There are three main factors that will cause hair color to fade. Washing the hair is the most obvious, but the two other factors which contribute to color fading are thermal styling and sunlight. Fortunately, by following a few basic tips, you can greatly increase the life of your haircolor, thereby maintaining vibrancy as well as saving money in the long run.
The most obvious cause of color fading is washing the hair. Shampoos that are too harsh can quickly cause haircolor to fade. Even mild shampoos can cause color fading if the hair is washed too often. It is a good idea to invest in a shampoo specially formulated for colored hair. There are many effective color-care shampoos on the market, but the best shampoos for preserving haircolor are sulfate-free.
After you have found the right shampoo and conditioner, it is important to determine how often you should shampoo your hair. Most hairstylists strongly discourage washing the hair every day. Simply rinsing your hair with water and applying conditioner will keep most people’s hair clean. Unless you have a job which causes you to get extremely dirty, such as a pig farmer or a coal miner, there is no need to shampoo the hair on a daily basis.
Thermal styling can also cause haircolor to fade. The heat generated by curling irons, flat irons, and blowdryers can cause damage to the hair’s cuticle, which is the outer layer which protects and seals in color molecules. The more damaged the cuticle is, the easier it will be for color molecules to “escape” from the cortex of the hair, which is the inner layer where the color pigment resides. To stretch out the life of your color, allow your hair to dry naturally whenever possible. If you must use blowdryers and curling irons, it is a good idea to purchase a heat-protection spray. There are many heat-protection styling products on the market, and they will protect your hair from the damaging effects of thermal styling.
Finally, it is important to protect your hair from sunlight. We all know that the sun has the ability to lighten hair, yet few of us protect our hair from the powerful ultra-violet rays of the sun. Most of us slather sunscreen on our skins, but do nothing to protect the hair. Wearing a hat is an obvious solution, but very few of us wear hats all of the time. Instead, it may be more practical to switch to haircare products that contain UV protection ingredients. Many shampoos, conditioners, and styling products are available that offer protection from UV rays. These products will say right on the label if they are formulated to protect the hair from sunlight.