellar client list has included: Cheryl Tiegs, Lily Tomlin, Teri Garr, Lindsay Wagner, Connie Selleca, Anne Bancroft, Marcia Cross and Kelly Rutherford to name a few. Her name has appeared on the pages of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Interview, Cosmopolitan, Women’s Wear Daily, Shape and all professional publications.

While Ms. Hill watches over her company she remains a constant advocate for early childhood education, especially for the underprivileged child. She also works closely with the International Foundation’s / UNICEF.

Tracy Hill


My name is Tracy Hill – Hair Colourist to Hollywood’s elite, and former international hair colour training director for Clairol Inc., L’Oreal, and Vidal Sassoon.  I have been an authority on hair colour for more than 30 years.

With my busy star-studded clientele covering the pages of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Cosmopolitan, often times my clients just couldn’t make it to the salon.  So I got busy and created coloursplash!®, a new product line called coloursplash!® designed to be used between salon appointments.

coloursplash!® is a unique ammonia and peroxide-free hair color product that keeps your hair looking fresh and perfect everyday of the month…AND it diffuses your grey!  This hair colour innovation is so effective it’s no wonder it sold out in only 6 minutes on QVC!

I also decided to put my decades of experience into an eBook to help as many people as possible with their hair coloring questions.  In my eBook, “Excuse Me… Your Roots are Showing,” I’ll give you expert advice, tips, and hair color secrets.  I will tell you everything you need to know about hair color; from coloring your hair at home, going to the salon; to choosing the right hair color.  In “Excuse Me… Your Roots are Showing” I will also dispel hair color myths, explain how to deal with coloring dilemmas, and much more!

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