The Dos and Don’ts
Stylists’ Rules for Maintenance Between a Cut and Color
We are in a DIY mentality, and many beauty-lovers have been turning to Pinterest boards and YouTube videos for tips on trying go-to services at home. Although it may seem exciting to take destiny into our own hands, sometimes these beauty hacks can cause more harm than good. We spoke with Nordine Elabassi, owner of Salon Nordine & Day Spa, who uses his 25-plus years of salon experience to give us the real deal on what can be done at home and what’s better left to the stylists.
• Wash hair with lukewarm water when showering. This helps seal the hair cuticles after hair has been colored.
• Use a shampoo and conditioner specifically for color-treated hair. “These shampoos are acid-based and alkalined [and] are gentler on your hair. They will seal the cuticle and maintain color.”
• Ask your stylist about monthly in-salon deep-conditioning treatments and treatments to do at home. “Only they know exactly what color was used and the percentage of ammonia and [the] developer. They know what products will best maintain your hair.”
• Invest in a gloss or glaze treatment during the same appointment as the initial color. “It helps your color maintain shine, protects cuticles and allows color to last a little bit longer.”
• Head to the salon for a touch-up every four to six weeks for permanent color or every six to eight weeks for semi-permanent color depending on hair growth.
• Shampoo hair right before an appointment. “The natural oil from the scalp works as a protective [barrier] from whatever color it is that you’re putting on the hair. If the scalp is clean, it increases the chance of irritation from the color.”
• Shampoo hair dyed with a semi-permanent color the day after. “Let the cuticles close and seal the color before you wash it.”
• Get caught up in formulas marketed for specific hair colors. Most salon-grade formulas for color-treated hair will work for any hair color.
• Use too much heat. “The more heat you use, the more damage you will do to your hair.” When using heat, make sure to use a heat-protectant spray.
• Color your hair at a salon and skip the trim. “By trimming the split ends, you make sure the rest of the hair is healthy, and [it] increases the overall look of the hair. It makes no sense to have great color and split ends.”
• Get a trim or cut every four to eight weeks according to hair length. “Short hair should be cut at least once a month to keep shape. Medium-length hair should be cut every six weeks, which gives you almost half an inch of growth. Long hair (shoulder or below) has the luxury to go almost eight weeks.”
• Know what styling products are good for your hair to achieve the look that you want with your new haircut. Ask your stylist about the products used during your appointment.
• Ask about complimentary bang-trimming at your salon. “If you are a regular client we make it easy for you to maintain your bangs by offering to trim them as a complimentary service.”
• Use heated tools at a high temperature to speed up styling time. “If you use a setting that is medium or low, it might take a little longer, but it will avoid some of the damage.”
• Attempt to cut your own hair with dull scissors. “The haircut is as good as the scissors a stylist is using.” A cut done without sharp styling scissors will lead to more split ends.
• Get a haircut that does not line up with your lifestyle. “Short hair requires more maintenance. If you are not going to put in the time to maintain it, there is no reason to cut your hair from long to short.”