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You caught a glimpse of your favorite celeb’s new fire-engine red locks. You decide you’re about due for a new 'do, head to your professional stylist and request the exact same color. Being the chameleon that you are, you consider straightening your hair with a chemical relaxer. Whether you should proceed with these new plans depends on how and when you’ve colored your hair and its condition.
Permanent Hair Color
Even the most daring hairdo diva needs to be cautious about over-processing her hair. When you double up on processing, you encourage twice the potential breakage, dryness and scalp irritation. Because permanent hair color contains ammonia, hydrogen peroxide or lead acetate, you must wait at least two to four weeks before chemically relaxing your hair. These highly reactive ingredients strip the hair, making it incredibly vulnerable. Yours needs time to recover. You can help it by using intense conditioning treatments.
Semi-Permanent and Demi-Permanent Color
Semi- or demi-permanent dyes cause less damage than permanent dyes. They don’t contain ingredients that are as harsh or as potent, but they still weaken your hair’s strength and elasticity. You can apply a chemical relaxer within 24 to 48 hours of some of these hair dyes. Read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully to determine which dyes are safe to use shortly after a chemical relaxer. If you don’t, your newly-tinted tresses could end up in the sink or on the bathroom floor.
If you’re an eco-friendly hair-color daredevil, you know that your henna or indigo coloring process doesn’t damage your hair. It actually strengthens the hair. So you’re A-okay to proceed with chemical relaxing immediately, right? Well, no. Many natural hair-color products contain metallic compounds that react with the chemicals in relaxers. So you also must wait at least four weeks before applying a relaxer. Otherwise, the new trend for the season will be green hair.
With so many potential threats to your vibrant-toned mane, what’s a glam girl to do? You can opt for a formaldehyde-free, Brazilian blowout. This process is much safer than a chemical relaxer. It lasts up to four months, gets your hair silky-smooth and infuses bond-building keratin protein into your hair. A Brazilian keratin treatment is 100 percent safe on color-treated hair -- no matter the type of dye.