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Red is the most difficult hair color to maintain. I’ve been sporting this color for years and I’m still frustrated at how it noticeably fades in as early as one month. It’s normal for the dye to wash out (I call it a blood bath!) while taking a shower, and the biggest challenge is keeping it vibrant for as long as possible.

Red dye fades fast! Clockwise, from top left: The day of my coloring, one week later, two weeks later, and one month after. See how the color faded?

Red dye fades fast! Clockwise, from top left: The day of my coloring, one week later, two weeks later, and one month after. See how the color faded?

Have you gone redhead recently? Thanks to years of trial and error, as well as tips from hairstyling pros, I’m sharing with you five ways to maintain your red hair color.

1. Choose a reputable salon to do your mane. Proper coloring doesn’t entail using just one box of red dye. For Pinays born with dark hair, you need layers of different shades (not just one shade of red) to blend well with your natural roots and your skin tone. Going DIY will only create a bloody mess in your bathroom. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to bleach your hair first before adding the red or any other bright color for that matter. Red dye can cling on even the blackest virgin hair as long as it’s done professionally.

2. Wait 2-3 days before washing your hair. Many salons insist that you can wash your mane 24 hours after you had it colored, but with red hair dye it’s best to keep it away from the water for at least two days.

3. Water is the enemy. Color your hair during a season when you know you won’t swim at the beach or pool. I once went for a quick dip in a hot spring, thinking that only few minutes won’t hurt my newly colored mane. I was wrong. When I dried up, I noticed that my red hair lost most of its vibrancy! If you can’t help but hit the beach, you may go for a dip but only until your chest or shoulders. Wait until your red hair color has completely faded out (usually this takes about two months if you follow all my tips) before you go swimming. If it’s raining outside, use an umbrella or hoodie. Drenched hair not only promotes fading, but will also stain the back of your white shirt.

CareForRedHairFEAT2

No dipping in the pool or beach—at least for the first few weeks after coloring.

 

4. …So is the heat. I’m talking about saunas, blowdriers, curling irons, and straightening irons. Avoid them during the first month because they will promote the quicker fading of your red color. And even if you carefully avoid getting your hair wet at the beach, direct sunlight can promote the fading of your hair color. Protect your colored hair with a few spritzes of hair sunblock. When washing your hair, use cold water because warm water melts away the red dye.

Malibu Color Wellness, one of the best sulfate-free color care products. It’s vegan, too!

Malibu Color Wellness, one of the best sulfate-free color care products. It’s vegan, too!

4. Use color care shampoo and conditioner. Unfortunately, those retail color care brands don’t work as well as high-end sulfate-free brands. I personally use Malibu Color Wellness Shampoo and Conditioner, which are available at salons such as JuRo.

5. Try dry shampoo. Since water is the enemy, avoid washing your hair daily to prevent premature fading. Every other day or every two days will do. Before you start complaining about bad hygiene, try purchasing a bottle of dry shampoo for those in-between days.

For more of Kate’s travel adventures, visit her blog, Kate Was Here, or follow her on Instagram and Twitter.

Kate Alvarez

Kate Alvarez

Writer, editor, and commercial model, Kate is the curl ambassador of BDJBox. She brings a fresh and adventurous perspective on beauty, especially when it comes to curl-friendly hair products! Read about her travel adventures and quirky lifestyle at KateWasHere.com.
Kate Alvarez

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