Pulp Riot Hair: Superior paint for extraordinary artists

Rainbow hair is bold, beautiful, and eye-catching. It is a way for clients to express themselves and an artistic outlet for stylists to push the creative envelope with each unique masterpiece. As this trend has grown, the options available to professional colorists have also grown. There are so many brands of vivid hair dyes available now, but today we are going to talk about my personal favorite: Pulp Riot.

 My very first shipment of Pulp Riot. Check out the beautiful artwork on the packaging!

My very first shipment of Pulp Riot. Check out the beautiful artwork on the packaging!

David and Alexis Thurston, who you may already recognize from Butterfly Loft & Butterfly Circus, are the founders of Pulp Riot. Together with a partnership of innovative artists including including Ash Fortis, Iris Smith, Jay Wesley Olson, Ricky Zito, and many others, Pulp Riot was formulated and tested. Luxury Brand Partners, parent company of well known and loved brands such as Oribe and R+Co, joined in partnership with Pulp Riot to help deliver this artist-driven brand in the biggest way possible.

Pulp Riot's launch started with an exclusive limited and controlled online only release, for which I was fortunate enough to receive a code for early access. I immediately ordered the full package and fell in love with the product. After the limited release, Pulp Riot became available to all industry professionals on their website. Now, in addition to being available online, you can find Pulp Riot on the shelves of SalonCentric starting February 1st!

What first attracted me to Pulp Riot was the amazing work of the artists who developed the product. These highly skilled colorists work behind the chair on a regular basis, and I knew they understood the needs their product would have to meet to surpass competitiors. They made sure that everything we could ask for in a color line exists within Pulp Riot. Zero degrees of separation between the people that create the product, and the people that use the product is an equation for success.

Upon the unpacking of my first order, I fell in love with Pulp Riot before I ever opened a tube. The beautiful, unique artistry on the boxes is incredible. The convenient packaging of an easy to squeeze tube, with a flip top to open and close, and a bright label depicting the color in the tube placed right on that top, was simple genius. These may seem like little things, but when you have been working with tubes that are not easy to squeeze, caps that require you to screw them on and off, and tubes that will not stand or store in any easy way that you can clearly see the label on them, these small differences stand out. They really thought of everything!

 My handmade DIY Pulp Riots watch chart, made from level 9 untoned blonde hair I saved from a client.

My handmade DIY Pulp Riots watch chart, made from level 9 untoned blonde hair I saved from a client.

Packaging aside - it's what's inside that really won my heart. Highly pigmented, creamy, conditioning color. The color is also 100% vegan. Pulp Riot has amazing spreadability (meaning less product used, to cover a larger amount of hair) and mixes very easily when customizing colors. Their "clear" mixer is not actually clear, instead it is more of a milky-white color which really helps provide dilution when trying to adjust the opacity of a custom shade. All 16 shades in the line are intermixable. You can combine Lemon with Fireball to make a beautiful orange, mix Absinthe with Lemon to create a vibrant neon style green, add Velvet into Smoke to create a smokey violet...the possibilities are endless.

 One of my mermaid clients, and a full Pulp Riot Rainbow transformation. We did not remove the preexisting color.

One of my mermaid clients, and a full Pulp Riot Rainbow transformation. We did not remove the preexisting color.

The colors generally do not bleed  when rinsing, either. I see very little color run off in the water when rinsing my clients. More of what I see is a "foam" coming off with the color - some say it looks like shampoo rinsing out - and I believe this is due to the starchy base of the color mixing with water. Simply rinse the hair until the water runs completely clear. I have been able to create looks such as the one below, where previously with other color companies the darker shades bleeding onto the yellow would have been a huge concern.

 Color bleeding is not as much of an issue with Pulp Riot. Following standard stylist tricks for vivids, including cool water and high pressure rinsing, I am able to create looks like this without the darker colors at the top dulling the vibrant hues on the bottom.

Color bleeding is not as much of an issue with Pulp Riot. Following standard stylist tricks for vivids, including cool water and high pressure rinsing, I am able to create looks like this without the darker colors at the top dulling the vibrant hues on the bottom.

Semi permanent dyes definitely require special maintenance to maintain their vibrancy, and I educate all of my clients extensively on how to care for their new color. However, I have to say that out of all the vivid dyes I have used before, Pulp Riot stays vibrant the longest and fades more true to tone than any other. My clients are amazed at the vibrancy of their color and the beauty of their fade outs. I personally seem to get the most compliments on my own hair once it begins to fade!

 My own Pulp Riot creation featuring Velvet, Jam, Mercury, and Smoke. Fresh on the left, vs. 5 weeks old on the right.

My own Pulp Riot creation featuring Velvet, Jam, Mercury, and Smoke. Fresh on the left, vs. 5 weeks old on the right.

While it stays in the hair very well, Pulp Riot is also fairly easy for us professionals to remove when the time comes. I stumbled upon that fact by accident one day, playing with some lightener on freshly colored hair that had been cut from a client. It started removing the vivids in seconds, right before my eyes! I have experimented on mannequins as well as performed removal several times on my clients, and I have to conclude that overall I have far better experiences removing Pulp Riot than removing other direct dyes.

