The first question that pops in your mind is: Can I wash my hair now? If not, how long should I wait?
Can I wash my hair immediately after dying
We checked with experts and got some answers. Ryan Pearl, a celebrity colorist, who has Hailey Bieber, Georgia Fowler, and many others as notable clients recommend waiting for at least 24-hours before you have your first shampoo after coloring. Tina Outen, founder of Tian Did It salon at Ricky’s in New York City, advice to wait for at least 48 hours before washing your hair. Leo Izquierdo, the founder of celebrity hair salon IGK salons, suggests waiting for 72 hours before applying shampoo to your hair.
What does science say about washing hair after dying?
Now let us understand a little basic science behind these star hairstylists and even your hairstylist asking you to wait for 72 hours or 3 days before washing your hair.
During the coloring treatment, the outermost layer of the cuticle gets opened to help the color penetrate the hair properly. It starts closing after the treatment is complete but it takes 72 hours to get completely closed, and lock the color in it.
Washing your hair before this time means the cuticle is still partially open and there could be a little loss of hair color.
Should I or Shouldn’t?
Now we know the reason behind that wait and even the outcome for not following the advice, the question arises: What if the hair wash is really necessary after dying it?
There are situations unavoidable where you feel a quick hair wash is a must. You can have an urgent meeting call or an unexpected party invitation, where greasy hair is a big no. A quick rinse is a must to look good. Then you should GO FOR IT. And if you are afraid of fading that beautiful color and fear of going all that money spent down the drain, keeping just a few simple things in mind would save all that money. And that color, too.
Will washing my hair the day of getting highlights tone the color down?
The highlight will probably be washed away as the cuticle is still open and not locked in.
“Most salons have a one-to-two-week window to allow for adjustments,” celebrity hairstylist and colorist Cory Aaron Scott.
"Highlights can be brighter and more vibrant right out the salon, depending on the type of toner that your stylist used. The right toner can cool down a platinum blonde, or add a buttery golden to all over warm brunette," celebrity colorist and Color Director for eSalon, Estelle Baumhauer said.
Ways to keep that color on even after a rinse
Waiting for 72 hours after dying your hair is just a suggestion, not a compulsion. If you are going to wash hair before it, some simple tricks would keep that maximum color locked within your hair only.
Use a chemical-free shampoo
The dyed hair can no longer be treated with regular hair care products. Be it shampoo, conditioner, gel, mousse, hair spray, heat-protectant or any such product, they all should be chemical-free. So, select a sulfate-free, paraben-free, and alcohol-free shampoo for your hair as it is soft on hair dye. Also, do not use any clarifying shampoo on color-treated hair as they strip the color off from your hair rather sooner.
Use a color-protectant shampoo
Using a shampoo specially formulated for dyed hair contain color pigments that adjust to different hair colors. Say, if you have dyed your hair red, washing your hair with red-dye pigments in it would not let the red color fade away with the wash. It recolors your hair each time you wash it.
So, the best shampoo is chemical-free color-protectant shampoo.
Do not rinse with hot water, at all
As much we all love having a bath with hot water, it opens the pores of our skin and even the cuticle of our hair. So, to take that first rinse, use only cold water or lukewarm water, if you live in cold areas. That will prevent the color from washing off.
Avoid excessive rinsing
After having that dirt and stickiness out of your hair, it feels soothing to have that water flowing smoothly through your hair. But that new hair color is also bleeding away with that water, it wasn’t fully locked inside the hair yet. Your hair has that month-old faded look now just after few hours of fresh color. So, before it actually happens, always rinse your hair only till the point the shampoo and conditioner are washed off. Don’t forget your cuticles still aren't completely closed to keep that color locked.
Do not use hard water
If not each time then while having that first rinse at least, use only soft water. It is the one we use for drinking, i.e., water from the purifier. Tap water is mineral-heavy and has chlorine added in it which is too harsh even on normal hair. Using this hard water on hair will wipe most of that color off from the opened cuticles instantly.
Seal that color after wash
After rinsing off the shampoo properly from your hair, seal the dye by using color sealer conditioner, preferably in cold water or just lukewarm water. It will seal that color then and there only and will make your hair shinier.
Let hair dry naturally
Let those colorful strands dry naturally. Do not rub hair with a towel as it will harm the cuticles. Do not even blow-dry. If necessary, spray a heat-protectant and keep the heat at the lowest and then dry the hair from a distance.
Protect hair from the ultimate heating source now
Now, everything has been taken care of, from shampoo to blow-dry. You are going to step out and attend that urgent meeting call. All eyes will be on your new hair color. Just ensure to do this last step to keep your hair going from vibrant to dull. Wear a hat or a scarf so as not to ruin your color from the harsh UltraViolet rays of the Sun. You can spray a UV protectant to keep the rays from penetrating your hair.
Keep those tresses beautiful to stay confident!
Getting your hair dyed is an essential part of grooming in today’s world. Gone are the times when coloring your hair was reserved just for a special occasion. Be it a date night, a weekend trip to the club, an office meeting or you need to lift your mood, getting a new hair color is the first thing on the to-do list.
It is super easy to get your hair colored. But the real struggle starts after coloring it. You don’t know what are the things you should be doing and which ones you should be avoiding. There are as much advice and suggestions as many people are there in your life.