How Often Can You Dye Your Hair And Other Semi-Permanent Hair Dye Questions

Semi permanent hair dyes have become really popular with the rise of the unicorn hair trend. This sort of dye often has bright, unnatural colors or metallic and pastel finishes. Often you will get the most true results if your hair is bleached to a very light yellow color (level 10), particularly with cool shades such as blue, silver or violet. This is because this sort of hair dye (not to be confused with demi-permanent hair dyes) are color depositing only. Unlike permanent hair dyes, which use a developer and ammonia to open up the hair cuticle and can lighten hair, semi and demi-permanent dyes can exclusively darken hair. They fade over time without changing the original color of your hair too much. However, demi-permanent dye has peroxide as a developer and will slightly lighten hair a bit.

What is a Semi Permanent Hair Dye?

Unlike permanent hair dyes, semi permanent hair dyes (also called hair glosses) are deposit-only colors. This means they don’t open the hair cuticle and lighten hair, only darkening it or adding a tint or gloss. However, unlike permanent hair color, semi-permanent dyes last only for a few washes and don’t 100% cover gray hair.

Glosses are available in clear if you only want to add shine, or colors that can be used to create rainbow hair looks. You won’t need an activator to use them, and they are often vegan friendly and conditioning. You can just use it straight on your hair. Depending on your hair porosity the results will be more or less intense and long-lasting.

Bestseller No. 1
ARCTIC FOX 100% VEGAN PURPLE RAIN SEMI PERMANENT HAIR DYE COLOR 4 OZ
  • Made only from vegan ingredients with no animal by-products.
  • No harmful chemicals in Arctic Fox hair dye that damage the hair like chemical based hair colors.
  • Arctic Fox hair dyes are gentle for frequent use and actually conditions your hair as it restores vibrancy.
  • Long lasting Colors, Smears Less, Sweet Scent, No Peroxide, No Ammonia, No Ethyl Alcohol, No PPD.
  • 15% Donated to help animals in need and to fight against animal cruelty.
SaleBestseller No. 2
Clairol Natural Instincts Semi-Permanent Hair Color, 1Kit, 6.5R / 16 Spiced Tea Light Auburn Color, Ammonia Free, Lasts 28 Shampoos
  • Pack of 3 Clairol Natural Instincts semi-permanent hair color kits in Spiced Tea Light Auburn. Ammonia free hair dye with aloe & Color Treat Conditioner fades naturally without harsh root lines so your hair will be healthy & radiant from roots to tips.
  • Natural Instincts hair color will infuse your hair with natural looking, radiant color that conditions. This semi-permanent color fades naturally over 28 shampoos, so go for an easy brunette one month & a brilliant blond the next.
  • Our Natural Instincts hair color lasts for 28 shampoos, fading naturally without harsh root-lines to keep your hair looking radiant. Natural Instincts dye is semi-permanent, so stay neutral with your natural hair color, or revel in revealing a new you.
  • Our natural, radiant hair color in ammonia-free shades with conditioner leaves your hair gorgeous from the roots to the tips. Reveal your hair's most brilliant shade with our multiple tones of hair dye colors in shades of black, brown, auburn, red & blond.
  • All Natural Instincts hair coloring products for women & men are ammonia free, infused with antioxidants & conditioning aloe to give you long lasting, semi-permanent & natural hair color using a treatment as nice and easy as a trip to your favorite salon.
Bestseller No. 3
Lime Crime Unicorn Hair - Chocolate Cherry (Full Coverage) Deep Burgundy Red Semi Permanent Hair Dye. Vegan Hair Color (6.76 fl oz / 200 mL).
  • UNICORN HAIR SEMI PERMANENT COLOR. Only mythical creatures are worthy of this color explosion. Unicorn hair brings the vibrancy of rainbows to the halo of your head. Made for the dreamers and believers, who love soft, colorful locks.
  • CHOCOLATE CHERRY (DEEP BURGUNDY RED. FULL COVERAGE). There's nothing better than a deep chocolate dessert with a cherry on top. This deep burgundy red color is the perfect amount of sassy and sensual to make you feel like fire.
  • ALWAYS VIBRANT, NEVER DULL. This semi-permanent hair dye washes out gracefully from poppin' to pastel, and always stays looking fierce. With no toner or developer needed, your hair will stay healthy and bright!
  • LOVE YOUR LOCKS. Use right out of the bottle, or create your own custom hue. This line was designed with unique gems like you in mind. Mix and match to multi-tonal hair, baylage, ombre, or holographic hues with these.
  • VEGAN & CRUELTY FREE. Lime Crime is savage AF, but not to animals. Verified vegan and Leaping Bunny certified cruelty free. Our products do not contain any animal-derived ingredients and there is no animal testing at any point in our supply chain.

