Friday, March 6, 2009

Colored Hair Care

OK so now that you tried semipermanent, permanent, or highlights hair color, how do you keep your chemically treated hair healthy at home?

The easiest answer is to try a shampoo and conditioner that's especially made to treat colored hair. You can go high-end with something like Bumble and Bumble, medium-end with something like Goldwell, or low-end with something from your local pharmacy or grocery store. Though, more often than not, these days your local pharmacy carries all sorts of brands from high-end to low-end. The key is to read up on these companies websites and other people's experiences of these products, to create your own consensus. I find that makeupalley is an AWESOME resource particularly when the user posts the type of hair (is it similar to yours?) they have, so that I can compare oranges to oranges and apples to apples.

Because my hair is wavy/curly and not as thick as it used to be during my teenage years (when it was also longer and didn't have layers) and has experienced a variety of hair coloring techniques by now, it has become even more porous than virgin curly or naturally straight hair.

When you have porous, wavy, or color treated hair you have to bear in mind the role ingredients have on how your hair behaves. I have very little success with sulfate shampoos. I hadn't realized that sulfate in shampoos was a leading reason why my hair was unmanageable, and why my neck and back was breaking out! I now look for hair products that are especially made for wavy hair or light curly hair. Also, I find that the heavier silicone doses within unruly/dry curly hair products does a number on my hair.

It's also very important to keep a high-quality deep conditioner on hand. Alternatively, you can use a natural recipe such as mayonnaise or avocado. Depending on the season and your hair's natural requirements and current state, you could very well end up using a deep conditioner once a week or more. I find it relaxing and pampering to take the time to sit back and do something leisurely while my hair is doused with a conditioner and is resting piled up high on my head. Longer hair can benefit from a large hair clip. It's also a good idea to use a plastic hair bonnet to keep the hair and conditioner moist and warm. Warmth helps the conditioner penetrate the hair's cuticle. If you've ever been to a salon for a conditioning treatment, more often than not they'll put you under a hair dryer on low with a plastic bonnet on.

I hope you find the hair product that helps you keep the color quality and shine in, and the elements out. Happy testing!
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