Here's How Often You Should Wash Colored Hair

by Sienna Fantozzi

If you color your hair, you obviously want it to last as long as possible — especially if you pay to get it done at the salon. Washing your hair and watching your color slowly fade away is like watching your money go down the drain. This made me wonder: How often should you wash colored hair? I know that you shouldn't wash your hair every day as is, but could the rule be even stricter for salon-treated hair?

I interviewed colorist Haleh Lekkos from Base Color Bar to find out everything you need to know about maintaining colored hair, and the good news? It's not as difficult as you think. It's all about knowing which products to use, choosing the right ones, and keeping up with a maintenance program.

Of course, there is some bad news. There's no beating around the bush — water is going to fade your hair color. But there is good news! There are things you can do to help preserve it, so you can go longer between dye jobs.

If your hair color is fading far too quickly for your liking, start doing these five things to help preserve it.

1. Wash Your Hair As Little As Possible

We've heard not washing your hair is good for your hair's health, but it is also beneficial if you dye your hair. To help preserve the color, as well as your hairs natural oils, Lekkos recommends washing your hair as little as possible, ideally every two to three days.

2. Use Color-Specific Shampoo And Conditioner

Lakme Color Stay Protection Shampoo For Color-Treated Hair, $16, Amazon

If you're just using regular shampoo/conditioner, it might be time to switch to a product specifically formulated for color. "Using color-stay shampoos or Paraben-free [products] will help your color last longer and not fade as fast," Lekkos said.

3. Try A Hair Mask

Arvazallia Hydrating Argan Oil Hair Mask and Deep Conditioner, $13, Amazon

The healthier your hair is, the longer your color will last, so make sure to take care of it between color treatments by using a hair mask. "It will help you keep and maintain healthy hair, especially if your hair is chemically treated," Lekkos said.

4. Get A Salon Treatment

You can totally buy a hair mask or DIY an at-home treatment, but if your hair is in need of some real TLC, go to the salon for a professional treatment. "Treatments at professional salons are more intense and have a higher potency than the ones you can buy for home," Lekkos said.

5. Strengthen Your Hair With Olaplex

Olaplex Hair Perfector No 3 Repairing Treatment, $28, Amazon

Lekkos' favorite hair strengthening product is Olaplex, which can repair your hair after coloring. "It restores your hair of dislufite bonds immediately, after one treatment!" she said.

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Images: Lucas Ottone/Stocksy, Javier Díez/Stocksy; Amazon