What About Demi Permanent Hair Dye?

Demi-permanent color is a longer lasting, no-ammonia version of a permanent dye. It doesn’t lighten the hair and only deposits color, but it’s mixed with a low volume developer which will damage the hair a bit. However, it also has increased grey coverage and can be used to tone highlights, enhance your natural color or to color correct a bleach job gone wrong.

If you have grey hair that is very fine and porous you can use demi-permanent dyes to cover it. However, often the result is blended hair that looks like natural highlights instead of grey hair.

How Often Can You Dye Your Hair?

If you are using a semi-permanent hair color you can dye your hair as often as you want, because it doesn’t have anything that could damage your hair. Many people who sport unicorn hair mix a bit of their hair dye into their conditioner, to top up the color and reduce fading.

If you are wondering how often can you dye your hair with a demi-permanent dye (mixed with peroxide or other developers) then the answer is different. Semi-permanent dyes fade slowly over a period of a few weeks, but if you keep reapplying them too often they have a tendency to deposit too much color, and the peroxide will hurt your hair.

SaleBestseller No. 1
L'Oréal Paris Feria Pastels Hair Color, P2 Rosy Blush (Smokey Pink)
  • Multi-faceted, shimmering, smokey
  • Ultra-expressive, ultra-sophisticated
  • Gentle, deep conditioning
  • For Color Treated Hair
Bestseller No. 2
Lime Crime Unicorn Hair - Bunny (Tint) Pastel Baby Pink Semi Permanent Hair Dye. Vegan Hair Color (6.76 fl oz / 200 mL).
  • UNICORN HAIR SEMI PERMANENT COLOR. Only mythical creatures are worthy of this color explosion. Unicorn hair brings the vibrancy of rainbows to the halo of your head. Made for the dreamers and believers, who love soft, colorful locks.
  • BUNNY (PASTEL BABY PINK. TINT). Pink hair don't care. This baby pink tint is made of daydreams and fantasies. Turn your hair from drab to fab with this unicorn worthy color.
  • ALWAYS VIBRANT, NEVER DULL. This semi-permanent hair dye washes out gracefully from poppin' to pastel, and always stays looking fierce. With no toner or developer needed, your hair will stay healthy and bright!
  • LOVE YOUR LOCKS. Use right out of the bottle, or create your own custom hue. This line was designed with unique gems like you in mind. Mix and match to multi-tonal hair, baylage, ombre, or holographic hues with these.
  • VEGAN & CRUELTY FREE. Lime Crime is savage AF, but not to animals. Verified vegan and Leaping Bunny certified cruelty free. Our products do not contain any animal-derived ingredients and there is no animal testing at any point in our supply chain.
Bestseller No. 3
ARCTIC FOX 100% VEGAN PERIWINKLE SEMI PERMANENT HAIR DYE COLOR 4 OZ
  • Made only from vegan ingredients with no animal by-products.
  • No harmful chemicals in Arctic Fox hair dye that damage the hair like chemical based hair colors.
  • Arctic Fox hair dyes are gentle for frequent use and actually conditions your hair as it restores vibrancy.
  • Long lasting Colors, Smears Less, Sweet Scent, No Peroxide, No Ammonia, No Ethyl Alcohol, No PPD.
  • 15% Donated to help animals in need and to fight against animal cruelty.

If you are using demi-permanent dyes, you probably should wait around a month in between dye jobs, but it depends on your natural haircolor, your dye and the general health of your hair. If you are trying to fix a hair dye disaster (for example, removing orange from hair) you can do it more often but be fanatic about deep conditioning and protein treatments to make sure your hair doesn’t become straw like.

How Long Does Semi Permanent Hair Color Last

How long does semi permanent hair dye last depends on the brand you used, the health and porosity of your hair and whichcolor you are using. It also depends on how often you wash your hair, and how you do it. Expect to have some fading from the first wash, but I have personally managed to keep red tones from Manic Panic on my dark hair for several months.

