Haircare - Hair

How to Use Purple Shampoo On Highlights

Highlight your highlights with purple shampoo.

Written by Amber Belanger
Purple shampoo on and for highlights

We may earn a commission for products sold through links on this page. Learn more.

Have you ever wondered how to keep your highlights looking fresh and vibrant? Well, you’re in luck.

Purple shampoo is a fantastic product designed to maintain the cool, bright tones in blonde or light brown highlights.

Using purple shampoo is fairly simple, but there are a few tips and tricks you need to know to get the most out of it.

Lets dive into how to use purple shampoo on highlights.

Understanding Purple Shampoo

Before you start using purple shampoo, you should know what it’s all about and how it works.

If you already know this, you can skip it.

Purpose of Purple Shampoo

Purple shampoo is a tool to help maintain the perfect shade of blonde or highlighted hair.

Its primary purpose is to neutralize yellow or brassy tones that can appear over time due to various factors like sun exposure, water elements, or fading.

By using purple shampoo, you can ensure that your hair continues to look fresh, vibrant, and true to the color you intended.

How It Works

The magic of purple shampoo comes from its unique purple pigment.

When you wash your hair with this shampoo, the purple pigment works to counteract any yellow or brassiness that might be present in your blonde or highlighted hair.

Since purple is the opposite of yellow on the color wheel, these two colors cancel each other out.

Remember, purple shampoo is designed to maintain the color of your blonde or highlighted hair. It is not designed to color.

How Purple Shampoo Effects Highlights

When you have blonde or light brown highlights, they can sometimes develop unwanted yellow or brassy tones. This is what purple shampoo is for.

The main effects of purple shampoo on highlights are:

  • Neutralizes yellow or brassy tones in the hair
  • Leaves a brighter and cooler tint to blonde highlights
  • Maintains desired color balance in your highlights
  • Should be used in moderation to avoid an overly cool or grayish tone.

Remember, purple shampoo is designed for people with blonde to light brown highlights or natural hair with yellow tones. It’s not recommended for people with darker hair or redheads, as it will not have the same effect.

How to Use Purple Shampoo On Highlights

There are four steps to using purple shampoo:

  1. Preparation
  2. Application
  3. Leave-in time
  4. Rinsing & Conditioning

But before you start using purple shampoo, you should now two things: how often to use it, and how long to leave it in.

Optimal Frequency

To maintain the vibrancy and coolness of your highlights, using purple shampoo should be part of your regular hair care routine.

It is advised to use purple shampoo once or twice a week depending on your hair’s needs and how brassy your highlights appear.

Initially, you may start using it once a week and then increase the frequency if required.


When using purple shampoo, make sure to leave it on the hair for an adequate amount of time for optimal results. The recommended duration is typically between 5-10 minutes, but this can vary depending on your hair, brassiness, and how potent the product is.

If your hair is particularly stubborn or prone to brassiness, you may leave the shampoo on a bit longer.

Keep in mind that overusing purple shampoo can cause unwanted violet stains.

Always monitor, adjust the duration and frequency accordingly, and consult with your colorist if needed.

Step 1: Preparing Your Hair

Before using purple shampoo, make sure your hair is wet and has been thoroughly rinsed of any previous products.

You may also use a clarifying shampoo before applying purple shampoo to ensure your hair is free of any residue, making the purple shampoo more effective.

Step 2: Applying Purple Shampoo

Pour a quarter-sized amount of purple shampoo into your hand, enough to cover your highlights.

Apply the shampoo directly to your highlighted areas, focusing on the brassiest parts.

Distribute it evenly through your hair and work up a lather using your fingers.

Step 3: Leave It In

As mentioned earlier, leave the shampoo on your hair for 5-10 minutes. You might want to set a timer to ensure you don’t leave it on for too long.

It’s important to give the product enough time to work its magic, but not overdo it to avoid unwanted results.

Step 4: Rinsing and Conditioning

Thoroughly rinse the purple shampoo from your hair, ensuring that no traces of the product are left behind. After rinsing, apply a moisturizing conditioner to your hair to add moisture and keep it soft and healthy.

Highlights In Different Colored Hair

Purple shampoo affects different hair colors in different ways.

As it’s designed for blonde hair, it has the biggest effect when used in this hair color. The same goes for highlights.

If you have darker hair, with darker highlights, you’ll see a lesser effect than lighter hair.

Here’s how purple shampoo affects different hair colors with highlights.

Hair ColorType of HighlightsRecommended Shampoo
BlondeLight-colored highlightsPurple shampoo
BrownLight-colored highlights with yellow tonesPurple shampoo
BrownLight-colored highlights with orange or reddish tonesBlue shampoo
BlackLight-colored highlights with yellow or brassy tonesPurple shampoo (applied only to highlighted areas)
BlackDark highlights or no highlights presentNot recommended to use purple shampoo

Purple Shampoo In Blonde Hair With Highlights

If you have blonde hair with highlights, purple shampoo is perfect for you.

The main reason for using purple shampoo is to eliminate unwanted yellow tones in your hair that can occur over time.

To use it, simply apply a sufficient amount of purple shampoo to wet hair, focusing on the highlighted areas. Leave it on for a few minutes and then rinse thoroughly.

Do this once a week or every other week to maintain your desired blonde shade. Just like that, your blonde highlights will stay cooler and more vibrant.

