How Long Does Permanent Hair Dye Last?

Permanent hair dye has been increasingly popular these days. It brings us many benefits compared to the traditional one. But do you know how long permanent hair dye lasts?

Indeed, this issue is of many people’s concern, especially beginners, since they are unsure whether permanent hair dye is really permanent as it names or not. So it’s time to find out the answer!

What Exactly Is Permanent Hair Dye?

Permanent hair dye, as its name implies, is a long-lasting hair color that remains on the hair until it grows out or you get roots to touch up.

How does it function? Before permanent dye can be put into your hair, the outer layer of your hair strand, known as the cuticle, needs to be opened. When it is opened, the dye interacts with the cortex, the inner part of your hair, to remove or deposit color.

Many permanent hair dyeing products apply a two-step method to get rid of the existing hair color before depositing a new one. It is basically like lightening, except that the colorant is linked to your hair strand.

Ammonia is known as an alkaline substance opening the cuticle, allowing hair dye to enter the cortex. Also, it works as a catalyst once the permanent hair dye and peroxide combine.

The developer or oxidizing agent is peroxide. Pre-existing hue is removed by the developer. It destroys chemical bonds in your hair, producing sulfur, which is responsible for the distinctive odor of hair coloring products.

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Shampoos Hub

Also, when the hair’s melanin is decolored, a new permanent color is attached to a hair cortex.

Does Permanent Hair Dye Wash Out?

Unfortunately, the answer is yes.

Although permanent hair color will not wash out of the hair as quickly as semi-permanent or temporary hair color, it will still fade and alter your hair color over time.

How Long Does Permanent Hair Dye Last?

A permanent hair dye can typically last 6-8 weeks before it fades completely.

All hair colors are generally water-soluble, which means once you rinse your hair, the color molecules disintegrate, and then the new color is washed away.

Also, since permanent hair dye works by opening up your hair strand so that the dye can be embedded deep within it, it will permanently change your hair color till it grows out.

Then, the dye will inevitably fade as well. And that is the time you might need to re-color or touch up your roots.

Permanent hair dye can not last forever. 
Permanent hair dye can not last forever.

Several factors cause your permanent hair dye to fade quickly, which we will go into more detail about in the following parts.

What Causes Permanent Hair Dye To Fade?

The Porosity Of Your Hair

It is described as the hair’s ability to receive and release water and other things.

Since the cuticles of high porosity hair are continuously elevated, the color is quickly washed away with each wash, causing it not to last long.

The Type Of Hair You Have And How You Care For It

If you use permanent or semi-permanent dyes on damaged, dry hair with split ends, all strands’ keratin proteins will attach to the dye molecules.

If your tresses are subjected to hot equipment such as straighteners or blow dryers, the cuticle is elevated. This exposes the hair and makes it accessible to dye molecules, leading to a hue that fades swiftly.

The Hair Color Brand

The hair color brand you use may influence how long the dye lasts. You should use a recognized brand once you intend to color your hair yourself at home.

Whether you have enough time and want to relax, go to a hair salon. Stylists are professionals who will guarantee that your hair receives the most excellent color products and lasts as long as feasible.

Shampoo And Conditioner

If your shampoo and conditioner include sulfates, your hair will likely fade quickly.

Sulfates are chemicals included in shampoos and conditioners causing large bubbles in the water. This chemical works as a foaming agent, leaving it simpler to distribute shampoo or conditioner throughout the hair.

Also, sulfates accelerate the fading of permanent hair dye by eliminating the color pigments of the tresses with each rinse.

Your Hair-Washing Routine

As we already stated, permanent hair color fades with each wash. As a result, the more regularly you rinse the hair, the faster the hair dye will fade. 

The Color You Choose

If your hair is black or dark brown, the color can stay at least 6 weeks before fading. However, lighter colors, such as reds, blondes, or any color lighter, only last 3-4 weeks until fading. 

It is because you must first bleach your hair to acquire these light hair colors. Bleaching hair causes your hair to be so porous that it rapidly absorbs the color when you dye it but then wipes right out.

