Purple Hair Experiment: Crazy Colour vs Schwarzkopf XXL vs La Riche Directions

If you’re a regular reader of Face Value Beauty Blog (anyone?!) then you will probably know that I DIY dye my naturally black hair to the current purple/blue/pink shade. There are actually a few purple hair dyes out there, but which one is best?

 Today, in the name of beauty science, I’ve done a highly non-scientific test to try some of the top semi-permanent purple colours out there. 

Purple Hair Basics

If you’re dyeing dark hair into some sort of vibrant colour, you will need to bleach it to blonde first, or use some sort of hair lightener like I have in this Schwarzkopf Colour & Lift tutorial video.

Once your hair is suitably lightened, you can then apply ANY shade of semi permanent colour – whether it’s red, purple, pink, green – the choices really are endless.

Look at all the colours in the La Riche Directions alone (pictured below), and that’s just ONE range. There’s at least 5 decent other ranges including Crazy Colour, Manic Panic, Schwarzkopf and Bleach London, so there will be the perfect colour out there for you!

I recently topped up my hair colour for London Fashion Week, and during the process I did three strand tests using three different purple hair dyes. Partly so I could decide on the colour I wanted and partly because I had no idea how they were all different. So here’s the results.

Crazy Color in Hot Purple

Crazy Color in Hot Purple is very blue toned – as soon as it came out of the bottle I was wondering if the colour was faulty – it was definitely more blue rather than purple.

Actually, the blue tones are really useful in cancelling out the warmer, orange tones that are in my bleached hair. If you have cool-toned blonde hair already, this might be too blue based to be a true purple for you.

I used the Crazy Colour to top up my colour every week and conditioning-wise, it was good – my hair felt soft and shiny after leaving the Crazy Colour in there. 

The bottle is 100ml, and retails for about £4 on Amazon. It’s enough for 2 full head applications.

Freshly dyed hair at London Fashion Week

La Riche Directions in Violet

This comes in an 88ml tub, which is enough for about 1.5 times full head application. You can see that it’s definitely got more red in it, when compared to the Crazy Color. In fact, this is basically THE purple that I want my hair to be.

Directions on the left, Crazy Color on the right

La Riche Directions is also very conditioning on the hair and I’ve left this in for a few hours before. It’s important to point out that these semi-permanent colours have no developer or bleach in them – they’re literally like a hair stain, so it’s safe to leave them in for over the 30-45 minutes that most hair dyes advise. Because they have no peroxide in them, this is why they will barely show up on dark hair, and you have to bleach it first.

The RRP price is £7.95 but you can find Directions tubs for £3-5 on Amazon. In fact, I buy them in bulk, getting 4 for £12 which lasts me about 2 months.

Schwarzkopf Ultra Brights XXL in Purple Punk

This was the first semi-permanent I ever used on my bleached hair and this range does have some of the best vibrant colours available.

This shade is the most pink based of the three but I think if left in a bit longer, it might be a little bit more purple. The consistency is slightly thicker than the other two so it’s not as easy to spread if you’re doing an all over hair mask.

Ultra Brights shown with the bleach I used.

Conditioning wise, it doesn’t dry out the hair or anything but it’s the least conditioning of the three. I have bought Ultra Brights XXL again and again though because it’s so easily available and I often add it to a conditioner to get a purple top up (see my tips on maintaining purple hair here!)

I actually have bought the Blue XXL Ultra Bright too, and added it to Purple Punk to get the exact blue/purple colour I wanted.

RRP £5 but they are currently on sale for £4 at Boots and they’re often on 3 for 2. The tube is slightly smaller at 50ml, but it’s enough for one full application.

So there you go! Three purple semi permanent hair dyes, three different kind of purples!

My personal favourite is the La Riche Directions as it’s got a mask-like consistency and is exactly the purple I want, but I could definitely be persuaded to try Crazy Color in a different shade as it is cheaper and slightly easier to use as it’s in a bottle form. 

So there you go, a purple hair experiment which will only be of use for about 2% of readers here but hey. I love me a good beauty experiment on myself..

Fund My Blog And Buy Through These Links

Schwarzkopf Ultra Brights Purple Punk
La Riche Directions Semi Permanent Hair Dye
 Crazy Colour in Hot Purple

Any home hair dyers out there? Tweet me your thoughts @FaceValueBlog or send me a comment on Facebook!

Zoe Bayliss Wong
Zoe Bayliss Wong

Zoe is a Forbes ’30 under 30′ finance pro, style writer, presenter and panellist, working for a fashion startup and trying to live that best life in the most IRL way possible.

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