Hair - Haircare

Blue Shampoo: What Is It & What Does It Do?

Everything you need to know about blue shampoo, what it does, and how it works.

Written by Amber Belanger
what does blue shampoo do

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The world of shampoos is big and complicated. We have cleansing, moisturizing, color-correcting, and so on.

And then we have toning shampoos, such as blue shampoo.

Toning shampoo is special, as its main focus isn’t actually to keep your hair clean. Instead, it is used to keep your hair color clean.

In other words, it removes unwanted color from your hair, much like a normal shampoo removes dirt.

So, how does it work? Lets find out.

What Is Blue Shampoo?

Blue shampoo is a hair care product designed for brunette and color-treated hair. It contains blue-violet pigments that help neutralize brassy tones in your hair.

If you’re familiar with purple shampoo, blue shampoo is the same. But where purple shampoo is for blonde hair, blue shampoo is for brown hair.

This shampoo is ideal for maintaining your hair color’s vibrancy and shine. As you wash your hair, the blue pigments deposit and combat warm undertones.

The blue process keeps your hair looking fresh and dazzling.

What Does Blue Shampoo Do?

Blue shampoo is a hair care product that helps neutralize orange and brassy tones in lightened or colored brown hair.

When you lighten or color your hair, warm tones might be exposed, causing unwanted brassiness. You can then use blue shampoo to eliminate these tones.

In essence, blue shampoo helps you maintain your desired hair color.

Blue Pigments

Blue shampoo contains blue-violet pigments that are deposited into your hair when you shampoo. The pigments are what makes the shampoo work.

This works by following the same principle as the color wheel. Opposite colors cancel each other out.

Remember, blue shampoo is not recommended for blondes. These hair colors tend to develop yellow undertones, not orange..

What Does Blue Shampoo Not Do?

Blue shampoo is an excellent product for reducing brassy tones in hair.

But, there are a few things it doesn’t do:

  • It’s not for all hair types.
  • It’s not a hair dye.
  • It does (usually) not repair damaged hair.
  • It’s not a replacement for your normal shampoo.

Keep in mind that while blue shampoo offers various benefits, it can’t solve all your hair color issues.

1. Not Suitable for Golden or Yellow-based Blondes

Blue shampoo is not designed for blondes or light-colored hair. If you have light hair, it’s better to use a purple shampoo. Blue shampoo won’t have the same great effect.

Stick to products specifically created for your hair tone for the best results.

2. Does Not Act as Hair Dye or Color Treatment

Blue shampoo is not hair dye or a color treatment. While it helps neutralize brassy tones and orange hair, it won’t drastically change your hair color. If you want to change your hair color, contact a professional colorist.

3. Does Not Repair Damaged Hair

Blue shampoo will not repair damaged hair. Its primary focus is to neutralize unwanted tones, but it may not provide the moisture for dry or damaged hair. Incorporate a conditioner or hair mask into your routine for hydration.

4. Not a Replacement for Regular Shampoo

Blue shampoo is not a replacement for your regular shampoo. It’s best to use it only once a week to avoid over-toning or turning your hair blue. Continue using your regular shampoo and conditioner to maintain clean and conditioned hair.

How Does Blue Shampoo Work?

Blue shampoo works by using the principles of color wheel theory. When your hair has brassy or orange tones, blue pigments will help neutralize these unwanted colors.

This is because blue and orange are opposite on the color wheel. They counteract each other.

color wheel

Similarly, purple pigments in purple shampoos work to neutralize yellow undertones. This is because purple is opposite to yellow on the color wheel.

When you use blue shampoo, these pigments are deposited into your hair. This corrects your hair color.

Additionally, these shampoos may also add shine to your hair, improving its overall appearance.

Who Is Blue Shampoo Made For?

Blue shampoo is for lightened and color-treated brown hair. It can work for natural brown hair as well. If you have red, orange, or brassy tones in your hair after treatment, blue shampoo may be helpful.

If you have lighter hair (gray, blonde, or white) go with a purple shampoo.

Blue Shampoo vs. Purple Shampoo

When it comes to maintaining your hair color, you’ve probably heard about blue and purple shampoos. But what’s the difference between the two, and which one should you use?

Don’t worry; it’s quite simple.

Here’s a quick summary to help you remember:

  • Blue Shampoo: Best for brunette or darker hair with orange and brassy tones.
  • Purple Shampoo: Ideal for blonde or light-colored hair with yellow tones.

Brown vs. Blonde

Blue shampoo is designed specifically for brunette or darker hair with orange and brassy tones.

On the other hand, purple shampoo works best for blonde or light-colored hair that has started to show yellow tones.

Blue vs. Purple Pigments

The reason blue and purple shampoos work differently is because of the color wheel. Colors opposite each other on the wheel can neutralize each other.

Since blue is across from orange, blue shampoo works for darker hair with brassy tones. Purple is across from yellow, so purple shampoo is effective for blonde hair with yellow undertones.+

So, if you have blonde hair or highlights, you’ll want to use purple shampoo to fight those yellow tones. Your hair will stay bright and fresh. If your hair is darker and you’re dealing with orange or brassy tones, blue shampoo will be your best friend.

