One of the biggest mysteries surrounding hair color is the difference between “types” of color. From temporary to semi-permanent to demi-permanent to permanent, all of these have their pros and cons. Today we’re breaking down each type to help you make the best decision for your look:
Temporary Hair Color
This is great for testing out a new subtle look, because it only lasts until your next shampoo. It is temporary because it does not penetrate the cortex of the hair. Of course, washing out easily has its cons. It may not “take” to some types of locks, or it may require a couple of washes for others. Also, because this color is surface level, you cannot lighten with temporary colors.
Semi-Permanent Hair Color
This type of hair color is considered “semi-permanent” because it gradually fades out after 5-7 shampoos (how long it lasts depends on how porous your hair is.) Semi-permanent contains no ammonia or peroxide, and doesn’t penetrate the cortex, so if you have fragile strands you will find that this solution doesn’t cause damage. Semi-permanent does not lighten hair, and you’ll notice slight fading with each wash.
Not to be confused with semi-permanent, demi-permanent is designed to enhance natural or previously color treated hair. Like the types mentioned above, it won’t lighten hair or remove the hair’s natural pigment. The benefits of demi-permanent include covering grays, changing the tone, and deepening the color while experiencing minimal fading overtime. Another benefit of demi-permanent color is that the results are typically less homogeneous than with permanent. In other words, root regrowth may be less noticeable than with permanent, which changes the pigment entirely.
This is the best option for anyone looking to make a dramatic change. This type penetrates the hair’s cuticle to change the natural pigment. For this reason, permanent is the best option for lightening or covering grays.
Unlike the temporary types of color listed above, permanent is just that. It doesn’t wash out – it only grows out. If you want to go two shades lighter or darker, permanent is your best choice. Make sure to use products specifically for color-treated hair for the longest-lasting results, like Shu Uemura’s Color Lustre Brilliant Glaze Conditioner For Color Treated Hair, Color Lustre Brilliant Glaze Treatment Mask For Color Treated Hair, or Color Lustre Sulfate Free Brilliant Glaze Shampoo For Color Treated Hair.
When thinking of coloring your hair, do keep in mind that you may want to consult with a professional about your plan before proceeding. Also be sure to read any warning labels that come with the product(s) you choose. This is the best way to avoid a color disaster!