Having your hair colored at the salon is expensive. Not everyone can afford to budget for that, especially when you’re doing a color that leads you to have roots every 4 to 6 weeks. I, for one, often dye my hair. I go and pick out the essentials and then prep my hair to do it. But have you ever made a mistake and it came out looking different than what you expected?
Sometimes, that accident proves happy while other times, you want to tuck all your hair up under a baseball cap and hide away. I’ve had both experiences happen to me before.
That made me wonder, can you re-dye your hair the next day?
As a matter of fact, you shouldn’t redye your hair the next day, research has shown that the use of permanent dyes damages your cuticles, making your hair porous, thus the overuse can be more harmful, not letting your hair and scalp recover from chemicals which can lead to allergic reactions.
There are many people who claim to have done it with success, but we all have different hair and situations. It might not be the right thing for you to do. In fact, it could make your hair even worse.
If you’re concerned, go see your stylist and deal with the lecture that will ensue. Otherwise, you should wait at least 4 weeks. Sometimes, depending on the condition of your hair, you may need to wait even longer than that.
Ok, so you fudged up your hair color. Girl, we have all done it. But if you want to come out of this with healthy hair on your head, buckle up and keep reading. I’ve got all the tips on what to do with that hair and how to love it again.
Listen to your hair before re-dying it
Sorry love, but the best way to fix this is simply to wait it out. Even if your hair is super-healthy, you’re going to damage it by re-dying it the next day.
Think your hair is healthy? Try my test and see if you pass:
- Does your hair break off easily?
- Does it feel very dry and brittle overall (not just at the ends)?
- Are your ends split?
- Do the ends snap off and feel weak?
If you answered ‘yes’ to these, DO NOT color your hair again. You’re just going to damage it to the point of no return!
What should you do? Well, you can use a hair repair mask twice a week to help you repair your hair after that coloring. That should help it get more life into it before you re-dye it in a few weeks.
And even if you answered ‘no’ to all my questions above, you should wait at least 2 weeks before you attempt to re-dye it.
Why do I recommend this? Simple:
- It’s likely still damaged from your first dye job. You need to nourish it first before you blast it with more chemicals.
- It needs time for deep conditioning. This will help your hair improve.
- Applying dye too soon after a dye job will cause extensive damage and breakage.
- You’ll have no idea how the color will look because you’re doing it on top of an existing dye. Those example colors on the box can’t help you either.
- You can’t lift color with color. So if you want to go from a dark dye job to a light one, you have to color correct or bleach first and I don’t recommend trying that without a professional stylist.
- Hair always does best when you wait 4 to 7 weeks before re-dyeing it.
- If you just want a change, wait it out. It will be time enough soon enough.
Never just wing it either. Those instructions are on the boxes and kits for a reason. They’re developed by professionals in the industry to help you color your hair on your own.
Things you should keep in mind when you’re dying your hair
While those box color kits seem to make things simple, you need to know a few things before you follow the directions and get coloring. It’s the difference between getting a good dye job out of a box and wanting to staple a hat onto your head until it fades out.
– Color doesn’t lift color
In most cases, hair dye isn’t going to lighten your hair if you’ve already colored it. Hair dye adds color to your hair. It won’t lighten it or remove color. If you want to change your hair color, you have to let that color fade out first so your hair has room to soak it up.
If you want to lighten your hair, you might need to strip out your undertone too. Every hair follicle has two layers, the first of which is the pigment and the second is the shade. This is why on the box, you see different possible results depending on your undertone and shade. Those two components are what give you your overall hair color. When you go lighter, you have to strip that undertone so you can brighten it up and then put that hair dye on top.
– Semi-permanent hair color won’t lighten your dark hair
Sorry, but you can’t get lighter hair with a semi-permanent color. I love semi-permanent because there’s no ammonia or peroxide but if you want to go lighter, you need those things. Semi-permanent doesn’t lift or lighten. This is why it might be best to go to a stylist to get that lighter look, especially if you want to re-dye your hair. And even more so if your hair already feels dry, brittle and delicate from your first dye job.
So, you can use a lighter semi-permanent dye on your dark hair, but it will only drop the color on. It’s better to use a semi-permanent that matches your shade so you’ll get added shine and a slight enhancement without damaging your hair.
