Can you imagine yourself with a horrendous patch of colors in your hair that looks like a dyed bundle of thatch?
Well, that’s exactly what happens when you color your hair right after a Brazilian.
So this begs the question …
How long after a keratin treatment can you color your hair?
According to professional hairstylists at the Aveda lifestyle salon, you can color your hair 2 weeks after a keratin treatment.
Don’t even try your luck before that!
I will personally wait 3 weeks to be on the safe side.
If you’re obsessed with hair color as much as I am …
Then you’ll know without a doubt, a luxurious touch of tint to your smooth and silken waves can change the whole look from wow to OMG!
It makes your hair gleam with unmatched intensity and suddenly adds a whole new dimension to your hairstyles.
Coloring your hair after a keratin treatment can help you experiment with a new look.
But, You’ll Have To Play By The Rules!
Right now, off the top of my head …
I can tell you about 20 things you cannot do after a keratin treatment.
Hair coloring is definitely one of them.
I know this sucks …
But I will give you good reasons why you should be patient.
Here’s what I will cover:
- Why you cannot color your hair straight after a keratin treatment
- Bleaching hair after keratin treatments
- The right time you can color your hair after keratin treatment
- Keratin treatments and color on the same day
- Best shampoo for keratin and color treated hair
I’m pretty sure you do not want to see all your money being blown away for nothing.
So take note, and let me show you exactly what goes on during that 2 weeks period.
How Does Hair Colour Work?
First, let me explain how color works its way into your hair.
There are 2 key ingredients that facilitate the process:
- Hydrogen Peroxide: Softens hair cuticle to dissolve natural hair color
- Ammonia: Opens hair cuticle to inject new color
For this process to work correctly, you need to prime your hair with a good clarifying treatment.
Because a clarifying shampoo cleans up the accumulation of excess hair products that prevent color pigments from depositing into the hair cortex.
See the illustration below:
To get the best out of your hair color treatment, your hair needs to absorb the pigments.
Which means there shouldn’t be any obstructions that prevent the color molecules from penetrating the hair.
What Happens When You Color Your Hair After A Keratin Treatment
A freshly done keratin treatment will leave a thin layer of keratin on your hair which needs time (2 weeks) to bind and penetrate deep into your hair.
It envelopes your hair to strengthen each fiber from the core.
Therefore, the first 2 weeks is a very critical time for you to take extra care as it defines how well and how long your keratin treatment will last.
At this stage, anything that interferes with the setting process can give you unpredictable results like:
- Frizz in patches
- Uneven looking hair
- Or even prematurely washed out keratin
You need to leave your hair alone for the first 2 weeks and let the keratin do its work.
That’s why your hairstylist also recommends you use a gentle sulfate-free and salt-free shampoo after a keratin treatment.
- It’s less abrasive
- It won’t dissolve or interfere with the keratin-binding process
- And it does not leave buildup and residues in your hair
So anything you put in your hair during the first 2 weeks matters.
Let’s see what happens when you add color to your hair during this period.
You see, it’s clear that adding color to your hair after a keratin treatment is futile.
- It wouldn’t work
- It will give you undesirable results
- The colors will just deposit on top of your hair
- And it’s a total waste of your money
The same applies to bleaching and highlights too.
Is It Safe To Bleach Hair After Having A Keratin Treatment?
I wouldn’t let bleach anywhere near my hair after a keratin treatment. Not even after 3 weeks!
According to Philip Kingsley, the “Hair Guru” who also coined the phrase “Bad Hair Day”, bleach is potentially the most damaging out of all hair color treatments.
Bleach swells the cuticles to make them more vulnerable to chemical damage, and it also damages your hair’s protein structure.
I would seriously hold off doing such types of hair treatments even after 3 weeks unless I consult with a pro hairstylist first.
So What’s The Best Solution?
The best solution is to use semi-permanent hair dyes on keratin-treated hair because they don’t contain Ammonia or Peroxides.
Think of them like mascara for your hair. You can use them to coat your hair with vibrant colors until they fade away with a few shampoos.
So How Can You Get The Best Of Both Worlds?
Next time, do your hair color before your keratin treatment instead.
I usually do mine before, and it works every time. Without any unexpected surprises.
I’ve also had my hair color done right before my keratin treatment, and the result was amazing.
Plus, it’s a win-win situation.
Apart from the fact that you get longer pampering sessions at your hair salon, there are more benefits to coloring your hair beforehand.
Let me explain why:
During a hair color treatment, Ammonia opens up the hair cuticles to inject color into the cortex. It triggers an oxidation process that raises the hair pH level to 10.
As a result, hair becomes more alkaline thus degrading its structural integrity to make it weak, brittle, and dry.
Doing a keratin treatment immediately after a color treatment:
- Repairs the hair’s structural damage
- Normalizes the hair pH
- Softens and closes the cuticles
- Removes all the color chemical deposits (at step 1 – clarifying)
Plus, a keratin treatment coats your hair with a strong protective layer that prevents color pigments from escaping when you wash or expose it to sunlight.
You see, this solution makes the keratin barrier work with your hair color rather than against your hair color.
Lock your hair color in rather than block your hair color out.
All you have to do after is use a color-safe sulfate-free shampoo to maintain your new colored and keratin-treated hair.
Best Shampoo For Keratin And Color Treated Hair
A premium hair treatment deserves premium and professional aftercare.
The LuxeOrganix argan oil shampoo uses an exclusive blend of wild botanicals, hydrating oils, and antioxidant-rich argan extracts to complement your keratin and color hair treatment.
I’ve had free samples from the company, and I cannot stop singing its praises.
This keratin shampoo for color-treated hair has:
- Zero sulfates
- Zero Salt
- Zero Parabens
- Zero Alcohol
- A 100% satisfaction guarantee (Made in the USA)
Why compromise one for the other?
If you can have a keratin treatment and coloring done in the same week, go for it.
But remember the right order:
- Hair coloring first
- Then keratin treatment
OR if you’ve already missed that chance, wait at least 3 weeks after your keratin treatment to color your hair.
Charlene has been blogging for over 10 years and has a background in digital marketing. She's also a certified yoga teacher and loves to travel.
When she's not working on her next article, she can be found spending time with her two young daughters or planning her next big travel adventure.