I am so thankful for the days I get strangers complimenting how vibrant my hair color is and how they don’t see very many people with even, healthy bright hair. My response is usually “its not easy, but it’s really fun”. I have had my hair this way now for almost 4 years. It is much easier to take care of now, but who knew it would take about 2 and a half years of serious commitment to get easier. Here’s how I did it.

  1. When I decided I wanted my hair pink, I lightened my hair twice over time to keep it healthy instead of lightening it all the way in one time causing more damage. I waited about 6 weeks in between. Less damage results in less fading because your cuticle is not blown open as wide to let the color molecules fall out (see my post titled “why does bright hair color fade so fast” to read more)
  2. I washed my hair very rarely. I would go an average of 5 days without washing my hair. Dry shampoo is my best friend! If you are one of those everyday washers that say your hair gets greasy right away, its actually because your pores are producing an overload of oil because you wash your hair everyday. If you could handle it for a couple weeks, your scalp would produce less oil and you wouldn’t have to shampoo everyday.
  3. Every other time I would wash it, I would spend the time to put my pink hair color all through my wet hair in the shower to refresh it. Gloves are needed. I would squish in the color after shampooing and then leave it while I did the rest of my showering and then rinse and condition. I know it sounds like a lot of work, but because I didn’t wash my hair very much, it was only about every 10 days.
  4. Every time I did my roots I would put the color through to the ends and leave it for hours. Bright colors are deposit-only stains and do not use developing pro-oxides. This means there is no additional damage related to the time it is left on the hair.

As time went on, I had put pink on top of pink on top of pink so many times that I began to notice it had stopped fading as quickly as it had before.  I stopped putting pink in every other time I washed it and noticed that the only place it seemed to face quickly was right at the root of my hair. This area had only had pink on it once since I lightened it to get rid of my brown growing in. That means it would naturally fade more since it had not had pink on top of pink over and over yet. So my routine changed.

Now, after I wash my hair, I take a tiny bit of my deposit-only color in a color bowl and use a color brush to apply a little bit of the color on my root area while my hair is wet. I only do this on my front hair line and my part. Because that is where everyone sees! It takes about 2 minutes and then I just blow dry it in! Again, because it does not have pro-oxide developer, it does not damage the hair to leave it in. That is the only maintenance I still have to do on my hair today. I can now go in pools, oceans and water parks and not worry about my hair color fading. It takes about a 2 or more year commitment, but it was worth it!

If you have some color in your hair, but not the whole head, try putting some of the color in your conditioner and apply all over to refresh it. DO NOT do this with any high-lift product. Use deposit-only color.