Hair Color Protection to Keep Your Color Salon Fresh
You paid plenty for that radiant shine, so why watch it fade away in a week?
If you want hair color protection that sticks around, begin by checking out the condition of your hair before you color your hair. If your hair is dry or porous, color will leech right out. That’s one of the reasons rich brunettes go red and blondes turn brassy. So, your first line of defense is deep conditioning, and balancing your hair’s protein and moisture levels.
To determine how healthy your hair is, hold a few strands at the roots while you pull gently near the ends. Does your hair stretch easily, or break almost immediately? To check for porosity, run your fingers against the cuticle’s direction and see if hair ruffles up. Or, put a few strands in water and watch if they absorb it fast and sink.
For hair that’s prone to breakage, try out protein treatments; for porous hair, deep-condition and moisturize! Once your hair is in great shape, it’ll hold hair color protection lots longer.
At the hair salon, choosing a hair color close to your natural shade amounts to longevity. Hair that’s been lightened a lot and then colored a new shade is more likely to need hair color protection. Also, try out semi-and demi-permanent hair colors, they don’t last as long as permanent hair color products, but they do fade off more gently, so you won’t see obvious roots. If you prefer permanent hair color, be sure to get a subtly tinted glaze or a clear glosser added over the top to lock in color and shine.
Avoid double chemical treatments, like perms, relaxers or straighteners and hair color. They make hair dryer and more porous, which brings you back to fast fading which needs more hair color protection. While you’re in the hair salon, book a deep-conditioning treatment for two weeks after the hair color service; this commits you to smart hair color protection.
If you’re getting a brilliant red, which fades faster than other hair colors, ask about every solution your hair salon can offer. A great hair colorist will start with a clarifying shampoo to remove product build-up, chlorine or mineral deposits, which can prevent hair color from fully anchoring in the hair. Then, he or she can even out the hair’s porosity with a treatment like Joico’s HKP. Your hair colorist can also choose a hair color product with what’s called a double dye-load – only professional hair color products have them.
Getting a few highlights is another solution. Because they’re created with bleach, they can’t fade. Add a play color like Manic Panic, and almost nothing will remove a red from your highlights. This means you had better be certain you want a near-neon shade.
If you have underlayers done in a shade that’s quite different from surface strands, a little fading won’t matter because this hair color simply peeks through the top. Also, the top layer will give hair color protection to the colored under layers from the sun’s UV rays.
Home Hair Color Care
The sun, hot water and harsh shampoos dull your hair color the most. Always wait 24-to-36 hours after a hair coloring service before you shampoo. Then, use tepid water and avoid over-shampooing; every other day is usually more than adequate. (See my article on the no shampoo regimen).
Choose a sulfate-free shampoo like Pureology, or one that’s made to inhibit hair color fade. Redken Color Extend shampoo and conditioner are also great options. If your new hair color is a brilliant red or a delicate blonde, try out hair care products with the pigment right in them; they punch-up hair color over time. Not only can you buy pigmented shampoos and conditioners, you can get hair styling products that boost color, like Goldwell ColorGlow Mousse.
Another way to prevent fading from week to week is to use hair styling products with UV protectors and moisturizers. Avoid alcohol-based hair styling products. Product over-use itself can make hair color look dull-especially if they build up. Favor lighter hair styling products unless you have very dense, heavy hair, and even then, don’t use more than you need.
As time goes on, make certain you keep your hair well moisturized and hydrated. Deep-conditioning and moisturizing treatments can be done at home, as well as in the hair salon. Try a hot oil treatment or splurge and ask your hairdresser to recommend a home-care deep conditioner.
Finally, if hair color starts to fade and your roots are showing, use a root re-touch product. Colormark has been just one that you sweep on with a mascara wand. It lasts until the next shampoo. Or, try Clairol Nice N Easy Root Touch-Up. You just brush the appropriate color right on your roots, wait 10 minutes and rinse.
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