Hot Water

Water is also a major cause of fading. The colder the water temperature you use to shampoo your hair, the better is it. Once the water is excessively hot, the hair cuticles may open for a more extended period, and the dye will fade.

Sunlight Exposure

The sun fades color; it also reveals the existing natural pigments, which are typically brassy and undesirable shades. Besides, the sun emits dangerous UVA/UVB radiation, which can potentially cause hair damage.

If you expose directly to the sun, your permanent hair color will fade more quickly. 
If you expose directly to the sun, your permanent hair color will fade more quickly.

Your Hair’s Moisture Level

Color retention is better in moisturized strands than in dehydrated strands. Once your hair is dry, you may observe that the permanent hair dye fades quickly.


Most pools contain significant chlorine concentrations to maintain the water bacteria-free and clean. High levels of this chemical may strip the permanent hair color, causing it to be brittle and susceptible to split ends.

Overuse Of Heating Tools

Hair becomes dehydrated as a result of using heat tools too frequently. Once your hair is dehydrated, it dries out and loses the pigments in the permanent hair color.

How To Increase The Longevity Of Your Permanent Hair Color?

Should Not Over-Shampoo Your Hair

Regular shampooing is among the most significant causes of your permanent hair dye fading. Because your hair color fades with each wash, it would help if you space out the shampoo sessions.

You should wash your hair two to three days per week or even try once per week. You can use dry shampoo to increase the break time between shampoo.

You may help with a longer-lasting hair dye and keep more of the hair’s natural oils to have healthier-looking hair. 

Make Use Of Cold Water

Hot water removes permanent hair dye in the same way it removes temporary or semi-permanent. Thus, when washing the hair, reduce the water temperature.

It seems unpleasant for several first minutes, but it will be well worth it because your hair color can last longer.

Selecting The Right Hair Care Products

If you want your permanent hair dye to last as long as possible, here are some products you should stay away from:

  • Shampoos containing sulfates: Sulfates and other harsh agents enhance the level of color loss you may experience for each wash. So, you should prioritize non-sulfates shampoos.
  • Products that are not color-safe. Non-color-safe haircare items may contain substances such as salt and alcohol, which might strip the hair coloring. To prevent this, replace them with color-safe ones.

Keep Your Hair From The Sun, Heat, And Chlorine

While using heat styling equipment, keep the temperature as low as is suitable for the look you want to achieve to minimize its effect on your hair.

Furthermore, if you plan to go out, do not forget to use an SPF-protecting leave-in, which will keep the hair from the sun’s Uv radiation and keep the dye from fading.

If you are so excited to go swimming in a pool, remember to bring a swimming cap with you first.

Make Use Of A Deep Conditioner

Keeping your hair hydrated will help the permanent hair color stay longer. Applying a deep conditioner or moisturizing mask on a regular basis can help you with this.

On the other hand, deep conditioners function by entering the hair follicle, so they can cause the color to leak out.

Consider An Oil-Based Color

It is a product with a distinct oil-based formula that optimizes the dyeing process for long-lasting and permanent color effects.

It drives colorants deeply into your hair without the use of ammonia, resulting in vivid and long-lasting colors.

Does Permanent Hair Dye Fade Back To Natural Color?

The answer is no. It can never return to its natural hue if you dye your hair permanently.

Once you dye your hair permanently, you will get the desired color. However, after 6-8 weeks, you may see a unique tint in the roots, which is the natural hue.

In fact, the hair color you used merely changed your hair’s structure and grown hair color. On the other hand, the new hair continues to grow with its original pigmentation.

In addition, the distinction between dyed hair and grown-out one may become more evident as time passes. Depending on the color you have dyed your hair, there can be a distinct line between the dyed area of your hair and your new growth. 

What Is The Longest-Lasting Hair Dye?

No hair dye can be said to be the longest-lasting, to tell the truth. In addition to the dye itself, many factors affect its longevity, as given above, including the hair’s porosity, sunlight exposure, chlorine, and others. 

However, we still recommend several excellent permanent hair dyes that can help the color stay in your hair relatively long.

