Demi-Permanent Dye: Everything to Know About This Type of Color

Perfect for when you need a color change that's more than a gloss, but less than an all-out bleach.

We know that in the world of hair dye, things can easily start to get a little bit complicated. There are so many different ways to dye hair nowadays: You can go the demi-permanent route, add highlights, lowlights, semi-permanent color, or permanent color. To clear things up about demi-permanent hair dye, in particular, we are breaking down the basics of this super common hair dye that can give some beautiful, glossy results. Read on for a quick primer on hair color’s lesser-known formula:

demi-permanent brown hair
Demi-permanent dye is great for darker colors.

Semi vs. Demi vs. Permanent: What’s the difference?

Semi-permanent dye: Also known as a gloss. These dyes aren’t able to deposit color inside the hair shaft so they sit on top instead. This allows you to add gentle shine and radiance to your hair but only for 6 to 12 washes.

Demi-permanent: The in-between sweet spot. It can create more color change and last longer than semi-permanent. Typically, this type of dye can last anywhere from 24 to 28 washes before completely washing out. Demi-permanent dye lasts longer because it has a small amount of peroxide incorporated to open the outer layer of the hair. It allows the dye to partially penetrate the shaft, allowing it to last longer than a gloss. This type of dye works well for adding a darker color to your hair but because of the small amount of peroxide, it will not be able to lighten hair significantly.

Permanent dye: This dye lasts the longest and can create the most color change. Permanent dyes will penetrate the hair, coloring it with a dye that won’t wash out. As opposed to semi and demi-permanent dyes, permanent dye does not always leave a gloss on top of the hair strand.

Who is demi-permanent hair dye for?

demi-permanent hair dye
Demi-permanent hair dye fades out quicker than permanent dyes.

Demi-permanent dye is perfect for those looking to simply enhance colors they already have with new tones. If you want to go for a subtly darker color change, go for a demi-permanent color. Blondes can really have the most fun with this because they can go darker much more easily than someone with already dark hair. Demi-permanent color is a good way to test out a fun hair color as well. Have you always wanted a red tint or purple hair? Get a good test run in with demi-permanent dye.

This dye is also good for blending gray hairs into the rest of your hair color. If you are around 25% gray, demi-permanent dye is a good way to make those strands more translucent and blendable with your current color.

How do you maintain demi-permanent hair dye?

When you use demi-permanent color, you’re already aware that it’s going to eventually wash out. You do want to make sure that your color isn’t washed out too early, though! When washing hair that has been treated with this type of dye, it is just as important to use color protective products as it is with permanent hair dye. And it’s even more important if you are going for a color that traditionally doesn’t last as long, like red hair dye.

We love Love Beauty and Planet Blooming Color Murumuru Butter & Rose Shampoo and Conditioner. This combo works to keep your hair soft and shiny as it helps to keep color vibrant for as long as possible.

Out of the shower continue maintaining your color with The Good Stuff Color Protect Milk, a leave-in conditioner designed to keep your color vibrant and your strands strong and moisturized.

Now that you’ve got the low down on demi-permanent hair dye, you can decide for yourself if it’s a coloring treatment you’re interested in!

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