I love bright colors and inject it everywhere I can! In my home, wardrobe, online and in my make up. But there was one area that was left untouched until now and that was my natural hair
I big chopped late 2012 and have grown my hair with so much love and TLC that at first I was afraid to use permanent color. But my hair was too dark for semi permanent colors to have effect so I decided to have a more drastic approach. Although bleaching is not a must I did use bleach to make it lighter first before applying red dye. The results is eye-catching, fierce and my hair is still ‘healthy’ since it’s still very moisturized and bouncy!
Note: Before bleaching/dying natural hair
Before you decide to apply a chemical process make sure your natural hair is moisturized and strong to begin with. I know ladies whose hair have become dry after coloring it but usually it was already dry and weak to begin with so the dye only made it worse.
The product you use to color your natural hair is also important! I used a Brazilian brand called Yellow Color but have seen natural ladies like Aleshanokeys use L’Oreal Highlights with success. Thank God for the power of internet because it allows you to do some research first and see if other people have had success coloring their natural hair.
Step 1: Bleaching Natural Hair
I used Yama Queratina Po Descolorante following the instructions above. I left the bleach in for approximately 30-45 minutes before washing it out. Some parts were lighter than others but I don’t mind a difference in color as I think it gives the final dye a nice texture in color shades.
As you can see in the picture above the color change wasn’t very drastic. Since my hair is dark I would probably need to bleach it 3-4 times before it turns out blonde. But that’s not something I was aiming for and giving the pigment in the dye was very rich the result was very vibrant.
What I noticed after bleaching my hair
I thought it was just me but after looking it up other natural hair ladies said the same thing: bleach changes your curl pattern/hair texture! Although the impact wasn’t very strong my curls are looser and my hair is ‘less’ bouncy the first days of my wash & go. Although it’s still thick it’s less. If you have fine hair or don’t want your curl pattern to change, don’t bleach! If you want looser curls than go ahead this is the trick
I must say I panicked at first because my hair laid flat the first day I dyed it. It looked like my hair was relaxed! So the same day I washed it with soap to ‘undo’ the effects a bit and the next day luckily my hair bounced back. Pffeeewwww!
Step 2: Coloring Natural Hair
– Wear clothes and towels that can get dirty because red dye is a b&^%$ and will stain everything including your bath tub!
– Use plastic gloves to protect your hands and nails
– Apply vaseline around your hair and ears to prevent the dye from staining your skin
– Mix the dye and then start applying it. I used Yellow Color 6000 and Alfaparf Red Booster to get a bright red. The original dye I used was Vitaderm and it was supposed to be pink but it became red! Since it wasn’t vibrant enough I added the second mix on top after a few days.
– I left it in for approximately 1h to make sure the effect was maximum. I’ve read one girl even left her dye for 6h because she said the longer you leave it in the more it will last.
– Rinse it out with cold/tepid water when you’re done. Don’t use warm water otherwise it will rinse out most of your dye.
Step 3: Preserving the red hair color
Although I probably should I don’t use specific products to preserve the red color. This is what I do to maintain the color vibrant and my hair healthy:
1. Wash less frequently
Normally I wash my hair twice a week but now I try to keep it at once a week. Yellow Color and Alfaparf washes out a lot so by washing it less I preserve the color longer. Will try to wash it again twice a week because usually my hair stays moisturized until 4 days after washing so to me it’s not worth it compromising my hair’s moisture for the sake of the color.
2. No shampoo with SLS
Although you shouldn’t be shampooing with SLS anyway this one especially applies if your hair is dyed. SLS is very harsh on our hair and skin and will rip off the color of your hair and dry it in the process.
I use a moisturizing deep conditioner (DIY or commercial product) once a week and leave it for approximately 1 hour. Since dying natural hair can be very harsh on natural hair I also include a protein conditioner every 3 weeks or so to help my hair gain its full strength back.
4. Oils: Yay or Nay?
After watching Taren Guy’s video after she had dyed her hair blonde one of the tips she gave for maintaining moisturized colored hair is to avoid oils and use as much water and conditioner as possible. I avoided oils in the beginning but last week I did an oil rinse with almond oil and my red natural hair turned out super moisturized, the curls were very defined and overall it looked amazing!
I guess the chemical process involved with blonde hair is very different so it might work in her case but when it comes to my red colored hair, it loves it!
5. Daily maintenance
I believe that when you deep condition, use oils and wash your hair it must be so effective that you don’t need to use a daily moisturizer. And I don’t even have to when I deep wash/condition correctly. And even after dying my natural hair that still hasn’t changed. I did a wash & go 5 days ago and my hair is still soft and moisturized without applying anything since the washing day itself. The only thing I added before blow drying it was Ecostyler gel and what was it.
Less is more is what always worked with my hair and I’m glad that it hasn’t changed even after dying it. Although the natural hair/beauty industry likes to convince us that we need all the products available out there, we really don’t.
Did you ever bleach/dye your natural hair? Was it a success? Comment below!
Thanks for reading!