Skip to main content

How to keep hair color from fading

A new hair color can look great at first, but this isn't always the case after it has been washed a few times. Over time, vibrant shades of dye begin to look dull and lose their lustre. Dark colors, and even more natural shades are also prone to fading.

If you're worried about the gradual loss of color in your new hair style, you can keep it looking great for longer by learning how to keep hair color from fading.

What causes hair color fading?

Hair color fading is primarily a result of washing your hair, but the fading process is also greatly expedited by exposure to sunlight and the use of heat styling tools like straighteners or curling rods.

You don't need to adjust the way you style your hair just to prevent fading, but the way you shampoo your hair definitely needs to be looked at in order to deal with the loss of color that occurs during washing, because this is the most important factor in how long your color will last.

Washing colored hair

Colored hair needs to be washed in a different way to natural hair if you're worried about fading. This is because the washing process is the most significant cause of fading and washing your hair the wrong way will quickly lead to a faded hair color.

The type of shampoo you use is very important to help decrease hair color fading. Clarifying shampoos and anti-dandruff shampoos are two of the absolute worst shampoos to use if you have a vibrant color. This is because these shampoos are very powerful. Clarifying shampoo, in particular, is designed to eliminate product from your hair and it will rapidly fade hair color as a result.

The problem with shampoos is that you don't always know that you're using a clarifying shampoo however, and even some ordinary shampoos can be designed to work in a way that emulates a clarifier. A simple tip is to avoid shampoos that specify that they are designed for oily hair, most men's shampoos, and chelating shampoos. All of these have a powerful clarifying effect, designed to remove product build-up and oil, which will also fade hair.


Colored hair shampoo

Colored hair shampoo doesn't always have any particularly special benefit beyond that of regular shampoos when preventing fading. In most cases, these shampoos are simply either a milder shampoo or a shampoo that also contains conditioning agents, which weaken the emulsification effect and stop the product from stripping as much oil and color out of your hair.

If you suffer from dry hair or you wash your hair more often, these shampoos may be an option for you. If your hair is oily though, you're better sticking to a regular shampoo, as even though these shampoos reduce fading, they do it at the expense of actually cleaning your hair. You end up with hair that is oily and looks dirty, even immediately after washing it.

Color refresher shampoo

Color refresher shampoo is the best way to prevent fading, because these shampoos actually deposit color back into your hair while you wash it. If you're wondering how to keep hair color from fading, these products are the holy grail of color rejuvenation.

Of course, as with all toning shampoos, it's important to choose one that is actually effective and powerful enough to be used for your own hair color. In the same way that some blonde shampoos are often so weak that they only slow down fading rather than preventing it, color refresher shampoos can suffer from the same problem and not be strong enough to work.

This doesn't mean they're not useful as they still slow down the hair color fading that leads to dull hair, but if you choose a phenomenal product, it will actually completely prevent fading or even help reverse it. This keeps your hair looking beautiful for weeks after coloring.

One such product is De Lorenzo's Nova Fusion shampoo range, which is available in 18 different shades including a deep violet, chocolate, cool brown, intense red, and silver. The silver version, as an example, can tone even darker blonde hair and is strong enough to completely reverse fading.

Other brands of hair color refreshers are available, and the key to choosing the right one is in selecting a product that closely matches your own shade, both in tone and strength to maintain the amount of color that you need.


Conditioner is just as important as the type of shampoo you use in preventing hair color from fading. Specifically, you need to ensure that you use a conditioner every time you wash your hair. This is because shampoo opens the hair cuticles to clean the hair, whilst conditioner has a sealing effect that closes the cuticles and prevents color and moisture loss.

Any conditioner will help with this, but a sealing conditioner is the absolute best way to keep your hair color from fading after washing, as well as offset the fading effects of the styling tools you use. Heat from straighteners and curling irons can quickly fade hair when porosity isn't properly treated to keep the hair sealed.


Leave-in products

If you're using the right shampoo and conditioner, the fading of your hair color will dramatically slow down, but you can also take this a step further by using a leave-in product. Two such products that can really help are leave-in conditioners and smoothing serums.

Leave-in conditioner helps to prevent color fading by protecting your hair from the environment, and further helping to seal it and keep color in. You can use one of these products by applying it after washing and towel-drying your hair and it will help prevent both dryness and color loss.

A smoothing serum like Redken All Soft takes this a step further by acting like a barrier to the external environment. Whereas a leave-in conditioner will add moisture into the hair, a smoothing serum prevents it from being lost. Serums effectively smooth the hair, making it soft, supple, and shiny, whilst also protecting your hair from the fading and damaging effects of heated styling tools and humidity.

Both of these products can even be used together, and if you have dry, frizzy, or frequently styled hair, they are a great option to help your hair look and feel its best.

More information:

Want to know more about how to keep hair color from fading, or have a question about fading? Leave a comment for more information...

Subscribe to email updates: Discover how to get professional hair at home!

Enter your email address:


Popular posts from this blog

How long does semi permanent hair dye last?

How to lighten hair without bleach

How to get platinum blonde hair

Can you bleach wet hair?

How to remove permanent hair dye