Silver Hair Maintenance Guide

Tired of platinum blonde, but not ready to go into full “My Little Pony” territory yet? Silver hair has attitude but it’s serious enough to go to the office. It’s due to be one of the most popular hair trends this year. However, before you take the step it’s worth considering silver hair maintenance and how it fits with your lifestyle.

Silver hair maintenance is not for the faint of heart. If you want to keep your grey mane looking its best it will need work. Silver hair requires toning shampoos, root bleaching every few weeks and lots of TLC for your bleached strands. Worth it? Totally.

Silver Hair Maintenance Tips

The basics of keeping silver hair looking amazing and your hair as healthy as possible are:

  • Use protein and moisturising treatments to keep your bleached hair as healthy as possible. Bleaching to level 10 will cause damage. Even if you use Olaplex. So be kind to your hair.
  • Many people swear by coconut oil for very dehydrated hair. Leave it as an overnight mask before shampooing.
  • Silver hair dye fades fast, so try to avoid daily shampooing. If your hair is just oily but not dirty, dry shampoo can help. Try to wash your hair no more than twice a week if possible.
  • Use a purple or violet color depositing shampoo when you wash your hair to keep yellow at bay.
  • Avoid heat styling when possibly, as it will not only damage your hair but also make the color fade quicker. If you need to, use a good quality heat protection product and a low temperature setting.
  • Mind your roots. Expect to have to touch up your roots every four weeks or so.
  • Once a week use a mix of conditioner and vegetable silver hair dye (such as Manic Panic) to replenish and even your silver hair color.
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Purple Shampoo for Blonde Hair: Sulfate-Free, No Yellow Silver Shampoo to Revitalize Blonde, Bleached, Highlighted or Grey Hair – 8.45Fl.oz/ 250ml
  • Combat Undesirable Yellow, Brassy Tones: Powerful purple shampoo contains intense violet pigments to counteract unwanted yellow hues. Purple toning shampoo is suitable for use on grey, blonde, bleached and highlighted hair for radiant, brighter color
  • Boost Cool Hair Tones: Stronger than traditional blonding shampoos, the vivid violet of silver hair shampoo enhances hair color for ice cool blonde or dazzling silver/ash tones
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  • Sulfate-Free Shampoo: SLS-free and paraben-free, blonde shampoo is formulated with Vitamin B5 derivative to soften hair strands and add shine in natural and color-treated blonde hair
  • Innovative UV Filters: Regular purple shampoo use protects your hair color against fading caused by damaging ultraviolet radiation to maintain your perfect shade of blonde hair
Bestseller No. 2
TIGI Bed Head Dumb Blonde Purple Toning Shampoo, 13.5 Ounce
  • Helps gently cleanse blondes while refreshing and conditioning hair
  • Contains purple toning pigment to neutralize brassy tones in blondes and enhance cool tones
  • Blended with Polyquaternium 10 to prevent and control frizz, static and flyaway

Root Maintenance With Silver Hair

Silver hair rooted with dark can look great, but if that’s not your cup of tea expect to touch up your roots monthly. If your natural hair color is warm or you want a full snow princess effect with no roots, then you may even need to do it more often.

In order to dye your hair silver you need to bring your hair to a very pale yellow color (Or hair level 10). This usually requires bleach, and so it damages hair to some degree, depending on your original hair color. Dark hair that has been colored before may require several bleaching sessions. It is not unheard of people spending 18h at a saloon to achieve that white blonde hair of their dreams.

On the bright side, touching up your roots means only working on virgin hair and not applying bleach to your entire head. This makes the process considerably quicker. If you have a lot of experience bleaching your hair, you can do it yourself but it’s not exactly an easy process. Definitely not one for a bleach novice!

You will need to apply bleach ONLY to the roots, which will lighten up very quickly because of the heat of your scalp. This is very important to keep in mind, because you can end up with hair that is different shades of yellow and that can be difficult to tone. If you have long hair that is difficult to section, get a friend or family member to help.

Bestseller No. 1
Pulp Riot Semi-Permanent Hair Color for Unisex, Mercury Silver, 4 Ounce
  • Dermatologist tested
  • 100 percent gray coverage
  • This is a rich, long-lasting color
Bestseller No. 2
Professional Semi Permanent Pastel Hair Dye. Conditioning Hair Toner, Easy Application, Lasts up to 10 Washes by Shades London (SILVER LINING)
  • No ammonia or Peroxide, Vegan friendly, No animals testing
  • Semi Permanent Hair Conditioning Toner that adds shine and body
  • Last up to 10 washes, gloves included
  • Easy application - leave for 10-15 minutes, and then rinse out product
  • Made in England by British Salon Professionals

Once your roots have lifted to pale yellow, it is time to tone them to silver. You can do an all over tone to refresh the color of your hair. Or you can leave your roots darker, and use a charcoal toner such as Pravana Vivids Silver + Pravana Black N1 to nicely blend into the grey. This is more forgiving than full on silver roots, particularly if your natural regrowth is dark.

This video shows a lavender silver hair with darker roots.

Silver Hair Vs White Hair

White hair is an extreme version of platinum hair. It is not actually just hair bleached to the maximum level 10, as that would be a very pale yellow, but it starts there. You will need to use violet toner to keep the yellow tones at bay, but if you use too much ashy toner you will start veering into silver hair territory.

Unlike with silver hair, if you want white hair to look good you need to make sure it’s even. It may take a few rounds of purple toner until you balance your newly bleached roots with your ends, but it’s worth it so it looks professional.

