Is your hair slowly changing color? Are your once vibrant, playful locks looking brassy and dull as if they're depressed by this economy?
If so, we've written this article just for you.
In the next 5 minutes, we'll dive into the science, secrets, and surprising facts contributing to two of the most dreaded hair woes today: brassiness and discoloration.
And, because we mean it when we say we got you, we're also going to help you with some hair care tips and steps, so you won't have to agonize again about, "Why has my hair color changed in such a short amount of time after my last color visit?! 😱" or "What's happening to my bright blonde hair?!?!?"
Let’s dive in.
We know there are many reasons why discoloration can occur. However, we know you'd rather spend your time doing something else, so today, we're going to cover the four most likely causes your hair color may be prematurely changing to different tones. Many factors affect the strength and adherence to hair color, even if you just made a color appointment at the salon. While personal hair care is often the culprit, additional factors are frequently overlooked. Keep in mind: this blog is for pre-colored hair and those who notice changes in its dimension.
Pop Quiz! Did you know the PH in the water from your shower can damage your hair and contribute to color changes? According to our very own Dallas City Hall, 80% of Dallas' tap water is considered "hard" with a high concentration of mineral deposits such as calcium and magnesium.
These minerals stick to your hair, creating a barrier that prevents the absorption of moisture and color. If you want more technical terms: calcium and magnesium build up in your hair cortex and shaft. As a result, your hair can become excessively dry with weakened follicles and strands.
These minerals interfere with your hair color, causing hair color to look dull, fade, or sometimes even discolor completely. Our solution is investing in a water-softener attachment for your shower head that could help filter out the high levels of mineral deposits. Finding the right solution for you is a quick search away. However, we like Jolie's for its visual sleekness and eco-friendliness brand mission (as it aligns with our own!) Kevin Murphy also makes the Everlasting Colour Wash and Conditioner, which removes mineral accumulation from the scalp, thus sealing in your color. This is an excellent alternative if you want to avoid investing in a new showerhead.
Speaking of shampoo and conditioner… The second source of discoloration occurs in the crucial products you use for personal hair care: shampoo and conditioner. Crazy right? These necessities are often overlooked due to more appealing aspects like perfumy scents, pretty packaging, or taking your friend's beauty product recommendations (because who else knows you better than she does?).
Certain ingredients in generic shampoos and conditioners can include harsh chemicals and synthetic cleansing agents that may strip color and weaken hair.
Another standard warning you hear when picking your shampoo and conditioner pertains to sulfates as a listed ingredient. It turns out the whole "no sulfate" thing is a misconception. Sulfates have plenty of benefits in your shampoo: they gently clean, create a foamy lather, remove heavy products from your hair (like hairspray, root spray, and gel), fight bacteria, and make the shampoo easy to rinse out with water!
Plus, scientists debunked the theory that sulfates can cause cancer, and specialists have endorsed sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) as a perfectly fine ingredient to use on your head.
Moisture is something every hair needs. We have a few recommendations that aren't generic brands you see in most stores, but we have them on our website for your convenience! If you can spend more on your products, we recommend the Shu Uemura Urban Moisture Deep Hydration Shampoo. Why? Because it hydrates strands with Moringa Oil for intense hydration and protects against pollutants using gentle cleansers.
We also love the R+Co Bleu Line Restorative Shampoo and Conditioner because it's a protein-based reparative formula using new patented blue technology and comes in recycled, sustainable packaging! What more could you want? The R+Co and Shu Uemura shampoos help retain moisture without weighing it down or giving it a greasy shine.
Think of shampoos as a trustworthy moisturizer necessary for your skin's health and appearance. These shampoos work similarly, aiding the health of your hair and its appearance and safeguarding your color. Attention Blondes! Since we're on the subject of shampoos and conditioners, let's talk about a product everyone raves about: Purple Shampoo.
While purple shampoo is an excellent addition to your hair regimen, it shouldn't replace your regular shampoo just because it's a fun color. There's also a danger of misusing or overusing your purple shampoo, and the excess of the lab-made purple pigment can leave a deposit that will dull and grey your blonder tones. If what we're talking about rings a bell, it's time to reevaluate your purple shampoo.
You can contact us anytime, and we'll happily match the purple shampoo and conditioner that's best for your hair type and care routine. If you reallywant to treat yourself, you can get Shu Uemura's Yūbi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo or Shu Uemura's Yūbi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Mask, both readily available in our shop. It includes handpicked Japanese white peony flowers for moisture and uses refined pigment technology for blonde tone neutralization. (Both products work great on blondes and brunettes, so you’re covered no matter what)
Lastly, excessive heat has always been known as one of the primary sources of hair damage. However, heat damage is less noticeable initially, so you may only notice it when it's too late.
We often think of excessive heat damage as using heat too frequently or unnecessarily. While that's true, it's not all bad news; you need to be on the lookout for specific hot tool features that can aid in preventing hair discoloration.
For example, some hot tools (flat irons or curling irons) come with ceramic, titanium, or tourmaline coating that helps with heat distribution, thus protecting your hair while styling. Another aspect to consider regarding excessive heat involves the construction quality of hot tools you may own. Heat moderation and limiter features are a constant variable with blow dryers (the usual suspect hot tool that causes hair discoloration problems, hence the variety of heat settings).
If you've had your curling or flattening irons for a few years, it’s possible that the protective coating may have worn off, meaning you might need to replace it. We know how painful it is to part ways with your favorite iron, but it's probably for the best.
We 👏 can't 👏 emphasize 👏 this 👏 enough: using a hair protectant in your hair care regimen for any heat past the safe range of around 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit is crucial. Heat damage is terrible for your hair in general and almost always is the culprit shifting your hair color into unwanted warmer or brassier tones.
So, before styling with a hot tool, we recommend using the Shu Uemura Tsuki Shape Blow Dry Spray. We love it because it primes and protects with heat activation and uses beeswax as a protective barrier to prevent moisture loss.
We hope these few tips and tricks highlight (pun intended) a few possible reasons your hair care routine could be causing hair discoloration. Whether you continue your hair care journey with or without us, we are here to answer any of your hair questions-- DM us, swing by the salon, or call us anytime!
PS: If you want us to evaluate your hair in person and provide feedback on improving your hair care regimen, you can book an in-person consultation with one of our expert hairstylists over the phone or on our website.
We have more expert hair care insider tips, tricks, and know-how in the works, so stay tuned!