I’ve had lots of questions about the condition of my hair since I dyed it and my methods for treating and caring for it now. So I thought I’d use this post to answer some of these questions.
As most of us already know, hair dye is drying. But it’s not the death sentence that people think it is for your hair.
I dyed my hair twice last year. Well, actually, 3 times. The first attempt failed, but that’s a story for another day.
2 lots of box colour (Garnier Olia) on the front/top of my hair and my hair hasn’t fallen out. I chose the front of my hair because that is the curliest part, where the curl pattern is much looser. Because of the texture there, the hair tends to be a little less prone to dryness than the rest of my hair. So I figured, if the dye is going to mess up my hair or dry it out, it’s best for it to be the most moisturised, easy to de-tangle part. I also chose the front/top of my hair because I wasn’t sure I wanted /wasn’t brave enough to go red all over. Sometimes I wish I had.
So back to post-coloured hair care….
There are two things to discuss here:
1. WHAT WAS MY HAIR LIKE IMMEDIATELY AFTER DYEING IT?
Once I had rinsed out the dye, and shampooed my hair it was a little dry. More frizzy than dry, actually. Apart from that, the only other change I noticed was the colour. I made more of an effort to moisturise my hair. I did it daily. Just a leave in conditioner, a few sprays of water, and occasionally a penny-size amount of olive or coconut oil. Most of the time I twisted my hair at night to help seal in the moisture, but also to stretch/style my hair in preparation for the next day.
Deep conditioning and hot oil treatments were something I tried to squeeze into my monthly routine as often as possible. My hair responded well to the post-colour regimen and I had very few problems. I think when the weather changed and it got a little warmer, the coloured hair did get a little crispy, but spraying the hair with water helped most of the time.
I didn’t really experience any phenomenal kind of breakage, that I can attribute directly to dyeing my hair. For the most part, when I was diligent and took care of it, it was in good condition. When I started to slack however, I definitely noticed a change in the condition of my hair. In both the look and feel of the strands and curls. I think the dryness also made my hair slightly more susceptible to split ends. So I started doing mini trims a little more frequently. This basically entailed me trimming the tips that looked split when my hair was in twists. Not the most professional technique, but it worked.
I don’t think the colour was as bright as it is now. It has always been more noticeable in the sunlight, but now, maybe because it’s growing out and there’s a contrast between the dyed red and my dark roots, it’s more apparent.
2. WHAT IS MY HAIR LIKE NOW?
Now, my hair is a little dry. I blame that on the weather and my neglect more than anything else. There’s no difference between the dyed hair and the rest of it. The whole ‘fro is parched. To counter the effects of the weather/heat, I have started once again spraying my hair with water before bed and twisting or re-twisting it. If I want to leave it out I do so on weekends. During the week I rock protective styles.
The colour, as I’ve said, seems to be brighter. I still haven’t noticed any (extra) breakage or changes to my curl pattern. All in all, I think my home-colour experience has been pretty good. On the days when the hair does seem a little crispy, I’m ready with my water and leave-in conditioner/moisturiser of choice. Because there have been changes to my hair routine (which I will be sure to write about) it’s hard to really track any other possible effects of the hair dye. I wash my hair once every 2 weeks or so now, and I rarely co-wash. Even deep-conditions have been abandoned (although I intend to change that this weekend).
My verdict is that colour treatments aren’t as bad as people make them out to be (as long as they’re done properly) and followed up with a moisture intensive regimen.
- If you’re thinking about dyeing your hair, make sure it’s relatively healthy. Talk to a specialist first if you’re not sure.
- Opt for ammonia-free colour if possible.
- Always do a skin patch test before you dye your hair.
- Be sure of the colour you want.
- If you’re doing it yourself at home, make sure you follow the instructions.
- Follow up with weekly deep conditions AND hot oil treatments to counter the drying effects of the dye.
- Try to moisturise at least 3-4 times a week: dampen/spray with water, apply a good moisturiser, twist/braid, and wrap/cover with a silk/satin scarf/bonnet.
- Try a protective style a few times a week to shield your hair from the elements.
- Avoid excessive heat a.k.a. blow drying and straightening (flat ironing) because this is only going to dry your hair out even more.
- Trim any split ends.
I was meant to talk about how I care for my colour-treated hair but this has actually become more like another ‘quick tips’ post. All the same, I hope it’s helpful.
Please feel free to share your own experiences of colouring your hair in the comments.
Until next time,
Stay Healthy, stay happy, stay blessed