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What Is Purple Shampoo?

Purple shampoo has a pigment added to neutralize blonde and gray hair.
Purple shampoo neutralizes yellow, orange, and green tones in hair.
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  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 03 April 2014
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Purple shampoo is often used to help brighten blonde and gray hair. It can help neutralize orange, yellow, or green tones, since purple is opposite these colors on the color wheel. This type of shampoo should not be used every day, since it can actually cause very light hair to turn purple. Instead, most professionals recommend using it about once each week.

Along with the cleaning and moisturizing agents found in most other shampoos, purple shampoo has a pigment added. This pigment is usually a violet color, but it can sometimes be more of a blue. Purple conditioners and other purple hair-care products are also available.

Purple shampoo is most often used for blonde hair, although some individuals with gray hair use it as well. This type of shampoo typically works best on chemically treated hair, like bleached hair, since it is more porous. Some of these shampoos may also work on natural blonde hair.

This type of shampoo is commonly used to remove unwanted pigments left in dyed hair. Certain types of hair dyes can leave brassy or yellow tones in blonde hair, giving it an unwanted hue that can increase over time. When the purple color is put on the hair, it will neutralize the unwanted colors.

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Blonde hair also has a habit of turning greenish after exposure to the chlorinated water in some swimming pools. The chlorine can oxidize copper found in some algaecides, turning it green. This color can sometimes seep into more porous hair, and it's especially obvious in people who have light blonde hair. Shampoo with a purple coloring can often counteract this and return the hair to its more natural color.

Using purple shampoo every day can actually cause hair to turn purple, however, so it should really only be used every few days or once a week. Leaving the shampoo on the hair for too long can also give the hair a purple tone. Any unwanted purple color will typically fade with time, but to return the hair to its normal color more quickly, deep cleansing or clarifying shampoos can be used. A shampoo for blonde hair that has yellow pigments in it may also help neutralize any lingering color.

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Discuss this Article

anon317697
Post 5

I need help please! I normally have dark brown hair and did an at home bleach kit (Born Blond Nice'n Easy) and it turned my hair yellow.

The next day, I got a boxed hair dye which was ash blond, and now my hair is brassy looking. Does anyone know what I should do? I'm not sure if I should buy blue or purple shampoo but need to know. Thanks for any advice.

SteamLouis
Post 3

My mother uses this. She has almost all white hair now, with some black strands. I've asked her to dye it dark but refuses. She says she likes her hair this way, and it does look nice with her shoulder length cut and thick hair.

She uses purple shampoo to keep the whites nice and bright. If she uses regular shampoo all the time, the whites change color, they look dull and almost grayish.

One thing I would recommend is for everyone to do a skin test or try a little bit on their scalp the first time. I know from my mom that some brands can cause allergic reactions for people with super sensitive skin. My mom had a slight allergic reaction with one brand but hasn't with others.

turquoise
Post 2

@ddljohn-- You should try it, it's great. I've been using it for a while, not just the shampoo but the conditioner too. I use it about twice a week because I'm always getting my roots redone, but you might want to start out with once a week like the article said.

I used buy mine from my hair salon but then realized that it was too expensive. Some retail stores which carry salon brands have it much cheaper, although there's no guarantee that it's in stock. You should also take a look at the pharmacy, some pharmacies carry it as well.

If you don't mind ordering it online and don't like the prices elsewhere, that might be another option.

ddljohn
Post 1

That is such a great idea! I dye my own hair at home all the time and I get those brassy tones after dying too often!

I usually end up dying it again with a darker tone to get rid of them, but after a couple of washes, they reappear and look worse than before.

Washing with purple shampoo sounds like a great idea! I don't know why I didn't think of this before because I do use a skin corrector primer that is green. I have red cheeks and the green corrector helps even it out since green and red are also opposites. It's practically the same idea!

I'm going to buy a purple shampoo next time I'm out. Will I be able to find it in beauty stores?

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