– Don’t even think to die your hair blond if it’s naturally dark
Oh sweetie, noooooo! I’ve done the blonde thing and it is true, it’s much more fun. But if you have dark hair (like brown or black), you’re going to damage it. You have to be very careful when you go lighter from darker hair. Plus, you’ll need to wait a longer period of time before re-dyeing your hair when you bleach it. Even with virgin hair, you should wait so you don’t wind up with damaged hair. If you’re going to go blonde, please do it right or you will be spending forever trying to correct the feel of your hair, I promise you this.
– Don’t dye your hair black to cover a bad dye job
Conversely, if you decide to cover it all up with black, that’s another bad idea. While it is easy to do and will cover things up, what if you don’t want to stay so dark? When you try to lighten it again, even to a light brown, it can be a huge pain in the rear. Black dye is really difficult to remove and it could take lots of steps to get rid of it to make way for a new, lighter color.
– Using dark colors over bleached hair is a call for a disaster
Can I just say this? Nooooooooooo! Do NOT toss dark-colored dye over your bleached hair. I have a friend who did that and she was miserable.
When you color hair that was bleached or even just lightened, it’s bad because your hair is more porous and won’t respond to the hair dye the way your hair would if it wasn’t bleached out. You’ll get either overcolored hair, so it’s maybe darker at the ends and lighter on your roots.
Even worse, you could turn it green or blue. You need to fill in those undertones again first before you add a darker color. You’re only adding color on top of color if you just throw caution to the wind this way.
For my friend, she had green hair. GREEN! And that was when all the colors of the rainbow were not a common thing for people to do with their hair. She wound up having to spend a lot at the salon to correct her mistake. Honestly, if you’re sick of bleaching your hair, you might just want to spend the money and get your hair back in good standing.
If not, you should get a toner designed for pre-bleached hair. This will help you balance out the color when you apply the new, darker shade.
– Don’t dye your hair red when in doubt
Red is a tough shade to pull off anyway. But dyeing your hair red can be a disaster if you don’t know what you’re doing. That pigment goes deeper into the hair strands. The developer stains the melanin and bonds to release quickly so it’s a harder color to keep up with.
That might make you think it’s easy to change, but it is much more difficult to remove. It stays in the hair up to lv.8N and since all color is composed of RYB pigments, the darker the hair, the more B+R. It will have less Y pigment. If it’s lighter, there’s less R+B and more Y. Bleaching it out, those raw levels are now exposed and go from dark to lv.9. Basically, that means it’s going to take a lot of work to set things right after using red dye.
– Don’t use strong lifter to lighten your hair at home
It is so difficult to lighten your hair right at home. Bleaching is very involved and can easily go wrong, leaving you with damaged hair. On top of that, you might not like the results you get the first time around.
If you really want to lighten hair you’ve already colored, you should use a strong lifter. This will clear your hair molecules of the color you’ve done. Once you have lifted your hair, you can then use the color you want.
That’s a pretty quick process, though it depends on how light you want to go. There’s a downside though. Those strong lifters are very invasive and can leave you with thinner, damaged hair. If you decide to do this, please do so at a salon or at the very least, use a low-peroxide lightener to highlight your hair.
Another option you have is to wait it out. You’ll want to wait about 8 to 10 weeks after that initial dye job so your hair color fades out. Your hair dye molecules will shrink and then you can dye your hair at home. After this time has passed, you should only go 1 to 2 shades lighter. If you want dramatic lightening as in 3 to 5 shades lighter, you should really go to a pro.
While you wait it out, use a root coverage spray. This will help ease the adjustment so when roots or grays show, you can spray it on. Highlights are another option you can pull off at home that brightens up the look while you wait it out.
– If you’re looking for gray coverage all you need is Hairprint
Now, hold onto your hats. Or take them off and rejoice. Because the future of hair is here right now. There’s a new product called Hairprint and it’s free of chemicals. What it does is re-pigment your hair and restore it to its natural color. No toxic chemicals or any of that junk.
While this is super-exciting, it’s not going to work for every hair type or color. So, which lucky ladies can try it out? You need to have brown hair (either light, regular, or dark brown) or black hair. A formula for blonde hair is expected to release at some point. There is nothing yet for redheads and Hairprint isn’t sure if it can get one off the ground.
Hairprint is ideal for anyone that has a lot of gray or has colored their hair for years though it may take a few uses to see results. When you color your hair or it starts going gray, there is damage that needs to be restored. Gray hair is what happens when the pigment is lost. With a few treatments, it can come back to your natural color.
