Everyone loves to have their hair colored, but not everyone is aware of the maintenance required to keep it looking fresh and vibrant. So, it’s not surprising that many clients would come back to the salon after a wash or two, complaining about their hair color fading so quickly.
How Hair Color Works
In order for hair color to work, it needs an alkaline to open the hair cuticles and allow hair color molecules to penetrate the cortex of the hair. Some traditional professional hair colors contain ammonia, which act as the alkalizing agent, but because of its negative health effects more holistic brands like Oway and Original Mineral chose to eliminate ammonia from their formula and use a milder, safer alkalizing agent in its place, a non-gaseous substance called Monethanolamine (MEA). Compared to ammonia which blasts open the hair cuticles causing hair damage, MEA slowly opens the cuticles.
Tips to Prolong Hair Color
1. Wash hair less frequently.
Most permanent hair colors can last for about six weeks as hair is continuously exposed to color-fading elements like UV radiation, heat, and toxins that weaken the hair. Washing the hair frequently will only strip away the hair’s natural oils that lock in the pigments. Shampooing 2-3 times a week is advised.
2. Go sulfate-free.
Sulfates, also known as sodium lauryl sulfate or SLS, contain salt that strip away the hair’s natural moisture. When the hair is dehydrated, the hair cuticles are raised which make it easy for hair color pigments to escape. We highly recommend using an organic sulfate-free shampoo specifically formulated for color-treated hair to help cleanse the hair and guard color from fading.
3. Use color-conditioning hair masks with phytopigments.
Some shampoos can be acidic, which dries out the hair. Following with a conditioner made for color-treated hair will help neutralize the hair’s pH and bring back lost moisture and shine. Using hair masks with phytopigments, like Oway Hmelt Mask, doesn’t hurt as well. These kinds of color-conditioning treatments contain plant-based pigments extracted from antioxidant-rich botanicals which help boost the hair color’s vibrancy and longevity.
4. Avoid using heat as much as you can.
Heat is the hair’s enemy, especially dyed hair. Color-treated hair is susceptible to damage and fading – adding heat to the equation makes it more fragile. Heat leeches color molecules out of the hair as it opens up the cuticles. If your clients must use heat, using the lowest heat setting while showering and styling are highly recommended.
5. Choose hair products that offer UV and heat protection.
Heat and ultraviolet radiation are detrimental to the health of the hair. Give the strands another layer of protection by using a heat protectant like Oway’s Thermal Stress Protector. It does not only prevent heat damage but it also helps lock in shine and moisture.
6. Eat a balanced diet.
Sometimes, the hair’s ability to retain color vibrancy is not only because of external aggressors like heat and environmental toxins. It can also be because of your clients’ diet and health. Are they consuming enough iron and vitamin B-rich foods? These nutrients help keep the hair strong, healthy, and lustrous.
7. Don’t forget your vitamins.
Are they getting enough vitamins and minerals from the food they eat? The good news is, there’s always supplements. Essential vitamins like Biotin, Iron, and Vitamin C strengthen weak hair and improve texture by supplying the body with antioxidants that fight free radicals.
8. Exercise. Exercise. Exercise.
Exercise helps burn stress hormones and keeps blood and oxygen flowing throughout the body (and that includes the scalp). As a result, the hair looks super shiny and healthy.
9. But remember to moisturize your hair after a workout.
All that sweat from working out can dry out the hair, so after taking a shower, make sure they moisturize their hair by incorporating some organic serums into their styling routine to re-hydrate the hair.