Of all of the temporary ways to dye your hair, hair chalk is the best option for those who want to experiment without much of a commitment. Because it’s super-trendy right now, there are tons of hair chalks on the market in every color imaginable that you can easily apply for a one-day use and wash out. Most of the hair chalks out there are very similar to art pastels used for drawing, and a lot of people just use those because they’re so easy to find. But if you love DIY and want to make your own custom colors that work best for your hair, you’ll probably prefer to make your own.
The brightness of the shade will of course depend on your starting color, but even those
with dark hair can achieve a tinting effect with hair chalk. It’s easy to apply and very easy to control, making it a perfect choice for someone who wants to apply a color only to their tips or as highlights but doesn’t want to fuss with the messiness of actual hair dye.
You can buy chalk that is specifically made for your hair, or you can use regular soft pastels found in any art supply store.
First you have to decide where to chalk. If it’s your first time out, you may want to begin by just doing your ends or one chunk of hair near the front of your face. Once you’re used to the process, you can get more creative with how you apply it. One of my favorite looks is pulling half your hair back and just doing the hair underneath to achieve a peekaboo effect.
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Begin by prepping yourself for application. Cover your workspace and your shoulders with a towel, or wear an old T-shirt that you won’t mind staining. Put on gloves to protect your hands.
Using the spray bottle with water, wet the part of your hair that you’d like to chalk. If you’re doing multiple areas (or all of your tips), start with one section at a time. You want to really saturate the hair without leaving it dripping wet.
Support the piece of hair you want to chalk in your palm. Hold the hair away from your head and, with your other hand, drag the chalk along the hair where you’d like the color to appear. You’ll want to really rub the chalk in, going up and down and putting pressure against your other hand. No need to hurt yourself, but really get it in there! Move slowly to avoid crunching up your hair as you move up and down.
Repeat this for each portion of hair you want to chalk.
Now, you’ll want to set the color by using heat. You can either use a blow dryer and then a flat iron, or vice versa. (Note that using a straightener on wet hair is not the best idea for anyone with particularly sensitive or previously color-treated hair.) You can also wait for your hair to dry naturally, if you’re patient.
Once you’ve dried and straightened all of the colored sections, use hairspray on the colored areas to prevent flaking.
Voilà! Chalk will wash out in one to three shampoos. Those with light-colored hair will need more washes than those with dark- colored hair.