Review: Madison Reed Hair Color

A while back I needed to dye my hair again, and I was looking around for a darker shade of red. I had dyed my hair red a couple of months before, but it was more subtle than I wanted. I was looking for something a little more vibrant because I knew from past experience that red hair makes my green eyes look brighter. I’ve been using Garnier hair color for a while with pretty good results, but I started looking at Pinterest trying to find a richer shade.

I stumbled across someone’s blog who had lovely deep red hair. She had a blog entry devoted to it and said that it was Trieste Red from Madison Reed. This brand is, as far as I know, only available online. I read through some of the information on their site and was pleased to see that they use fewer chemicals and more natural ingredients than most box hair color. I started reading the reviews, and to be honest they sounded too good to be true. Their site is full of glowing, happy reviews of people who loved their results. I was skeptical, but I also had a coupon code and thought it was worth giving it a try. I have waist length hair so I was happy to see that they have the option to add an extra tube of color for $10, rather than buying a whole second kit.

My order arrived in fairly good time, I’d say it was around the typical 5-7 business days or less. At the time I didn’t plan to review it, so I have no pictures of the packaging. It arrived in a long box, with the extra bottles of developer and color in it’s own box. Included in the main box was the color, the developer, two sets of gloves in their own little box, barrier cream to keep color off your skin, a wipe to clean up color that does get on your skin, small bottles of shampoo and conditioner, and a plastic cap to put over your hair. It really is a full kit, not just a box of color. I liked that everything was in it’s own little boxes and packaging, it was a very nice presentation and nothing got lost.

They include two sets of gloves so that you can use the second set when rinsing the color out. The gloves are black, not the regular clear kind. They work fine but seemed just a little tight, and I have pretty small to average hands.You might want to have an extra set laying around if you have larger hands.

I put the barrier cream around my hair line as instructed. It does in fact help keep you from getting dye on your skin. However I think I got it a little too close near my ears and the color didn’t take as well in those spots. I’m not sure if this step is really needed, but it’s handy to keep things neater, especially if you need to go out in public right after doing your hair. I usually do mine late at night so if I have any extra dye on my skin I have time to deal with it. The places where the cream got onto my hair weren’t a huge problem and I doubt anyone but me would ever notice that the color didn’t take as well there, just be careful about that. I should say that I ended up getting dye on my arms here and there also, and it came off just fine.

Mixing up the dye was easy, just like any standard kit. The only thing I didn’t particularly like was that the developer bottles that you mix in and use to apply the color are a little tough to squeeze. It’s not that noticeable at first, but if you have alot of hair, it gets kind of frustrating, especially when your arms are tired from being up over your head as you separate your hair and apply the dye. It’s just a minor thing, if my hair was shorter I would’ve been done much faster and probably wouldn’t have noticed it. If you think it might be an issue for you though, it may be worth buying the mixing bowl and brush to use instead.

That’s another nice thing about the Madison Reed website. They have all kinds of extras that you can add on to your order. Clips, dye brushes, plastic capes to protect your clothes, root touch up, and even shampoo and conditioner. You also have the option of choosing auto delivery, which I think is every six weeks.

My favorite part about the dye itself, was that it didn’t stink! Seriously! I’ve used alot of hair color of the years. With some of them I had to run out of the bathroom just to get a fresh breath of air (I’m looking at you, foam color), and others like Garnier had a much less offensive scent but was still noticeable. The Madison Reed color did not seem to smell anything but pleasant. That’s a major bonus in my book since, as I said, I have such long hair and it takes a good while to get it evenly colored. I was very glad that I bought the extra bottle, if you’re in doubt, just go for it. You could always save it for a later time. When I finished applying the dye, I used the included wipe to clean any extra dye off my skin. It worked well but seemed to irritate my skin a little around my neck and collarbone. Nothing serious, but I got a little red so I just got a wet paper towel and cleaned the rest of the dye with that. After my shower it was no problem.

Rinsing the dye out was similar to any other dye. While rinsing it out, my hair had that ‘just dyed’ feeling of being a little straw like, but as soon as I used their shampoo and conditioner it felt much softer. My hair looked nearly black when wet but as I dried it, it turned a deep red. Every single gray was covered perfectly, and the color was even and shiny. My hair felt soft and even healthier. I had read somewhere that it was good to wait 48 hours to wash freshly dyed hair, so I did that to try and keep the red from fading. It seemed to help, and I made sure to squeeze every drop of their sample shampoo and conditioner since it was sulfate free, so I got multiple uses from those.

Every time in the past that I’ve dyed my hair red, it’s been really messy. Many times the red dye will continue to stain towels days after I’ve done my hair (though I’ve never had that happen with any other color). With this brand, I never noticed it staining my towels, not even after the very first wash.

It’s been about a month since I used this dye, and I’m still quite happy with the results. The day that I did it, someone told me it was the best my hair had ever looked! It did fade a bit over time, but it just faded to a dark mahogany with a noticeable red tint in the light. I really liked this shade because while it was definitely red, it did not look unnatural. After 4 weeks the grey is still covered, except where the roots are growing out. Overall I am extremely satisfied with my purchase and I will definitely use this brand again. Who knew that all those positive reviews might actually be right? Obviously nothing is going to work for every single person, but compared to other home hair color I have used, this is my favorite. The only major drawback is the price, and you also have to pay shipping. On the bright side they have frequent coupon codes for various discounts and freebies, and a referral program. If you refer a friend you each get $15 for use on your order. Here is my referral link if you’re interested in using it. If you do, thanks so much! If you choose not to that’s fine too. (It would be silly of me to not post it, I love getting discounts and I like to share good deals with you guys too!)

That’s all for now. Leave a comment if you’ve tried this brand, or plan to! Also before I go, you can get a free spooky glam trio and free shipping from Zoya with a $25 order or more. The code is GLAM3 and ends on the 31st. Enjoy!


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