L’Oreal Paris Superior Preference Fade-Defying

It is the gold standard of bright color that has been carefully combined to provide a multidimensional hue. It contains golden camelina oil, a UV filter for silky hair, and vitamin E antioxidants.

Notably, when this product can last up to 8 weeks, allowing you to enjoy its vibrant hues for an extended time.

Clairol Nice’n Easy Permanent Hair Color

This product features a natural-looking mix of highlights, grey covering, and tones. It enhances and reconstructs your hair every time you dye it with its new REPAIRPLEX 2x Repair.

According to the manufacturer, this product will last until the hair grows or you recolor it. As a result, your trial is worthwhile.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Do Different Types Of Permanent Hair Dye Last?

Black Permanent Hair Dye

Black permanent hair dye can remain in the hair for 5 to 7 weeks after application with no discernible difference. Then, between weeks 7 and 9, it completely vanishes.

Black dye fades in the same way as any other dye does. Although the pigments in black dye’s formula are strong and resistant, they will eventually fade off your hair fiber.

Unless you have gray hairs, your hair color should be thoroughly reapplied every 5 or 6 weeks. However, if you need to hide the unwanted gray hairs, you must apply the color to your roots every three weeks.

In addition, how you care for your hair will affect its longevity. So you can use the above tips to make your black dye stay longer.

Red Permanent Hair Dye

If you use a permanent red-tone dye, it will persist for 3 to 4 weeks. It will fade after that, and you may need to recolor your hair.

Red permanent hair dye can last for 3 to 4 weeks. 
Red permanent hair dye can last for 3 to 4 weeks.

Red hair is the color that fades quickest. Since the color molecules in red pigment are significantly larger than those in other hues, the first several times you dye your hair red, it will not fully enter the hair cuticle and dye the hair, which means that with every wash, it falls out of the hair cuticle quicker.

Remember that when you permanently color your hair bright or flaming red, it will turn orange as the color disappears. Nevertheless, if you apply a permanent deep or deep red dye, the hair will become brown once it fades.

Schwarzkopf Permanent Hair Dye

Schwarzkopf permanent hair dye may last up to 28 washes in most cases. It absorbs color, locks in color pigments, and nurtures your hair with its anti-breakage and color & protection technology.

How Long Does Permanent Hair Dye Last On Gray Hair?

It may last for up to eight weeks. Even while permanent hair color lasts much longer than semi-permanent and demi-permanent hair color, root cover-up is still required every 4 to 6 weeks.

Since permanent hair color includes ammonia and peroxide, which are chemical agents opening the hair cuticles and allowing color pigments to permeate, it is critical to put a nourishing conditioner on the hair.

How Long Does Professional Hair Dye Last?

There is no exact answer to the longevity of your professional hair dye because it depends on the color you dye and the product itself. 

However, salon color generally lasts longer with the same product and color, not due to the product but the application. 

Professionals always apply the dye only to your roots and then replenish it instead of being put all over immediately, as most home coloring is. Because the ends do not get porous, they will last longer.

If you want to get more information about this topic, you can watch this video:

What Can You Do To Return To Your Natural Hair Color?

Let Your Hair Grow Out

As mentioned above, growing your hair out is a great option to go back to the original hair color.

Get your hair cut

Once you are out of patience waiting for the permanent dye to fade, try trimming it to allow faster things along. The shorter the hair, the less you may need to grow it out.

Color Your Hair in Your Natural Color

Definitely, it is the simplest and quickest way to get back to the natural hair color. When the color fades, you can dye your hair with your original color matching the new-grown hair.

Final Words

At last, let’s go over our main topic once again. The answer is 6 to 8 weeks as to the title question, “How long does permanent hair dye last?”.

In addition to the hair dye itself, there are many other factors affecting the longevity of your hair color, so you should follow our tips carefully to extend the lifespan of your permanent hair dye.

Edna Feber

I’m Edna. I'm here to guide you about hair products and maintenance tips. You'll fine here product reviews regarding hair tools, hair color, hair care and more along with tips to keep your hair healthy!

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