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Purple shampoo on shelf, how purple shampoo works

How Does Purple Shampoo Work: Everything You Need to Know

Many blondes are already familiar with purple shampoo, but there is probably a lot you don’t actually know about it. Or perhaps you’ve just gone blonde for the first time?

From who should use it to when you should be using it (and everything in between), here is everything you need to know about using a purple shampoo. 


What is purple shampoo and who should use it?

Purple shampoo is simply a shampoo that contains a purple pigment. It is made specifically for people with blonde treated hair who want to keep their colour on the ashier side or want to neutralise any brassy or yellow tones.

Generally, purple shampoo is used to keep blonde hair vibrant and fresh in between salon visits, so it’s always worth picking up an effective, high-quality purple shampoo. (This will maintain your salon-fresh look for as long as possible). Try to steer clear from cheap, drugstore products as they can be very drying and even damaging on the hair.

And if you’re not quite sure where to start, we recommend trying out the Aveda Blonde Revival Purple Toning Shampoo. This fabulous purple shampoo will revive the look of a salon-treated blonde colour in no time. It’s also sulphate free so will cleanse the hair without stripping!

How does purple shampoo work?

Purple shampoo works in a very similar way to a toner – in fact, you could class it as a toner, as it simply works to adjust the tone of your blonde hair.

But how does it actually work? To explain this, we need to look at colour theory.

Colour wheel for how purple shampoo works

As you can see, purple is directly opposite yellow on the Pantone colour wheel. This means that purple can cancel out any yellow or brassy tones, leaving the tone of the hair neutralised. 

You’ll also notice that blue is across from orange and red. Yes, you guessed it – there are also blue shampoos on the market for very orange or red tones in the hair, but for most blondes, a nice lilac-coloured shampoo is perfect. 


How to use purple shampoo as a toner

So now we know the science behind how it works, how should you actually use a purple shampoo as part of your hair care regime?

Firstly, as mentioned, make sure your purple shampoo is a nice lilac shade and from a reliable brand. You don’t want to damage your hair by using it.

Next, ensure that the hair is wet, just as if you were going to shampoo it normally. You’ll want to lather the purple shampoo through your hair, coating it evenly.

Then, (this is the important bit) leave it on the hair for up to 5 minutes. It is okay to leave it on for longer if your hair has really brassy tones. However, be warned that leaving it on for too long can actually cause strands of your hair to turn to a lilac or silver shade! If it’s your first time, it’s better to try a few minutes and see how your hair reacts to the product.

Finally, rinse your hair and condition as normal. We recommend using the Aveda Blonde Revival Conditioner. When used with the Purple Toning Shampoo, you will get a brighter, illuminated blonde as a result. 


When not to use purple shampoo

It should be noted that purple shampoo is not ideal for every blonde out there. If you have honey toned locks or a warmer shade of blonde, then purple shampoo will remove this!

It is also important to only use a purple toning shampoo once a week (or less), as overuse can actually cause the hair to turn a muddy-grey colour which will be hard to remove.

Lastly but crucially, do not use purple shampoo if you have just had a toner applied to your hair at the salon. This is because it can strip the toner out of the hair! Instead, wait until your toner has faded completely before fixing any brassy tones with a purple shampoo.


Get a Cool-Blonde Look at Strand & Lock London Hair Salon

Before you start incorporating a purple shampoo into your hair care routine, why not get a toner? It will last so much longer and we can achieve the exact shade of blonde you want. Check out our services, or book an appointment to get your dream blonde here.

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