What Does Purple Shampoo Do to Red Hair?

How and when to use it, what it does to hair, and how it works.

Written by Kate Holmsy. Updated on What Does Purple Shampoo Do to Red Hair

When you decide to dye your hair red, it may seem to you that keeping the color vibrant and vivid will not be a problem. However, with time, you suddenly find out that your fiery red locks tend to turn yellowish and partly even brassy! Those chunks do not make your appearance look better of course, so the obvious solution is to remove them.

And this is when most of us decide to go to a salon every three to four weeks to fix that brassiness. But such a method can empty your wallet quite fast! Instead, consider using a purple shampoo.

What does purple shampoo do to red hair that starts developing yellow or brassy tones? This is what we are going to tell you about today in addition to a few handy tips on how to make use of this wonderful product to take the best of what it can offer.

What Does Purple Shampoo Do to Dyed Red Hair?

Well, shortly speaking, if we apply purple shampoo on our dyed red hair, it will remove the ugly brassy and yellow tones that tend to appear after a while when the mane is colored red. However, you can use this shampoo for another purpose which is toning down the redness in your tresses.

What makes purple shampoo be able to remove such a stubborn hair color as blue which is quite difficult to get rid of? See, this shampoo contains blue and violet pigments that remove those orange and yellow tones from your chevelure when it is dyed red. So as a result, your strands will look as if they have never been colored before! The natural hair color will also be restored, by the way.

Nevertheless, to be able to use purple shampoo correctly and not end up with messy hair and ruined color, we recommend you read on to learn how to utilize this product properly, as well as discover more about it and its principle of work.

What Does Purple Shampoo Do to Dyed Red Hair
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What Is Purple Shampoo?

So what is that mysterious purple shampoo and why is it called purple? Well, as for the name of the product, it is called purple because it really has this color. If you squirt some on your palm, you will see that the substance has a deep purple, blackberry-like color!

What is purple shampoo used for? This product is usually used for two major purposes. The first one is removing brassy and yellow or orange tones that usually come out after we dye our hair red. However, that brassiness may also appear on blonde or even brown locks because of the impact of a whole host of things, such as chlorine in water, UV rays from the sun, mineral impurities, etc. This is actually why purple shampoo can be successfully and safely used by those who have blonde, brown, or even darker hair colors! The product will keep the color of your mane vibrant and shiny as if just after the expensive salon treatment.

And the second most frequent reason why we make use of this kind of shampoo is that it works well for toning down the redness in our hair.

There is, by the way, one more area of use for this shampoo, and this is color removal. See, purple shampoo can also be applied if you need to get rid of red dye in your hair completely. Thanks to the violet and blue pigments it contains, this substance can strip the red color out of your locks quite easily leaving you with the initial hair color.

I put purple shampoo in my dry hair & this happened... | Blonde Hair HacksI put purple shampoo in my dry hair & this happened… | Blonde Hair Hacks

How Does Purple Shampoo Work?

This is probably the most frequent question people ask when they decide to make use of this product on their hair. If answered shortly, the purple shampoo principle of work lies in using violet color to correct warmer tones in dyed hair. However, to understand how purple shampoo works in detail, you will need to recall the color theory and the color wheel.

If you are familiar with coloristics even a little bit, and you can imagine a color wheel to yourself, try to remember where purple color is located in reference to yellow. That’s right, purple is in direct opposition to yellow! It means that these two colors are able to cancel each other out.

This is why, when you tone your yellowing blonde locks with purple shampoo, it will cool down the tone of the yellow shades thus giving your strands a more platinum vibe. Simply speaking, the purple shampoo will neutralize the warm shades and hide brassiness.

It works the same way with red hair, by the way. This is why purple shampoo is considered so effective when we need to get rid of brassiness on our fiery manes!

But do keep in mind that, for getting the best result on both red or blonde locks, it is strongly recommended to use purple shampoo that has a very dark, rich, and vibrant violet color! Only then it will provide you with the best toning and color correcting properties.

How Does Purple Shampoo Work
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How to Use Purple Shampoo

When it comes to applying purple shampoo to our hair, we may feel a bit frustrated and confused. Is it ok if we just wash our locks with it as if it is a common shampoo? Or, maybe, any specific washing “ritual” is needed? And how to apply it so that we don’t cause any damage to our tresses?

No worries, ladies! Using purple shampoo is, in fact, a very simple and effortless process. Just check out the common application procedure that can be done to normal or dry hair for making a medium color correction.

  • Cleanse your hair with purifying or clarifying shampoo first. It will remove the build up and other pollutants, making hair shafts more receptive to purple shampoo absorption.
  • Apply purple shampoo liberally from the roots of your hair to the hair tips.
  • Let the shampoo sit on the strands and absorb for five minutes, then rinse it out thoroughly.
  • Now follow up with a purple conditioner for further toning (any regular conditioner will also do).
  • After you rinse your hair, apply a deep moisturizing hair mask. It will make your locks soft and smooth the frizz. Doing it is a must if your hair has been bleached.

