Imagine hair color in a bottle made just for you -- and the bottle even has your name on it.
It's a new trend in hair color called eSalon.
"What we're giving people that color their hair at home is the same custom-blended formulations that professional stylists give to their clients at the salon, for a fraction of the cost," said Francisco Gimenez, CEO and co-founder of eSalon.
If you've ever colored your hair at the salon, you know it can cost a lot of money.
"Instead of paying $100, $150, you're paying only $20," Gimenez explained.
Twenty bucks for customized color -- that's the marketing pitch for this new revolution in hair color. The website allows you to consult professional hair colorists from the convenience of your computer.
"We ask questions about your natural hair color, your dyed color, how much gray you have, how often your color your hair, what type of hair texture you have," Gimenez continued.
You can pick your desired color and you can get a clear idea of how it should look. You can also upload a photo of yourself to give the color consultant a better idea of what you look like. The kits are custom created just for you, and delivered right to your home.
"It's amazing. It's so easy. It's idiot-proof," said Lauri Slater.
The 49-year-old tried the product after bad luck trying to cover her grays with other take-home kits and visits to the salon.
"I had almost gone blonde, and so I tried to go to a salon to correct that color and it was an absolute disaster," she said.
However, with eSalon's customized color, she found an easy, affordable solution she was looking for.
"I was pretty stoked. I was like, this is easy, it works and it doesn't smell and it didn't drip all over my bathroom, and it was amazing!" Lauri exclaimed.
Those results add up to big profits for eSalon. The company says it has shipped out more than 500,000 formulations since it started in 2010, tripling its volume every year.
However, even they admit that not everyone's happy about the growing trend.
"We're getting complaints from stylists that don't like what we do. But at the end of the day, we're seeing the best interest of the clients and that's what we're here for," Gimenez said, adding that their goal isn't to put hair salons out of business.
He added that the only real consumer complaints they get are from folks who don't follow instructions. However, Lauri Slater says those directions are simple and it's revolutionized the way she dyes her hair.
"It's magic, it just comes to my door and I love that," she says.
eSalon is also working on making some take-home highlighting kits in the near future.
WJBK-TV | Fox 2
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