If you can use Hairprint, it’s exciting to note that it just takes 75 minutes which is a lot easier to handle. Especially when you think of how much time it takes to do any of the things I mentioned earlier on in this article. It also leaves your hair stronger, healthier and full of shine. So instead of bringing on more damage, it corrects it. How revolutionary!
Hairprint is like permanent dye though in that it isn’t fully permanent. You will need to touch your hair up every 4 to 6 weeks depending on the number of grays you have to cover. But if you’re like me, you’re probably really excited to see something like this hit the market.
That is, if you’re a dark-haired girl. What about everyone else? And how do you fix your hair color without re-dyeing it if you don’t get something like Hairprint? Relax, doll. I’ve got you covered with tips on that below so keep reading!
Tips on how to fix your hair color with no need to re-dye it
There are other ways to fix your hair. If you colored your hair and you’re really unhappy with it, you could follow these tricks to getting it back to something you love. Read on!
-If you use semi-permanent dye wash it to take out most of the color
Semi-permanent hair dyes don’t last as long as you’d like but if you’re not happy with the color, that’s a good thing. You can just wash it every day. It takes about 6 to 12 shampoos to fade the color. So just wash it extra and you should see that color fade out. Make sure you take care in conditioning your hair during this time too. You want to nourish your strands so that when you’re ready to color again, your hair will be hydrated and healthy. You don’t want it to come out looking dry and brittle.
– Use a clarifying shampoo to tone down red and dark hair color
Even better, you can use a clarifying shampoo. You should never use one if you love your color, but if you want to get rid of the dye, you can fade it even faster with a clarifying shampoo. Just use that instead of your normal shampoo and it will lift darker color from your hair. With each wash, you’ll see the color fades and lightens more than when you use your color-protection shampoo.
– Get rid of the orange color by using a purple shampoo
Ok, so you really messed things up and got some bizarre orange color going on. Don’t panic! We can get rid of that brassiness. Simply get a purple shampoo and it will correct that brassy look. Any shampoo with purple and violet undertones will take care of that mess really quickly. In most cases, this should work like a charm. If not, you’ll need to consult a professional so you can tame your tresses.
– Wash your hair a few times to lighten the unwanted ashy blond color
Some women deliberately seek out ash blonde tones. They look great on the right complexion. But other women look washed out with it as it can have a gray appearance. If you got ash blonde but didn’t like the way it turned out, you can wash it every day for a week. It should lighten up significantly from this point to a color you’re much more at home with.
If that still doesn’t do the trick, go to the salon and have it corrected. You don’t want to mess with bleaching and cause more damage. Only a professional can balance it out without ruining your hair completely.
– If your roots don’t match the rest of your hair, grab a root cover
Showing your roots can make you feel vulnerable or less spectacular than usual. You can cover them up with a root cover-up. They make them in sprays and pens that can help you get your color looking uniform, at least for the time being. What they do is help blend your roots into your color on your lengths. They’re great for graying hair too and can save you a few trips to the salon until you figure out what you want to do.
This might be the time to go discuss with a colorist what your best options are for your hair. The more you color it, the more damage it incurs so cutting down on that would be best for your hair’s health. Unlike you and your box kits, your colorist can set the tone in one go and then you can maintain it on your own. Until you get that sorted out though, get a root cover you can use at home without ruining your hair.
– Use a color remover
When your hair is uniformly the same color from end to end, you can also use a color remover. These are designed to pull the color from your hair without being as harsh as bleach. They won’t quite lighten your hair as bleach does, but you can get the color out of your hair that you didn’t like. Then I advise you to go to a colorist and get the color you want to set right. It will be so much easier to maintain at home from there.
The only trouble here is that bisulfite, which is in color remover, can lead to damage. You should be very careful when using it, especially if your hair is already in a fragile state. It might be best to pony up the money to see a professional colorist and get your hair back on a good path first. Then you can use all these other products we discussed to maintain your hair color and hair health.
If you’ve colored your hair and hate it you’re not alone. But you do have options! I strongly urge you to nourish your hair during this time and get it into good health. Do not try to re-dye your hair immediately after. You will only make things worse and have a more costly mistake to correct at the salon.
Do deep conditioning and wash your hair often to get the color to come out. If you’ve bleached it and it’s brittle, make sure you get it back in good condition again or else it will feel like straw. Again, colorists and stylists are experts at this stuff so making an appointment to get your hair back on track is a smart move. Then you can handle all your touchups and gray coverage on your own at home thanks to some very smart products that are easy to get and easy to use.