There are five major hair colors: black, brown, blond, white/gray, and red.
All of these can develop unwanted undertones. But depending on your hair color, the color of the undertones vary.
Brown hair develops orange undertones, while blonde hair develops yellow undertones.
This is why blue shampoo isn’t for everyone. It only works to combat specific unwanted colors.
So, should you use blue shampoo, or should you go for something else?
Blue Shampoo Basics
Blue shampoo is a hair care product designed to neutralize brassy tones in your hair. It contains blue pigments that work according to the principles of color theory.
When your hair turns brassy – think orange – blue helps to counteract those unwanted hues. This is because blue is opposite to orange on the color wheel.
Who Should Use Blue Shampoo?
There are two groups of people who will benefits the most from blue shampoo:
- Brunettes with orange/brassy undertones.
- People with color-treated hair with warm undertones.
That’s not to say that other hair colors won’t benefit. But the effect won’t be as noticable. And, there may be better products (more about that later).
Brunettes with Orange Undertones
If you’re a brunette with orange or brassy undertones in your hair, blue shampoo is quite beneficial for you. This is because blue shampoo is designed to neutralize orange and brassy tones.
As you use blue shampoo, it deposits blue-violet pigments into your hair. This balances out the warmer tones and gives your hair a more cool and neutral appearance.
Read more: How Blue Shampoo Works on Brown Hair
Lightened and Color-Treated Hair
Blue shampoo is also ideal for those with lightened or color-treated hair, specifically if you have natural brown hair.
If you’ve added highlights, balayage, ombré, or gone through another lightening process, you’re more susceptible to brassy or orange tones. Blue shampoo helps maintain the color you’re trying to achieve.
Whether it’s a caramel or ash brown color, it works.
How Blue Shampoo Works on All Hair Types
Now that you know what blue shampoo does, it’s time to dive into how it affects different hair colors and types.
Below, you can read about all the hair colors, and the recommended shampoos for each.
|Blue shampoo (may not be necessary)
|Blue shampoo (limited use)
|Blue shampoo (limited use)
The recommended shampoos are general guidelines and individual results can vary. It’s always a good idea to consult with a hair professional for personalized advice based on your specific hair type and desired outcome.
Blue Shampoo on Brown Hair
Blue shampoo works effectively on brown hair, especially for those with unwanted red or orange tones. It helps neutralize these tones, as blue is the opposite color of orange on the color wheel.
If you have light brown hair with highlights or balayage, blue shampoo can maintain the cool, ashy tones in your hair, while keeping the brassiness at bay.
Blue Shampoo on Blonde Hair
Blue-based toning shampoos are designed for brunettes. Naturally, blue shampoo is not recommended for blondes. This is because blondes develops yellow undertones, not orange.
For blonde hair, it’s better to go with a purple shampoo. You will see much better results when trying to counteract the yellow tones.
Blue Shampoo on Gray Hair
Gray hair is in the same boat as blondes. It’s a lighter hair color, so gray hair tends to develop yellow or golden undertones.
As with blonde hair, a purple shampoo will do you better than a blue shampoo if you have gray hair.
Blue Shampoo on Black Hair
When it comes to black hair, blue shampoo can work. But it’s not always necessary. Blue shampoo is formulated to counteract orange and red tones. These are more commonly found in lighter hair colors.
Since black hair often lacks these warm undertones, blue shampoo may not yield significant results.
Blue Shampoo on Red Hair
Blue shampoo is not recommended for red hair, as it may cancel out the vibrant tones that you want to maintain in your red color.
Instead, choose a color shampoo instead of blue shampoo for red hair to maintain the vibrancy and shine.
Blue Shampoo on Colored Hair
For colored hair, particularly in cooler shades like blue, green, or purple, blue shampoo can help prolong the color.
It’s important to remember that overuse of blue shampoo on colored hair might result in a blueish hue, so limit its use to once a week at most.
Blue Shampoo on Lightened Hair
If you have lightened your hair through highlighting, balayage, or ombré techniques, blue shampoo can help. It will maintain the cool tones and keep your hair from looking brassy or too warm.
It’s essential to use blue shampoo only as needed, typically once a week, to avoid any color alteration in your lightened hair.
Blue vs. Purple Shampoo
Both blue and purple shampoos are designed to help maintain the color of your hair and neutralize any unwanted tones.
To understand the difference between the two, look at the color wheel. Violet is directly across from yellow, while blue is across from orange.
This explains why blue and purple shampoos target different hair tones.
Purple Shampoo: For Yellow Tones
Purple shampoo is perfect for you if your hair has yellow tones. It works by using violet pigments to neutralize these yellow tones, making blonde or light-colored hair appear brighter and ashier.
Blue Shampoo: For Orange and Brassy Tones
Blue shampoo, on the other hand, focuses on neutralizing orange and brassy tones. It is more suitable for brunette or darker hair as these colors tend to have orange undertones.
The blue pigments in the shampoo cool down these warm tones, keeping your hair looking vibrant and multi-dimensional.
The Right Shampoo for You
To decide which shampoo is better for you, take a look at your hair. Do you have more yellow or orange tones.
If you notice that your hair has more yellow hues, then purple shampoo would be a better choice for you.
If your hair has orange or brassy tones, then blue shampoo will be more effective in maintaining your hair color.
Using Shampoos in Combination
Remember that these shampoos can be used instead of or in addition to your regular shampoo. You can try adding a small amount of blue or purple shampoo to your regular shampoo for a more gentle and consistent effect.
Don’t forget to follow the instructions for each product and consult with a hairstylist for professional advice if necessary.
Frequently Asked Questions
What hair colors benefit from blue shampoo?
Blue shampoo is best for people with color-treated hair, especially those with brunette, dark brown, or black hair. It can help neutralize brassiness and maintain the true tone of your hair color.
Is blue shampoo suitable for brunettes?
Yes, blue shampoo is specifically designed for brunettes to help prolong the vibrancy of their hair color and tone down any unwanted brassiness.
Can bleached hair be treated with blue shampoo?
Although blue shampoo is more suitable for brunettes, it can be used on bleached hair as well. However, a purple shampoo might be a better option for bleached or blonde hair to neutralize yellow tones.
Are blue shampoo and conditioner recommended together?
Using a blue shampoo and conditioner together can provide optimal results in maintaining the desired hair color and tone. While blue shampoo neutralizes brassiness, a matching conditioner can hydrate and protect your hair color.
Is blue shampoo damaging to hair?
No, blue shampoo is not damaging to your hair when used correctly. Since it might be used less frequently than your regular shampoo (typically once a week), your hair won’t be exposed to its color-depositing pigments too often.
Can blue shampoo help neutralize orange tones?
Yes, blue shampoo is designed to neutralize unwanted orange and red tones in the hair. The blue-violet pigments in the shampoo can diminish brassiness and ensure your hair color stays fresh and vibrant.