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How to Use Purple Shampoo

Water or chemicals like bleach and chlorine can damage light hair and turn its colors brassy and yellowed. Whether you're a natural blonde, have dyed your hair a lighter color, or have recently gone gray, purple shampoo can restore a more natural and glossy color to your hair. How often you use purple shampoo is your choice—you can use it as little as once monthly or as much as twice a week, though using it too often can turn your hair purple. As long as you use purple shampoo carefully, you can maintain your hair's natural color and reverse the damage.

Part One of Three:
Choosing a Purple Shampoo

  1. 1
    Find a purple shampoo with a thick color and consistency. A high-quality purple shampoo should be opaque, not transparent, in color. If you can, squeeze a small amount of the purple shampoo onto your finger before buying it to make sure it has a solid color.[1]
    • Great options include Matrix So Silver purple shampoo, and Paul Mitchell Platinum Blonde purple shampoo.
    • You can find purple shampoo online, at local beauty supply stores, or at a salon that sells retail products. However, you may want to call the salon first to make sure they have it in stock.
  2. 2
    Buy a darker purple shampoo for grey, silver, or platinum hair. Darker purple formulas, some of which verge on indigo or blue in hue, work best on platinum, gray, or light blonde hair. Shy away from bright purple or violet shampoos and look for a dark shampoo made specifically for pale hair.[2]
  3. 3
    Pick a brighter purple shampoo if you have blonde hair. Blonde hair needs less purple coloring to remove brassiness from its tone. Avoid inky violet shampoos and go for a brighter color to prevent oversaturating your hair.
    • The lighter the color, the less brassiness it will absorb from your hair. Keep this in mind when choosing the right purple shampoo for you.
  4. 4
    Avoid purple shampoo if you have dark hair. Purple shampoo is ideal if you want to turn blonde or silver hair from a brassy to a brighter, more neutralized color. It is not as effective on brunette or black hair. If you have darker hair, try another shampoo treatment instead.

Part Two of Three:
Applying Purple Shampoo

  1. 1
    Wet your hair with slightly warm water. Get your hair completely wet before applying the shampoo. Warm water is both soothing and healing to your hair. The temperature helps expand your hair shafts and allow them to better absorb the purple shampoo.[3]
  2. 2
    Rub the shampoo into your hair. Apply the purple shampoo to your hair from root to tip. Massage the shampoo in gently as you work the shampoo through your hair, lathering the shampoo in as you go. Pay special attention to hit your hair's "problem areas"—brassy or yellowed strands that you're hoping to treat with the shampoo.[4]
    • If you're using purple shampoo on highlights, only apply the shampoo to blond streaks. Purple shampoo has no effect on dark hair.
    • Prioritize your roots while shampooing to prevent damaged hair in the future.
  3. 3
    Let it sit for about 2-3 minutes if you have naturally blonde hair. If your hair is a warmer, natural blonde color and has mild brassiness, 2-3 minutes should be enough time. After several minutes have passed, rinse your hair out with cool water.[5]
    • Your roots will need more time to absorb the shampoo than your ends, which is why you apply the shampoo there first. Ends are more porous and change tones easily.
    • The recommended time may vary slightly from brand to brand. The shampoo may need to be left on for up to 5 mins.
  4. 4
    Leave the shampoo for up to 15 minutes on brassy or color-treated hair. If your hair is significantly discolored or you have recently dyed your hair blonde, leave the shampoo in for 5 to 15 minutes. Your hair may need more time to fully absorb the tone. Then, wash the shampoo out of your hair with cool water.[6]
    • If you have never used purple shampoo before, try leaving it in for 5-10 minutes and washing it off. If you notice little or no difference in color after drying your hair, try 10-15 minutes for your next treatment.
    • If you leave the shampoo on longer than 15 minutes, expect lilac tinting to be left in your hair. While this could work for gray or silver hair, your natural blonde look could be ruined.[7]
  5. 5
    Keep the shampoo in for 30 minutes for gray, silver, or platinum hair. Although individuals with darker hair may worry about draining their hair of color, silver and platinum benefits from leaving the shampoo in longer. Keep the shampoo in your hair for up to half an hour before rinsing, depending on how stained or brassy your hair is.[8]
    • Unlike using purple shampoo on darker blonde hair, the goal with platinum or silver hair is to remove the warm tones entirely.
    • If you plan to leave the shampoo on your hair for this long, you may want to place a plastic shower cap over your head while you wait.
  6. 6
    Condition your hair as you normally would after rinsing the shampoo. Finish washing with a conditioner to moisturize your hair. If desired, you can pair your purple shampoo with a purple conditioner to strengthen the tone's intensity.
    • Using a purple conditioner with purple shampoo can lead to an ashy tone. Only use it if you want a pale hair color.

Part Three of Three:
Maintaining Your Hair Color with Purple Shampoo

  1. 1
    Use purple shampoo once a week or whenever you notice brassiness. Alternate your purple shampoo use with non-tinted shampoos to keep your tint light and even. If you have warmer naturally blonde hair, you may even use the shampoo only when you notice yellowing. Pay attention to your hair and use your judgment when establishing a routine.[9]
    • If you're not noticing any changes after a month, you can always up your routine to 2-3 times a week.[10]
  2. 2
    Dilute your purple shampoo if it's too strong for your hair. Although purple shampoo will not dye your hair, you may notice some lilac tints after you wash if it's too strong. To prevent this, mix your purple shampoo with water in a 2:1 ratio and put it in a spray bottle.[11]
    • If you need to dilute the mixture further, add more water.
    • This option is ideal for individuals with already-warm hair who are just touching up their color.
  3. 3
    Apply purple shampoo to dry hair for a glossy finish. In lieu of using the shampoo in the bath or shower, massage the shampoo into your hair before you get it wet. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes, then rinse it out with cold water. Applying the shampoo dry can leave your hair glossier and rid it of a persistent brassy hue.[12]
    • Try this method if you have severely brassy hair and have seen limited results from washing with purple shampoo.
  4. 4
    Deep condition a few times a month. Purple shampoo can dry out your hair over time. To prevent brittle, unhealthy hair, deep condition your hair several times a month after using purple shampoo, or whenever your hair starts to feel dry.[13]
    • If your hair is frizzy or flyaway, often has split ends, exhibits a dull color, or is prone to breakage, you may have dry hair.[14]

Community Q&A

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  • Be patient when using purple shampoo. Although you may see some results at first, it can take several treatments to see a substantial change in your hair color.
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  • Because purple shampoo is not hair dye, it will not turn your hair blonde. It can only reverse hair damage and return your hair to its initial color.
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Expert Review By:

Licensed Cosmetologist

This version of How to Use Purple Shampoo was reviewed by Ashley Adams on December 15, 2017.

11 votes - 100%
Co-authors: 4
Views: 2,193
Categories: Hair Care

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