We know there aren’t a million options in this relatively new haircare category – but it’s still incredibly impressive when three shades of the same product share the Gold Award with almost identical scores after being sent to completely different tester panels (of the appropriate haircolour) – as Color Wow did, below; the Dark Brown, Light Brown and Red shades all scored almost indentically, with their different tester panels, so we’ve incorporated comments across the three different shades. (Scroll down to read them because there’s LOADS of positive feedback.) Definitely a gold star all round for Color Wow.

Nobody’s suggesting that these winners – all of which are basically ‘painted’ onto coloured hair to disguise root regrowth – are long-term solutions, but they’ll save your bacon (and boost your confidence hugely) in emergencies, till you can get to your colourist or find the time for an at-home dye session.

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GOLD (JOINT) AWARD Color Wow Root Cover Up

A hat trick for Color Wow! Color Wow was created by two people who know a heck of a lot about hair – John Frieda and his former business partner, Gail Federici. Their new co-venture actually launched with these compacts: sleek, elegant, more like a make-up palette with a mirror, a small brush and a pan of mineral colour which you stroke onto emerging greys to disguise them. (The lighter shades can also be used to lift the tone of darker roots, on blondes.) Light-reflective elements in the product help ensure a natural look, and once in place Root Cover Up is said to be resistant to water – rain, swimming pools, humidity, sweat – staying put till you wash it out. The version for redheads scored very slightly ahead of the other two winning shades. Light Brown was just a tiny smidgen behind the Red shade, ideal for touching up encroaching greys on mid-brown hair, VERY closely followed by Dark Brown.


‘Color Wow is an essential part of my hair and beauty wardrobe. The palette size is just right, its easy to apply with the double-ended brush, it stays put and is not noticeable that I use it. And, most importantly, the week you realise your roots are beginning to show it gives an extra week or two to get your colour redone’ • ‘I have two palettes in lighter and darker shades. I use the darker to cover my grey roots. It does that very easily and looks very natural. I no longer have a grey track running down the centre of my head and I also find it very useful for the front hairline which once the grey starts showing makes it look like my hair line is receding. With a few seconds of application, I can remove that illusion’ • ‘I use the lighter shade to create the odd highlight. The double-ended brush is good as you can create different size highlights’ • ‘I found this very easy to apply, the colour seemed to immediately grab on to my hair and the shade matched very well. It was very quick to use and I didn't need to go over patches’ • ‘My hair looked very natural, you couldn't tell I had touched it up with this product. The Brunette palette covered the grey showing through at the roots and lasted until I washed my hair 48 hours later. It promised to cover roots and that’s exactly what it did’ • ‘Loved this – great to be able to camouflage the grey and extend time between colourings. Easy to use, portable and no mess’ • ‘Really impressed with Color Wow in red. I had initially thought it expensive to pay over £20 for something, which looked like an eyeshadow. I was wrong. It's so handy, as the grey roots show about three weeks after colouring and this little gem allows me to choose when I colour rather then panic when I look in the mirror. It stays in place, doesn't come off on bedding. Have bought another one already’ • ‘The best product of this type I have tried. The powder covered grey brilliantly and was natural looking. It did have a slight mattifying look but the product has a slight shimmer so it gave a nice shiny effect. Fantastically handy in between hair colour appointments and saves me so much money as it prolongs the time between.‘

Red £28.50 for 2.1g – click to buy

Light Brown £28.50 for 2.1g – click to buy

Dark Brown £28.50 for 2.1g – click to buy


SILVER AWARD John Frieda Root Blur Concealer

John Frieda had long said goodbye to his namesake brand before this root cover-up was launched – but the company lives on with an unbelievably wide range of haircare and haircolour options, including this lightweight root concealer powder. In this case, the mirrored compact features two shades for customised camouflage of regrowth – and the brush itself is angled, for ease of application. There are four duos available, and as a little goes a long way, you’ll get around 40-60 applications out of a single palette, John Frieda (the brand) promise. Interestingly, several testers independently observed that this is a great brow touch-up, too.


‘You can blend the two-tone powder – a darker and a lighter – with the brush provided. It blended in my grey hairs and I would use it as an emergency product if I suddenly had to go somewhere important and had no time to get hair coloured. The light one worked quite well on my brows too’ • ‘The two tones of powder mean you can achieve a natural effect. An effective product if you have grey hair and/or need a colour boost round your hairline. It was a fabulous brow powder too’ • ‘The darker shade matched the colour of my hair quite well, not quite as dark but it didn't seem to show the difference when applied. The result was very natural and I was pleased with the effect. I would buy this product, as it is great to have on standby for those times when you haven't time to dye your hair’ • ‘Great product. I loved having the two shades to mix together so I could just blend away the grey roots. It is really fantastic for covering grey. The finished result was completely natural looking. Only drawback is that it’s quite messy’ • ‘This looks quite natural to blend out grey when my colour is in need of redoing. It lasts for two to three days until I next wash it. I also used it to create high/low lights. It didn't run, which some do when mixed with perspiration’

£14.99 – click to buy