Purple Shampoo In Brown Hair With Highlights

For those with brown hair and light-colored highlights, purple shampoo can also be helpful.

It can neutralize brassy tones, especially in your highlights, by targeting yellow hues in your hair.

However, if you have more orange or reddish tones in your brown hair, a blue shampoo might be a better choice.

When using purple shampoo for brown hair with highlights, apply to wet hair and focus specifically on the highlighted areas. Let it sit for a few minutes and rinse out thoroughly.

Repeat this process once a week or as needed.

Purple Shampoo In Black Hair With Highlights

If you have black hair with light-colored highlights, such as caramel, honey, or any other light shade, purple shampoo can work for you too.

But if your hair is too dark, there’s no reason to use the shampoo. It won’t do anything, except stain your hair or dry it out.

Using purple shampoo can help remove the yellowish or brassy tones in your highlights, keeping them looking fresh and vibrant.

To use the purple shampoo for black hair with light highlights, wet your hair, apply the shampoo to the highlighted parts, and let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing out.

Do this once a week or as needed to maintain the desired tone of your highlights.

Remember, it’s essential to apply the product only to the highlighted areas to avoid any unwanted effects on your natural black hair color.

Additional Considerations

Besides using the shampoo correctly, there are some things to consider:

  • Choosing the right product for your hair.
  • Avoiding overuse
  • Other mistakes

Choosing the Right Purple Shampoo

When you’re looking to buy purple shampoo, it’s important to find the right one for your hair type and the specific tone you want to maintain. Keep in mind that different purple shampoos have various strengths of purple pigments.

For more severe brassiness, choose a shampoo with a darker purple hue, whereas a lighter purple option works better for a subtle effect.

Make sure to read the label and consult with a professional colorist if you’re unsure which shampoo is the best for you.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Purple shampoo is not without pitfalls. Here are some of the things you want to avoid.


It’s essential not to use purple shampoo too often, as it can lead to over-toned or dull hair.

Generally, using it once or twice a week would be sufficient for maintaining your desired hair color.

Leaving It on for Too Long

Purple shampoo is not meant to be left on your hair for an extended period of time. Typically, you should let it sit for 3-5 minutes before rinsing thoroughly with cool water.

It’s recommended to follow the instructions provided on the shampoo bottle to avoid unwanted hair color changes.

Uneven Distribution

Correct application is crucial to get the best results. Work the shampoo evenly through your hair, focusing on the areas with the most brassiness.

Use a wide-tooth comb after applying the shampoo to ensure even distribution. This way, you can avoid uneven color results in your hair.

Maintaining Highlights

Complementary Hair Care Products

To keep your highlights looking fresh, purple shampoo is great. But you also need to take care of your hair health. Here, a conditioner is great.

Remember, when choosing a conditioner, always opt for a color-safe and hydrating formula, as it’ll help prevent fading and restore any dryness caused by the highlighting process.

Tips for Keeping Highlights Vibrant

Here are some easy-to-follow tips to keep your highlights looking vibrant and healthy:

  • Wash your hair less frequently: Overwashing can lead to color fading, so try to only wash your hair every two to three days.
  • Use lukewarm or cold water: Hot water can strip your hair of natural oils and lead to color fading. Stick to lukewarm or cold water to keep your highlights vibrant.
  • Protect your hair from the sun: Sun exposure can cause your highlights to fade and your hair to become dry. Use a UV protection spray or wear a hat when you’re out in the sun.
  • Deep condition regularly: A weekly deep conditioning treatment will keep your hair moisturized and help maintain the health of your highlighted hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long to leave purple shampoo on?

It is important not to leave purple shampoo on your hair for too long. Generally, you should leave it on for about 3-5 minutes. However, each product is different, so follow the instructions on the bottle carefully. If it is your first time using purple shampoo, start with a shorter time and adjust as needed.

Toning highlights with purple shampoo?

Purple shampoo is great for toning highlights. It helps neutralize brassy and yellow tones by depositing a small amount of purple pigment onto your hair. To do this, simply apply the shampoo to your wet hair, massage it in, and rinse it out after 3-5 minutes. You’ll notice a cooler, more vibrant shade to your highlights.

Does purple shampoo lighten or darken?

Purple shampoo does not lighten or darken your hair. Its main purpose is to neutralize unwanted tones in your hair. However, it can make your highlights appear cooler and more vibrant, giving the illusion of a lighter shade.

Using purple shampoo with regular shampoo?

For the best results, use purple shampoo only once or twice a week. On other days, use your regular shampoo. Purple shampoo can be drying, so it’s essential to maintain a balance between using it and using a moisturizing shampoo.

How often to use purple shampoo?

Using purple shampoo once or twice a week is usually enough to maintain a cool tone in your highlights. Overusing purple shampoo can lead to over-toning your hair, which could result in a dull or purplish tint. Give your hair a break between purple shampoo uses to prevent this from happening.

Applying purple shampoo on dry hair?

Applying purple shampoo on dry hair can provide a more intense toning effect. If your hair is very brassy or you want stronger results, you can try using purple shampoo on dry hair. However, be cautious with this method, as it can also result in over-toning. Make sure to watch the time and rinse thoroughly, and always follow up with a good conditioner to prevent dryness.

Photo of author

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.