I've been getting a lot of questions about my hair color...CIAA so I'll be brief :)
I grew up with 3 black girls who were all natural redheads and I've always thought it was so pretty. I first went red-ish in highschool the old school way...Sun-In lol! As funny as it sounds, it did the job and it's cheap so that was my option. I would warn anybody though, if you don't have natural red or brown undertones, it probably won't lighten your hair to reddish brown. I have a friend who has a natural ash brown tones in her hair. She used Sun-In and it gave her the prettiest blonde highlights. You never know what you're gonna get if you use this product but one thing is for sure...it will give you a very natural look because it lightens your own color a few tones. You have to use it in the summer for the best results. The more you're in the sun, the faster it works.
Anyway, when I decided to go red by a professional, I went to Aveda Institute. They are students and do professional services at a deep discount and their instructors watch to make sure they do it right. I'm really vocal at salons so i'm never afraid that they'll get it wrong. If you aren't confident enough to tell the stylist exactly how you want your hair, this is probably not the place for you. If you are open to something new and/or want to trust someone to do something that you might not have thought of for yourself, this is a good place to try.
I knew exactly what color I wanted because I saw an Aveda ad in a magazine and loved the color. Here's the picture that I brought in. I just loved this so much and they did a great job mixing and whatever they did to come up with this. I love my red hair :)