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Glossing VS. Toning

Hey, friends! We’re excited to let you in on a little secret! Today we’re going to share the benefits of gloss and the different ways it can be used! Today we will cover: the differences between glossing and toning, who can benefit from this service, and when and how often it should be used!



What is a hair toner?


Have you ever sat through a blonding service and snuck a peek in the mirror to catch a glimpse of the beautiful, highly sought after yellow/orange color on your hair? If you answered yes, then I’m sure you caught on to the fact that we’re totally kidding! Yellow/orange tones are typically the last color blondes want to see on their hair after having it lightened! If you answered no, then there’s a good chance you have no idea what we’re talking about, but that’s okay because today, we’re all going to learn together!

To understand where the need for “toner” comes from, we will touch briefly on the act of lightening the hair and how it works!


There are two chemicals that play a role in lightening the hair: ammonia and hydrogen peroxide. When those two chemicals are mixed and applied to the hair, they penetrate the cortex and strip the hair of pigment (melanin) through the process of oxidation. The way we determine color in the hair world translates to a number system with level 10/12 being the lightest (your blondes), and level 1 being the darkest (black). Depending on the starting level, hair goes through multiple different phases. For darker-haired clients, the hair will turn red, then orange, and eventually yellow depending on the level of lift you’re able to achieve through oxidation. This is NORMAL and will almost always result in an underlying undertone that needs to be neutralized. Which brings us to our next question: Why is it, whenever I leave the salon can I no longer see those tones in my hair? Well, that’s all thanks to every hairdresser’s best friend, toners! Toners are almost always applied following a lightening service. They are formulated with corrective pigment which gives them the ability to neutralize any unwanted tones that are visible in the hair. Understanding the color wheel helps your stylist determine which toner to use and when. For example, if the client pulls yellow, your stylist will use a toner containing the underlying pigment of yellow’s complimentary color, (the color that lives directly across from it in the color wheel) violet. If the client pulls orange, your stylist will neutralize with blue, and so on! Interesting, right? It is important to note that toning/glossing the hair has the longevity of about 4-8 weeks depending on the formula and other factors like how often a person washes their hair and what products they’re using. Now you’re probably wondering if toners can damage the hair. We’ll touch on that soon!





What does it mean to gloss or glaze hair?


Good news! If you’ve made it this far then you already know almost all the facts! The difference between gloss, glaze, and toner is…. *Drumroll please... --there is none! That’s right! Gloss, glaze, and toner are the same service, same formula, and same application. In fact, the terms can be used interchangeably. The only thing that changes is the intention behind them. Toner is becoming a bit of an outdated term, so we will use the term “Gloss” moving forward. We’ve already talked about one reason this service may be implemented in the salon, but the beauty industries best kept secret is that it can also be used to maintain the health of the hair on almost anyone -which brings us to our next segment!




Who can benefit from gloss?


You’re in luck because EVERYONE can benefit from this service. The only contraindication is if you have developed an allergy to the formula. But why would I want to get a gloss? I have virgin hair. Great question! Here’s why: gloss enhances the overall appearance of the hair by sealing the hair cuticle and making your hair look less dull and more vibrant by adding shine (hint the term GLOSS). The formula is acidic which helps balance your hair’s PH level while strengthening and creating a protective barrier around the hair strand and balancing the hair’s porosity. Plus, hair toners are super versatile and can be customized to suit your specific needs! Whether you're a blonde, brunette, or redhead, there's a toner out there for you!

So, if you're looking to refresh your hair color, banish brassiness, and add some serious shine, a gloss service is your go-to! Even if you’ve never colored your hair, you should still be making regular trips to the salon to boost the vibrance of your gorgeous locks! Trust us, your hair will thank you for it!








By: Hannah Sprengel

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