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Everything You Need to Know About Hair Toner



What is A Hair Toner?

Hair Toner

Hair toner is a gel or glossy-looking liquid, is made of different chemicals that work together to control brassy color and maintain your desired color. It’s not for lightening hair, just for “warming” it up.

Toners are different than hair dyes. While you can go to a hairstylist to tone your hair – and that will probably happen if you go in for a professional dye job – you can also buy hair toner in stores or online. It is not typically used for hair that hasn’t been colored or bleached – both of these treatments usually require it for perfecting the tone.

On light hair, the toner will literally add a tone over it to protect it from discoloration. For dark hair, the toner will improve its shade. Overall, hair toner works by bringing out or muting shades in your hair and also adds shine. Something we can all use, right?


Types of Hair Toner

Types of Toner

From demi-permanent to semi-permanent products like purple and blue hair toners, there is something for any girl looking to improve her hair’s shade.

For women who are no stranger to coloring their hair and do it every couple of months, a demi-permanent gloss is a good option. Not only can you use it at home on your own time without leaving the house, but it will do wonders for your dye job as far as keeping it vibrant and healthy.

Purple toners are best for women with blonde hair. If you have ever noticed your blonde hair yellowing after you colored it, a purple toner (such as shampoo) is the best solution for nixing that.

Violet clashes with yellow to eliminate it for pure blonde results. If you are a brunette, use a blue shampoo to prevent orange shades. Both toners will make your hair lusher as well!

For at-home use, check out DpHue Color Boosting Gloss, RedKen Color Extend Purple Shampoo, or SheaMoisture Purple Rice Conditioner.


How to Use Hair Toner

How to Use Hair Toner

The first thing to know is that if you are wanting a major dye job, such as all-over color, then you will want to see a professional hair colorist.

While box dyes do work at home as a DIY, it does not really need to be said that a professional can always do better work. Plus, if you have any shade of hair that is not naturally blonde and that is your desired color, you will need bleach work. You can get all of this and hair toning done at a salon without the worry of messing it up yourself.

If you’re simply want to manage the results of a professional dye job, then you can purchase toning products online or from your local salon to use at home. For hair that has been given silver highlights or gray color, there are special Overtone products that will keep the color looking it’s boldest and best.

Fair reminder, many stylists will warn against using toner other than shampoos at home. They can be difficult to play with and you could end up damaging your hair. When in doubt, you can ask your local salon for advice. You definitely don’t want to end up over-toning your hair or choosing the wrong one.

For hair toning shampoos, they work like regular products: wash them in and out just once per week for best results.


How Much Do Hair Toners Cost

before and after image of hair toner usage

You can expect to have as much as $20 tacked onto your regular color or cut at a salon. Simple shampoos and conditioners will cost between $20 and $30. If you see your stylist every three months for a cut and color touch-up, that’s perfect for doing a hair toning treatment.


How Often Should I Tone My Hair?

At home, shampooing your hair with purple or blue shampoo once per week is enough unless you shampoo your hair pretty regularly. The rule of thumb is the more you wash it, the more often you’ll need to apply hair toner.

Either way, if you consider how your hair will look after using a toner once per week at home or each time you visit the salon, the cost is worth it. We all know it costs money to keep our hair looking gorgeous!


Ultimately, your stylist will tell you how you can manage a gorgeous, healthy color with hair toner. Other ways to keep your hair looking its best are to avoid using hair tools at their highest temperature, avoid over-washing, and conditioning regularly.

Put your faith in your hairstylist, and you’ll never be steered in the wrong direction!