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JAWED HABIB

If you are a glorious redhead or a stunning blonde here’s how to keep your new hair colour intact

There is only one problem with a shimmering head of fabulous new hair colour; six weeks later, it doesn’t look the same. The sun, pollutants and chlorinated water fade your shade, frequent shampooing strips the shine and even permanent colour isn’t really permanent. To make salon or at home hues last longer and restore vibrancy here are some tips:

* After getting your colour done, wait at least 48 hours before shampooing to prevent fading.

* Use tepid (not hot) water always for washing hair.

* Just be sure you start off right with a shampoo and conditioner designed for colour treated hair and don’t stop using and go back to the usual kind; you could lose all the benefits you’ve gained.

* Choose from the products that are gentle on colour and include UV protectors, or go with ones that contain pigmented dyes to refresh colour with each use.

* If you use colour depositing shampoo and conditioners, it’s always best to ask a professional which precise shade is best for you as these products contain pigmented dyes and add tone and shine. To give your colour an incredible boost, apply heat with the conditioner for five minutes.

* Always use colour care products as they contain anti-oxidants and UV filters that simply protect existing colour and extend its life.

* When it comes to styling products, all you have to do is look for ones that contain UV protectants and vitamins, but that don’t contain alcohol.

* Use pomades and crèmes at the beach to protect your hair by smoothing them on and wrapping locks into a ponytail or braid.

* A hat or a scarf is always a good idea when you’re out in the sun.

* To avoid the chlorine and copper in the swimming pools; rinse out salt water fast with chlorine free water and use a detoxifying shampoo to remove any impurities.

* Gently blot the hair after shampooing – never rub it vigorously as this ruffles the cuticles and can result in colour “escaping”.

* Keep in mind that the hair colour you choose also affects how it fades or changes over time. Reds fade fastest and blondes take on a brassy colour if exposed to too much sunlight. If this happens, ask your professional colourist about quick colour refreshers or rinses that neutralise brass.

* Anytime you get your roots retouched, your colourist should refresh the ends with a semi permanent colour that brings back tone without building up or making colour too dark.

* The final word on keeping the colour you love. If its fading too fast, your hair might be dry and damaged, which makes it porous. Start a weekly regimen of deep conditioning – with a product that is designed to return the colour, to help prolong the colorant.

(This is the first of a fortnightly column on hair care by the expert.)

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