Generally speaking Demi-permanent color stays in the hair for 12 to 24 washings, while semi-permanent only lasts for six to 12 washings. But this is a very rough average of a process that is incredibly unreliable in terms of results. As you are only depositing color, and not opening the hair cuticle fully like with permanent hair color, the end result and durability will depend a lot of the past history of the hair being dyed.

You can apply semi-permanent dye to virgin hair, and it will last much longer than if you apply it to bleached hair. This is because bleached hair (a prerequisite for anybody not naturally blonde to have unicorn or pastel hair) is much more porous and the color escapes the hair quicker when washing.

Bestseller No. 1
PRAVANA ChromaSilk Vivids Creme Hair Color with Silk & Keratin Protein (BLUE)3 fl oz
  • ** see direction below to achieve desired results**
  • Amazing Blue Vivid hair color
  • 3 oz hair dye tube
Bestseller No. 2
Pravana ChromaSilk Vivids (Violet) 3.0oz
  • ** see direction below to achieve desired results**
  • Amazing Violet Vivid hair color
  • 3 oz hair dye tube
Bestseller No. 3
Pravana Chromosilk Vivids Hair Color (3 Pack) (Vivid Silver)
  • Pravana Chromosilk Vivids Hair Color (3 Pack) (Vivid Silver)

Darker semi-permanent dyes usually last longer than pastel colors or lighter tones, but they fade to a pastel color with washes. Also, if you use heat styling that will burn out color from your hair quicker.

The brand of semi-permanent dye you use can also make a huge difference: how long does manic panic last is nowhere near as long as salon only brands such as Pravana Vivids for example. But this also means that removing Pravana Vivids is almost impossible without bleaching the hair, whereas Manic Panic can be removed with hot oil treatments and vitamin C for far less damage. It’s all about striking a balance between how often you want to re-color and how much damage your hair can take.

How long does semi permanent hair color last also depends a LOT on the aftercare. Dry shampoo will become your best friend, and cold water rinses something you deal with. Hot water, anti-dandruff or other harsh shampoos and frequent washing will fade semi-permanent hair color much quicker. If you live in a sunny climate, SPF for your hair and avoiding heat styling will also keep your bright hair rainbow-like for longer.

How To Remove Semi Permanent Hair Dye

How to remove semi permanent hair color is a frequently asked question. People often want to change the color of their hair, or decide that maybe that bright blue they got for summer is not the best color to go to work with. There are many ways to remove semi permanent hair color, and it’s a good idea to try the less damaging ones first and bring in the bigger guns (bleaching or bleach baths) if all else fails.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Nizoral A-D Anti-Dandruff Shampoo, 7 Oz
  • Shampoo fights dandruff outbreaks
  • Ketoconazole 1% controls flaking, scaling, and itching
  • Use just twice a week
  • Thick, rich lather rinses clean
  • Paraben free
SaleBestseller No. 2
Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo for Anti Dandruff with Jojoba, Argan, and Organic Tea Tree Oil – Natural, Sulfate Free Treatment for Women and Men – Safe for Color Treated Hair ( 8 fl. oz.)
  • Shampoo contains sodium
  • One of Maple Holistics most original and best-selling formulas, Sage Shampoo can help eliminate dandruff in an easy and natural way. No longer do those with moderate-to-heavy dandruff plaguing the scalp area have to suffer the embarrassment and inconvenience that comes along with dandruff dust shoulders guaranteed.-Gentle hypoallergenic shampoo platform contains no harsh ingredients, no sulfates, no parabens, is cruelty-free and vegan-friendly, and is safe for color treated hair.-
SaleBestseller No. 3
Pure Tea Tree Oil Shampoo - Natural Essential Oil Anti-Dandruff Shampoo For Dry Itchy & Flaky Scalp - Anti-fungal & Anti-Bacterial - Sulfate Free Hydrating Cleanser - Prevent Head Lice & Thinning Hair
  • Pure Tea Tree Oil Shampoo - Natural Essential Oil Anti-Dandruff Shampoo For Dry Itchy & Flaky Scalp - Anti-fungal & Anti-Bacterial - Sulfate Free Hydrating Cleanser - Prevent Head Lice & Thinning Hair
  • HAIR GROWTH THERAPY SHAMPOO for women, men and children. Promotes fast hair growth and regrowth for strengthened, luscious locks. The best formula to eliminate hair loss, shedding and thinning hair.
  • TEA TREE MOISTURIZING SHAMPOO FOR DANDRUFF hydrates the scalp, locks in moisture & cleans the hair follicles to encourage healthy hair & skin. It soothes irritated itchy scalp & eliminating flakes.
  • OUR HEAD LICE TREATMENT SHAMPOO naturally eradicates lice. Our alternative chemical free, botanical lice prevention with lavender and rosemary, gets rid of lice in colored, processed and natural hair.
  • SAFE AND EFFECTIVE HYPOALLERGENIC SULFATE FREE tea tree shampoo for sensitive skin nourishes the scalp as it prevents flakes and lice. Our formula will leave your hair feeling rejuvenated and fresh.

