Whether you color your hair at home with drugstore hair color kits, or let a professional do it at the salon, hair color never seems to look as good six weeks down the line as it does when it’s just been applied.
By then, gray hairs and roots can be seen; brown dye jobs start to look brassy, red ones become faded, and blonde ones appear dull and straw-like. You probably won’t be surprised to learn that how long your hair color lasts depends greatly on how you care for your hair.
We’re here to teach you the best hair care techniques for keeping your dye job looking fresh.
1. Use Sun Protection For Your Hair
Hair is just as vulnerable to damage from the sun as skin is. If you’re planning to go out in the sun for an hour or more, cover your hair with a scarf or hat. If neither of those is an option, use shampoos and conditioners formulated to act like sunscreen.
Can’t find any sunscreen shampoos? Make your own by mixing together one teaspoon of regular sunscreen with SPF 25 and ½ cup of water, and keeping the mixture in a spray bottle. Spray a little onto your hair right after you finish your daily shower to protect your hair from the sun all day.
2. Keep It Cool
The single most effective thing you can do to preserve your hair color is to wash your hair with cool water, not hot water.
It also helps to avoid washing your hair every day. Washing it every other day is sufficient, especially if you know your hair color often fades quickly.
3. Before Coloring, Use Deep Conditioner
Several days before each hair color treatment, use a deep conditioning treatment on your hair.
Hair that has just been conditioned will not only be shinier and softer, but well-conditioned hair accepts color more readily and holds on to it for longer. The deep conditioner also helps guard your hair against the damage that the chemical agents in the color treatment can cause.
4. Use Shampoos Formulated To Enhance Color
On the days when you wash your hair, use a shampoo made specifically for color-treated hair.
If your hair color usually turns brassy, the color-enhancing shampoo and conditioner you choose should be violet-based. This helps prevent those unwanted undertones of orange and gold from appearing in your hair.
5. Use Hair Conditioner
The purpose of hair conditioner is to keep hair soft, supple, and well-hydrated – all qualities that hair usually loses when colored, since color treatments tend to dry out your hair.
If your hair is damaged, dry, or brittle, it won’t hold a color as well as conditioned hair will. Not only that, but conditioner makes colored hair appear brighter and shinier.