SHADE NUMBERS & WHAT THEY MEAN

SHADE NUMBERS
& WHAT THEY MEAN

It’s time to color! You’re standing at the shelf trying to decide which shade is best. The color on the box looks right, but what exactly does that number in the corner mean? The Koleston KolorSquad is here to crack the shade number code and help you find the perfect, unstoppable color.

First things first, a little lesson in vocabulary. All numbers indicate level and tone

Level is how much lift the color has. The higher the number, the lighter the color.
  • 2 - Black
  • 3 - Darkest Brown
  • 4 - Dark Brown
  • 5 - Medium Brown
  • 6 - Light Brown
  • 7 - Dark Blonde
  • 8 - Medium Blonde
  • 9 - Light Blonde
  • 10 - Very Light Blonde
  • 11/12 - Lightest Blonde
Tone is a nuance of color that can be warm, cool or neutral.
  • 0 - Neutral (for all skin tones)
  • 1 - Ash (for cool skin tones)
  • 2 - Matte (for cool skin tones)
  • 3 - Gold (for warm skin tones)
  • 4 - Red (for warm skin tones)
  • 5 - Mahogany (for cool skin tones)
  • 6 - Violet (for cool skin tones)
  • 7 - Brown (for all skin tones)
  • 8 - Blue (for cool skin tones)"
So, when you’re looking at a shade number, where is the level and where is the tone?
  • Numbers before the / are the level.
  • Numbers after the / are the tone.
  • Note: twice the same level number (e.g. 55/46) means the shade is very vibrant.


Wondering how to determine which type of color is best for you? Use the Shade Selector to find your perfect shade.

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