Manic Panic’s Virgin Snow, Wella’s White Lady, and Directions white toner are three white hair toners that work really well to achieve white hair on level 10 hair.

Bestseller No. 1
Manic Panic Semi-Permanent Hair Color Cream 4 Ounce (Virgin Snow)
  • Fades gradually with each shampoo
  • Ready to use, no mixing required
  • Gives highlights to darker hair
  • Vibrant, electric colors
Bestseller No. 2
StarGazer Semi Permanent Hair Color - WHITE - Amonia Free Hair Dye Includes Gloves
  • StarGazer Semi Permanent Hair Color
  • Amonia Free
  • Includes Gloves
  • 70ml / 2.5 oz

What to Do If Silver Hair Looks Yellow

Silver hair maintenace is all about keeping the yellow at bay. Yellowish undertones on grey hair just look dirty, but they are easy to remove with the right products.

To start with, once your hair is level 10 you need to tone it with a violet toner. Wella T18 White Lady is a classic for a reason, and you can use Wella Color Charm Liquid #050 Cooling Violet afterwards to create a silver/grey effect. If your hair is not light enough this won’t work, so make sure you are at a very pale yellow first.

If your silver hair looks yellow after a few washes, this is usually because the silver dye is washing off your hair. You should use a purple shampoo and conditioner to counteract the warmt tones. This will deposit violet dye on your hair, which is the opposite to yellow on the color wheel and will cancel it out.

Other reasons why silver hair can turn yellow are environmental factors such as:

Also, chlorine from the swimming pool can turn your hair yellow… or green! So avoid swimming pools or use products such as this one to act as a barrier between your hair and the water.

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Joico Color Balance Purple Shampoo Plus Conditioner 10.1 oz.
  • Joico color balance purple shampoo 10.1 fl. oz. + purple conditioner 10.1 oz. duo
  • The shampoo and conditioner preserves 89 percent of your precious hair-color
  • Preserves 89 percent of hair color for up to eight full weeks
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ArtNaturals - Color Balance and Tone Purple - Shampoo and Conditioner Set - (2x 16 Fl Oz 473ml)
  • ArtNaturals Purple Shampoo and Conditioner Set is specially formulated to protect, balance and tone bleached blonde and silver-colored hair.
  • Duo contains coconut extract to help repair split ends, and promotes glossy, re-conditioned hair. Infused with Vitamin E to stimulate scalp circulation, help repair damaged hair follicles, and encourage healthy new growth.
  • hampoo's surfactant-free formula will not strip hair of color and is natural.
  • The Conditioner is a non-stripping formula that helps to deeply moisturize and stimulate scalp circulation as it locks in color on color-treated hair.
  • The Shampoo's formula helps neutralize brassiness, hydrates, and revitalizes dry, brittle hair.

Help! Silver Hair Turned Blue (or Purple)

This is the opposite situation to silver hair turning yellow. It’s usually caused by excessive toning or overuse of color depositing shampoos. Thankfully, this is easy to fix: This kind of products usually wash out from the hair pretty quickly.

If you are unhappy with your silver hair, semi permanent vegetable dyes such as Manic Panic and Directions are great. They wash out after a few weeks, but will cover excessive purple or violet tones in the hair without adding warmth.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Pravana ChromaSilk Vivids (Silver) 3 fl oz
  • Paraben-Free.
  • Zero Phthalates.
  • No animal testing.
  • Free from MEA and DEA.
Bestseller No. 2
Sparks Complete Color Kit, Starbright Silver
  • HEALTHY BEAUTIFUL HAIR: Sparks conditions as it colors, leaving the hair healthier looking than ever before. You get the color that you want with hair that you'll love. It's long lasting bright hair color that stays bold and fun for as long as you need it.
  • ENDLESS COLOR CREATIVITY: Sparks Hair Color is designed to be able to be mixed with other Sparks Colors. You can create all kinds of new colors with the 19 different shades, plus a crystal clear that can give you different levels of pastel on any color!
  • BE BRIGHT, BE BOLD: Find the silver lining in one of our newest colors yet! Starbright Silver is a highly dimensional, lavender-toned silver that's great for all over color or added for a peekaboo effect with any SPARKS vibrant shades. For best results, apply to hair that has been pre-lightened to a level 10 blonde. In simplier terms: the hair should be a really pale yellow color. For maximum color vibrancy and durability, pre-lighten hair with SPARKS HIDRACOLOR Powder Lightener and Creme Developer.
  • SUPER EASY AND CONVENIENT: Sparks hair color is very simple to apply. There is no activator or developer needed. It is deposit only hair color. The added conditioning even makes it easier to maintain and keep healthy, bright, and beautiful.
  • SPARKS ENCOMPASSES LOVE AND COLOR: To capture your personality through creative color designs, our SPARKS Bright Haircolor has become the leader in creative hair color, with long lasting results. SPARKS HIDRACOLOR is our most recent launch, a long lasting, exceptional gray coverage, permanent or demi-permanent hair color.

You don’t want to add a yellow dye to the mix (warm or golden colors) because you can end up with either muddy or greenish hair that has the worst of both worlds.

Silver Grey Hair Inspiration

Just to finish, I wanted to add that there are many different styles of silver hair that suit a variety of lifestyles and personalities.

As you can see, grey and silver hair is a trends that has as many variations as any other hair color. Depending on which one you choose, silver hair maintenance will be more or less difficult, but it’s totally worth it. Are you ready to dye your hair silver?

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