Situations That Benefit from Blue Shampoo

Blue shampoo is not always the way to go. So here’s how to know, when you should use it:

  • On lightened and highlighted hair
  • If you experience unwanted orange tones
  • To maintain a cooler shade
  • On natural brown hair with unwanted tones

Lightened and Highlighted Hair

Blue shampoo is beneficial for you if you have bleached, lightened, or highlighted brown hair. This includes balayage or ombré hair. It neutralizes undesirable warm tones, red tones, or brassiness that can appear in the hair after treatment.

Counteracting Unwanted Tones

Blue shampoo acts as a toning shampoo by depositing blue-violet pigments onto the hair strands. So if you see unwanted tones, use blue shampoo.

Maintaining Cooler Shades

By using blue shampoo once a week, you can maintain your hair color as best as possible. This helps in preventing the color from fading into warmer tones.

Natural Brunette Hair

Even individuals with natural brunette hair can benefit from using blue shampoo. Although the effect may not be as noticeable, blue shampoo can still help maintain a more natural and cooler tone.

How to Use Blue Shampoo

Here’s how to use blue shampoo:

  1. Wet your hair: Start by wetting your hair as you usually would before shampooing.
  2. Apply blue shampoo: Apply some blue shampoo to your hair, working it in gently to ensure even coverage.
  3. Leave it in: Let the shampoo sit in your hair for a few minutes to allow the blue-violet pigments to work their magic on the brassy tones.
  4. Rinse: Rinse your hair thoroughly to remove the shampoo and reveal your refreshed, brass-free hair color.

For a more in-depth guide, or for specific cases, check out this article on how to use blue shampoo.

It’s important not to leave the shampoo for too long. This can result in dry hair or slight blue stains.

How Often to Use Toning Shampoo

Remember, blue shampoo is different from regular shampoo. It’s part of a category called toning shampoos.

Since blue shampoo contains color-depositing agents, you don’t need to use it every day. In fact, using it once a week is enough to keep those brassiness away.

Use With Conditioner

To make your experience even better, you can pair blue shampoo with a blue conditioner.

This duo works great together to get rid of any remaining warmth. It also gives your hair that fresh-from-the-salon look, even weeks after your last hair appointment.

How to Pick the Best Blue Shampoo

When choosing the perfect blue shampoo for your hair, there are a few important factors to keep in mind:

  • Hair type and color
  • Sulfates
  • Cleansing performance
  • Reputation
  • Ask a professional

Hair Type and Color

Consider your hair type and color. Blue shampoo is ideal for brown hair with warm undertones. If that’s not you, look for a better product for your hair.

Sulfate-Free Formula

Remember to look for a sulfate-free option. Sulfate-free shampoos are gentler on both your hair and the environment. They can also lessen the risk of color fading or irritation on your scalp.

Gentle Cleansing

Think about the cleansing performance. A good blue shampoo should cleanse your hair gently, without stripping away natural oils or leaving residue.

Reputation of the Brand

Consider the reputation of the brand and its products. Brands with great reviews make greater products. It doesn’t have to be a big brand, as long as they know, what they’re doing.

Recommendations and Personal Experience

Don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from friends, family, or your hairstylist. They might have firsthand experience with blue shampoos and can suggest a product that works well.

Integrating Blue Shampoo into Your Hair Care Routine

Integrating blue shampoo into your hair care routine can have several benefits. Here’s how to do it for the best results.

Use Sparingly

To avoid overuse and potential discoloration, it’s best to use blue shampoo once a week at most. Before applying the blue shampoo, wet and cleanse your hair with your regular shampoo.

Focus on Problem Areas

Pay attention to areas where you notice brassy color or unwanted warm tones, especially near the roots or around your face. Apply the blue shampoo to these specific areas.

Follow Up with Blue Conditioner

For optimal results, consider using a blue conditioner. This will help lock in moisture, further reduce brassiness, and leave your hair soft and manageable.

Don’t Replace Your Current Routine

Incorporating blue shampoo into your hair care routine is meant to complement your usual maintenance practices. Not replace them entirely.

Continue performing regular root touch-ups, using appropriate hair masks, and getting conventional highlights as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does blue shampoo differ from purple shampoo?

Blue shampoo contains blue-violet pigments, while purple shampoo has purple pigments. The main difference between them is the hair colors they target. Blue shampoo works best for brown and bronde hair with brassy tones, whereas purple shampoo is used for light-colored hair like blonde and silver.

What are the benefits of using blue shampoo and conditioner?

Using blue shampoo and conditioner can help neutralize the warm, brassy tones in your hair. It works by depositing blue pigments onto your hair with each wash, counteracting the underlying warm tones. This helps your color-treated hair look fresher and more natural for a longer time between salon visits.

Can blue shampoo be used on different hair colors?

Yes, blue shampoo can be used on various hair colors, but it’s most effective on brown and bronde hair. People with darker shades of blonde might also find blue shampoo helpful for reducing brassiness. However, if you have light blonde or silver hair, purple shampoo is the better option for your needs.

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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.