So you have spent all your monthly savings on a beautiful hair colour treatment at the salon. What now? Do you wash your hair right after? What kind of precautions do you need to take? And what are the things that damage the colour in your hair? All of these questions you may have on how to take care of coloured hair are pretty valid as colour treated hair does need a lot of TLC to maintain the pigment and shine.
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- Which things harm your hair colour?
- 01. Be cautious with a fresh colour
- 02. Use sulfate-free products to wash coloured hair
- 03. Watch the water temperature
- 04. Mix dye with your conditioner
- 05. Keep up with hair trims
- 06. Shield your colour while styling hair
- 07. Keep it safe from external stressors
- Did you know?
- FAQs about how to take care of coloured hair
Which things harm your hair colour?
The major factors behind damage in coloured hair are washing with hard water, use of excessive heat styling products, physical damage while aggressive brushing and exposure to UV light. If you fail to follow proper aftercare procedures, your colour can fade faster and start looking brassy and dull. Your hair can fail to recover from the damage it went through during the colouring process if you do not care for it properly. Fortunately, there are some easy rules to taking care of coloured hair that you can follow for a long-lasting pigment that is shiny and healthy!
01. Be cautious with a fresh colour
Just got your hair coloured? Wait at least 72 hours before you wash your hair again! When your hair is being coloured, the cuticles are opened in order to let the pigment seep into the hair shaft. If you wash your hair right after your salon appointment, it can drain the colour from the still-open cuticles, which is definitely wasteful. On average, it takes up to three days for hair cuticles to close up completely. The longer you wait to wash your hair, the deeper and more permanent the colour sets on your tresses. Which means... fewer touch-ups!
02. Use sulfate-free products to wash coloured hair
FYI, the sulfates present in hair products (SLS and SLES) are responsible for producing lather when mixed with water. These hair care baddies are detergent in nature and strip your hair of natural oils, hydration and moisture. It does so by removing the free lipids present in the cuticles of your hair. Once this protective compound is gone, water can penetrate the easily, resulting in faster colour loss. We recommend you switch to sulphate-free and colour safe shampoos and conditioners to lengthen the vitality of your hair colour.
03. Watch the water temperature
Hot water tends to open up your cuticles, which can lead to the hair colour fading faster. So, here’s how you should wash your coloured hair - start with lukewarm water to prep your tresses for shampoos to cleanse better and conditioners to nourish deeper. Once done conditioning, rinse your hair with cold water to lock in all the hydration. Washing coloured hair with hot water can make the colour fade faster than it naturally would.
04. Mix dye with your conditioner
Since hair conditioner is absolutely essential for coloured hair, you can use this step to enhance and maintain the pigment in your tresses. This is a good tip for vibrant pastel shades like pink, purple or even blue - add some of the hair dye you used to your conditioner. This hack will subtly re-dye your hair every time you wash it and keep it looking “new” for a longer period of time. Make sure you are maintaining the integrity of the hair dye by using the same quality as the one used for the original treatment.
05. Keep up with hair trims
Dead and dry split ends don’t hold on to the hair colour and fade faster than the rest of your hair. So make sure you're keeping up with your hair trimming appointments in order to get rid of split ends for a fresh root-to-tip color. Go for a trim every 3 to 4 months, depending on how well you are taking care of your hair ends.
06. Shield your colour while styling hair
This one is an essential tip - heat styling and the products used while doing it can seriously harm the health of your hair colour. Use leave-in conditioners on a daily basis to keep up the hydration levels in your tresses. While heat-styling, use a heat-protectant spray in order to avoid moisture loss. These sprays are multi-purpose as they protect your hair from heat damage as well as humidity in the air for the rest of the day.
07. Keep it safe from external stressors
If you are an outdoors-y person, chances are, your hair colour might suffer from external stressors. Use leave-in treatments to protect your hair colour from UV light damage. They can also shield your colour from dust and pollution damage. Practice putting your hair in protective hairstyles while working out and if you are hitting the pool, always keep your hair tucked into a swimming cap. SPF-infused hair mists can come in handy on days you cannot avoid the outdoors. So just throw one in your bag; along with a headscarf for emergencies!
Did you know?
The biggest contributor to taking care of colour-treated hair is your washing habits. The natural oils in your scalp are the ones that keep your colour looking healthy. Also, despite the precautions taken, you are bound to wash away a little colour with every wash. Keep your hair washes limited to 2-3 times a week and alternate between colour-safe dry shampoos to keep greasiness at bay. You can also invest in colour tinted dry shampoo for a smooth root touch up, but make sure anything you're using on colour treated hair is 100% alcohol-free!
FAQs about how to take care of coloured hair
1) Can I oil my hair after colouring?
A. Yes, oiling can help moisturise colour-damaged hair. However, talk to your hairstylist for the right hair oil for the kind of dye used on your mane to avoid any “browning” of the colour.
2) Is it better to colour hair dirty or clean?
A. The idea that hair colour “sticks” better on dirty hair is a myth. In fact, dirty hair is only appropriate while lightening with a global colour. Freshly washed hair will give you better results and increase the life of the colour.
3) Does vinegar make my hair dye last longer?
A. Yes, according to some hair experts, vinegar can help make your hair colour stay bonded with the tresses for longer. But make sure you are using organic apple cider vinegar in small quantities in DIY hair mask blends for this to work without harming the colour of your hair.
Main image courtesy: @kajalaggarwaloffcial