Hair color is an investment, and if you’re not taking proper care of your strands at home your new hue won't last as long as it should. Incorporate these easy steps into your hair care routine to prolong the life of your color and help your color look better in between salon visits.
1. After coloring, wait as long as you can before your first wash.
It takes about 72 hours for the hair cuticle to fully close, so it’s best to wait as long as possible before your first wash. Those with red, pink or purple hair should prolong shampooing as long as possible as these hair colors fade the fastest. If you find yourself struggling with oily strands before day 3 post-dye job, opt for a color-safe dry shampoo that will absorb oil and freshen your strands without stripping your color.
2. Say goodbye to harmful sulfates.
Contrary to popular belief, not all shampoos are created equal, especially those formulated with sulfates. So what exactly are sulfates? They are the ingredients that strip your hair of oils, dirt and any other grime that builds up throughout the day. The operative word here is “stripped.” Sulfates strip the color from your hair, resulting in premature fading and discoloration. Instead, opt for a formula that not only protects your color, but also restores moisture and shine.
3. Tone at home.
To keep your color on point, use a toning shampoo or conditioner once a week in order to prevent your strands from turning brassy. The purple-hued formula cools down warm or orange tones. The trick is to find the right formula and the proper amount that works for your locks. Blondes can apply the formula all over their scalp, but those with highlights or subtle balayage should only apply the shampoo to the colored areas. Quick tip: If you need something less harsh, the Redken Magnetics Color Extend Conditioner!
4. Use a color-safe conditioner.
Much like it’s important to use a shampoo that won’t strip your color, using a conditioner specifically designed for colored hair is crucial. Look for a formula that not only prevents fading but also works to boost shine and smooth the cuticle to keep your strands looking fresh. For best results, apply conditioner to your entire head, concentrating most of the product in your ends. Massage the conditioner into your strands and leave it on for 3-5 minutes before rinsing.
5. Heat Protection.
Nothing compromises your hair faster than sky-high temperatures. Whether it’s the constant use of hot tools or the blazing sun, heat is definitely not good for your hair color. Some easy ways to keep it cool? Wash hair only once or twice a week. Less wet hair means less styling tools. Also, make sure to always rinse your strands with cool water in the shower. Another tip? Wear a hat! The sun causes fading and too much exposure will result in lightened and possibly discolored strands. If heat is unavoidable, try using heat- and UV-protectant styling products.