Which dye works best for natural hair?
The short, shaggy natural hair with some colour to make it a little more interesting is all the rage at the moment. We get many questions about which are the best hair dyes to use. We can’t recommend a particular brand but there are a few principles that you can follow to get the results you want and still retain healthy hair.
- Do your research.
There are two types of hair dye, permanent and semi permanent. In simple terms permanent hair colour strips your natural colour in order to work while semi permanent colour simply coats the hair strand. Permanent colour tends to have bleach or ammonia and has to break down the hairs natural protein in order to work. Semi permanent colour will fade over time, these are sometimes called rinses.
Check the ingredients list of any dye that you wish to use. As a rule, permanent colour should only be used by trained professionals.
- Ensure your hair is healthy.
It’s a good idea to get to grips with the particular characteristics of your hair before you decide to dye it. Many people will feel nervous about suddenly having short natural hair and rush to dye it.
Get into a routine, understand how to moisturise and condition natural hair before you dye, you will need these skills afterwards. Deep condition your hair regularly in the weeks or months leading up to dyeing your hair and try to dye it during summer when there is more humidity rather than in the drier months.
- Take precautions.
Read the directions carefully and follow them. Do a strand test, always do a strand test. Do NOT bleach your own hair, go to a professional.
- Remember you hair type.
This is why it’s best to wait till you understand your hair to dye it. The results you achieve will depend on your particular hair type. Does your hair absorb moisture and product easily? If it does, then it will probably change colour quite easily. Hair that absorbs moisture at a slower rate may need more than one application of dye.
- Deep condition.
Your hair has been chemically altered. It will be less able to retain moisture. Get into the habit of deep conditioning and moisturising, be stringent about your protein treatments; dyed hair is essentially damaged hair.
- Go sulphate free.
Use a sulphate free shampoo to reduce the rate at which your hair colour will fade.
You can have healthy natural, dyed hair but you have to work that little bit more at keep it moisturised. There are natural dyes that are less damaging but we will discuss those in subsequent posts.
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