Haircare - Hair

Green Shampoo for Red Hair: Remove the Worst Tones

Struggling with unwanted red hair? Or looking to enhance your red hair? Then learn whether green shampoo will work for you.

Written by Amber Belanger
green shampoo for red hair

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Red hair is one of the rarest hair colors. But for some reason, it occurs in dark hair. One way to deal with unwanted red tones is to use green shampoo.

Hair colorists know everything there is to know about color. And their studies conclude that it’s all about the color wheel.

Opposite colors cancel each other out.

That’s why you can use green shampoo to combat red hair.

If you have red hair, and want to preserve it, read more about how green shampoo affects red hair later in this article.

Understanding Red Hair and Green Shampoo

Before you start using green shampoo, you need to know how it works.

Color Wheel Theory

The color wheel is a helpful tool in understanding how colors relate to one another. Colors that sit directly across from each other are considered complementary. When combined, they neutralize each other.

In the case of red hair, green is its complementary color on the wheel. So green removes red.

Neutralizing Red Tones

Over time, dark hair develops unwanted undertones due to factors such as heat styling, environmental damage, or hair dye.

These undertones are often red.

To neutralize these red tones, you can use a green shampoo. The green pigments in the shampoo help counteract the red tones in your hair. This results in a more balanced, natural color.

Green Shampoo vs. Purple Shampoo

You’ve likely heard of purple shampoo. It’s all the craze. But, only for blondes.

Purple shampoos are designed for blondes and those with lighter hair colors, as they work to neutralize yellow and brassy tones.

Green shampoos, on the other hand, are created specifically for red hair and darker hair colors that experience red undertones.

While they share a similar purpose, the difference in color pigments makes them effective for specific hair colors.

What Does Green Shampoo Do to Red-Colored Hair?

Green shampoo is designed specifically to neutralize red tones that may appear in dark brown hair. If you have red-colored hair, it’s important to know that green shampoo is not meant for your hair type.

If you’re looking for something to enhance red hair, check out color-depositing shampoo instead. These deposit red color into your hair, enhancing the red instead of removing it.

This way, you can ensure that your vibrant red color stays put and your hair looks as good as possible.

How to Use Green Shampoo to Get Rid of Red Hair

Using Gloves

Some people prefer to use gloves when handling green shampoo. It can stain your hair, so beware of this.

Following Manufacturer’s Instructions

Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results when using green shampoo:

  1. Typically, you’ll need to wet your hair first.
  2. Then apply the green shampoo. Make sure to massage it into your hair and scalp, just like you would with a regular shampoo.
  3. Let it sit for a few minutes, as the green pigments work to neutralize red tones. Typically 1-5 minutes, depending on your desired outcome and hair type.
  4. Once the time is up, rinse the shampoo out thoroughly and follow up with a conditioner if desired.

Optimal Frequency of Use

For optimal results in neutralizing red tones, use green shampoo regularly. But not every day.

Using green shampoo too frequently may cause your hair to take on a greenish tint, especially when exposed to sunlight or hard water.

Start by using the green shampoo once a week and observe the results.

You can then adjust the frequency based on your needs and the intensity of your red hair tones.

Now that you know how to use green shampoo to neutralize red hair, you’re ready to achieve the perfect, balanced hair color you’ve been aiming for.

In the next section, we’ll cover some alternative ways to do this.

Alternative Methods to Remove Unwanted Tones

The best alternatives to green shampoo are:

  • Color correctors
  • Toning treatments
  • Natural and DIY remedies.

Color Correctors

If green shampoo doesn’t quite give you the results you’re looking for, try a color corrector. These products are specifically designed to counteract unwanted tones in your hair.

For example, if you have orange tones in your hair, try using a violet-based product, as violet neutralizes orange.

Similarly, a blue-based color corrector can tackle brassiness and yellow tones.

Salon Treatments

Sometimes at-home treatments aren’t enough, and that’s okay. Your trusted salon is a reliable option.

Professional hairstylists have experience fixing color issues and can provide specific treatments tailored to your hair color and situation. Don’t be shy about discussing your concerns with your stylist, so they can help you achieve the perfect color.

Natural Remedies

Natural remedies might not be as instantly effective as other methods, but they can still help.

An easy-to-try at-home solution is using vinegar:

  1. Mix one part apple cider vinegar or white vinegar with two parts water.
  2. After shampooing, pour the mixture over your hair.
  3. Leave it for a few minutes
  4. Rinse thoroughly.

It’s essential to be cautious with natural remedies, though, and not over-use them to avoid damaging your hair.


For those who enjoy experimenting, concocting your own hair treatment can be fun and budget-friendly.

To help rid of brassy or yellow tones, mix purple food coloring or dye with your favorite conditioner and leave it in your hair for a few minutes before rinsing.

Be sure to do a strand test before applying it to your entire head, as DIY treatments can yield unpredictable results.

Other Shampoos for Different Hair Colors

In addition to green shampoo for red hair, there are other color-specific shampoos suited for different hair colors:

  • Blue shampoo for brown hair.
  • Purple shampoo for blonde hair
  • Color-depositing shampoos for hues.

These shampoos help maintain and enhance the vibrancy of colored hair.

Blue Shampoo for Brown Hair

Blue shampoos are great for brown and dark hair with cool undertones, as they neutralize unwanted warm tones.

Your hair will have a rich, cool hue that stays vibrant for a longer time. Apply blue shampoo on your brown hair regularly for enhanced color and shine.

Purple Shampoo for Blonde Hair

If you have blonde hair, purple shampoo is your go-to product.

Purple shampoos deposit pigments that help neutralize yellow and brassy tones in blonde and silver hair, giving you a brighter, cooler shade.

Color-Depositing Shampoos for Various Hues

For a variety of other hues, color-depositing shampoos come in handy. Just look for one that matches your hair color.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best green shampoos for red hair removal?

There are many options on the market, but some popular choices include Matrix Total Results Dark Envy Shampoo and Olaplex No. 4 Bond Maintenance™ Shampoo. These products are specifically designed to help remove red tones from your hair.

Where can I purchase green shampoo for my hair?

You can find green shampoos at your local beauty supply store, hair salon, or online retailers like Amazon and Ulta.

How does green shampoo affect red-toned hair?

Green shampoo contains color-correcting pigments that neutralize red tones in the hair, making your color look more vibrant and rich.

Matrix Total Results Dark Envy Shampoo and Olaplex No. 4 Bond Maintenance™ Shampoo are two popular options that cater to red-toned hair. They both contain color-correcting pigments to neutralize the unwanted red hues.

Can you make your own green shampoo at home?

Yes, you can make your own green shampoo by mixing a green food coloring or pigment with a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo. However, it may not be as effective as commercial products, and it’s essential to be cautious about the ingredients you use.

Is Matrix a good brand for green shampoo?

Matrix is a reputable brand in the hair care industry and their Total Results Dark Envy Shampoo is a popular choice among users, especially for those with red-toned hair. It’s designed to neutralize red hues, making it suitable for both color-treated and natural cool brown hair.

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Amber Belanger

Amber is not just a beauty enthusiast. She has spent countless hours doing the nails of her friends, researching the newest studies on personal care, as well as tried and tested numerous hair products. She prides herself on her factuality and luscious hair.