Since we know you'll be slathering on lots o' sunscreen to protect your skin this July 4th weekend (right?), here's advice on how to protect another precious element: your hair color. We asked Sharon Dorram-Krause, colorist to Kate Winslet, Julia Roberts, and Uma Thurman, and Color Director for Nexxus Hair Care, how to keep your shade vibrant. First and foremost, says Sharon, use a color-protecting shampoo and conditioner-they really do help to reduce fading (her favorites, naturally, are the Nexxus Dualiste shampoos and conditioners-these systems combine color-protecting agents with volumizing, hydrating, or anti-breakage ingredients). Beyond that, here are her five top color-saving tips:
- Dab on baby oil before the pool. The copper sulfates found in pool water can do a number on your color (much more so than chlorine), causing it to develop a green or orange-ish tinge. Rub just a tiny drop or two (you don't want to create an oil slick in someone's pool) of baby oil between your hands, then run them through your dry hair. When you get out, rinse your hair with regular water as soon as possible, then shampoo that evening to get rid of any remaining residue.
- Reduce brassiness with a hot-oil treatment. If, despite best efforts, your color turns brassy, most salons offer a professional oil treatment that can remove the chemical deposits. If you can't get to a salon, try an at-home hot oil treatment. Work the oil through damp hair, then blast all around your head with a hair dryer to help it sink in. Leave it on for 10 to 30 minutes (the brassier your hair, the longer you should leave it on).
- Tired of coloring your hair? Here are four tips for getting back your natural hair color.
- Don't be afraid of sulfates. They've gotten a bad rep as the primary cause of color fading, but the amount of sulfates in most shampoos is not enough to cause significant color loss. The only shampoos you should avoid if you have color-treated hair are clarifying ones, which have a higher amount of sulfates.
- Add a filter to your shower head. The biggest cause of fading-water! It contains mineral deposits that can alter your shade. A filter removes some of the harsh substances such as iron and lime.
- Go easy on the hair glazes. A tinted at-home glaze is one of the most popular ways to brighten dull color, but don't use it more than once every other week. Most glazes contain silicone, so if you apply them too often, the silicone can build up on strands, making them stiff and prone to breakage.
More hair care advice: The top five hair tips for gorgeous hair.
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