Ammonia Free, Garnier Olia Hair Color – I Got Dyed!

I’ve only colored all of my hair one time in my life. I was young and mad at my husband and thought coloring it black would make him more mad since he loved my curly brown hair. It didn’t though. Oh he noticed alright but he didn’t say anything. In fact, I believe I recall a grin from him.

Garnier Olia Hair color

Olia Shade Range

Anyways, I have had lowlights and highlights before but that’s it. I thought trying out this new hair color would be fun. Garnier Olia Hair Color is an ammonia free dye. The company claims that it can lift up to 3 levels and is a permanent color with 100% gray coverage. Lets see how it did shall we?

before hair color

garnier olia hair color mix garnier olia hair color mixed

First, in full disclosure, I attempted to do this myself. My lack of hair dyeing skills played a role in my failed effort so I called on my very good friend, Ollie, to help me. We pulled out the products to scan it all over. Everything looked like a regular hair color kit with the exception of the bottle you mix the hair color in. It was all fancied up in an oval shape. It’s a great idea, however, my friend Ollie dropped it a few times. It became very slick and hard to manage in her hands. We immediately noticed two things; 1) the smell was hardly noticeable and 2) I (my neck) wasn’t getting all stained up from the dye. Yay! It took two boxes for my hair since I do have quite a bit. It needed to set 30 minutes as opposed to other hair color kits of 10-20 minutes. That’s because of the ammonia, or lack of. It needs those extra minutes to get your hair to the desired color.

hair color


Time’s up and we rinse! Add the conditioner and rinse again. The results are in and I am pleased! I used 5.0 and while it’s darker than I expected, I really didn’t know what to expect. Does that make sense? I didn’t now what color to pick and actually asked my friends on facebook for their opinion. The overall winner was 5.0. So check me out and let me know what you think!


You can tell by the first photo that there are at least 3 different colors going on in my hair.  I have dark roots, regular brown throughout, and light pieces of hair that probably came from the perms I get every so often.  If you look back up at the shade chart, I’d say that the after photo looks very close to the 5.0 that I chose.  What do you think?  At this point, I’m more concerned with that bald spot at the back of my head. What’s up with that?!!! Am I getting old and losing hair or what?  *sigh*

Before  after

Would I use this again?  Absolutely!  I do think it’s a great product.  It did color my few gray hairs and made my hair look like it’s natural color, or so my husband said.  He’s always noticed my hair….I love that about him.  I think the ammonia free hair color will appeal to a lot of folks.  If you’ve tried it, let me know your thoughts!


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  1. says

    I think it looks great on you. I’m terrible with picking the “right” color. I ended up with about 10 shades too dark this year when I tried it myself and I’m so glad it was semi-permanent. I’m back to my natural color and staying that way until I die.

  2. Lauralee Hensley says

    No, never tried ammonia free hair color. I usually have to leave my hair color on for 40 minutes, so I don’t think you had to leave it on long at all. Looks like it gave even all over color. I tend to dye to the lightest shade in my hair when it grows out, rather than to the darkest. Would I try an ammonia free hair color, might if it would actually color my hair and last for at least six weeks like my current brand does.

  3. says

    You are SO brave! I had a bad experience with hair color when I was a teen and I have been scared to death to dye my own hair ever since!
    I think it looks great on you, though! Is your hair naturally curly? I love your curls!

  4. Amy says

    Yes I’ve tried and yes I LOVE it. The conditioner that comes in the package smells wonderful!! They really need to sell it on it’s own. Olia does seem to leave my hair softer and silkier, unlike traditional dyes. The color is spot on and the lack of harsh/chemical smell is a huge plus. Here’s to hoping they continue to sell it for a very long time. Your hair looks great by the way. Looks healthier too.