Saturday, February 28, 2015

Keeping red hair, red.

The title of this post is deceiving, if you were coming for surefire tips and tricks of the trade from a professional fake red head- I apologize but you are about to be severely disappointed. This is much less of a post on what to do and much more on what NOT to do, laced with a few tricks that might actually work.

I am a new red head that is struggling to keep any of my hair red, besides the roots which are a Clifford level shade of red. You see, I have had red hair before and maybe I am subconsciously blocking out the trauma and stress of trying to maintain red hair dye but for the life of me I do not remember it being this hard. 

I had red hair when I was 14, when I was 15 (the hair color, spicy salsa red, which I distinctly remember not being difficult to maintain) and then again my freshman year of college. 

(Left: college, Top Right: 15, Bottom Right, 14) 

However, recently for the first time in 3 years, I decided to go 100% red again and it's proving to be very difficult. I impulsively made the decision to go red and completely unlike my personality I started with a mild red- hoping it would do the trick. It looked nice at first but over night it faded so returning to my normal go big or go home attitude, I bought a very intense red and tried again. Yes, I died my hair twice in one weekend (apparently that is a bad thing)

The second time came out looking fabulously red that my roommate told me was 'edgy'. Having a secret desire to be as edgy as possibe without being weird, I vowed to keep my hair this red until being marketable for jobs is more important than my edge, forever. Despite my determination to be the only fake red head in all of the world to deal with immediate fading, the shower proved to be ruthless on my fresh and edgy new color. After hours of complaining and repeatedly harassing my roommates by popping out at random moments asking, "On a scale of brown-10 how red is my hair," I began doing research on how to keep red hair dye longer- I settled upon a few things NOT to do, and a few tricks that actually work.

Things that work:

  1. Wash your hair in cold water, This was appropriately timed in my life with a campus propane shortage and request to take shorter,colder showers. However, I didn't believe this was an actual thing that works but the other methods were more high-maintenance and I am lazy. So I gave it a shot, and it actually helped decrease the fading with each shower. There is some scientific reason as to why this works, but I don't really care so I will not even attempt to explain it- it's legit. Google it if you want to know. 
  2. DEVINE'S RED COLOR DEPOSITING CONDITIONER This stuff is a God send, I swear. If Jesus was a hair product, he would be this one. My halfhearted attempt at explaining this: It's a bright pink jar of bliss that you put in your hair and keep there for a few minutes then wash out and pray your hair is still red. It helped to restore some of the red that had faded after the first week of dying it. While it didn't return it to the normal red, it is maintaining it until my patience runs out and I redye my hair. 
The things I ignored that probably work if you have more commitment than I do:
  1. Wash your hair every other day. I have short hair that gets gross fast, so I will never try this but not surprisingly, not washing your hair is a surefire way to not wash out your dye. 
  2. Professional Dye. I am poor and can barely afford name brand bagels, a professional dye job is not going to happen however, they know what they're doing better than a box. 
  3. Glazes in between colors. I found a few articles that pointed be towards, saying they had magnificent glazes. However, you cannot order them online and driving to the store was too much of an effort- if you happen to pick some up feel free to mail them my way. 
  4. Sulfate free shampoo. Another one I have no motivation to look into. However almost every article said to avoid sulfate hair products. Again, probably something science-y. 
  5. Avoid the sun. I live in central PA and right now I am having a hard time remembering that the sun exists in these sub zero temps. However, I sure for those of you that I absolutely hate right now that live in tropical, sunny places- this is something to consider. I was just given a sample of Avon Advance Techniques Color Protection, That I plan on using when I go to FLORIDA IN TWO WEEKS! 
So there you have it, the lazy person's guide to halfheartedly attempting to preserve red hair. I plan on re-dying my hair right before my Florida trip and will probably come back with more things you shouldn't do like lay in the sun or swim in chlorine. Stay tuned for that!

What do you do to maintain your red hair? Any low maintenance tips for other lazy red heads? 

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