Smelly Hair after Color Conditioner

Older woman with red hair
Photo: Ozgur Coskun/Shutterstock
Q: I am an 80-year-old redhead. Red, as you know, does not age to a flattering shade. So, since 1997 I have used a L'Oréal product that is a color shampoo and a color conditioner. Perfect to keep me a redhead, but a softer shade than when I was young. Now that it is no longer available, I am struggling not to look wishy washed out.
I tried a product today that is just a color conditioner. Something called Davines. The color is just right, but I don't like the smell of it. That ammonia-like odor! It's driving me crazy just smelling myself.
I go ballroom-dancing four evenings a week and smelling like this is totally unacceptable! Do you know of any remedies, home or otherwise, to rinse my hair after the color conditioner is used that will remove or lessen the stench? Otherwise, my hair is shiny and healthy. Just very smelly.

A: The two home remedies for that chemical smell associated with some hair products are as follows:
A) Mix two tablespoons of baking soda in one quart of warm water. Use this as a final rinse after you use your color product. As the hair dries, the baking soda should help to absorb much of the odor from the hair. Alternately, you can pour some of this mixture into a spray bottle and mist it lightly over dry hair if the smell persists.
B) Use equal parts of white vinegar and water as a rinse after applying the color. The vinegar mixture will help neutralize offensive odors and will help make the hair look shiny as well.
If neither of these options gives you the results you want, ask at your local beauty supply store for "odor remover" products. There are a few different types, including an additive you can add to hair color that helps neutralize the odor before it gets put in the hair.
See also:
Hair deodorizer
Home remedies for healthier hair