How to Look Smarter by Preventing Permanent Hair Color Fade

Coloring your hair is a fun experience. You want to keep the experience going for a long time if you don’t have any negative outcomes. But somehow, even with permanent hair color, you notice hair strand colors fade sooner than you want.

For one reason or the other, you want to color your hair. Whether it’s because you are growing gray hair or love to experiment with odd and lovely colors, you would feel let down when your permanent hair color fades.

It doesn’t matter how you did it, but when coloring your hair is just right, you want it to last for as long as possible.

The type of hair dye determines how long before the color starts fading. However, permanent hair color is well permanent. The only way to clear permanent hair color is to grow new hair.

So how come the permanent hair color fade? Does it even lose color?

These are the burning questions that need answers for the enthusiast who wants a new hair color but is scared it won’t last.

permanent hair color fade

Does Permanent Hair Color Fade?

No, it doesn’t. Permanent hair dye is long-lasting. And unlike the other types of dye (semi and demi), permanent does not lose color. However, it can lose luster and have a dull disposition. This could lead it to looking washed out or out of color.

Permanent hair color remains its original color for about four to six weeks before you start seeing your roots. This doesn’t mean it is fading. It means new hair is growing, replacing your colored hair.

When this happens, you either get your roots colored or let the hair color fall out naturally.

However, if you notice your hair color fading faster than intended, it is due to certain factors which are accelerating its color fade. 

detanglers natural hair

Causes of Permanent Hair Color Fading

Several factors can cause permanent hair color fade. It’s also a fact that some permanent hair color fades faster than others when exposed to these factors. But the simple factors that cause hair color to fade include:

1. Shampooing

When you shampoo your hair almost every day or every other time, the color begins to lose its sheen. Permanent hair color begins to show signs of dulling around its 28th wash. So you have to be careful when you shampoo.

Over shampooing when you have colored hair could lead to its fading fast, especially when it is exposed to minerals and chemicals in the water.

2. UV Radiation

The hair, just like the skin, is highly absorbent. When UV rays are absorbed by the hair, it leads to hair fading. Over exposing your colored hair to the sun can lead to permanent hair color peeling off.

3. Heating Tools

Just like UV radiation, heating tools can lead to permanent hair color fade. Heat is one of the most hair damaging factors, including for treated hair. So when you use heat tools, it affects the color of your dye.

How to Protect Permanent Hair Color from Fading

permanent hair color fade

To protect your hair color from fading away naturally, you need helpful tips to help maintain your permanent hair color as natural as possible.

1. Avoid hot showers

Contrary to what you may think that hot water brings moisture, it does the opposite. Hot water decreases the moisture in your hair by drying it out quickly.

The cuticles are opened with heat, and the hair could lose moisture and nutrients stored in the cuticles.

When this happens, the luster of your hair also reduces, which also affects hair color. When you want to shampoo, use room temperature water for your permanent hair color. This would preserve the color and make it last longer.

2. Shampoo less

Colored hair, when exposed to water, naturally gets duller after each wash. Normal permanent hair color starts to lose its shine around the 28th wash.

If you are the type to wash your hair frequently between days, try to shampoo your hair as little as possible. Also, avoid washing your hair immediately after your color treatment. Wait at least 24 hours before the water hits your hair.

On the other hand, you can stick to a dry shampoo like OGX Kandee Johnson Collection Mermaid Dust Dry Shampoo. Dry shampoos absorb moisture without looking pasty or white. They also help to preserve your hair color.

Then you could opt to co-wash your hair one or twice a week to keep your hair looking shiny.

3. Avoid hot tools

As I said, heat is not a friend of hair in general, including colored hair. Hot tools, especially during the first weeks of your color treatment, should be avoided as much as possible. They are known to speed up color fading.

This includes blow dryers, straighteners, and curling irons. You could use natural hair styling tips to keep your hair color.

If you must use hot tools, use color-friendly heat protectants. Or follow strict tips on how to use hot tools.

4. Use a shower filter

Using shower filters would protect your hair from chemicals, minerals, and chlorine. Hard water is known to strip the hair of color and natural oil.

Shower filters minimize the harm of these chemicals on your hair. Also, it helps to protect your hair color treatment.

hair color

5. Use color friendly products

This is essential when using styling products. When you use color-friendly products, your permanent hair color will likely fade later than it should.

You should protect your hair with color-friendly treatments like conditioners, styling products, sprays, or thermal protectants.

Hair color is different and could wash out when it comes in contact with some components.

Furthermore, when you want to touch up your hair color, use pre-color treatment to prep your hair for coloring. Protecting your natural hair strands against color treatments also includes user-friendly hair products.

6. Protect your hair while swimming

Saltwater or chemically treated water are bad for hair color. The sun and chlorine are terrible combinations for hair colors.

When you plan on visiting the pool, use thermal protectants with sun protection to prevent permanent hair color fade. Also, use products with antioxidants to keep your hair color from fading by protecting it from free radicals.

On the other hand, a nice shower cap would do the trick of protecting your hair. If your hair is tucked neatly in the cap, you would be protecting it from both water and the sun.

7. Deep condition

Conditioners are heaven-sent. They do a lot for the hair and not just providing and retaining moisture.

Color-treated hair needs as much TLC as your natural hair. You need to deep condition with friendly hair color treatments at least once a week. The conditioner must be color right with your hair. That is, it must cater to the particular hair color you have.

Also, when you use high-quality hair oils and serums, you are protecting your hair from further damage. Moreover, when you need to do a hot oil treatment, using the right oils would save you from fading your permanent hair color because of the heat.

8. Avoid overexposure to the sun

Staying under the sun without protection with a hat or cap for your color-treated hair is a bad idea. Overexposure to the sun could damage or fade quickly your hair color.

To avoid this, use a thermal protectant with sun protection like ORLANDO PITA PLAY Atmos-Shield 10-In-1 Hair Protectant Treatment Spray.

Also, wear a scarf, hat, or cap to keep your hair from becoming dull. Or better still, stay out of the sun as much as possible if you can help it.

Frequently Asked Questions

gold hair

Can natural hair use permanent hair color?

Yes, natural hair can use permanent hair color.

Natural or afro-textured hair is unique. The cuticles are different, and most of the time, natural hair is 4C hair. This means the hair has to be exceptionally taken care of. But this does not mean you can’t color-treat your hair.

If you want to treat your natural hair, use dyes that are gentle on hair strands, and would let it absorb moisture and nutrients.

Will permanent hair color fade naturally eventually?

No, it won’t. Permanent hair color does not fully fade out like other hair colors.

Permanent hair color falls out rather than fades. That is, new hair growth replaces your color-treated hair over time.

However, permanent hair color does lose its shine. This is why you have to treat it once in a while to make it last longer.

color-treated hair


Wearing lovely hair colors is nice if you love to live on the edgy side. However, you have to watch out for your permanent hair color fade. Factors like overexposure to the sun, hot tools, and overwashing can cause a luster in your hair color.

You can protect your permanent hair color by keeping it away from heat, including hot water when you shower.

It is also important to always keep your hair protected using a thermal heat protectant. But it has to be color-treated hair friendly.

Permanent hair color does not fade, although it can look dull if it is not taken care of. This is why you have to care for your hair no matter the state it is in, to get the best experience with your hairstyles.

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