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Hair Color > Articles > Color Formulas and How-Tos from NAHA 20

NAHA 20 Color Formulas and How-Tos

By: Kerri Lee

Creativity and discipline are musts if you’re going to enter NAHA, and that’s not all.  You’d better have some knock-out color up your sleeve, no matter which category you choose to enter.  Here is the inside color scoop, along with the formulas and how-tos, from some of this year’s winners and finalists—including Haircolor Winner Adriana Balea. 

NAHA 20 Haircolor Winner Adriana Balea
Francesca's Salon and Spa, Toronto, ON
“For my collection, I had to think outside the box. I wanted vibrant, strong colors to break the boundaries of color.  I wanted to push the limits and see just how far I could go!”


Natural Level:  3
Prelighten:  Wella Blondor + 40-volume developer
Blue:   Wella Color Touch 0/88 (after pre-lightening)
Black:  Wella Color Touch 2/0 Black


Natural Level:  2-3
Prelighten:  Wella Blondor + 40-volume developer 
(Note: lightener was applied three times.)
Pink: Wella Color Touch 0/68 + 00 Clear


Natural Level:  2
Prelighten:  Wella Blondor + 40-volume developer 
Top Color:  Wella Color Touch 2/0
Yellow:  Koleston Perfect 0/33 (this color was applied twice)



NAHA 20 Student Finalist Corey Lofton
Aveda/Fredrics Institute, Cincinnati, OH
“I wanted to create a collection that showed versatility and portrayed edginess.” 

Begin by performing a 20-volume “color cleanse” with the following formula:
1-oz. Aveda Shampure shampoo + 1-oz.. Aveda Enlightener + 1oz. 20-volume developer.
Post “color-cleanse” formula: Aveda Full Spectrum Hair Color 40g 4N + 6g Aveda Full Spectrum Deep Hair Color Pure Tone Dark O/R + 40g 10-volume developer.

“We did an on the scalp bleach for this look.”
Formula: 1-oz. Aveda Enlightener + 1-oz. Aveda Booster + 1-oz. 30-volume developer.

Base Formula:Aveda Full Spectrum Hair Color 40g 2N + 40g 10-volume developer
Process for 20 minutes.
Highlights: 1-oz. Aveda Enlightener + 1-oz. 30-volume developer
Process to Level 9.
Toner: Aveda Full Spectrum Deposit Only 40g 9N + 3g Light Y/O + 3g Light V/B + 40g Cream CTA.  Process until color begins to oxidize in the bowl and rinse.



Try the Step-by-Step:  Chrystofer Benson's NAHA 20 Haircolor Technicals!




NAHA 20 Fashion Forward Winner Faatemah Ampey
Bella Salon and Spa, St. Paul, MN

“The inspiration for this collection was the Renaissance era.  I've always enjoyed the beauty and elegance of this period, and I wanted to create really big hair that was soft, controlled and beautiful.  It is a bridal collection presented in a nontraditional way which is why I named it the Slutty Bride collection. The Slutty Bride commands your attention and pulls you into the ambience! The pictures really capture the strength and raw emotion of my vision.”


“Originally Ruth was a strawberry blonde, and I transformed her into a stunning red head.  I had to persuade her to do it! The fiery red was great with her pale skin and icy eyes.  She loved it!”
Formula: L'Oreal Professional Majirel equal parts 6CR(6.46) + 7CC(7.44) + 20-volume developer.




“My beautiful Asian model displayed a tricolor look which was done on 28-inch extensions for a dramatic presentation of color. The end result was a beautiful color that faded from dark brown to light auburn and then to blonde.  It blended perfectly because her color was fading from old highlights.  The color also gave the hair a cool texture.”

Natural Level: 3
Extension formulas:
First six inches from the scalp – model’s natural color
Midshafts:  L'Oreal Professionnel Majirel 601 + 40-volume developer.
Ends:  Lightener + 30-volume developer


“I kept the color story simple.  I knew I wanted the turquoise and blue scarf to pop!  I thought a beautiful sable brown would compliment the scarf best.”
Formulas: L'Oreal Professionnel Majirel 5N + 15-volume developer, followed by a clear glaze.




