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Should You Wash Your Hair Before Colouring?

Typically, a lot of effort goes into keeping your hair vibrant and fresh when you decide to lighten it up. Many people even change their hair’s appearance and colour regularly to maintain a fresh look. But if you’re new to colouring your hair, then you’ve probably wondered what you need to do before dyeing it.

No need to worry, though; many of us wonder if we should wash our hair before dyeing it, as we fear the negative consequences if we get the decision wrong! That’s why it’s not uncommon to find people who skip shampooing their hair for about two days before the scheduled dyeing. Others, however, don’t give the matter much thought.

Facts On Washing Your Hair Before Dyeing It

Almost everyone nowadays has access to the internet, so it has become a lot easier to get expert opinions on haircare. There are many different practices and beliefs surrounding routines before, during and after hair colouring. We’ve outlined some of the most important ones below to help you decide if you should wash your hair before dyeing it.

You Can Dye Your Hair Even If It’s Dirty

Most people make sure they’re ready for their appointment with their stylist. While some go straight to the salon without making any preparations, the majority wash and clean their hair before the visit; no one wants to be the person who arrives at the salon with messy, smelly hair.

That’s not to say that’s it’s always necessary to wash your hair first. Haircare experts agree that skipping one or two washes before colouring your hair allows natural grease to build up on the scalp. This buildup of oil, along with the colour of the hair dye, helps stop irritation.

The Colour Of Your Hair Matters

Always consider the colour of the dye you plan on using before you go to your stylist. If you washed your hair with a shampoo containing colour-depositing or toning properties before colouring it, then those oily strands wouldn’t make a difference. These formulas and other products you apply to your hair could directly impact the final result of your hair colouring.

If you’re planning on using a lighter-coloured dye, the oil caused by dirty hair can make your hair look a bit bleaker than it is. Most stylists recommend skipping a few washes within a week to get that stunning look. However, you may opt for a few scrubs so you can get that accurate appearance that fits your hair’s natural texture and colour.

It’s Best Not To Wash Hair Before Bleaching

Once you’ve decided on the colour for your hair, do the necessary preparations for it. If you’re going for fantasy colours or light blonde, your stylist will need to do significant bleaching. If this is the case, you can skip washing for a day or two before going to your appointment. Bleach should never irritate your scalp, but it’s best to use the scalp’s natural oil to add another layer of protection to your hair.

Don’t Arrive With Wet Hair For Your Appointment

If a permanent change in hair colour is what you’re after, many of these formulas might require you to have dry hair during your appointment. If that’s your case, make sure that you keep your hair dry, as drying it at the salon will take too much time. Whether you wash your hair or not before your appointment, ensure that your hair is dry when you arrive at the salon.

No Shampoo After Appointment

If you’ve decided upon either a lighter or darker tone for your hair, it’s recommended that you skip the shampoo for a few days. That way, you let the dye penetrate deeply into every strand and allow the new colour to absorb and oxidise. In addition, your hair’s natural oils replenish themselves, making the new colour more vibrant and longer-lasting.


The thought of not washing the hair before dyeing goes back many decades and is backed up by many experts. The right course of action, however, depends on certain key factors. Chief amongst these are the condition of your hair and your choice of its new colouring. If you take these factors into account, your hair’s dyeing outcome may be more successful.

At Vinci Hair Clinic, we offer a wide range of hair restoration treatments to help restore hairlines and thinning hair. If you’re concerned about the condition of your hair, get in touch with us to discuss your options. Book your free consultation with one of our hair specialists today!