Photo: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images
Making the choice to color your hair doesn't mean you also have to choose to damage it. Lucky for you, there are several hair color options that leave you with colored tresses sans the damaging after-effect. Back before the hair color revolution, limited natural ingredients such as flower extracts were used to change the color of your hair. In these modern times, we're fortunate to have a variety of other options.
Coat your hair with color and add some shine with a color glaze. It's like putting a clear top coat on your color. Don't worry; a glaze doesn't have any ammonia, so it will not damage your hair. Color glazes can be found in several colors -- including brown, blonde, red and clear. Not sure which one to choose? Clear is always a good choice, as it won't add color but will add tons of shine. John Frieda has one of the best color glazes, and it's highly rated because of the price (about $10 per bottle at the time of publication), user friendly application and because of the subtle shine and color it adds.
Demi-permanent color is another nondamaging hair color you can add to your arsenal. Demi-permament hair color is often used to blend away gray, refresh color or add shine. Demi-permanent color can't lighten your current color (as with any no- or low-ammonia colors) but it can intensify your present hue. Pick one of the best, like the Ion Color Brilliance Intensive Shine Demi-Permanent Hair Color that's easy to apply at home if you're an avid do-it-yourselfer colorist.
Semi-permanent hair color works by coating the outside layers of hair. If you're looking for a nondamaging hair color, this is another option. Semi-permanent color fades gradually over six to 12 shampoos, although using a deep cleansing shampoo can cause color to fade faster. If that isn't enough, semi-permanent hair color may actually help heal damaged hair, since ingredients in these product can help fill in any damaged spots in the hair's cuticle. If you want a pro to do the work, they will use a top-quality color brand. Otherwise, Clairol Natural Instincts Loving Care is one of the only semi-permanent hair color brands available to the novice colorist consumer.
All-natural-loving color enthusiasts will likely be excited about this plant-based dye that's all natural, gentle and is free of toxins and harsh chemicals often found in other commercial color products. However, natural henna hair-color products often leave little as far as color variety (a reddish brown is the only hue available). Be cautious before using henna, as it can be extremely difficult to remove.