NAHA 20 Master Hairdresser Finalist Charlie Price
Color Lead by NAHA 19 Winner Lisa Vann
Denver, CO

Natural/Existing Levels:  6 with warm, Level 8 highlights.
Formula 1:  Aveda Full Spectrum Hair Color 60g 3N + Aveda Full Spectrum Deep Hair Color Pure Tone 8g Dark Red/Red.  Apply to midshafts and ends, process 10 minutes and shampoo.
Formula 2:  Aveda Full Spectrum Hair Color 60g 1N + 18g Aveda Full Spectrum Deep Hair Color Pure Tone Dark Blue/Violet + 20-volume Color Catalyst.  Apply to new growth.
Formula 3:  Aveda Full Spectrum Hair Color 60g 1N + 20g Aveda Full Spectrum Deep Hair Color Pure Tone Dark Blue/Green + 20-volume Color Catalyst.  Process 30 minutes.

Formula 1:  Equal parts Aveda Shampure Shampoo + 1 scoop Enlightener + 30-volume Color Catalyst.  Lift to pale yellow, shampoo and towel dry.
Formula 2:  Aveda Full Spectrum Deposit Only 20g 0N + 20g 10N + 2g Aveda Full Pure Tone Light Blue/Blue + Pure Tone Dark Blue/Green.  Process 5 minutes.


Natural/Existing Level:  6 golden copper with Level 10 highlights
Formula 1:  Aveda Enlightener + 20-volume developer + Cream Booster.  Apply to new growth.
Formula 2:  Aveda Enlightener + 30-volume Color Catalyst.  Apply to midshafts and ends.  Process to pale yellow.
Formula 3:  Aveda Enlightener + 10-volume Color Catalyst.  Apply a fine, halo foil weave.
Formula 4:  Aveda Full Spectrum Deposit Only 40g 0N + 1g Pure Tone Light Blue/Blue. Apply between foils.  Process 10 minutes.

Natural/Existing Level: 5 with Level 8 gold colored treated ends
Formula 1: Aveda Enlightener + Cream Booster + 20-volume Color Catalyst.  Apply to midshafts and ends. Process 20 minutes.
Formula 2: Aveda Enlightener + Cream Booster + 10-volume Color Catalyst.  Apply to new growth.  Process 30 minutes to pale yellow.
Formula 3: Aveda Full Spectrum Deposit Only 0N.  Apply to new growth.
Formula 4:  Aveda Full Spectrum Deposit Only 20g 0N + 1g Pure Tone Light Blue/Blue.  Process 10 minutes.

NAHA 20 Haircolor Finalist John Simpson
Lewis Salon, Pittsburgh, PA

“For my Melted Reality collection, I took classic architecture and modern elements to create a spectacular hybrid. It gives a new spin to classic shapes, colors and styles in a world which is completely intrigued by technology.  It’s high shine combined with the electronic wonderland of virtual color fusing with the natural elements and beauty of the earth.”

Natural/existing level: 7 with Level 9 highlights
Formula 1:  Goldwell Oxycur Platin Ultra Lightener 35mls 30-volume developer + 1 scoop Oxy ultra.
Formula 2: Goldwell 12 Series Ultra Lite Blondes 40 mls 40-volume developer + 20 mls 12 BG.
Utilizing paper thin, back-to-back horizontal slices from nape to crown, then from temporal front to crown, alternate Formulas 1 and 2 to decolorize.  Process 30 minutes or until hair appears “glowing gold
Formula 3:  Goldwell Colorance Acid Color 50mls Colorance Lotion + 20mls 10 G + 5mls 8 GG
Formula 4:  Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 10-volume developer + 30 mls 8 AS
Formula 5:  Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 10-volume developer + 30 mls 9 PV                                    
Formula 6:  Goldwell Colorance Acid Color 40 mls Colorance Lotion + 20 mls 9 BN
From right to left temporal, utilizing the front hairline as the outside shape, take a 2-inch curved angle section with narrowed corner points creating a crescent. Starting 1 inch behind section 1, from right to left crown, create a second connecting crescent approximately 1 inch in width.  Utilizing the hairline as a guide on the right, create a 1-inch crescent curve from occipital to center nape.  Apply Formula 3 scalp to ends around the working sections.  Starting in section 1 at the center “belly” of the crescent , apply Formula 3 in three, thin horizontal slices back to back.  Apply Formula 4 to two horizontal slices, the two slices of Formula 5 and two slices of Formula 6.  Repeat the pattern until you reach the upper “belly” of the crescent.  Applying horizontal slices in a curved section creates a “glowing” effect with the vertical fall.  Use the same pattern for the second section.  In the third section, create horizontal slices starting at the tip of the nape and traveling to the occipital. Diffuse and alternate Formulas 4 and 5.  Process 30 minutes.
Formula 7:  Goldwell Colorance 10G + Clear.  Glaze all strands, process 20 minutes.

