How to Pick the Most Natural-Looking Black Hair Color

A shade like black-brown can look natural on many skin tones.

Photo: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Black hair can be dramatic and eye-catching, but not everyone can pull it off. While black hair can make you look exotic and mysterious, it can also make you look washed out and sickly. And while some black hair dyes can look flattering and natural, others can make your hair look fake and synthetic. To pick a black hair color that looks the most natural, think about your skin tone and natural hair color.

1.

Consider your skin tone. If you have a darker skin tone or olive-tinted skin, you can get away with jet black hair dye and still look natural. If you have very pale skin, on the other hand, the stark contrast of blue-black and jet black hair can wash you out, making you look like a vampire. If you must dye your hair black, choose a black-brown hair dye, which is a lot less harsh a shade. Choose a blue-black shade if you have a cool skin tone -- the blue-black dye will bring out the blue or pink undertones in your complexion.

2.

Use your natural hair color as a guide. If your hair is medium to dark brown, you can get away with jet black hair color better than someone with ginger, copper or pale blonde hair. If you're a redhead or a blonde, keep in mind that even temporary black hair dye can remain in your hair for several months. Before dyeing your hair such a stark difference, think about trying some lighter hair colors first, like medium brown. If you like the change and feel like you're comfortable going darker, move up to dark brown, and finally -- if you're still happy with the results -- to brown-black.

3.

To make the final decision, take a photo of yourself facing the camera and with your hair pulled back. Upload the photo to a virtual makeover site and try on different hairstyles and hair colors. Not only can you get a look at how different hair dyes will look against your skin, you might yourself find a dazzling new hairstyle as well.

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