 Removal of faded Pulp Riot color, using lightener and 20 volume.

Removal of faded Pulp Riot color, using lightener and 20 volume.

 Removal of OTHER vivids, using lightener & 20 volume.

Removal of OTHER vivids, using lightener & 20 volume.

I have been able to create so many different looks with Pulp Riot. I can paint with confidence and ease thanks to this amazing product. Did I mention, it also smells great? Nearly every client has commented on the pleasant smell of the color. Not really something critical to the experience, but a nice bonus!

 

Pulp Riot is not just a company that's bringing us haircolor. Pulp Riot is forging the path by providing innovative education, encouraging collaboration instead of competition, and empowering, recognizing, and supporting the artists that use their product. For more information, check them out at www.pulpriothair.com 

Trionics Hair Care: How enzymes changed the game

Today I want to discuss Trionics Hair Care and how their products changed the game for me and my clients. If you're following me on any of my social media accounts, you've probably already seen me posting about these wonderful products. I hope that this post can reach other professionals who may have questions about Trionics, and also serve to educate my clients as to why I am so passionate about the use of these products in the salon.

 Trionics makes developers for every level of lift: No Lift for deposit only, Accent for one level of lift, Gray B Gone which is a 17 volume for just the right balance of lift/deposit for gray coverage, Actuator for 2-3 levels of lift, Lift thru which is the highest volume that is safe for on scalp usage, and Higher & Higher for 5-8 levels of lift for off scalp use only.

Trionics makes developers for every level of lift: No Lift for deposit only, Accent for one level of lift, Gray B Gone which is a 17 volume for just the right balance of lift/deposit for gray coverage, Actuator for 2-3 levels of lift, Lift thru which is the highest volume that is safe for on scalp usage, and Higher & Higher for 5-8 levels of lift for off scalp use only.

Let me start by saying Trionics is not new to the industry. For nearly 30 years they have been offering enzyme-based developers to salon professionals. My entire time in beauty school I never heard anything about enzyme developers at all. When I stumbled across a post about Trionics Higher & Higher enzyme developer in a Facebook hair forum, I was intrigued. At first glance, the comparison to 40-80 volume developer seemed scary. Knowing how aggressive 40 volume developer can be, I was terrified of trying something stronger, so when I picked up my first bottle of Higher & Higher I put it to the test on a sample of hair cut from a client. I was shocked to see the high level of lift achieved in a short time, but also amazed at how healthy the hair felt after lightening! This experiment sparked a desire within me to learn more about the product and to get to know how and why the enzymes work. I took a Trionics class at the Fashion Focus hair show in Charlotte, NC in October 2016 where I became familiar with all of their products.

 Presentation during Trionics class at the Fashion Focus Charlotte, NC hair show.

Presentation during Trionics class at the Fashion Focus Charlotte, NC hair show.

While Trionics enzyme developers do still contain hydrogen peroxide like standard developers, the chemistry with the enzymes is far more nuanced. When processed with heat, these enzymes catalyze to accelerate the chemical reaction while also nourshing, healing, and protecting the scalp and hair. Without heat you still reap the benefits of the enzymes, just at normal processing speed. As a colorist, this ensures I achieve brighter blondes, richer reds and browns, better gray coverage, healthier hair, and save time still using my favorite color lines! The products are both gentle and effective, and have been a lifesaver for many stylists and clients who have reactions to using harsh peroxide products in the salon.

 Philice LeBow is an educator for Trionics, and she is the daughter of Marvin LeBow, who is the president of Trionics Hair Care. We met in person at the Charlotte Fashion Focus 2016. Philice is extremely knowledgeable and uses social media & her online presence to provide endless support for Trionics users. She makes herself personally available for any questions or troubleshooting to make sure you are getting the most from your products.

Philice LeBow is an educator for Trionics, and she is the daughter of Marvin LeBow, who is the president of Trionics Hair Care. We met in person at the Charlotte Fashion Focus 2016. Philice is extremely knowledgeable and uses social media & her online presence to provide endless support for Trionics users. She makes herself personally available for any questions or troubleshooting to make sure you are getting the most from your products.

Trionics is a line of universal developers, meaning they can be used with all manufacturers color lines and lighteners. Universal developers can be a controversial topic in our industry. Some stylists are opposed to them, and most all manufacturers won't support the use of such products with their color lines. At the end of the day, it is a very personal decision that I would never try to force on someone else. But let me put something out there for consideration: What company wants to admit that another companies product works just as well as, or better than, their own product? It would be directing sales right out the door and hurting their very own pockets. I encourage everyone to do your own research, your own hands on testing, and make your decision based on science vs. opinion.

I have done a ton of testing with my Trionics Hair Care products, and will share some of the results with you here.