Timing matters. If you are wondering how to remove blue hair dye right after applying it, you are lucky because it’s much easier than after several weeks have passed and you are left with stubborn greenish-turquoise tones in your hair that refuse to go away. Generally speaking, fading semi permanent dyes until they become a pastel color is easy, the problem is getting rid of that last shades of very light pink or blue.

Start with washing your hair several times with shampoo (anti-dandruff shampoo works great) and hot water. You should see a lot of color going down the drain only by doing this.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Moroccan Oil Treatment (0.85 Oz.) - Oil for Damaged Hair - Infused with Antioxidant Argan Oil. Moroccan Hair Oil Treatment
  • Argan Infused: this versatile, argan oil-infused hair oil with light formulation can be used for conditioning, styling, and finishing. This hair oil detangles your hair and speeds up blow-drying time
  • Prevents Split Ends: Moroccan oil treatment is non-greasy and fast absorbing. It helps to reduce the occurrence of split ends. Moroccan oil penetrates deep into the hair shaft, strengthening each hair strand and reducing the split ends
  • Hair Care Oil: lightweight formulation of this oil makes it an ideal choice for those looking to tame uncontrollable, frizzy hair. Rich in vitamins, this argan-infused oil smoothens dry, frizzy hair without weighing it down and making it look greasy and flat
  • Nourishment: restores the natural shine and softness of your hair. This anti-oxidant hair oil is strengthened and deeply moisturized from the follicle to the tip. Just apply a little on your skin and get soft, healthy and glowing skin
  • Vitamin Rich Oil: presence of fatty acids in skin care oil is what gives this oil its antioxidant properties which makes it an ideal natural product for use on hair and skin.
SaleBestseller No. 2
Silk18 Natural Hair Conditioner Argan Oil Sulfate Free Treatment for Dry and Damaged Hair Silk Amino Acids Jojoba & Keratin All Hair Types Women & Men & Teens Safe for Color Treated Hair
  • Silk18 conditioner contains more than just a masterful blend of harmless conditioning ingredients to help do the job, Silk18 is formulated with a maximized portion of silk amino acids. These aren't fake chemicals: naturally derived from silk are eighteen different silk amino acids which have marvelous benefits to "behind-the-scenes" of conditioning.
  • Helps with frizziness, dry hair, curly hair, static reduction, and gently conditions to result in soft, shiny, and easy-to-manage hair. Additionally, Silk18 conditioner is safe for color treated hair (sulfate free).
  • Contains a holistic synergy of conditioning agents and natural ingredients to condition all hair types. Signature Silk18 formula contains eighteen different silk amino acids to deliver silky softness and assure moisture retention,, jojoba and argan oils to strengthen, protect, and provide shine, botanical keratin to replenish low keratin levels (a common cause of frizzy hair).
  • No artificial fragrances, coloring, sulfates, or any harmful ingredients. 100% natural vanilla provides a delicious and warm aroma that appeals to both men and women alike. Made in the USA and cruelty-free (not tested on animals).
  • Whereas shampoo cleans the hair, conditioning is essential for both feel and appearance. Maple Holistics Silk18 conditioner is the perfect shower aid and compatible with any shampoo.
Bestseller No. 3
OGX Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Extra Strength Penetrating Oil for Dry/Coarse Hair, (1) 3.3 Ounce Bottle, Paraben Free, Sulfate Free, and Sustainable Ingredients
  • POTENT BLEND: this powerful, potent blend infused with argan oil is perfect for damaged, coarse hair, help bring your smoothness back with just a few healing drops; just apply to damp hair and let dry naturally; with Moroccan argan oil for extra protection
  • SOFTNESS AND STRENGTH: this exotic treatment with Moroccan argan oil, formulated for coarse hair, penetrates, moisturizes, renews & creates softness and strength, protecting your hair from harmful styling heat and UV damage, giving you smooth, sexy tresses
  • DEEP HEALING: deeply heal, smooth and restore luster to damaged, dry and coarse hair; applying OGX Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil will have your hair feeling nourished and renewed so you can have the confidence that only comes from loving your beautiful hair
  • HOW TO USE: apply a small amount to palm, rub hands together, then apply evenly to surface of damp (towel dried) hair working through to ends; easy and effective, use with a moisturizing conditioner for extra softness and shine without the extra weight
  • ROCK WHAT YOU GOT: the hair you have makes you, you; be proud of those locks; here at OGX, unattainable looks don't inspire us, but originality does, that's why we love being different; we approach beauty in our own way, and we hope that you will too

