It’s easy to get addicted to coloring your hair a vibrant new color. It starts with one at-home dye session, and before you know it, you’re making monthly trips to the salon to touch up your roots for the nth color you’ve sported this year.
But what happens when you start noticing more hair fall than usual after your dye sessions?
Believe me, this is more than possible, especially if you tend to book numerous hair coloring appointments at the salon every couple of months.
You’re only supposed to lose 50-100 strands of hair per day, and a little more than that if you don’t wash your mane daily.
Any more than that, and there might be something wrong.
If you’ve been experiencing hair loss after coloring your locks, you might need to start rethinking your dyeing habits.
And if you’ve been experiencing hair loss due to hair dye, will it grow back?
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Why Am I Losing Hair After Coloring It?
Hair loss due to breakage is actually quite common for women who color their hair often.
But that doesn’t mean it’s easy.
It affects not just your hair’s health, but even your self-esteem and confidence.
After all, who would feel good looking at the shower drain and seeing huge clumps of their hair in it?
It’s super ironic too, because styling your hair should be a form of self-love, not self-loathing.
I want to premise this by saying that hair dye will only really damage the hair that’s been colored.
So, it doesn’t affect the growth of new hair directly.
But because it leads to damage and breakage, you lose a lot of your hair, even if the problem isn’t the regrowth.
Damage To The Strands
The main reason someone suffers from hair loss after a coloring sesh is because of chemical damage to the strands.
Coloring your hair needs ammonia and lots of hydrogen peroxide.
These potent chemicals poke and force open the outer lining of your hair shaft to penetrate it.
This dyeing process weakens the structure of your hair since it breaks down the proteins that keep it strong and elastic.
And when you destroy these proteins, it can lead to a handful of hair just falling out.
Ammonia and peroxide also loosen the strands on your head.
Just the fact that you used these chemicals in your hair increases your likelihood to see more hair shedding than usual.
This damage to the hair is what eventually leads to breakage later on.
That’s why it’s important not to do too many dyeing sessions in a short span of time.
Your hair needs to recuperate and regain proteins that once made it strong.
Dramatic Changes In Color Can Cause More Hair Breakage
The damage your hair gets from hair coloring is even worse when you dye it outside its color group.
That means you’re going more than three shades above or below your natural shade.
This can take a toll on your strands because it takes more chemicals to achieve those colors.
Hair loss and breakage are often worse for those who choose to lighten their hair, since it almost always requires bleach.
Bleach is another powerful substance that breaks down your hair fibers to remove all the natural pigments in your hair.
It replaces these pigments with a new shade you chose beforehand.
That’s why many people who go from black or brown hair to a full, light blonde find that their hair gets thinner over time and doesn’t grow longer.
This is because of the breakage that occurs at the ends of the hair, which is known as the most damaged and dehydrated part of the hair.
Not only is using bleach extreme, but it also means you have to touch up your roots with bleach every few months.
That can spell disaster and cause you to shed even more hair than you’re losing now.
Other Factors In Your Dyeing Process That Can Cause Shedding
Aside from just the chemicals in the dye, there could be other factors that lead to your hair loss too.
First, the manipulation that comes with dyeing your hair might be pulling out more hair than necessary.
Tugging and rubbing your hair with combs and foils might add tension to the scalp, making it easier for hair to fall later on.
Back-To-Back Chemical Processes
Another reason might be that you’re coloring your hair right after doing another chemical process, like relaxing your hair or getting a perm.
Processed hair is already damaged, and coloring it with chemical-filled dyes will only add fuel to the fire.
When you over-process your hair, it gets dehydrated and super brittle.
Breakage is inevitable when your hair gets to this point, and you won’t even notice it snapping off when you’re doing something as simple as tying your hair in a ponytail.
So, color your hair only when it’s been at least two months since your last chemical process.
If you’ve been using the same dye for years and are only experiencing hair loss now, then maybe you’ve developed an allergy to that dye.
Allergies to hair coloring products can develop at any point in your life.
Consider switching your dye to a healthier one.
Lastly, extreme hair loss that exposes parts of your scalp might be caused by chemical burns from bleach and peroxide.
Your hair follicles can be found on your scalp.
So when you hurt and burn your scalp with dye, it weakens your hair and pulls it out from the root.
How Do You Handle Hair Breakage From A Dye Job?
Here are a few things you can do to deal with hair breakage that is brought about by coloring your hair:
Take A Break From Hair Dyes
The first thing you should do if you want to stop hair loss is to take a break from coloring your hair, especially if you colored it a lighter shade.
Bleached hair means root touch-ups.
And if your hair already got super weak the first time you bleached it, it only means that your roots will get extremely damaged and brittle each time you touch up.
Consider going back to your natural hair color instead of maintaining a light color.
Dermatologists also suggest that you cut out many of the unnecessary styling tools you use daily, like hair straighteners or curling wands.
Use Gentle Hair Products
Be gentle to the hair and go as basic as possible – shampoo, conditioner, hair mask, and a leave-in product.
But the one thing you can’t sleep on is protein.