 For this experiment, I used Schwarzkopf BlondeMe powdered lightener. Tested with Trionics Higher & Higher vs standard 40 volume developer, with and without heat. Trionics Higher & Higher gave superior lift both with and without heat, and also protected the integrity of the hair. The hair used with normal 40 volume under heat was overprocessed and crunchy, dry, and matted. DISCLAIMER: Manufacturers directions of BlondeMe do not recommend using with heat, or anything above 30 volume developer. I broke both of those rules for the sake of this experiment.

For this experiment, I used Schwarzkopf BlondeMe powdered lightener. Tested with Trionics Higher & Higher vs standard 40 volume developer, with and without heat. Trionics Higher & Higher gave superior lift both with and without heat, and also protected the integrity of the hair. The hair used with normal 40 volume under heat was overprocessed and crunchy, dry, and matted. DISCLAIMER: Manufacturers directions of BlondeMe do not recommend using with heat, or anything above 30 volume developer. I broke both of those rules for the sake of this experiment.

It's important to always use good judgement and follow basic precautions when lightening hair, even with enzyme developers. If you wouldn't feel comfortable using normal 30 or 40 volume peroxide on the hair, don't use Trionics Higher & Higher. If you are applying heat to speed processing, use a low to medium gentle heat to process and check the hair frequently during the process. Olaplex also works great to mitigate the damage being done to the hair, but do not rely on that alone to prevent overprocessing. 

 Comparison of Redken Freehand clay based lightener and Trionics KO Blondes clay based lightener, using both Redken 40 volume pro-oxide and Trionics Higher & Higher developers. Processed 20 minutes in a meche sheet with medium heat. These hair samples were cut from an artifically colored client.

Comparison of Redken Freehand clay based lightener and Trionics KO Blondes clay based lightener, using both Redken 40 volume pro-oxide and Trionics Higher & Higher developers. Processed 20 minutes in a meche sheet with medium heat. These hair samples were cut from an artifically colored client.

The launch of Trionics KO Blondes was such an exciting moment! The minute I received my first tub in the mail I couldn't wait to put it to the test. In the past I have used other clay based lighteners with lackluster results. Trionics KO Blondes has blown me away in every aspect. The lightener is violet tinted, which helps to fight brassy tones through the lifting process. The powder is easy to mix, unlike some clay based lighteners which have texture like flour and explode out the bowl making a mess. The lightener stays a nice consistency as you work, unlike some others which swell rapidly in the bowl. The lift when paired with Trionics developers is definitely unmatched by any clay based lightener I've ever used! Brighter blondes, in less time, while still maintaining the integrity of the hair. What more could you ask for?

 Comparison using Redken Shades EQ with dedicated processing solution vs. with Trionics No Lift Enzyme Developer. Applied on dry hair and both processed 20 minutes.

Comparison using Redken Shades EQ with dedicated processing solution vs. with Trionics No Lift Enzyme Developer. Applied on dry hair and both processed 20 minutes.

Shades EQ is a great product in many colorists arsenals. If you have ever used Shades EQ, you know it calls for a dedicated processing solution. I decided to test using Trionics No Lift enzyme developer to replace my SEQ processing solution. I was impressed to find the same great color payoff, but with an improvement to the consistency of my mixed color as well as more shine on the colored hair. I tested these same hair samples shampooing a total of 10 times to compare longevity, and found that SEQ faded about the same amount on both test strands. Trionics No lift enzyme developer has eliminated the need for me to stock Shades EQ dedicated processing solution.

 Trionics Gray B Gone developer with Pravana 4N, on 100% white/gray hair, processed 20 minutes under warm dryer.

Trionics Gray B Gone developer with Pravana 4N, on 100% white/gray hair, processed 20 minutes under warm dryer.

Gray coverage is something we have all struggled with. In beauty school we were taught to process gray for the full processing time (often 40-60 minutes) and if the hair was still stubborn, to pretreat by presoftening the hair. This can be a time consuming process, which is not only inconvenient to stylists and clients alike, but also a burden in an industry where time equals money. Trionics Gray B Gone eliminates the need for these time consuming steps, and allows me to cover grays in as little as 20 minutes when capped under a warm dryer. The hair sample for this test was cut from my only 100% gray/white haired client, and illustrates this products amazing ability to penetrate resistant hair. My clients have been amazed by the rich coverage and faster processing time when using Trionics Gray B Gone enzyme developer!

Trionics doesn't just make developers. There is a full arsenal of cleansers & treatments as well as perms. I am a huge fan of the enzyme conditioning cocktail, booster plus blowout spray, Get It Strate semipermanent straightening system, and I also have their Pre-Chemical Cleanser and Chelating clarifying shampoo on the way in my next shipment! I enjoy the consistent quality results that these products provide on a daily basis behind the chair, as well as the world-class education and endless support I've recieved from the company on a personal level. Thank you Trionics for the amazing products you provide and every way you have touched my life!

 Some of the beautiful diverse colors I have created using my Trionics Hair Care products.

Some of the beautiful diverse colors I have created using my Trionics Hair Care products.

Are you already using Trionics Hair Care products in the salon? Do you have questions or reservations about making the switch? Feel free to leave your feedback on this post or reach out to me personally.