Education, Physical Health, Wellness / Self-Care

Considering Dying your Hair? Read this first

Know which type of dye you need.

words by: Natasha Marsh
Dec 7, 2021

Ever wondered what hair dye actually does to your hair? As in the chemicals that work in your hair and scalp to break down the natural hair pigments and lift the hair cuticle? If this is starting to make your eyes raise, you are not alone. To better understand the different types of hair dye, see the below.


Bleach and highlights

If you choose to bleach or highlight your hair, the dye will remove the color from your hair through oxidation. Oxidation works by stripping the colored pigment of your hair shaft (hint: this is why some hair turns white when bleach is left on too long). Sadly, it’s impossible to get lighter hair without a bleaching agent — also known as, oxidizing agents.



Semi-permanent or temporary hair dye is the most natural way to dye your hair and is also the easiest to use. Basically, you can apply the semi-permanent or temporary dye straight from the applicator, unlike permanent dyes that have to be pre-mixed before application. Aka, it’s less of a headache.


They last six weeks and will fade out progressively. This type of dye does not have bleach in it and cannot lighten your natural shade. The nice thing is when you shampoo your hair, it will start to slowly go down the drain — so if you aren’t too keen on a color, you can wash it out quickly. However, if you do like the color, the down fall is that you will have to reapply more frequently — which of course could be damaging to your hair.


Permanent hair dyes

Similar to bleach and highlights, permanent hair dyes are oxidizers as well. Basically, the oxidizer (like hydrogen peroxide) and ammonia mixes in with the coloring agent before application. The nice thing is, in comparison to semi-permanent dyes that have to be frequently redone, you won’t have to apply permanent dyes as often.


Manufactures actually spend a lot of time making sure it is a long-lasting color and a formulation that doesn’t damage the strength and elasticity of the hair. There are also a lot more colors to select from when you go permanent. With that being said, the chemicals are really strong and can cause damage if you leave it on for too long.


It’s important to note that any hair dye can cause damage to your hair if left on for too long. That’s why it’s so important to stock your bathroom with color-protecting hair products to combat dryness and moisture.


Here’s a guide to at-home hair dying and how to take care of your hair post-dye.


Photo via INI/FameFlynet Pictures