Hot oil treatments are also great to remove semi-permanent hair dye and condition your hair at the same time. You can buy hot oil treatment kits or just applying WARM (not hot, warm, it should be pleasant and not burn your skin) olive or coconut oil, and leaving it on your hair for about 15 minutes. After this, wash your hair again with shampoo and hot water, and most of the dye should be gone.

If you want to help your rainbow hair dye fade faster you can just use hot water and clarifying shampoos regularly. If you are blonde (or have bleached your hair to get unicorn colors) you can also squeeze the juice of a lemon and covering your hair with it for about 10 or 20 minutes. Bonus points if you sit in the sun during this period.

For more stubborn semi-permanent dyes, or colors that need to be gone quickly, you can try a Vitamin C treatment. You can mix crushed vitamin C tablets with dish washing liquid and use that to wash your hair. If you have a sensitive scalp, anti-dandruff shampoo will do the trick as well but it may be slower. This works great for removing semi-permanent dyes that are vegetable based, like Manic Panic and Directions.

SaleBestseller No. 1
NOW Vitamin C Crystals Ascorbic Acid 100% Pure Powder, 8 Ounces
  • Antioxidant Protection
  • 100% Pure Powder
  • 100% Vegetarian and Vegan product
  • Can be combined with other powdered supplements or dissolved in liquid for easy ingestion
SaleBestseller No. 3
Vitamin C Powder 1 lb (16 oz) L-Ascorbic Acid, Antioxidant, Boost Immune System, DIY Skin Care, Eco-Friendly Packaging (Also available in 4 oz, 2 lb, & 5 lb)
  • HIGHEST QUALITY, FOOD & USP PHARMACEUTICAL GRADE, KOSHER, NON GMO. PACKAGED IN THE USA
  • LAB TESTED FOR VERIFICATION & GUARANTEED PURITY
  • EXCELLENT SOURCE OF VITAMIN C: Immune-Boosting Antioxidant Power
  • MAXIMUM POTENCY: Pure L-Ascorbic Acid, The Most Effective Vitamin C Powder on the Market.
  • 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEED

Hair Dye Removers And Bleaches

Many manufacturers of vivid semi-permanent hair colors have released products designed to extract them from hair. Those extractors are not the same ones used for permanent and semi-permanent dyes. They are specific for fashion colors, rainbow colors and other color depositing glosses. Performance may vary, but they can be a good thing to try if your hair is damaged by the bleaching and you can’t get rid of the remnants of a unicorn hair shade.

Bleach can be used to finish removing semi-permanent hair dyes if you want to dye your hair another light color. Otherwise you can use a darker dye on top of the faded dye to achieve a natural brunette or dark blonde (but be careful with the undertones, as you can end up with muddy green hair).

SaleBestseller No. 1
Manic Panic Flash Lightning Hair Bleach Kit 40 Volume.
  • Fast Action
  • Powerful Lift
  • Kit Includes: Dust-Free Bleach Powder 38 grams, 40 Volume Creme Developer 4 ounces, Tint Brush, Gloves, Mixing Tub, Plastic Cap, and Instruction Sheet
  • Note: Gloves and cap are located inside tub
SaleBestseller No. 2
Manic Panic Flash Lightning Bleach 30 Volume Box Kit
  • Fast Action
  • Powerful Lift
  • Kit Comes With Tint Brush, Gloves, and Hair Cap. (Gloves and Cap located inside tub)
  • 30 Volume Box.
  • Misc.

We hope to have answered all your questions about semi-permanent dye, from how often can you dye your hair to how to get hair dye out of hair or how long does semi permanent hair color last, Feel free to ask anything we missed in the comments!

Leave a Reply