You know exactly what I’m talking about...
you leave the salon, your stylist gave you all the ‘cool toned’ blonde vibes a girl could ask for, all is good in the world. Then, out of nowhere your hair starts misbehaving, warmth starts showing through and within a few weeks your blonde hair is turning ORANGE.
Look, we’ve all been there and while I’m sure your stylist can bring you back to life at your next appointment, you may be doing things at home to contribute to this unsightly brassiness that's invading your blonde.
Here’s a few reasons I’ve found for the dreaded brassy tones and a few tips to help you prevent it or at least prolong the inevitable:
1: USING EXCESSIVE HEAT. Most of us use hot tools (including blow dryers) on a daily or weekly basis. In a perfect world we could just hop out of bed with gorgeous, effortless loose waves or smoothed hair but the reality is that many of us experience some wild hair that must be tamed at times. Using styling tools frequently or using tools that have the heat set too high for your hair will bring on the yellow (or worse). I usually suggest my blonde clients set their hot tools in the 300-350 degree range. The temperature
setting may need to be different based on your hairs texture but I can say that using 450 degrees or higher on your hair is definitely going to do your hair a disservice. Try to use smaller sections when using hot tools to lower your need for higher heat, and always use hot tools that have a temperature setting. There is also the option for heatless texture, (which is all the rage right now, and ACTUALLY WORKS) you can find one of the heatless wave tools that I've used and love here
2: THE HAIR PRODUCTS YOU'RE USING. This can feel like a huge generalization but anything you’re using on your hair OR skipping out on can be a huge contributor to your hair discoloring. Products like low quality shampoos & conditioners as well as some haircare products like hairsprays (no matter the quality) can (and do) change your blonde to a brassy dull color. This happens because of build up, certain ingredients, or the products being used before styling tools are used. Hairspray for instance can leave a yellow color behind when paired with a curling iron or when built up over days of use when restyling your hair. Be sure to use salon grade shampoos and conditioners to avoid silicon build ups and lower quality ingredients, I love using Olaplex! Hair primers or serums can be a great product to add to your styling regimen before hairspray to create a bit of a barrier. Above all.... DO NOT forget the heat protectant! Heat protectors will cover and protect the hair stands from excessive heat and allow you to style your hair without compromising the color or health of your hair. My go-to is The Shield by Amika, being an aerosol spray helps with even distribution and it smells SO GOOD.
3: YOUR WATER. Yes, the water coming out of the tap can totally be a bringer of the brass. Hard water will add some of the funkiest hues to someone’s hair and unfortunately is most often visible in blonde hair. Water is described as "hard" when it has high mineral content, these minerals get built up in the hair and start to dull otherwise lustrous hair and has the tendency to appear with a orangey hue. I’ve even seen brunettes come in with chalky orange hair from their water (it can be a bit aggressive here in Florida) whether your water is well or city, you may benefit from adding a filter. You can install a charcoal filter for your shower head, pretty easily. I've purchased this one here, it’s not going to last forever but it’ll help, just be sure to change the filter out within the recommended time frame. You can also use MalibuC, I use their products behind the chair daily. They have a couple of products in their line that are specifically tailored to treat hard water discoloration, and honestly all of my blondes get these treatments to keep their blonde nice and bright!
4: SUN BLOCK. There's one ingredient in your sun block that turns hair (and clothes) a rusty orange color & that’s Avobenzone. I'm sure you're thinking "who puts sunscreen in their hair?!" but most people don't think about it after the sunblock has been applied. If you leave your hair down at the beach (or wherever you are having fun in the sun) after your SPF has been rubbed onto your back, your hair then absorbs the product ultimately discoloring your hair. Obviously this is something that may only taunt your hair during specific times of year, but it can totally wreak havoc on your blonde. Some mineral treatments may work to get the color out, a color glaze may be needed in order to neutralize the peachy orange colors but unfortunately its possible that this kind of discoloration can completely ruin hair extensions ( if you wear them) to the point of no return. You can swap out any of your sun blocks containing Avobenzone for ones that are mineral based instead like Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen found here. Your hair (and stylist) will thank you.
5: YOUR TONER IS GONE. Some of you may be asking “what is a toner!?” I like to call them color glazes, but basically it is a color service that neutralizes unwanted tones in the hair or even adds tones that don’t come naturally (like those icy gray hues that were trending pretty hard about a year and a half ago). Standardly, a color glaze should last anywhere from 3-5 weeks depending on your hairs porosity, how often you wash your hair, and a few other factors. If your glaze is gone, and you’re at that 3-4 week mark, this is when you can grab that trusty purple shampoo and fight those warm tones until you can get back into the salon. Be sure not to use the purple shampoo before you’re SEEING the unwanted warmth though, because it can strip your color glaze right out, sooner than desired.
While there's many more reasons you may be seeing brassy tones in your hair these have been the causes I've run into most working behind the chair. I really hope you have taken away some helpful information with this blog or gained a bit of knowledge you didn't know before.
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