How to Deal with Damaged Bleached Hair

Woman taking care of her damaged long bleached hair
Taking care of long bleached hair - Photo: Oksanashufrych via Canva
Bleaching your hair can create a beautiful result, but that lighter color can come at a price – hair damage. If you’ve found your strands are suffering after a bleaching session, you’ll want to read the following tips on how to repair damaged bleached hair.
Restore your natural oils
The chemical process of lightening your hair can leave it brittle, dry and damaged. So the first thing you’ll want to do is feed your hair (and scalp) with plenty of nourishment and hydration. Your scalp releases oils naturally to help keep your skin and strands luscious, but sometimes it needs a helping hand – especially after bleaching.
By choosing gentle products, you can ensure your hair doesn’t have to deal with any further harsh ingredients. Look for moisturizing shampoos and conditioners, and deeply hydrating hair masks and leave-in treatments. And don’t forget products that are specifically formulated for your scalp. Look for nourishing ingredients like vitamin B3 to look after the skin under your strands, too.
Just remember to leave your hair well alone for a full 48 hours after it’s been bleached. Don’t apply any shampoo for the first two days. But after that, you can set to work treating your scalp and strands to a deeply moisturizing, hydrating experience.
Woman with bleached hair wearing a swimming cap
Hair protected by a swimming cap - Photo: Jupiterimages via Canva
Protect your hair
As well as being on top of what you put onto your hair, you’ll also want to be aware of what not to expose your hair to. Because bleach contains chemicals, it’s best to avoid adding any more chemicals to your hair – like the kind you’d find in a swimming pool. You can still go for a swim; just keep your hair out of the water. This is a useful tip to follow at all times, but certainly for at least the first 10 weeks after bleaching your hair.
If you use heated styling tools you’ll want to add a layer of protection to your hair first, to limit any further damage. This means spritzing on a heat protection spray before using your hairdryer, curling iron, or straighteners. Better yet, skip the hot tools entirely if you can. Speaking of heat, the sun’s UV rays can cause further damage to your hair, so it’s a good idea to wear a headscarf or hat when you go out in the sun.
It’s not just excessive heat that you want to avoid; it’s also excess friction. This can weaken damaged bleached hair further, and even break your strands. So try to avoid hairstyles that involve pulling your hair back tight, or using bobby pins and metal barrettes that can snag your strands. Avoid brushing your hair whilst wet, and opt for a wide-tooth comb (or even your fingers) to detangle your hair. Switching your regular pillowcase for a silky smooth silk or satin one can also help protect your hair when you’re moving your head around in your sleep.
Blonde woman with a silk or satin pillow
Protect your hair with a satin pillowcase - Photo: Tatiana via Canva
These tips on how to repair damaged bleached hair should help set you on your way to healthier hair. There are lots of questions around hair damage in general, and you can learn more about caring for your strands with these damaged hair FAQs.
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