It is believed that a whopping 70-75% of all women colour their hair at any given point in time. Majority of them also know that hair colour is damaging to the hair but it is their need to look younger, different or stylish that reigns supreme. Almost 5,000 different chemicals are involved in the making of a hair dye.  Permanent hair colours are supposed to be more harmful than dyes because they chemically weaken the hair length making it hard and brittle.

When you are pregnant, it is safe to use hair colour despite the potential absorption of a small amount of chemical through the scalp skin but such small amounts have not been found to be damaging for the growing baby. Some women switch to highlighting or use henna to minimize chemical exposure.Listed below are some simple and effective strategies to reduce hair damage caused by these chemicals.

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1) Use a special colour protecting shampoo and conditioner: This may increase the interval of repeat hair colouring and thus is gentler for your hair. Use conditioners with Silicone (dimethicone) which will coat your hair and protect it for longer.

2) Use an Umbrella when you go out in the sun as UV rays can damage the hair and also fade the colour faster. Similarly wash your hair less often as even harsh water (especially chlorinated water in swimming pools) can also damage coloured hair.

3) If you just wish to discontinue colouring then ask for bleaching which will remove your hair colour and gradually the original hair colour will be restored. Bleached hair also requires extra care for some time but at least the new hair will be damage free.

4) Allow at least one month (4 weeks) between two colourings. If you go in for even root touch-ups earlier than this, there is a possibility of irreparable hair damage. The average hair growth is considered to be 0.4-0.5mm per day, or approx 1.5cm of new hair shall show in 4 weeks. Also as we age our skin becomes thinner, so experts advise to use a colour shade lighter than you’ve been using previously.

5) Never mix two different products to give you that perfect shade. Always try to find the closest matching on the shade card and inform your saloon person to give you a shade lighter or darker. Avoid keeping the colour on your hair longer than what is required. If you want a darker shade right from the beginning, go in for the right mix rather than keeping it on longer.