How Much Does Professional Hair Colouring Cost in the UK?

With the rising cost of living, you might wonder if you still have money for luxuries like professional hair colouring. So, how much does professional hair colouring cost in the UK these days, and can you afford it? 

Professional hair colouring in the UK costs £80 on average if you want all your hair dyed. Dying your roots or touching up a dye job costs around £73. The final price you pay could be more if your hair is long. 

Read further to discover more about getting your hair professionally dyed at a UK salon and the average cost of a cut and colour. 

How Much Is It To Get Your Hair Dyed at a UK Salon?

In recent times, more people started dying their hair at home. Although some have good results, to be honest, nothing compares to professional colouring at a salon. So how much will getting your hair dyed at a UK salon set you back? 

It costs between £36 and £120 to get your hair dyed at a UK salon. The final price you pay depends on if you need full hair colouring, or if you only need your roots to be dyed. 

What’s the Average Cost of a Cut AND Colour in the UK?

When you need to get your hair coloured, it’s good to kill two birds with one stone and have your hair cut as well. But how costly is it to have your hair cut and coloured? 

The average cost of a cut and colour in the UK is £112, assuming that you’re having your whole head of hair dyed. If you only need your roots to be touched up, a cut and colour will set you back around £105. 

This price can be higher if you also want your hair to be washed and blow-dried or you want to add highlights. 

The below table explains the price range and average UK cost of a cut, colour, highlights, and shampooing and blow-drying (source: Nimble Fins, YouGov): 

DescriptionPrice RangeAverage Price
All Over Colour£40 and £120£80
Dye Touch-Up £36 to £110£73
Full Head of Highlights£98 to £123£110.50
Half Head of Highlights£74 to £103£88.50
Shampoo and Blow-Dry£20 to £30£25

However, the final price you pay depends on various factors: 

  • Hair length 
  • Services required 
  • Stylist’s experience 
  • Salon type 
  • Your location 
  • Your hair’s condition 

I’ll discuss these factors in more detail below. 

Hair Length

Hair length is the main factor affecting haircuts and colouring. 

The longer your hair, the more dye your stylist must use, and the more time they must spend cutting your hair. Some salons break down their prices for a colour and cut depending on whether your hair is short, medium-length, or long. 

Here’s an easy guide to determining the category in which your hair falls (source: Head Curve): 

  • Short: You have short hair if it falls above your shoulders. 
  • Medium length: Medium-length hair ends between the shoulders and the armpits. 
  • Long: Hair is considered long if it falls below your armpits. 

If your hair is very long (i.e., it falls at your waist or lower), your stylist might charge you extra. 

Services Required

When you’re having your hair coloured at the salon, you might be tempted by some additional services, such as the following: 

  • Dying the roots of the hair only 
  • Dying the full head of hair 
  • Adding highlights 
  • Washing and blow-drying hair 
  • Permanent or temporary colouring 
  • Colour correction 
  • Toning 
  • Balayage 
  • Conditioning treatments 

Each one of these services or treatments will cost extra, so you should bear this in mind when determining how much your visit to the salon will cost. 

hair stylist applying hair colour to a woman's hair

Stylist’s Experience

Most medium to large-sized UK salons have stylists with varying experience levels. If you want your hair coloured, your colourist will typically have one of the following titles: 

  • Technician: These are usually newly-qualified hairdressers or colourists with less than two years of experience. This is by far the most economical option.
  • Advanced technician: Advanced technicians have more than two years of experience and are well-versed in hair colouring, highlights, and balayage. This is a good balance of value and experience for getting your hair coloured.
  • Senior technician: Senior technicians typically have five or more years of colouring experience and often specialise in an area, such as highlights or balayage. Costs a bit more, but you’re getting an expert.
  • Creative director or technical consultant: If you want the most qualified stylist to take care of your hair, you’ll need to make an appointment with the salon’s most senior stylist. This is typically the technical consultant or creative director. This is the most expensive, sometimes up to double the standard price.

Some people don’t notice a difference between a creative director or a technician’s work quality, but others feel more comfortable using a colourist with a lot of experience. Most salons base their hair colour prices on a technician taking care of you. 

You can expect to pay between £5 and £10 extra for each higher level. 

Salon Type

The salon type can also affect how much you pay for a cut and colour. Franchise salons typically have more significant overheads, and their prices are often set by head office, making them more expensive. 

If the salon is a boutique salon offering drinks, massages, and snacks, you can expect to pay more. Independent salons might charge less than a retail chain.

However, if you use a mobile hair salon or a home-based one, their overheads will be lower, and you can expect to pay prices at the lower end of the spectrum. 

Your Location

Your location can greatly affect how much you pay at the salon. 

Everyone knows that central London prices for anything are higher than in the rest of the country, so if you’re using a London-based salon, the prices will be at the top of the range. If you’re using a salon in another major city (like Birmingham, Bristol, or Manchester), you can also expect a costly salon experience. 

Salons based in affluent suburbs often charge higher prices, and some customers claim that salon prices in the south of England are higher than in the rest of the country. 

It may be worth heading out of your town and city and considering a salon in a more remote location. A ten minute drive might be worth the trip if it means your hair colouring is 10-20% less, especially if you want a cut as well, and have long hair.

Shop rentals in small villages or towns are generally much lower than those in the city centre or in large shopping malls, so they can keep their costs down.

Your Hair’s Condition

Your hair’s condition doesn’t typically make a difference to the price you pay at the hair salon. However, your stylist may charge you more if it’s: 

  • Extremely damaged. 
  • Very thick, stubborn.
  • You want to go from black to blonde. 

Before colouring your hair, your stylist will check if your hair can withstand the dying process. If not, they will need to condition your hair deeply before proceeding, which will cost more. Very thick or stubborn hair that doesn’t colour easily can also cost more as your colourist will need to use more products and spend more time on your hair. 

If you want to change your hair colour drastically, the colourist may need to add a toning product to achieve the perfect shade.

Cheaper Alternatives to a Full Colour at a Salon

If you’re short on cash, there are other options. The first is to just do your highlights at home – here are the kits I recommend for that.

The second is to treat yourself to a hair mask – the best ones I’ve found are here. No, they won’t colour your hair, but you can feel pampered with soft, silky hair, a bit like a salon experience.

Then there’s the obvious – you could always consider dying your hair at home. 

Some excellent home hair dye choices include Garnier Nutrisse Ultra Colour or L’Oreal Paris Preference Hair Dye, both available on Amazon. These hair dyes come in a wide range of colours, give your hair a beautiful shine, and are easy to use. 

Now that you know how much it costs to colour and cut your hair at a UK salon, I hope that you can work it into your budget!


I'm a busy working mother of three, so my specialties are anything to do with kids, the home, saving money while shopping, beauty and cleaning up mess!

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