Coloring your Hair is a great way to upgrade your look. With proper care, hair dye can last a long time. If you don't take good care of your hair, however, even the best dye job can fade quickly. Knowing how to take care of color treated hair is important. Not only will it help the color last longer, but it will also ensure that your hair stays healthy and strong.
EditWashing Your Hair
- Wait 72 hours after dyeing before you wash your hair again. One of the biggest mistakes people make is washing their hair too soon after dyeing their hair. After you wash the dye out from your hair for the first time, let your hair dry naturally, then leave it alone for 72 hours. If you wash your hair before then, you risk the dye fading.
- You can use clarifying shampoos before coloring your hair, not after. They strip color too.
- Use sulfate-free shampoos and conditioners made for color-treated hair. Just because something is labeled for color-treated hair does not necessarily mean that it is good for your hair. Sulfates are harsh cleaning agents that cause hair to turn dry and brittle. They can also cause dye to fade quickly from your hair. If you want to keep your hair healthy and vibrant, then any products that you use must be sulfate-free.
- Most labels will state whether or not the product is sulfate-free. If the label does not say anything, check the ingredients for anything that contains the word "sulfate."
- If you dyed your hair blonde, choose a sulfate-free blue or purple shampoo to keep it from turning brassy.
- Keep punk colors vibrant by adding some dye to white conditioner. If you dye your hair an unnatural color, such as pink, blue, purple, or green, consider adding a few drops of your dye into your bottle of conditioner. Shake the bottle up so that the dye is distributed evenly. Each time you use your conditioner, you'll deposit a small amount of dye into your hair.
- Don't let anyone else in your household use it—otherwise they'll end up with colored hair!
- Only use white conditioner, otherwise you may end up with a different hair color than you desire. For example, if you mix blue dye into yellow conditioner, it will turn green.
- Be aware that some of the dye may come off on your skin when you use it. Be sure to rinse your hair well afterwards so that you don't stain your towels.
- Wash your hair no more than 2 or 3 times a week. This may sound less than ideal, but there really is no need to wash your hair more often than that. Not only does frequent washing fade color faster, but it can also cause your hair to dry out.
- If your hair tends to get oily, use a dry shampoo on your no-wash days to soak up excess grease.
- Wear a shower cap whenever you take a shower without washing your hair. This will keep your hair dry and preserve its color.
- Use cool to lukewarm water when you wash your hair. Cold water would be the best, but you can use lukewarm water if you can't take the cold. Do not use hot water, however. Not only will this cause your color to fade faster, but it will also leave your cuticle open, causing the color to fade.
- Wash and rinse each color separately if you have multicolored hair. This is especially important if you recently dyed your hair bright colors, such as blue, green, and purple. If you try to wash all your hair all at once, you risk the colors blending together. Separate the colors in your hair, then wash and rinse them individually to avoid color transfer.
EditDrying and Styling Your Hair
- Allow your hair to dry naturally whenever possible. If you must use a hairdryer, apply a heat protectant and focus the heat on the roots. If you have curly hair, consider drying your hair using the plopping method instead. This is where you plop your hair on top of your head and wrap a T-shirt or microfiber towel around it.
- Do not sleep with wet hair. Going to sleep with wet hair can lead to damage and breakage, so plan ahead when you wash your hair. Make sure that you give your hair enough time to dry before bedtime. If you must go to sleep while your hair is still wet, braid it first.
- Don't pull your hair into a bun or ponytail before going to sleep, even when it is dry. This will damage your hair further.
- Use heat protectants and low heat when you dry or heat-style your hair. This is a must, regardless of whether you are blow-drying, curling, or straightening your hair. High heat can damage your hair (especially if you bleached it first) and cause the color to fade faster. If you are going to straighten or curl your hair, be sure to blow-dry it first.
- Apply the heat protectant before you blow-dry, curl, or straighten it.
- Embrace your natural hair texture. Heat-styling tools, such as flat irons and curling irons, can damage your hair, even if you use a heat protectant. Learn to love your natural hair texture, or find no-heat alternatives to straightening or curling it. Use heat tools only for special occasions.
- Use foam hair rollers in damp hair to create curls.
- Braid your hair while it is wet to create waves.
EditKeeping Your Hair Healthy
- Use hair masks once per week instead of conditioner. You can use store-bought masks or make your own using natural ingredients, such as coconut oil or shea butter. Apply the mask to damp hair, then tuck your hair under a shower cap. Wait for the time recommended on the label or recipe, then rinse the mask out.
- Look for masks made for bleached or color-treated hair. Nourishing, deep-conditioning, or reparative masks are also a great option.
- Most hair masks do not contain sulfates, but double-check the ingredient label.
- Make your hair masks more effective by heating them first. You can do this with store-bought masks and homemade masks, including coconut oil. Heat the mask in a small dish in the microwave for 5 to 10 seconds, then use it accordingly. Alternatively, you can stick a bottle of conditioner in a large cup of hot water for a few minutes.
- Apply the hot mask or oil to your hair. Tuck your hair under a shower cap, then wrap the cap with a warm towel. Wait 15-20 minutes before rinsing the treatment out.
- Alternatively, you could apply a room-temperature mask to your hair, put on a shower cap, then sit under a hooded dryer for 15-20 minutes for a deeper conditioning treatment.
- Continue to use your usual products if you have natural hair. Naturally curly or African-American hair is delicate and prone to damage, so it requires a little extra care. When you dye your hair, you shouldn't give up those other conditioning treatments and moisturizing creams. Keep using them as you normally would, but make sure that they do not contain any sulfates.
- Wear your hair in protective styles as much as possible, such as cornrows or braids.
- Protect your hair against the elements. Cover your hair with a hood, hat, or scarf whenever you step outside, especially if it is bright and sunny outside. If you don't like covering your head, apply a UV protection spray to your hair before stepping outside.
- Cover your hair with a swim cap before getting into a pool. If you don't want to wear a swim cap, rinse your hair with plain water first, then apply some conditioner. It would be even better if you wait 20 minutes before stepping into the pool, so your hair can absorb the conditioner. Once you are done swimming, rinse your hair immediately.
- Trim your hair regularly to keep it healthy. Plan on trimming hair every couple of weeks. How often you do this depends on how fast your hair grows and how healthy it is. If your hair starts to look ragged at the ends, it's time for another trim.
- Take breaks from bleaching or dyeing your hair. The more you bleach or dye your hair, the more porous it will become, meaning it won't hold onto dye very well. If you notice that your hair color is fading or that your hair is starting to look fried, it's time to take a break. Let your hair grow out to its natural color.
- If your roots are beginning to show, try a root touch-up kit instead of re-dyeing your hair.
- Another option is to use a gloss every so often. It is not as damaging as hair dye and will revitalize your hair color.
- Consume vitamins that are essential to hair health. Vitamin C is found in things like citrus, and helps keep your scalp healthy. Biotin is found in carrots, eggs (yolks), and salmon. It helps make your hair strong and glossy. If you cannot eat the foods that contain these 2 vitamins, then supplements are always an option.
- Make sure that your hair is healthy before you dye it. This is especially important if you have to bleach your hair first.
- Use good-quality hair dyes. If you are in doubt, ask your stylist!
- Some hair dyes fade faster than others. For example, most reds tend to fade quickly.
- Care for Color Treated Hair
- Extend Hair Color
- Dye Your Hair an Unnatural Color
- Dye Blonde Hair Black