Here’s How to Go Purple With Your Hair Color

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When you’re bored with your look, one of the best and easiest ways to shake things up is to dye your hair.

If you’re hesitant but want a slight change in appearance, highlights should do the trick. If you’re OK with changing your hair color, dyeing it the basic brown, blonde or dark blue will do. But if you’re feeling adventurous and braver, go purple with your hair.

Pinterest boards are filled with purple hair color inspirations — most of them beyond interesting. Even international superstars like BTS aren’t afraid to dye their hair purple. Plus, in terms of choices, you have plenty! You have different shades to choose from plus you can either use a permanent, semi-permanent or temporary dye.

If you want to it a go, here are the answers to some of the most common FAQs associated with dyeing your hair purple.

Can I Pull Off Purple Hair?

woman with purple pixie cut hair
Photo by TI NGUYEN on Unsplash

Anyone can pull off the purple hair look. Unlike other colors, this shade is easier to pull off. And since it has both cool and warm undertones, you don’t have to worry about your hair color clashing with your skin tone.  Purple is available in different shades, which means you have plenty of options!

Consider the following:

  • Lilac. If you have pale skin, go for this lighter shade of purple. Lilac’s light purple tint is an unconventional color choice for some, especially since you don’t see a lot of people walking around with lilac hair. Still, it’s a great statement color that goes well with curls, waves and braids.
  • Eggplant. People with fair to medium skin tones can go darker with their shade of purple. Add warmth to your complexion by dyeing your hair eggplant purple. If you’re a brunette, the eggplant hair seamlessly blends with your dark locks.
  • Lavender. Lavender might look the same as lilac, but lavender has blue tones whereas lilac has pink. This shade of purple is quirky, playful and adds doses of personality to any look.
  • Dusty purple. Think of it as lilac or lavender bur faded. If you want to go light with your hair color but refuse to look like an anime character, dusty purple is your shade. Sophisticated and chic, dusty purple is a shade often used for hair coloring techniques, like balayage or ombre.
  • Indigo. Do you want to look ethereal and mystical? Mix blue and violet to get indigo. Indigo blends well with dark hair and suits medium skin tones.
  • Grape. If you’re not a big fan of drastic change and have naturally dark hair, go grape with your shade. This royal shade of purple resembles wine, too.
  • Purple hair with shadow roots. Color the rest of your hair a lighter shade and leave your roots dark. This way, you need not worry about touching up your roots once you see re-growth. Plus, the shadow roots make your purple hair color look edgy.

How Do I Prepare for Dyeing My Hair Purple?

Hair dyeing requires a more serious preparation compared to hair straightening.

Before you dye your hair or have a pro do it for you, get your hair into a healthy state first. The healthier your hair is, the longer the color will last. On the other hand, if your hair is too damaged, the color will be less vibrant and it will fade faster. Plus, split ends are more visible with colored hair so trim your hair before you dye your hair purple.

Also, take your natural hair into account. Your natural hair color influences the shade of purple hair dye that will work for you. Since you have to pre-lighten your hair before you add the dye, if you have naturally dark hair, it can only be lifted so light to prevent damage. Darker hair works best with eggplant or deep purple shades. But if your hair is in the lighter shade, you have more color options. Anything from deep shades to pastels will work for you.

Finally, prepare for your life post-purple hair dye job. Wait at last two days before you wash your hair after dyeing it. It takes two days for your hair to trap in the color so washing it could cause fading. Also, get used to cold showers. If you shower in hot water, your hair’s color will fade. A cold shower — or a lukewarm one — isn’t just great for hair health; it seals the color better, too.

How to Dye Your Hair Purple

women with purple and blue hair
Photo by Josh Maddocks on Unsplash

Dyeing your hair purple involves many steps. Here’s a rundown:

Choose Your Hair Dye Type

The shade of dye you chose is only one factor involved in the product selection process. You should also decide if you want to go temporary, semi-permanent or permanent with your purple hair dye.

