Tips to help hair color last longer, behind the mirror, shimmer lights shampoo and conditioner, color lover conditioner, bleached hair

As fate would have it, a last minute scheduling conflict forced me to go outside my comfort zone and find someone besides Katja (my normal hair guru) to dye my hair before my recent trip to San Diego. This created a very uneasy feeling for me, and for lack of a better word a lot of stress. Finding someone who understands your quirks, your taste, and what you basically can afford isn’t easy. A mishap with your hair could ultimately result in something so destructive the only resolution would be to cut it off completely and start over. Been there before(!) so I proceeded with caution.

With less than 24 hours before departure time I was in a panic. It was the first time I was seeing Julie since the hair re-invention, and while Julie probably couldn’t care less, I wanted to show up and show off my new color. My roots had grown out past a place Kurt Cobain would be happy with, and more than that… the hint of silver I had grown to love was faded to a yellow, not white, yellow. I was disgusted. Perhaps a bit dramatic, but such is life.

Something had to be done. I started calling around to all the places that co-workers recommended and as it goes in NYC no one had an available appointment. It wasn’t until a friend said to me, “Why don’t you just go to Patricia Fields? If anyone can do silver, I am sure the salon that services our neighborhoods queens can…”

Tips to help hair color last longer, behind the mirror, shimmer lights shampoo and conditioner, color lover conditioner, bleached hair

Seriously, I cannot believe I didn’t think of this sooner. It was tough to get a last minute appointment because I was trying to sneak in right before pride… you can imagine how busy they were matching the most beautiful wigs with elaborate costumes. I met with Ayumi, we discussed the color I wanted along with my dislike for anything with a yellow tint. She got the ‘just-rolled-out-of-bed-french hair’ I was going for pretty fast. And yes, my hair looked great. But, what Ayumi and her friends with elaborate wigs taught me went much further than nicknaming me Ice Princess, Elsa, or trying to imitate my silver locks for pride weekend (but that part was a lot of fun!) They taught me how to make the color last longer!!!

Blow drying is a must.

I had no idea. I was under the impression that heat tools were damaging for my hair. Which is true. But, what was so delicately pointed out to me was, “Girl, your hair is bleached to white, and toned silver… NOT natural.” Point taken, my hair is already damaged. While, I have not been able to find many articles on the Internet to support this recommendation, I have been blow drying my hair once a week and I really do think it is helping the color last.

Color correcting shampoos & conditioners.

I agree this seems obvious. However, since I am lazy as F$@# I did not invest previously in the right shampoos and conditioners. I am a bit embarrassed by this because I would never scrub my sensitive, acne-prone skin with any old face wash but I was just haphazardly using any old shampoo on my hair. Finally, I invested in Shimmer Lights by Clairol. It is specifically for brightening white and gray hair plus it shampoos away yellow, and refreshes faded highlights. Miracle!

Tips to help hair color last longer, behind the mirror, shimmer lights shampoo and conditioner, color lover conditioner, bleached hair

Don’t over wash.

Once or twice a week is fine. And it really is.

Add toner to your conditioner.

So maybe you guys already knew this one, but I did not. Ayumi suggested that I go to my local beauty supply store to purchase some Manic Panic toner in Virgin Snow to mix into a bottle of conditioner that she recommended called Framesi Color Lover. So I did this. Amazing! The bottoms of my hair turn yellow(ish) the fastest and I can pile on the conditioner (with the toner mixed in), let it sit while I shower and Voilà! Keeping the color longer.

What tips do you guys have for making hair color last longer?

***beauty always comes from within, photos taken by Amanda Teague, xoxo behind the mirror***

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