The Cheapest Way to Change Your Hair Color in NYC



Have you heard of Salon Apprentice?

If you’re willing to spend a little extra time at the salon, you can receive free or discounted services – hair cuts, colors, bayalage, highlights, the works!

Salon Apprentice links you up with hair stylists – many who have years and year of experience, but are looking to improve or join a very exclusive salon and therefore need to train in a 4-5 year apprentice role.

You do not need to have professional hair model or modeling experience to volunteer, and all you need to is choose your city and read through the listings to find an appt. that fits your needs and schedule.

Here’s my before and after with Yi:


Before – blonde, fried hair, with about 2 inches of roots

Before – blonde, fried hair, with about 2 inches of roots



Standing silver at my petsit over Winter Break

Silver – courtesy of Yi at Soon Beauty Lab

I’ve had numerous positive experiences with Salon Apprentice from multiple locations – Fox and Jane, Soon Beauty Lab, Whitemore House Salon, etc. The only advice I have for you is to avoid Carsten, Aveda, and Arroyo – which often have newbie stylists and will either not do as good a job as other salons – or which may require a long, long sit as they often need a lot of help from the Master Stylist monitoring them as they cut or color your hair.

Unfortunately my silver hair color from Yi quickly faded – about 3 weeks – and not amount of toning with purple shampoo seemed to reviving that silver color. I suppose I could have purchased more toner, but with my hair a light, ashy blonde, nearly devoid of color, I decided I wanted to add color.

Fading color

Nearly white – silver faded 3 weeks after my hair appointment

Step in stylist, my husband, Sandy Patch, who grew up as the test gerbil of a Colorist-gone-mad who loved dying Sandy’s hair red, polka dotted, striped, etc. while he was in high school. As a result, he’s had a lot of experience bleaching and coloring his own hair, and was more than happy to step in and give me a little color.

We popped into  Ricky’s on Saturday, where you can pick up a tube of Sparks Hair Color creme for $8.99. You can save a bit purchasing it from Amazon for $5.26, but I was too impulsive and eager to try out some color.

I decided to try Mermaid Blue, and while it certainly was effective, and I certainly did turn blue, it was not an evenly distributed blue as a tube was not enough to cover my thick bob. The color came out patchy, and I hated how bright it was.  I wanted something different, but I did not want to stand out or look unprofessional.

My favorite stylist, my husband, Sandy Patch

Soo, as you can see in the picture above, we bought some more color – this time Starlight Silver.

What results is the hair color below.



Blue Hair, Don’t Care (j/k. Hair color makes me nervous!)

Choose your own adventure, but if you want to do it cheap, either check out Salon Apprentice or try out a bottle of Sparks Hair Color.