What is Natural Hair Dye & How Do You Care For Colored Hair?
After dying my hair regularly for more than 10 years, I have tried it all. I have gone to the salon for bleach. I have colored my own hair; going brown, blonde, and red. I have used purple shampoos, toners, and every product I could find to protect my color. With all that experience, I have tried, tested, and relied on the best products around to ensure my color is vibrant and healthy.
Whether you go to a professional to color your hair or take the risk of doing it yourself at home, caring for your color is just as important as the initial dying process. But before we get into the best products, here are a few easy practices you can apply to your hair routine to get the most out of each and every color.
Do not wash your hair too soon after dying it. 72 hours is what is most highly recommended by professionals. Without that time the color pigment will not get to fully penetrate the hair and you can wash it down the drain. After saving up for months for a new do, you do not want it fading in less than three days.
Cool it down. I mean your shower temperature. Using water that is too hot when washing your hair not only damages it and dries it out, but can also cause your hair color to appear dull and lifeless.
Ditch the sulfates. Sulfate-free shampoos are ravaging the hair product aisles and it is about damn time. This ingredient may make your products lather better, but it also strips your hair of its moisture. Sticking with products that are sulfate-free will lengthen the brightness and vibrancy of your color.
Cut down on washing your hair. I am sure you already know this. The less often you wash your hair the better. Not only will your hair get used to its natural oils and build up less quickly, but every time you shampoo your color fades just a little. Therefore, the less often your shampoo, the longer your color lasts.
Protect your hair from damage. Both hot tools and UV rays can damage your hair and fade your color. This is why you want to avoid using heat on your hair. If you just need to blow dry and curl, or straighten then use a heat protectant prior. Also, try to find a product that offers UV protection. The sun does not just damage your skin, but your hair needs protection as well.
Trim those ends. You already know that split ends make your hair appear dry and frizzy. But without a fresh trim every 6-8 weeks that dryness also makes your hair look lackluster.
Onto the products that will keep your hair color fresh and vibrant until your next appointment with a colorist or with your gloves and bathroom mirror.
Olaplex is a brand that has been used and lusted after by stylists for a long time. It can be added to hair dye at the salon to maintain your color and prevent excess damage. And now they even make an at-home version of this holy grail called Olaplex Hair Perfect No. 3. Do not think of this as just another hair mask or conditioner, it is so much more. It actually aids in bonding broken hair and repairing it. I bet you didn’t even think that was possible. This can be used on all hair types from thin, fine, and straight to thick, coiled, nappy, and frizzy. It reduces frizz, amps up volume and bounce, tames flyaways, strengthens and protects the hair, and even restores its health. You can use it up to twice a week and should see results with the first use.
Reducing brassiness for those who love to go blonde can be an uphill battle. All you want is a sandy or cool blonde, yet that yellowy orange tone keeps creeping in. Of course, a purple shampoo will help tone down minor issues, but if you want to see a major difference in the tone of your hair, Kristin Ess has released a new hair gloss that achieves shockingly intense results with just one shower. And even better, there are 7 shades to choose from so blondes are not the only ones who can tone. You can add warmth to dull hair, enrich copper hues, and more. She even launched a clear gloss for those looking to add shine and vibrancy without altering their color. The Kristin Ess Signature Gloss is to be used between salon visits. It lasts 3-4 weeks depending on how often you shampoo. It is as easy as wetting your hair in the shower, mixing the activator and gloss, and letting it sit for 20 minutes. Rinse, shampoo, and condition as usual to reveal the toned and glossy hair you expect and truly want.
Now, for those who want to care for their hair color from the moment the dye touches their strands, you may want to look into natural hair dye. Who knew there was such a thing? Well, with the growing desire for more natural beauty products from skincare to makeup and even nail polish, chemical-free hair color is gaining traction.
We all know that traditional hair dye is loaded with potentially dangerous chemicals and allergens that can severely affect your health. But there are quite a few options for those willing to DIY their own natural hair color.
Coffee can be used for more than perking up your mood in the AM, it can actually darken hair, conceal greys, and add depth to already deep tones. All you have to do is brew some strong coffee, let it cool (of course) and combine one cup of the coffee, a few cups of your favorite leave-in conditioner and 2 tbsps of coffee grounds. Add this mixture to clean hair, chill out for roughly an hour and rinse. It is recommended to rinse all natural methods with apple cider vinegar for longer lasting results. Now, this may not give you the drastic before and after you’re hoping for until your complete the process a few times, but a little patience is worth it, right?
Of course, henna is the most popular of all natural hair dying options as it has been used for thousands of years. Henna is ideal if you are going for a more auburn or red look. If you see henna hair dye claiming to give you another color be aware that the manufacturer has added other ingredients to achieve those results. You can also do it yourself if you are confident in your DIY skills. You want to mix 1 cup of henna powder with 2 cups of lemon juice and a tbsp of vinegar. Be patient, because it has to thicken for 4-6 hours before you comb it through your hair. Also this is one messy process, so be prepared for that. Finally, wrap your hair in plastic and relax for 2-3 hours and then rinse.
Different types of herbs and teas can also help you dye your hair naturally, but there are so many options for every hair color. If you are interested in those methods I advise you to do lengthy research on exactly what you are looking for and how to achieve it. As always attempt all DIYs at your own risk and do a patch test to ensure you do not have a bad reaction to any of the ingredients.
If mixing up a funky concoction is not your idea of a good time, you can also purchase hair dye that is ammonia-free, chemical-free or even organic. Do be aware that without the harsh chemicals these options will probably not last as long as a traditional dye, but are a bit more user-friendly than creating your own DIY hair dye with stuff you can buy at Trader Joe’s. Two highly rated options are:
Christophe Robin Shade Variation Care is a temporary option made with nourishing ingredients like almond butter and licorice extracts. This is vegan and cruelty-free, and you can even mix a variety of shades to create your own custom color.
Herbatint Permanent Hair Color Gel comes in 30+ shades and is highly tested to be the most gentle way to dye your hair. With organic herbal extracts, your hair is nourished and your scalp is protected. It is also cruelty-free and odorless.
Hair dye is a lot more complicated than one salon appointment and forgetting about it for the next two months. There is so much that goes into achieving and maintaining vibrant and healthy-looking hair color, but hopefully, my advice has given you a bit more knowledge and confidence going into your next hair adventure.
Cover via All Things Hair