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August 22, 2023

How Long Does Hair Dye Last?

Hair Dye Last

One of the biggest questions guys have when they consider dyeing their hair is how long the color will last. Eliminating those pesky gray hairs is great, but nobody wants to dye their hair multiple times a week to maintain their look—understandably so.

A salon-quality men's hair dye kit like Cleverman can last up to a month or longer, while cheap hair dyes you find at the drugstore may only last a few days. (We’ll get into the specifics of what makes hair dye last—or fade—later on).


In years past, men’s hair dye would fade as soon as you took your next shower. Thankfully that’s no longer the case. By adding higher-quality ingredients (and removing harmful ones), guys can maintain a bold, natural-looking hair color for a month or longer without compromise.


Let’s unpack the science behind the duration of male hair dye and how to make it last longer.


How Long Does Hair Dye Last?


A high-quality color hair dye for men will last 4-6 weeks before the color begins to fade. However, that time frame can vary based on the type of dye you use, how much color you need, the health of your hair, and your grooming habits.


“Most men only need to dye their hair once per month, which is enough to maintain their desired color in between haircuts,” says Jorge Buccio, Cleverman’s Senior Colorist. “That said, if your hair grows faster than normal you may need a touch-up to cover the roots of your hair between full coloring sessions.”



There are three main factors that can affect how long your hair dye lasts.


1. The Type of Hair Dye

There are two main types of hair dye that last different amounts of time:


– Permanent Hair Dye: This dye penetrates your hair shaft and doesn’t fade—it lasts until your natural shade emerges at the roots, which can take 3-6 weeks depending on how quickly your hair grows. Keep in mind, permanent hair dye for men often have harsh chemicals that can lead to damaged hair.


– Semi-Permanent Hair Dye: This dye binds to the outside of your hair shaft, instead of fully penetrating it. Semi-permanent hair color usually lasts 4-6 weeks, but that depends on how often you shampoo your hair (more on that later). 


2. Your Hair Care Habits

Aside from the type of dye, your hair-washing habits have the biggest influence on how long your hair dye lasts.


Each time you shampoo your hair, it removes a tiny amount of the hair dye. If you use semi-permanent hair dye, the color should last up to 20 shampoos. So if you shampoo every other day, that’s about six weeks.  



3. How Fast Your Hair Grows


Hair dye doesn’t penetrate your hair follicle, so your natural hair color will slowly begin to show at the roots as your hair grows. Most people’s hair grows one-quarter of an inch (half a centimeter) every two weeks, but that can vary based on age, health, and genetics.


If there’s a noticeable contrast between your hair roots and hair shaft, you can do a touch-up rather than recoloring your whole head of hair.


What Causes Hair Dye to Fade?


Excessive hair washing is a common culprit of hair dye fading prematurely. But how you wash your hair matters too.


For starters, hot water opens your hair cuticle layer, allowing color to escape. Adjust your water temperature to lukewarm or cool—at least when you’re directly washing and rinsing your hair.


Harsh shampoos can also cause hair dye to fade fast. Specifically, you should try to avoid sulfates: a type of cleansing chemical notorious for stripping away your hair’s natural oils and, along with them, hair dye. 


To make your hair dye last as long as possible, try one of these shampoos:


– Sulfate-free shampoo

– Color-safe shampoo

– Dry shampoo


Another thing to watch out for is ultraviolet (UV) damage from the sun. Prolonged exposure to UV rays can break down the particles that bind to your hair, causing the pigment to fade. UV damage can also cause hair damage, so don’t sit out in the sun longer than necessary.



3 Tips to Make Hair Dye Last Longer


Here are a few tips to maximize the staying power of hair dye and protect against fading, according to Cleverman’s Senior Colorist Jorge Buccio. 


1. Cut Before You Color

Coloring your hair soon after a haircut will help you get a better look and a more even color on your roots.


2. Use a Lock-In Conditioner

Post-treatment is essential to make your new color last as long as possible. That’s why every Cleveman male hair dye kit comes with shampoo and conditioner that’s customized for your hair type.


Our blend of amino acids and essential oils doesn’t just nourish your hair strands—it locks in the color for longer-lasting results.


3. Avoid Washing Your Hair Every Day

As we mentioned above, excessive hair washing causes hair dye to fade faster than it has to. Limit shampooing to three times per week, at the most.


Better Hair Begins with Better Products

When you notice gray hairs sprouting, you might be tempted by that cheap hair dye at your drugstore. Be warned: it’s cheap for a reason.


Off-the-shelf dyes aren’t customized for your unique hair color or texture. Chances are your new hue won’t match your natural hair color—which is arguably worse than dealing with gray hair. That’s why Cleverman customizes your hair dye from 10,000+ possible color, technique and application tool combinations. Think of us as your personal stylist. 



Mass-produced hair dyes may also fade faster since they rely on lower-quality ingredients and application tools. If you want hair dye that blends better and lasts longer, look no further than Cleverman.

Jorge Buccio
Celebrity hairstylist Jorge Buccio is Cleverman‘s Senior Colorist. He has over 20 years of experience in Hollywood, including celebrities Salma Hayek and Matthew McConaughey, and has worked with industry giants such as Schwarzkopf Professional and Revlon Professional. His avant-garde approach further aligns with Cleverman‘s commitment to style and personal taste.

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