Two things you can do before you color your hair that will make a big difference in terms of how long your color will last. First, apply a deep conditioner to your hair three days before you have your color applied. Your hair needs to be moisturized to help the color absorb evenly. The better conditioned your hair is, the more the color will take to your hair.
- MYHoneyChild Olive You Deep Conditioner
- Curl Junkie Hibiscus Banana Deep Fix Moisturizing Conditioner
- DevaCurl Heaven in Hair
The second thing that will help the life of your hair color before you go to the salon is to not wash your hair. Do not wash your hair for at least 24 hours, 48 hours is even better, before your appointment. The natural oils produced by your scalp help the color adhere and penetrate more deeply into the hair shaft.
The Right Process and Color
Choosing what kind of process and the actual color can make or break the life of your hair color.
Making a decision about what kind of color process to use is another choice that can have an effect on how long your color will last. Highlights are a better choice in some situations than a single all over process. Having your natural color mixed in with highlights helps it not be so obvious when your color starts to grow out.
Next, stick to a color that is two to three shades within your natural color. The bigger the color change, the more obvious your roots will be when your hair starts to grow out. Plus, you will be able to maximize your time between salon visits if you stay close to your own color.
When should I wash my hair after I have colored it?
It is best to wait 48 hours after the color service to cleanse your hair since shampooing can cause major color fading so waiting will help. Also, washing your hair less often is helpful. Only wash your hair when you really need to. The more you wash your hair the faster the color will fade.
Co-washing with a conditioner and choosing the right shampoo will also help extend the life of your hair color. Do not use clarifying shampoos, because they can strip away your color. Cleansers with harsh sulfates fade color and dry your hair out very quickly. Use sulfate free shampoos, or alternate if you have to use a regular shampoo. Always use cool water to wash and rinse your hair. Hot water opens the hair cuticles and allows the color to go right down the drain.
Sulfate free cleansers
For highlights in red hair
- Mix 1/3 c apple cider vinegar with 2/3 c cold water
- Rinse hair with mixture and then rinse again with cold water
For bold undertones in dark hair
- Crush 8-10 walnuts including shells
- Mix with 1 c water and bring to boil.
- Let cool and then strain to remove all shells.
- Pour in spritz bottle and keep in the fridge.
- Spritz on hair to deepen color.
Another alternative to adding vibrancy to your hair color is having a clear color gloss applied over newly colored hair. The gloss will help seal in the new color and add shine to your hair.
Increase the amount of water or liquid you drink. This helps keep your roots moisturized and prevent your hair from drying out. A side advantage is that your skin will also benefit from the added hydration.
Use leave-in conditioners and UV protectant sprays
Using a daily leave-in conditioner is a great way to keep hair soft, hydrated and protected. Indoor heating, dry cold winter air and the sun are all very drying and damaging to hair as well as color. If you don’t use a leave-in conditioner on a regular basis it is a habit you should get into.
Also when summer arrives months from now, you will benefit from this new routine. Swimming and summer sunshine are more enemies of hair color. A leave-in conditioner will still be very helpful for protection against chlorine and UV rays. It also helps lock in moisture.