Also, there are a few tips that you should keep in mind when washing your mane with a purple shampoo. First of all, observe your hair before starting to apply the shampoo to get the most out of the application stage. See, like this, you will be able to spot the problem areas that will benefit more than others from applying violet tones.

Naturally, when applying the shampoo, concentrate on these areas, and remember that you should concentrate on the sections of your hair separately! It will help to spread the product evenly all over the mane and avoid uneven toning or color removal, depending on what you are using the purple shampoo for.

Second, if your hair is particularly yellow, brassy, or orange, don’t be afraid to leave the shampoo in for more than just five minutes. Sometimes, it is even allowed to let it work for up to half an hour! However, be ready that, when kept for this long, it may leave some violet staining on your hair!

There is one more tip we would like to share with you. Quite many girls tend to make the same mistake when applying purple shampoo to their strands. What they do is that they apply the product mostly close to the roots and the scalp hoping that it will spread itself further along the locks to the hair tips.

But this is not going to happen! Gravity works, but not in this case! If applied like this, your purple shampoo will leave you with uneven color and warm toned ends, and that’s all. Surely, this is not what you are looking for!

How to Use Purple Shampoo
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How Often to Use Purple Shampoo?

The answer will be like this: the frequency of use depends on what you are going to use it for. For instance, if you just need to tone your hair, once a week will be fine. But for color removal, you might want to increase the frequency up to two times per week, as well as increase the dose.

Also, if this is your first time using it, we would recommend applying it only once a week at the beginning. Like this, it will be easier for you to keep the process under your full control and gradually strip off the color until you get the desired shade.

How Often to Use Purple Shampoo
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DIY Purple Shampoo For Those Who Are On a Budget

Well, this recipe will become handy not only if you can’t buy proper purple shampoo. Feel free to use it in case you are a control freak and you need to keep an eye on everything around you including the dye removal process!

But if we talk seriously, making a purple shampoo yourself at home will allow you to have a total control over the strength and color correcting properties of the product which is super great, especially if you find it complicated to pick up the ideal option for yourself in a store.

To make it yourself, you will need to go through a few easy steps:

  1. Buy any regular shampoo of your choice and Gentian Violet Dye. This is a semi-perm and ammonia-free dye, but you can replace it with a high-quality purple food coloring if you want!
  2. Now mix the dye/coloring with the shampoo you have bought. To avoid the mess, either use a large bowl, or incorporate the coloring agent right into the bottle of shampoo.
  3. Mix the ingredients if you do this in a bowl, or shake if you blend them in a bottle. Be sure you add the coloring/dye slowly to not incorporate too much!
  4. Your final product must be of deep and vibrant purple since it is this color that does the color correcting job. A pastel or light purple will not be that effective!

Done! Now you can start using your homemade purple shampoo just like you would do with the store-bought one.

DIY Purple Shampoo For Those Who Are On a Budget
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What Purple Shampoo to Buy?

With so many options and varieties on the market, it can be rather complicated and even challenging to find a purple shampoo that will ideally fit your hair and meet your requirements and needs.

This is why we have prepared a list of most effective purple products that will suit any budget and any purpose, from cheap to pricey, from light toning to color removal. For different hair types!

What Purple Shampoo to Buy
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The Best Purple Shampoo You Can Find

Sounds somewhat pretentious but Naissant’s Purple Shampoo is really a top product. It can be used as both an intensive toning remedy and a shampoo for everyday color correcting purposes.

And since it contains beneficial ingredients like olive oil and hydrolyzed wheat protein, it will be very gentle to your hair.

On-Budget Option

Don’t want to spend a fortune on a highly pricey product? We can understand you very well! In this case, opt for Clairol Shimmer Lights shampoo. It is affordable and effective, but you might not quite enjoy the scent since it is far from being exquisite.

The Best Purple Shampoo You Can Find
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For Dry And Fragile Hair

If our hair needs extra care, we want to use only the gentlest products on it. So if you are using purple shampoo frequently, and you are concerned about the safety of your mane, try out Luseta Color Brightening Purple Shampoo.

It is paraben-free and contains natural balancing extracts that boost the volume and reduce the frizz. Also, this shampoo will make your hair shafts stronger thanks to quinoa seed extract, and biotin will stimulate production.

With these tips, suggestions, and recommendations, you will easily choose the right purple shampoo that will give you exactly the effect you need. And if you need a total control over the color-removal or toning process, you now have a recipe for DIY purple shampoo as well!

Frequently Asked Questions

⭐ How long should I leave purple shampoo in my hair?

From 15 minutes to half an hour.

⭐ How effective is purple shampoo as a toner?

Toning hair with purple shampoo gives a good and stable effect.

⭐ Is dying hair with purple shampoo possible?

Only if you want to dye your hair purple temporarily.

⭐ How long should you wait to use purple shampoo after dying your hair?

Wait for at least 72 hours. But purple shampoo is better to be used when brassy or yellow tones start to appear.

Written by
Kate worked in "The Fashion Magazine" for four years as a freelance writer and loved to consult and help people with their style. How to create your own style, how to look beautiful, and select trendy colors for your hair - these are just a few of many issues Kate will happily explain in Beezzly Beauty blogs!
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