How amazing do you feel the moment you walk out of your hair color appointment? Your color is fresh, vibrant and the shine on that sucker could blind a stranger walking by. So why is it that just weeks later your color is feeling dull and lifeless? Why isn’t the tone as vibrant, and why does it look and feel much different from the hair you remember just weeks prior? Well, let’s take a look and see if you are taking the utmost precaution to make sure your color isn’t getting tired of your bad habits and walking out the door on you.
1. It all begins at your hair appointment. You know that deep conditioning treatment that your stylist offers you? That one that “locks in the color with protein and seals the cuticle down to offer shine and softness.” That one that you may… or may not pass up due to the extra $15-$25? That stuff is liquid gold! Not to mention the incredible scalp massage that comes with it! While you’re totally relaxing that treatment is working hard and giving your hair a protein-moisture dream makeover. You see, hair color needs protein. Imagine this, have you ever seen that couple at the bar where the girl sits on her man’s lap even though there are plenty of other seats around? Protein is that big tough dreamy hunk of a man and hair color is a that needy girlfriend that would prefer to sit on her man rather than her own seat. She is needy, annoyingly needy. So do yourself a favor, let you needy hair color sit on the lap of her boyfriend, protein, and take your stylist up on the offer.
2. Okay, we are still at your hair appointment. Your stylist is walking you up to the front and they begin to talk to you about retail. You think to yourself, “Here we go again. They’re pitching me their expensive color safe shampoo and conditioner again. It’s just too darn expensive!” What you aren’t thinking about is the protecting the investment you’re making at the counter. Your hair color! You are typically spending over a $100 on your hair color, and then allowing it to wash down the drain because
a $15 difference in shampoo and conditioner from the store brand. Let me be frank, store brand hair care products do not protect your color. No matter how “sulfate free” or how many vitamins and minerals they promise are in there, they are not being totally honest. The good stuff they put in there is heavily cancelled out by all the waxes and chemicals they use as fillers to be able to provide it for you at that cost. Trust me, Blake Lively, Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Gardner do not use it, even though their hair is shiny and beautifully wind blown in the commercials. I’ve been behind the scenes on a campaign that didn’t even have the stylist use the actual product they were trying to sell. It’s a mirage! Bottom line, it creates build up on your hair which in turn dries out your hair because it works as a barrier against any moisture and protein that actually wants to get in and help your hair. I recommend either Redken Color Extend shampoo and condition or Redken Color Extend Magnetics sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. Although those are the specific products dedicated to protecting your hair color, none of their other hair care products will strip your color. Pureology is also an amazing luxurious hair color care brand that I adore, and it’s entire line has added color saving properties. Your stylist should be able to make a recommendation for your specific hair type. Trust them!
For all you “I don’t use conditioner” people, start using it. Shampoo roughs up the cuticle and you need conditioner to smooth it back down. If you hair gets weighed down easily opt for Pureology Pure Volume or Redken Bodyfull conditioner.
3. Now I like my showers HOT. I like the water almost burning my skin, because I am almost always cold. This is the worst possible thing for hair color. I’m guilty and I’m sure you are as well. All of that steam and putting your hair in hot water opens the door to your cuticle and allows your hair color to take a beautiful swan dive down the drain. Solution: when washing your hair use warm water (even cool water if you can handle it). Just turn the heat down a bit! Your hair will thank you for it.
4. Invest in hair masks and treatments. These professional companies do not make hollow promises. Redken and Pureology are two brands I love and am committed to because of they way they are constantly looking for ways to repair damaged hair and also protect hair from future breakage. Here are the masks and treatments I recommend and who they are meant for:
For dry and damaged hair in need of strength and shine: Redken Diamond Oil Deep Facets Intensive Treatment
For color treated hair that needs fade resistance, including UV protection: Redken Color Extend Rich Recovery
For color treated hair that needs added strength and softness: Redken Color Extend Magnetics Deep Attraction Mask
For blondes or highly distressed and damaged hair that needs an intense repair: Redken Extreme Strength Builder Plus
5. Now, if you do nothing else, at least commit to this next one. Use a heat protectant when styling your hair! I recommend Redken Satinwear 02 for something lightweight, or Pureology Precious Oil for something a little more smoothing. Apply these before you blow dry and rest assured your color has a barrier from the heat! When using hot tools it is SO important to have a thermal spray. I recommend Redken Iron Shape 11. This versatile spray will not only protect your color and integrity of your hair, but it will also make sure all the work you put into styling it will last. Not to mention, the smell is fantastic!
…so this happens…
…and not this.
There you have it! Follow these simple steps and keep your color looking rich and lustrous until you see your favorite friend-artist-therapist-magician-Wonder Human of a stylist again.
Hair color is an accessory, let’s wear it well!