Try out the hottest hair colors and cuts before you make a commitment.

By Katie Holdefehr
Updated January 24, 2018
L'Oreal Hair Color App on phone
Credit: L'Oreal Professionnel

Deciding to take the plunge on one of the trendiest hair colors of 2018 can be a nerve-racking decision. You’ve seen that gorgeous “hot chocolate” hair color trend look amazing on some of your favorite celebrities (Mandy Moore totally nails it), but will it look as flattering with your short bob cut? Thanks to a new augmented reality makeover feature in L’Oréal Professionnel’s Style My Hair app, you can find out before you head to the salon.

Currently available in the iTunes store (and launching soon for Android), Style My Hair now has a feature that lets you try on hair colors in real time. Here’s how it works: once you download the app, you can choose to either “Try a new hair color” or “Try a new total hair look.” I choose hair color, and all the sudden a rainbow of color options popped up below the live video. I immediately clicked the pretty rose gold hue marked “on trend,” and a split second later, my hair on the live video turned blush pink. The 3D experience means that the color will follow you as you move and turn your head, providing a very realistic test run of potential future ‘dos. Whether you’re planning a dramatic hair makeover, or have just always been curious what you would look like as a blonde or a brunette, this app gives you a glimpse at a new you.

To test out an alternative haircut, the process is a little different. The app will instruct you to tie your hair back and take a selfie—then a lob, bob, curly locks, and other styles will pop onto your photo. However, because this feature doesn’t follow you in real-time video, it’s much less realistic than the hair color feature. Our verdict: Stick to the hair color test to make serious hair choices, and give the haircut feature a whirl just for fun.

Once you’ve found your perfect shade of rose gold, “hot chocolate,” or “cream soda” hair color, the app can help you find a local hair colorist who can turn the image you see on the screen into a reality. You’ll have a much less stressful trip to the salon now that you can visualize exactly what the results will be.