How to Care for Dyed or Bleached Hair

Updated on July 8, 2016
Source

I dyed my hair again. I couldn't help it. I got bored of having the same old, plain brown color. This time I wanted something bright and cheerful, I wanted something elegant and youthful. So I went blonde. Yes, I know, not the smartest choice, but I had to have blonde hair.

If you are thinking of changing your hair color, there are a few things you need to know...

Anatomy of a Hair Strand

There are three major layers to every hair strand:

The medulla - This is the inner part of every hair strand and it's usually filled with air. However, if your hair is strong and healthy, the medulla will be filled with soft keratin.

The cortex - This is the layer that is responsible for giving hair its elasticity and strength. The cortex also produces melanin, which is responsible for giving hair its color. The darker your hair, the more melanin you have.

The cuticle - This layer is thin and transparent. It is made of several flat, thin cell layers. The purpose of the cuticle is to protect the cortex.

For our purposes, we are mainly interested in knowing about the cortex and the cuticle.

Dyeing hair can be so fun, but also a lot of work!
Dyeing hair can be so fun, but also a lot of work! | Source

Ammonia Has Advantages???

One the advantages of ammonia is that it is volatile: it evaporates easily even at room temperature. This means that your hair's pH level goes back to normal as soon as the ammonia evaporates. Hair dyes that don't contain ammonia use other types of alkaline substances to lift the cuticle. These substances are not as volatile as ammonia, which leads to your cuticle being open for a longer period of time.

What Happens to Hair When We Dye It or Bleach It

The cortex is the layer of hair that safely keeps your hair color, and the cuticle is the guardian that protects it. When you dye your hair, the cuticle needs to be lifted so that hair dye can get into the cortex. But, how do you lift the cuticle?

AMMONIA. Ammonia elevates the hair's pH level and causes the cuticle to lift up.

Once the cuticle has been lifted, hair dye has a free pass into the cortex to let the new color get in.

If the hair dye is a darker color than what you have, the hair dye will remain inside the cortex. If you're aiming for a lighter color, the hair dye will contain peroxide, which oxidizes the melatonin found in the cortex, thus leaving you with a lighter color.

Melanin and Pheomelanin

Melanin is a pigment. It gives color to your hair. The more melanin you have, the darker your hair will be.

Pheomelanin is the type of melanin that blondes red-heads have. It gives hair those light, golden tones, as well as giving skin pinkish tones.

What You Should Know Before You Dye or Bleach

Any procedure to change your hair color will inevitably damage your hair. Lightening or bleaching your hair will cause considerably more damage than changing your hair to a darker color. However, before you do anything to your hair make sure that you know these two essential things:

  • Don't bleach your hair unless it is healthy and strong. If you dye weak and brittle hair you may end up completely burning your hair and, in the worst of cases, losing your hair.
  • Prepare your hair before changing color. This is especially important if you're going to bleach your hair. Begin the treatments at least a month before the procedure. This will prepare and strengthen your hair to take the "beating."

*There are a lot of things you can buy to strengthen your hair, but natural is always the best way to go. These are some awesome ways to strengthen and beautify your hair naturally.

Dyed hair requires a lot of conditioning and care.
Dyed hair requires a lot of conditioning and care. | Source

Before You Dye or Bleach

So now that you have everything ready, let's go through some things that will help you cause less damage to your hair.

Always dye your hair when it is dirty, never do it on clean hair. Why? Dirty hair has natural oils that act as natural protection, plus the hair dye will distribute more evenly. Don't wash your hair for at least 48 hours before the day of the procedure.

Never dye your hair if you're wearing any kind of hair products such as hairspray or gel. This may cause you to end up with different and uneven colors.

Wait 48 hours before washing your hair. This helps you keep the color for a longer time and reduces the damage. This doesn't mean that you shouldn't rinse your hair right after dyeing it. You NEED to rinse it, but don't apply shampoo.

To cause less damage, apply this mixture to your hair before applying the hair dye:

  1. Mix a little bit of your favorite hair conditioner with 1/2 tsp of jojoba oil.
  2. Apply this mixture to your hair 20 minutes before dyeing it.
  3. Leave it on and apply hair dye. (Yes, apply the hair dye on top of the jojoba oil mixture.)

This little trick will leave your hair shinier and the color will distribute more evenly. Jojoba oil also serves as a fabulous protection for your hair.

Use vaseline. Apply vaseline all around your hairline and all over your ears to prevent hair dye from staining your skin.

Coconut oil is a great way to condition and strengthen you hair naturally.
Coconut oil is a great way to condition and strengthen you hair naturally. | Source

The Model's Hair Color

Never ever believe that you will achieve the color of the box model. Those models have been photoshopped to no end. If there's a hair color you want to reach, ask a professional what's the best way to go instead of simply choosing based on the color the box shows you.

Afterwards

So now that you have the hair color of your dreams (or something close to it), you need to make you sure that you take care of the color as well as your hair. Remember that your hair just went through a traumatic procedure, so you need to take care of it even more than you did before.

  • Apply a deep conditioning treatment at least once a week. Coconut oil, jojoba oil and shea butter can work wonders on your hair.
  • Don't wash your hair every day. If you can, wash it once a week, but if you can't wait that long, wash it every other day. To reduce the damage that shampoo can cause, mix 1 part shampoo and 3 parts water. You will still get the nice clean feeling - along with the suds - but with a lot less chemicals.
  • Use warm water. Don't shower with hot water. Hot water dries and weakens hair. If your hair is already weak and brittle from dyeing it and bleaching it, then you definitely want to stay away from hot water. If you can, shower with cold water. If you can't take the cold water, then just shower with warm water and add a splash of cold water at the end of your shower. The cold water will seal the cuticle and will make your hair look and stay healthy.
  • Protect your hair from the sun. A lot of shampoos and conditioners now offer UVB/UVA protection. If your favorite brand doesn't offer these benefits, use wheat germ oil. This oil is a wonderful sun protector that will keep your hair shiny and healthy.

Remember: even though dyeing your hair can be fun, you have to be careful not to overdo it. Allow 3-4 weeks between every dye.

Happy living!

Questions & Answers

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      No comments yet.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, bellatory.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://bellatory.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)