Adding sunkissed blonde highlights or lifting your hair to a brighter, blonder shade is quite a commitment. It not only needs some extra TLC to keep the color in tip-top shape, but also requires time and money to keep your hue from getting brassy, dry and free from unwanted yellow tones. And, while visits to the salon are absolutely necessary, there is a whole slew of things you can do at home, too, to prolong the color as much as possible.
When you bleach your hair, your strands become porous. This often leaves hair more prone to damage, which brings about the dullness, brassiness and yellowish undertones that we strive to avoid. Aside from applying weekly hair masks, purple shampoo can be a game-changing at-home technique to help keep your color looking fresh.
Curious about how exactly to use purple shampoo? Keep reading for everything you need to know about the at-home remedy, straight from an expert.
What is Purple Shampoo?
Purple shampoo is specifically formulated to help correct pigment on blonde and gray hair tones, including silver, pastel, beige and platinum-colored hair. "The shampoo contains purple pigment which neutralizes unwanted yellow tones on lightened hair," explains George Papanikolas, a celebrity hair colorist and Matrix Brand Ambassador. "It's tone-intensive, meaning that it'll allow you to tone your hair at home."
In other words, when you lather purple shampoo onto your hair, it'll help prevent and get rid of unwanted brassiness, tone your discolored strands and add vibrancy to highlights and blonde or silver hair tones.
Candidates for purple shampoo include those who have platinum hair, blonde highlights or anyone who has had some form of lightener or bleach in their hair. Overall, it's a great product for anyone who wants to keep their salon-lightened hair fresh for as long as possible. And, if you feel purple shampoo is too much for your hair, yet you still want the results it provides, you can always opt for other alternatives like purple hair masks or purple conditioners.
When to Use Purple Shampoo
According to Papanikolas, purple shampoo should be used as soon as you notice your color getting dull or yellow. "I usually recommend every third shampoo so that it doesn't dull down the hair," he says. "Overuse can over deposit, leaving the hair with a murky violet hue." As a rule of thumb: you should use purple shampoo sparingly but still ensure it's rotated into your routine.
"If you leave purple shampoo on for too long, it may deposit a visible lilac hue," he says. However, if it happens, know that it isn't permanent. It'll likely only happen if you have a very light blonde or bleached hue or if your hair is dry and damaged. "To remove the hue, switch to regular shampoo for the next few washes and it should go back to normal."
When you're first adding purple shampoo to your routine, incorporate it only once a week to see how your hair reacts. You should also experiment with the amount of time you leave it in and with how much you apply to see what works best for your strands.
The Benefits of Purple Shampoo
Purple shampoo provides a whole slew of benefits to your strands. Firstly, it works to neutralize yellow tones. "This is because purple is the opposite of yellow on the hair color spectrum," says Papanikolas. Violet tones tend to neutralize yellow and orange tones in hair, warming them and cooling them down to their original color.
While it won't lighten your hair color, it'll help to tone your hair and prevent brassiness at home. It can actually make things worse if you try to lighten your hair color, so it's best to take a visit to the salon if that's your desired goal.
In addition, according to Papanikolas, purple shampoo will illuminate highlights on blondes and add brightness to color-treated and natural hair, ranging from gray to white shades.
How to Use Purple Shampoo
Begin by applying a pea-sized amount of purple shampoo to wet hair in the shower. This should be applied all over with a particular focus on where your dyed hair looks brassy or discolored.
Papanikolas then advises lathering it through the hair from root to tip and then letting it sit on the hair to neutralize. This should only be left on for no longer than fifteen minutes.
Rinse and follow with your favorite conditioner or hair mask to ensure your hair remains hydrated and free of dryness.
If you plan to heat style your hair, it's best to ensure your curling irons or hair dryers are on lower heat settings to help protect the color after you use purple shampoo. Applying a heat protectant will also help.