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Is Hair Color Really Damaging Your Hair?

If you’re looking to dye your hair for the first time, you may be concerned about the rumors that coloring causes damage to your natural hair. After all, dealing with dry and split hair is not worth it to get the hair color you want.

Thankfully, proper care and professionals can minimize any damage that is naturally caused by using a coloring procedure.

In this article, we’ll give you a quick understanding of how hair is damaged during the coloring process and the best way for you to have a brand new look without extensive damage.

Can Coloring Hair Damage Your Hair?

Yes, hair color can damage hair if not done properly or if harsh chemicals are used.

Coloring hair breaks down the hair’s natural structure and then rebuilds with new pigments. This process can cause damage to the hair shaft. Finally, your hair can end up being dry, broken, and full of split ends.

Additionally, harsh chemicals or coloring hair too frequently can further damage the hair. Note that with proper care and choosing the right high-quality products, you can minimize the hair damage to minimal.

Factors That Affect The Damage

Difference in Colors

Hair Coloring Type

Lightening or darkening your hair is a chemical process that either deposits or strips away natural color; this process either deposits or removes color particles. It does this by lifting up your hair cuticles and applying the color or stripping it from the hair.

Whenever you lift your natural hair color to apply a lighter color, you first pull the pigment from the strand of hair. The follicle is opened up with chemical relaxing agents, which leaves room for a new color to be left behind.

Yes, there is damage done to your hair with any chemical dye or bleach. But, there are varying degrees of damage that dye can cause depending on the hair dye type used.

Semi-Permanent Dye

Semi-permanent dye is widely available and very popular for makeovers done at home. The dye particles in semi-permanent dyes are too big to sink into the hair and eventually wash away.

Semi-permanent dyes usually last 6-8 weeks. These dyes cause far less damage than permanent colors.

However, a majority of semi-permanent dyes are vivid colors such as green or pink. Many people have naturally dark hair, and to see the bright dye, they need to bleach their hair multiple levels lighter.

While semi-permanent dye itself is less damaging, you need to use a lightening/bleach to allow the dye to be seen. Bleaching your hair like this can be just as harmful as using permanent dyes.

Permanent Dye

Permanent dye penetrates deep into the hair’s core and deposits the desired color, meaning it can’t be washed away. Being true to its name, this color will permanently remain until you cut your hair.

When appropriately applied, permanent color doesn’t cause any visible damage.


By using any product that will lighten your hair and give you a blonde effect, you run the highest risk of damaging your hair.

These products are usually mixed with an ammonia developer. This developer comes in levels of 10, 20, 30, or 40. – the higher the number, the faster the ammonia breaks down the color in your hair.

Essentially, the lightener is eating the color out of your hair. If you aren’t extremely careful, you can sour a DIY project by bleaching your hair at home and leaving it in for too long. This causes the bleach to start eating your actual hair away and turning it brittle. Bleach is well-known to ruin hair if it isn’t used correctly.

Protecting Your Hair: Tips for Avoiding Damage During Dyeing

Don’t let the idea of hair dyes damaging your hair scare you away from a new look. It is 100% possible to maintain dyed hair in a healthy and beautiful way. There are many ways to minimize the damage and ensure your hair is at its best.

See a Professional

Consulting hair professional before coloring hair

The best way to avoid damage is to have your hair colored by a professional colorist. They understand the science behind hair dyes and how to keep the damage they can cause to a minimum.

Use Sulfate-Free Shampoos and Conditioner

Store-bought shampoos and conditioners run the risk of drying out your already sensitive hair. Don’t be scared to invest a little more in higher-quality products for your hair.

Avoid Constant Heat Styling

Heat will dry out and damage your hair faster than almost anything. Make sure you’re using a generous heat protectant and letting your hair air dry often.

Utilize Deep Conditioner and Hair Masks Regularly

Utilize Deep Conditioner and Hair Masks Regularly

Coloring the hair dries it out considerably. However, implementing a regular deep conditioner routine will help the hair stay healthy.

Can You Get Back Your Natural Hair Color After Dyeing Hair?

Yes, it’s possible to restore your natural hair color, but it depends on the level of damage and color change from previous dyeing. It may require a professional stylist or multiple treatments. Also, the process may take time.

It’s also possible to find a dye that matches your natural color and use that to blend it in with any new growth. It’s always best to go to a professional to ensure that your hair is taken care of.