Den Ng's winning look at the L'Oreal Professionnel Style & Colour Trophy competition
Not only did he win the L'Oreal Professionnel Style & Colour Trophy competition at national level, 27-year-old Den Ng went on to win the International Cut & Style Award at the L'Oreal Professionnel Style & Colour Trophy International Grand Final held in Spain.
The hair director at Prep Luxe says his top priority as a hairdresser is to listen to his customers because it's the key to being great at his job – you have to know someone's lifestyle needs to recommend the best hair changes. And since his most recent accolade is in the category of hair colouring, we pick his brains to get the best tips on how to care for coloured hair.
1. Your hair colour history is a must-know for your hairstylist
Your hairstylist or salon should keep a record of your previous colouring jobs, but if you’re switching to another hairstylist, it is best to tell them what was previously done and what you’re now looking to do before you pick a new hair colour.
“Colouring is also about correcting worn-out colours and planning for colour correction in the future for a smooth colour transition,” says Ng.
Ng's victory walk at the L'Oreal Professionnel Style & Colour Trophy competition
2. Feel free to share a little about your shampooing and styling habits with your hairdresser
It gives your hairstylist a bigger-picture perspective and insight, so they can recommend hair changes that will blend seamlessly into your life. Says Ng: “By using a more holistic approach, we can then add value to the customer.”
3. Try the “colour melting” technique if you want low-maintenance but fancy-coloured hair
Colour melting – an immensely popular hair-colouring technique right now – means colouring the hair roots in a darker shade that fades seamlessly into your previously coloured lighter hair. You can't tell where the darker shades end and the lighter ones begin because there is no harsh transition line that makes you look like you’re colour-blocking your hair.
This technique can be used on a wide range of colours, from browns and gold to oranges to pinks. “The key is to match the hair colour to your skin tone. And it means easier maintenance and fewer touch-ups at the salon – which is good if your hair grows fast," says Ng.
Colour melting is suitable for many colours, including this vivid purple-pink
4. Keep your hair healthy if you want your colour job to last
Healthy hair retains colour better and longer. Dry, malnourished hair is more porous, which makes it harder for the colour pigments to stay put. Ng recommends using the L’Oréal Professionnel Smartbond conditioner daily to strengthen your hair bonds, so colour stays longer.
Another shot of Ng's hair model at the competition
5. Never wash your coloured hair with hot water
Hot showers at the end of the day may be comforting to your senses and aching muscles, but you should never wash your hair with hot water as it strips away colour. So bear with the cold if you want your hair colour to last longer (and read these tips on how to protect your hair from heat damage).