How to Make Hair Color Last LongerHair color can dramatically change your look or can be used to add subtle highlights and definition to your hairstyle. Unfortunately, all hair coloring fades with time, diminishing the vibrancy and richness that your hair had immediately after coloring. It may be tempting to color your hair more often to compensate for color fading, but more frequent chemical processes lead to breakage and hair loss. In order to minimize the fading process and prevent the need for frequent retouches, you can take steps to help your hair color retain its vitality and richness.
1. Select the Right Color and Prepare Your Hair for the Coloring Process
If you prefer low maintenance hair and want to avoid frequent touch-ups, select a color that is only a few shades lighter or darker than your natural hair color. Because it is more closely matched to your natural hair, fading will not be as apparent and roots will be less obvious. Another excellent way to minimize color fading is to ensure that your hair is healthy before coloring. Several days before you color, apply a deep conditioner and allow the treatment to sit on your hair for 10 to 15 minutes. Well-conditioned hair absorbs color more readily, resulting in longer lasting color. This conditioning treatment will also help protect your hair from the damage caused by chemical treatments.
2. Use Color-Enhancing Products
There are many shampoos and conditioners on the market that help preserve and boost hair color. To lessen the need for frequent touchups, women with blonde or light hair should use color-enhancing shampoos that help reduce brassy tones and disguise roots. Brunettes and redheads should try color-enhancing products that brighten hair color and deposit minor amounts of tint to compensate for color loss. Color-enhancing conditioners are helpful for women of all hair shade and retain color by smoothing the cuticle of the hair and adding moisture. One of the best ways to ensure your color remains fresh is to keep your hair well conditioned in order to prevent dryness and damage.
Some salons offer color-enhancing products that are custom-made for your specific hair color. Color enhancers sold in stores are targeted towards a general hair color, such as blonde, red, or brunette. However, some stylists can prepare a custom blend specifically targeted toward the exact color of your hair. These mixtures help perk up hair color between salon visits. Ask your stylist about custom-blends and the cost of the treatment.
3. Other Techniques
When you color your hair, ask your stylist to use permanent hair coloring only. Semi- permanent colors fade much faster than permanent dyes. Retouches should be applied only to the roots and not to the length of the hair. While you may eventually need to recolor all of your hair, it is best to keep colorings to a minimum to avoid excessive damage. After your hair has been colored, do not apply hot oil treatments or protein- based conditioners, which prevent color from properly saturating your hair and can actually strip your hair of tint.
When washing your hair, avoid using excessively hot water. Cool water helps hair retain a richer color tone and helps to smooth the surface of your hair. You should also avoid excessive exposure to the sun and chlorinated water, which can actually leave a green tint on light hair. By properly preparing your hair for the chemical process, using color- enhancing products, and carefully caring for dyed locks, your color will retain its vibrancy and richness.