Garnier Olia Hair Colour: First Impression & Review

My natural hair colour is dark brown, but as some parts have faded/lightened (from colouring in the past, and of course from being in the sun) I’ve been wanting a bit of a change. Nothing too drastic of course, I’m not that adventurous when it comes to my hair. However I do love dark hair, and wanted it to be just a teensy bit darker. Something about really dark hair has always seemed so chic and mysterious.

Why I chose the Olia: Dying your hair at home with box dyes can often be very damaging to the hair, so I was exceptionally curious about this “ammonia free” and “oil-powered” hair colour. Garnier claims that the Olia “uses an exclusive 60% oil blend with natural flower oils” in the colorant. I heard so many mixed reviews about this particular kind of dye and was weighing the decision for a couple of weeks. Then  I watched Carli Bybel’s video on the Garnier OIia hair colour, and decided to give it a try!

My mom-who has been colouring her hair for years-dyed my hair for me, and during the process we compiled a list of pros and cons. I read so many negative reviews for this product, and while there are a lot of aspects that are not so great, I wanted to put together a full review.

I went with the colour “2.0 Soft Black” and used 2 boxes.

Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 12.36.57 PM


  • The product has a really nice smell to it. It doesn’t smell like ammonia (which makes sense, since it’s ammonia free) and doesn’t have that typical unpleasant odour that most hair dyes do
  • It’s not harsh-It doesn’t sting or itch or burn like so many out there do (again, ammonia free)
  • The consistency is  on the liquidy side, so it spreads very easily along the hair
  • After, when my hair dried, it definitely left my hair looking shinier and healthier
  • The colour turned out really well-soft black, as the name suggests-but not blue-toned or fake looking at all.
  • Looks super healthy, natural, and gorgeous


  • Bottle is not very practical or well designed-The rounded shape and smooth finish makes it feel extremely slippery while wearing gloves, and it’s quite hard to hold on to. Some sort of grip on the bottle would be much better (we always pour the dye into a mixing bowl)
  • The nozzle is too long-I’m not too sure why they went with such a long nozzle applicator, as it doesn’t really serve a purpose. It’s and as previously stated makes it difficult to hold on to properly
  • While rinsing it out, my hair felt quite dry. Initially I didn’t put enough conditioner and my hair felt like a rats nest in the shower.
  • While drying, my hair was HORRIBLY tangly and very dry. I literally broke a comb trying to get the tangles out (my hair typically always gets dry when dyeing – make sure to use ALL the after-colour conditioner they give you! I usually condition twice for extra hydration.)
  • Right after dyeing, my hair feels extremely  tangly. It looks shiny, but doesn’t feel particularly hydrated. I usually like to do a coconut oil mask before my next shower to help combat this!

Things to Keep In Mind: 

  • If you have thick or long hair (or hair below shoulder-length) you will definitely need more than 1 box. My hair is quite long now, and 2 boxes was just enough.
  • I do not recommend this product if you are wanting a drastic colour change– a shade or two lighter or darker works very well, but if you are wanting a bold change such as a bright red, I don’t find this is strong enough.
  • I do not recommend this product for grey coverage-grey hair is particularly resilient when it comes to being dyed, and this dye just is not strong enough for resilient greys.
  • Make sure to condition your hair very well after rinsing out the colour-I recommend using the entire tube of conditioner that comes with the dye

Bottom line:

I am very pleased with how the colour turned out, and it was really nice and gentle while developing in the hair. Overall, I am pleased with it.

Will I purchase it again? Yes, I probably will. My scalp is very sensitive and I really liked that this didn’t smell or sting. Now that I know to use more conditioner, I am very curious to see how it will work next time.

Here’s how my colour turned out:

Hochwertige Perücken und Haarteile für Frauen  

UPDATE: (MAY 2020)

I have been using this dye for nearly a year now, and it has definitely become my favourite. I love the color, I love that it doesn’t sting or smell, and I haven’t wanted to use anything else!


    • July 25, 2014 / 11:58 am

      Thank you so so much! You are such an absolute sweet heart 💕 I love your posts and your photos are all so beautiful! I also love the fact that we share the same name 🙂
      Cheers 💕

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