Natural/existing level: 5 with Level 11 highlights on porous midlengths and ends
Formula 1:  Goldwell Topchic 2+1 11 Series 50 ml 40-volume + 23 ml 11V + 2 ml VV Mix.  Apply to Level 5 regrowth, process 30 minutes.
Formula 2:  Goldwell Pre Pigmentation System 30 mls water + 15 mls Gold.  Apply to all strands, process and remove.
Formula 3:  Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 10-volume developer + 30 mls 7 BG                  
Formula 4:  Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 30 mls 20-volume developer + 25 mls 6 B + 5  mls VV Mix
Formula 5: Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 10 vol + 30 mls 8 RP                                     
Formula 6: Goldwell Topchic 30 mls 10 vol + 30 mls 8 GG         
Formula 7:  Goldwell Elumen 35 mls
AB@9 + 5mls NA@2 +2mls GN@ALL
Starting from left recession point, traveling to right crown at parietal ridge, take a curved diagonal line from hairline to crown and connect contrasting curved diagonal to create a crescent section approximately 1 ½ inches in width at the “belly” of crescent.  Starting from the end point of section 1 at right crown, take a curved diagonal line across the lid to left parietal ridge with a contrasting curved diagonal line creating approximately 2 inches of width at center “belly” of the crescent.  From temporal right to occipital then occipital to left temporal, apply Formula 3 to the lower portion of the section scalp to ends.  Apply Formula 4 to the upper portion of the section scalp to ends.  Starting at the  front left recession and working to the right crown of section 1, then starting from the right crown and working to the left parietal ridge, take 2-count alternating horizontal back-to-back slices of Formulas 5, 6 and 7, scalp to ends.  This horizontal technique creates a “melted” effect.  Process 30 minutes.
Formula 8:  Goldwell Colorance 40 mls Colorance Lotion + 10 mls Clear + 10 mls 9 PV.  Glaze all strands, process 20 minutes.

Natural/existing level: 5 with Level 7 highlights
Formula 1:  Goldwell Silk Lift High Performance Lightener 1 scoop Silk Lift Gentle + 35 mls 20-vol. Silk Lift Developer + 1 Silk Protein Ampule.  Apply in back-to-back slices to decolorize all strands.  Process 30 minutes or until hair is pale yellow.
Formula 2:  Goldwell Elumen 40 mls
BR@6 + 5  mls NA@2 + 3 mls VV@ALL
Formula 3:  Goldwell Elumen 35mls AB@6 + 3 mls RV@ALL + 2 mls BB@ALL 
Formula 4:  Goldwell Elumen 30 mls
AB@9 + 3  mls BB@ALL + 2  mls Gn@ALL
Starting at the right recession, one inch from the hairline, take a curved angle to the left recession. Take a contrasting curved angle from left to right recession with 2 inches of width at the “belly” to create a crescent section. One-half inch behind section 1, create a crescent that is 2 inches in width and length within the parietal ridge.  One-half inch behind Section 2, create a chain of three, 1-inch crescent sections over the crown from left to right, forming a U-shaped section.  Apply Formula 2 background on all hair outside of Sections 1-3, scalp to ends. Starting at the high point of Section 1, take a thin diagonal slice at right recession. Using the diffusion method, tap Formula 2 into every slice.  Take two forward diagonals and apply Formulas 3, 4, then 2.  Repeat this pattern in Sections 2 & 3. Process 30 minutes.
Formula 5:  Goldwell Colorance 40 mls Colorance Lotion + 19 mls 10 BS + 1 ml 8A.  Process 20 minutes.

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