*UPDATE 2021: I not longer use or recommend oVertone.*
Recently I have learned (through experience) that oVertone is not semi-permanent as advertised. It is very difficult or impossible to remove, even after not using it for 6+ months. I wish I had heard about this before I decided to try it out years ago. I recommend reading the negative reviews here thoroughly first if you are considering trying it. And if you are ever planning on lightening your hair after coloring it, I would recommend not using overtone. I thought oVertone would be a less damaging option for my hair, but it wasn’t worth it, and I wish I’d gone to a salon instead or found a better option. I threw away my leftover oVertone because I would never consider using it again.
oVertone also stained my bathtub, as I mentioned in my original review. I thought it was because my bathtub was very old and crappy, but I was always careful to rinse my hair after using it in our stainless steel sink in our new house just in case (since we had brand new tubs I didn’t want to risk staining). And a bunch of reviews on Trustpilot report people staining their bathrooms as well, so it wasn’t just me.
Original Post (2017):
Also check out my updated oVertone review (Vibrant Orange, Extreme Orange, & Copper kit comparison) and my oVertone Ginger review. Also check out this post about how I match my eyebrows to my oVertone Orange hair.*
I’m not usually very adventurous with my naturally dirty blonde hair (I’ve been various shades of blonde my whole life, with the exception of a few months when I was 19 and decided to dye my hair dark brown.) I’ve always loved red/orange hair though and was finally ready to do something fun and different this past December, so I decided to color my hair red with oVertone color.
I heard about oVertone from Mia, who colored their hair an amazing teal with it. I looked into some other vegan and cruelty free hair colors, but I decided on oVertone because I’ve never dyed my hair myself, and it seemed less intimidating to use since it’s technically a color conditioner and not a hair dye. I also hoped it would be less damaging to my hair than standard dyes.
I wasn’t sure which conditioners to order so I sent oVertone an email asking what I should use to achieve my goal: Jessica Hamby hair! I sent photos of her and my current color, and they responded saying I should try Vibrant Orange (starting out with the Go Deep treatments until I got my desired color and then maintaining it with Daily Conditioners). I ordered the set that comes with both as well as a trial-size conditioner (update 2020: the kits don’t come with the free trail size conditioner anymore.)
Coloring my hair (Go Deep Weekly Treatment)
When the conditioners got here, I got my partner Lucas to apply the Go Deep treatment (now called Coloring Conditioner) since you’re supposed to saturate all of your hair evenly, and I have so much hair. It took a while, and honestly it seems like it would be difficult to do it yourself, unless you’re already good at dying your hair and know what you’re doing.
The tools we used were disposable nitrile gloves to protect his hands from staining, a dye brush to apply the color, and alligator clips to section off my hair.
After one treatment my hair was reddish, but not as vibrant as I wanted, so the next day Lucas did the treatment again, and then I was really pleased with the results! I went out that night and got a bunch of compliments--someone even said my hair looked like fire.
Maintaining my color (Daily Conditioner)
After I got the color I wanted, I started using the Daily Conditioners every time I washed my hair to maintain my color. I only washed my hair every other day or every third day and used dry shampoo (mixed with cinnamon to match my hair better) if needed.
Using the daily conditioner was easy for me since I always put conditioner in, put my hair up, and leave it like that while I wash my body and face anyways, so nothing about my routine changed other than the conditioner itself. Apparently it's better to wash your hair with cold water to fight fading with dyed hair, but with oVertone it's fine to use warm water, which is awesome.
oVertone recommends that you use the Go Deep treatments every week, but to me that's a pain, and the conditioner is pricey, so I got away with just using the daily conditioner for about 5 weeks before I felt like I really needed another Go Deep treatment. My hair did fade some, but it was still red.
After that treatment, I used the daily conditioner only for another 4 weeks, and then I stopped using it, and about two weeks after that, most of the color had faded. (I want to be blonde for an event later this month, so I wanted to make sure it had time to fade.)
As I hoped, oVertone didn't feel damaging to my hair--it may sound weird, but my hair actually seems drier and gets tangled more easily since I've stopped using their daily conditioners. My hair is naturally oily though, so I'm not sure how it would affect drier hair.
Since I'd never colored my hair at home before, I wasn't sure how bad it would be as far as potentially staining things. The Go Deep treatments have 50% more pigment than the daily conditioners, so they have more staining potential, and I did stain the shirt I was wearing (which I expected.) I never had any issues with the color running after using the daily conditioners though, and the daily conditioner didn't stain my hands (I'd always wash them off with soap right after.) The daily conditioner did stain my shower in a couple of places where I accidentally got blobs of conditioner, but that could be avoided by being more careful--our shower is old and kind of stained anyway so I wasn't that worried about it.
Honestly coloring my hair with oVertone wasn't cheap since my hair is so long, and I had to do two initial Go Deep treatments, which used up almost the whole bottle ($28.) Obviously it's still a lot less expensive than going to the salon though. (Update 2020: After using Vibrant Orange, I switched to Extreme Orange instead of Vibrant since it's more pigmented so I could get more color for the price, and then eventually switched to the Copper Kit.) I am also considering trying Arctic Fox Hair Color next, since it's less expensive (update: I tried Arctic Fox and did not like it.)
Overtone is 100% vegan and Logical Harmony approved! It smells very minty, if you're into that. Coloring your hair with oVertone doesn't work as well with darker hair, so you'd have to lighten or bleach it first for more noticeable results (update: they now have overtone colors for brown hair.)
They have a lot of info up on their site on how to use their conditioners as well as swatches of their shades over various hair colors, so check it out if you're interested.
Overall I loved using oVertone because it was exactly what I was looking for: vegan hair color without going to a salon that isn't hard to use or damaging to my hair! And honestly I look pretty damn hot as a redhead! ;) I'm going blonde again for an event later this month, but after that I'm thinking about either going orange again or trying a different color, maybe pink or cherry red. Thoughts?
Have you tried any vegan hair dyes or colors? Let me know in the comments!