  • Temporary hair dye lasts for up to three washes, depending on how well your hair soaks the dye. If your hair has been dyed or bleached a lot before, the dye will last longer due to the hair’s higher porosity levels.
  • Semi-permanent. Lasts up to six washes before the color starts fading; this hair dye also fades slowly in previously dyed or porous hair.
  • Even if you opt for permanent hair color, fading can still occur over time. You’ll need to refresh the color to maintain the same level of vibrancy and brightness.

Semi-permanent and temporary hair dyes offer a wider variety of shade ranges but require more retouching to keep your purple hair vibrant. These dyes, however, do not damage the hair since they don’t contain a chemical conditioning base.

Bleaching Your Hair

If you have darker hair and want to go for lighter purple hair color (or probably go half and half with your hair), you’ll need to bleach your hair to lighten it.

To lighten your hair, you’ll need the following supplies:

  • Bleaching powder
  • Tinting bowl
  • Developer
  • Sectioning clips
  • Brush

Similar to any chemical process, section your hair into four sections so you can lighten your hair evenly. Part your hair from the middle of the forehead to the back of your neck. Next, part your hair from ear to ear.

If your hair is dark, lighten it to at least a yellow blonde. “How blonde is too blonde?” is a question that can only be answered by people who’ve bleached their hair before or a professional. If you haven’t, consider going to a professional. If you want to DIY your bleach, do some research.

Dyeing Your Hair

Once you’ve bleached your hair, start dyeing. Before you begin your dyeing project, cover the floor and nearby furniture with plastic or old towels. Purple dye stains ceramic and tile materials, as well as clothing, hard if you don’t wash it immediately. Make sure every inch of your bathroom or kitchen is covered and you’re wearing clothes you won’t miss.

Start your dye job by brushing and parting your hair. Two-thirds of your hair should be up in a bun on top of your head. A hair clip can keep your locks in place but a hair tie works well too. Also, use latex gloves to protect your hands.

Add plenty of conditioner to your hair dye to save on dyeing product. The dye-to-conditioner ratio depends on the length of your hair, how vibrant you want the purple color to be and how much money you’re willing to spend in terms of maintenance.

If your hair is chin- to shoulder-length, squeeze about 1.5 cups of your conditioner into a glass or plastic container. Top it off with a quarter of purple hair dye. Mix the dye and conditioner with your brush and color your hair from the top to the bottom. Work in all the colors by using your fingers.

Rinsing Your Hair

Once you’ve dyed your hair, put your hair in an old towel and wait. The longer you sit with the dye in your hair, the better the hair color. It’s best to leave the dye in for a couple of hours but if you’re in a time crunch, 45 minutes is enough.

When it’s time to rinse your hair, wash it with cool water. The colder the water, the better. You could also just take a shower but don’t use shampoo just yet. Once you’ve rinsed all of the dye out, put it back in a towel and let it air dry.

How Do I Fix Purple Hair?

woman with vibrant colored hair
Photo by Dan on Unsplash

If you over-toned your hair, worry not. You can still fix your purple hair by:

  • Washing your hair multiple times with clarifying shampoo
  • Applying baking soda and vitamin C powder to your hair after washing it
  • Massaging dishwashing liquid into your hair
  • Using a hydrating hair mask

Is Purple Hair Hard to Maintain?

Maintaining your purple hair color requires time, effort, money and plenty of patience. A few weeks or months in, your hair will start to fade into either a pinkish color or a grayish one. When it has become this color, it’s time for another dye job.

Fortunately, you don’t always have to re-bleach your hair when re-dying. Cover your hair with the same ratio of dye to conditioner, let it sit for hours and then rinse it with cold water. If you want to address the dark roots, however, you’ll need to re-bleach.

Other maintenance tips:

  • Use a bit of shampoo to wash your hair and avoid washing out the color.
  • Put a few drops of purple hair dye into your conditioner whenever you shower.
  • Consult with your hairstylist for potential anti-frizz treatments such as keratin.

Purple is an adventurous hair color that makes a statement. Venture into a crazier and more colorful hair adventure by going purple with your locks.

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