At some point in our natural hair journey, we may get the itch to spice up our look with a little color. Since permanent dyes are often the go-to for their… permanence and offer the boldest change, we’ll be mainly referring to those here. But we also have info Temporary Ways to Color Your Natural Hair.
There’s much out there about caring for color-treated hair but what about before you even pick up that applicator bottle?!
Here are 3 things to consider before that trip to the beauty supply store or salon:
Assess the Current Condition of Your Hair
Coloring Can Be Permanently Damaging To Your Hair
Really take a look at your hair. Examine it. Are you experiencing breakage? Is your hair always super dry? Having a bout with excessive shedding? If you have yet to get a handle on these issues, coloring your hair should be the last thing on your mind!
Permanent hair colors include agents that will open up the hair cuticle to get down to the cortex to lift your current color (lighten) and deposit the new one (color). This increases the hair’s porosity and decreases the elasticity. In layman’s terms, there is some degree of damage with permanent hair color as the hair will often be weaker and drier afterwards.
Naturally, starting with hair that is already in a damaged state will only make matters worse. Put DOWN the box of Honey Blonde, boo! Nurse your hair back to health and then you can consider adding a little color to your life.
Of course, if it’s being done by a professional who actually cares about the health of your hair, they will have had a consultation with you, evaluating the state of your hair to give you a thumbs up or thumbs down to color until your hair is “well” enough to handle it.
Choose the Right Color
I don’t necessarily mean the right shade that compliments your complexion, although that does help after all is said and done. What I’m talking about is selecting a brand that will do the least amount of damage to your already fragile strands. Sheamoisture and Creme of Nature both have less damaging permanent coloring systems.
Like I said, there is always some level of damage when applying color and our hair is already prone to dryness. So try opting for colors which don’t contain ammonia or other harmful chemicals. They do exist. Be an informed consumer and read those boxes carefully if you’re doing it at home or ask your stylist about the specifics of the color they’re about to apply.
Read the product review on Sheamoisture Ammonia-Free Hair Color
Ask, “Am I Ready?”
If you think maintaining your natural hair is work, wait until you color it, especially if you go lighter! This is no time to slack on your regimen so seriously think about all that is involved in the maintenance of color-treated hair before you do it.
Think about your circumstances: your life, your schedule, your pockets! Are you prepared to do what it takes to keep your color looking its best and your hair the healthiest it can be in that state? Do you have the budget for upkeep?
If you’re a low-maintenance kind of girl who barely has time for wash day, maybe highlights is a better option for you as it requires less maintenance than a full head of color. Whatever the situation, be honest with yourself now or else you’ll be paying for it (literally and figuratively) later!
This is in no way meant to scare you away from color! We just want you to be armed with the info you need so you can make the best choices for your natural hair in the long run. Hope it helps!
If you decided that you are, in fact, ready to color your hair here are Tips on How to Color Your Natural Hair