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Touch-up vs Touch-up Highlight- Why does color take so long?!

The purpose of this blog is purely educational when it comes to booking services in the salon.

At Craft House Salon we book appointments based on time. Each color service requires a different allotment of time together in the salon. When it comes to color services, it can cause a major upset to a colorist's day when there is a miss booking or miscommunication on what services you might be getting.

Breaking down the difference between a single process touch versus a highlight touch-up offers perspective on timing and how important it is for us to reserve time for you accurately.

A single process touch-up is when you apply a color formula to deposit a permanent color to your hair. Typically known as a touch-up, the services are intended to cover grey, blend grey, go darker than your natural color, or up to 2-3 shades lighter than your natural color. The application applied to what most people call "roots," which we professionals call regrowth. This regrowth, on average, for five weeks in-between visits, can be 1/4 of an inch to a 1/2 inch long, depending on your hair growth rate. This color application takes, on average, 30 min.

Once the hair color is on your hair, depending on the color line, you will process for anywhere between 20-50min.

A highlight touch-up on the other hand is when you apply bleach or lightener to lift the color of your hair to a lighter color. Typically known as a high light touch-up, the service is intended to lift the regrowth of your new hair to match the level of lightness from to your ends. The application is applied to what most people call "roots," which we professionals call regrowth by being weaved or slices with a comb, and the color is applied to your hair in foils. This regrowth, on average, for 8-10 weeks in-between visits, can be 1/2 of an inch to a 1 inch long, depending on your hair growth rate. This color application takes, on average, 60 min.

Processing highlights because you are lifting the hair to a lighter tone can take between 30min to an hour. This type of coloring requires attention as the lifting process is different every single time. Each person's color lifts to different levels, and the room's temperature can impact how quickly the process takes. Meaning the colorist must frequently check the process of the color; unlike a single process that stops at a specific time, highlights can vary greatly.

Additionally, most highlights require a gloss to return the desired tone to the pre-lightened hair. The application for this is roughly 15 minutes, and the processing time can vary between 5min-30 min.

Are you confused still?

This is a simple breakdown:

Single Process Touch-up

Application 30 min

Processing time 30 min.


Without blow-dry total time of 60 min

Highlight ouch-up

Application 60 min

Processing time (average) 45 min.

Gloss application 15 min

Gloss processing time (average) 20 min


Without blow-dry total time of 2hrs and 20 min

As you can tell, there is a massive difference between the time it takes to do these services. That's is why we are so specific about details pertaining to your color goals, as we always want to make sure we have enough time together to reach your dream hair.

we genuinely hope this clarified service booking time better.

If you are ever confused about what to book for in the future we would be thrilled to help you.

If you have any questions or need a more personalized recommendation, let's set up a time for a consultation to review what time will need to be dedicated to appointments in the future.

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