Protein treatments help build up damaged hair to fortify and give them structure and strength again.
Use a daily conditioner and leave-in cream that has protein.
And once a week, give yourself a deep conditioning session with a protein mask.
Of course, moisture is just as important as protein.
This gives shine and bounce back to your hair, so make sure your conditioners also have ingredients like coconut oil, argan oil, glycerin, and more.
Minimize Hair Manipulation
You should also do your best to minimize combing and brushing.
This will tug at your hair a lot, pulling out strands that are sensitive to breakage.
Instead, finger-detangle only when your hair is saturated with a mask or conditioner.
This will make it more slippery, so it will be easy to remove tangles without much effort.
Get A Trim
You might also want to think about getting a trim to chop off the parts of your hair that are irrevocably damaged.
A haircut can even out your locks if the strands are breaking off in different lengths.
It will also get rid of split ends to aid in healthy hair growth.
Can Hair Dye Cause Hair Thinning In The Long Run?
Yes, because hair is weakened by the dyeing and bleaching process, stands can break off because of even the slightest form of manipulation.
And when enough of those strands fall out of your head, you’ll notice your mane thinning out.
When more and more of your hair sheds, the thinning will get more obvious.
The skin of your scalp will start peeking through, making it super distracting.
The key to stopping this from becoming a huge problem is by strengthening your hair as soon as you can after your dyeing appointment.
Bring out those hair repair conditioners and protein treatments to help fortify your strands and rebuild them again.
And if you suspect that it’s an allergy to your hair dye that’s causing your strands to stress out, stop using it immediately and toss it in the trash.
It’s not worth finishing the dye you currently have if it means your mane that was once so thick will get thinner and less voluminous.
Hair Loss Due To Hair Dye: Will It Grow Back?
Since the bleach and peroxide in your hair color only damage the part of the hair that was dyed, that means it won’t affect new growth.
Those are the only parts of your hair that are prone to breaking.
So as long as you don’t touch up your roots, the new hair that will grow out of your head is safe.
The only reason why you’re losing hair in the first place is because of harsh dyes.
The chemical damage breaks your strands off, making it feel like your hair isn’t getting longer.
But if you care for your hair and cut those nasty chemicals out, your hair will grow back healthy and strong again.
Plus, the alopecia that comes from hair breakage is only temporary.
When the hair regrows, it’s like you’re pushing a reset button on your mane.
Take care of the new growth and try your best to repair the damaged ends, and you’ll be back to healthy, bouncy, hydrated hair in no time.
Burn To The Scalp
But if you’re dealing with a chemical burn to the scalp (which is possible if you’re using bleach with a high developer), it’s completely different.
Depending on how severe your burns on the scalp are, some hair follicles might have been killed off.
If that happens, it will be hard to reverse the hair growth.
You might have to speak with a medical professional about treatment and supplements to grow the hair back.
How To Prevent Hair Loss When Coloring Your Hair
Here are some tips on how you can prevent hair loss as a result of a dye job:
Condition Your Hair Before Coloring It
The moisture and nutrients from a deep conditioning mask can strengthen your hair, preparing it for the impending damage of bleach and peroxide.
This might help in softening the blow of hair damage, and consequently, hair loss.
Pick A Healthier Hair Dye
Try going for semi-permanent color instead of harsh permanent ones.
Instead of forcing your hair cuticles open and obliterating your hair’s healthy proteins, it merely sits on top of your strands, coloring them by coating the outside.
Plus, semi-permanent dye is ammonia-free and often has conditioning ingredients to moisturize your hair as you color it.
That means less damage than other types of dye.
Keep An Eye On Your Timer When Dyeing Your Hair
When dyeing your hair at home, make sure you don’t leave in those scary chemicals for longer than suggested in the hair color’s instructions.
Extending the time the dye is in your hair can damage your hair more than necessary.
Get Your Hair Colored By Professionals
Instead of DIY-ing your hair coloring at home and running the risk of making rookie mistakes, put your hair in the hands of a seasoned professional.
They’ll have more experience with coloring than you, so they know the best ways to maintain your hair health.
Plus, going to a professional for your hair dyeing gives you a chance to ask them to assess your hair and recommend healthier alternatives for bleach and permanent hair dye.
Lighten Your Hair Gradually
If you’re going from jet black to blonde, don’t do it all in one go – that will be extremely harsh on your locks.
Do multiple coloring and bleaching appointments every two or three months to go blonde with less damage.
If hair loss has crept its way into your life because of how often you color your tresses, it’s high time you rethink how you do it.
Focus first on repairing your hair, whether it’s by treating it to protein masks weekly or chopping off the overprocessed strands.
Then, change the way you dye your hair.
Do just one or two shades lighter or darker instead of a dramatic change.
Use healthier alternatives for dyes, like semi-permanent ones.
Suffering hair thinning or shedding doesn’t mean you need to stop coloring your hair forever.
You just have to make better choices and put in the work to ensure you’re protecting your hair’s health and integrity.
By prepping your hair right and doing the proper aftercare, you’ll be able to enjoy beautifully colored locks again – this time without dreading hair loss.