Why Does My Hair Dye Keep Bleeding?

Are you tired of hair dye bleeding on your collars, in your shower, down your neck, or on your face? It can be a real pain. The first step in stopping bleeding hair dye is to find out why it's happening and then take it from there. In this article, we'll help you with the "why" of it all and reveal why your hair dye keeps bleeding. We'll then give you tips on how to fix the issue. Let's get right into it!

Your Hair Cuticles are Not Sealed

If your hair dye is bleeding, it's most likely because your hair cuticles are not fully sealed. The cuticle is the outermost layer of the hair, and it's made up of overlapping scales that protect the inner layers of the hair shaft. When these cells are lifted or raised, they allow the dye to seep out.

You Wash Your Hair with Hot Water

Do you loathe cold showers? Unfortunately, we have some bad news for you. Washing your hair with hot water is one of the main reasons why dye bleeds. Hot water opens up the cuticle and allows the dye to escape from the shaft. If you want to avoid dye bleeds, stop taking hot showers altogether or at least rinse your hair with cold water at the end of your shower.

You Use Harsh Chemicals or Sulfates in Your Hair

Shampoos, conditioners, and other hair products containing harsh chemicals can also cause bleeding. Harsh ingredients can strip away the natural oils in your hair and cause the cuticles to lift. To avoid this, look for hair products that are sulfate-free and be gentle when washing your hair. Also, pass on products that contain drying alcohols and salt - these ingredients are known to be dye strippers.

You Used Semi-Permanent Dye

Unlike permanent dyes, semi-permanent dyes do not penetrate the hair shaft and instead sit on top of the hair. This means that they are more likely to bleed when wet (whether the water is hot or cold).  If you dye your hair with a semi-permanent dye and are worried about it bleeding, try using a color-safe shampoo and conditioner and avoid washing your hair for the first 48 hours after dyeing it.

Your Hair is Damaged

Damaged hair is much more likely to bleed than healthy hair. Why? Because damaged hair strands have imperfections (holes, knicks, etc.) along their shaft. And all of these imperfections provide an escape route for dye molecules. Working on the health of your hair should be a top priority if you dye it frequently. Be sure to use a deep conditioner at least once a week, limit your use of heat-styling tools, use a hydrating daily leave-in, and get regular trims.

You Use Heat Styling Tools

Similar to how washing your hair with hot water can cause dye bleeding, using heat styling tools can also lead to hair dye seeping out. The intense heat from these tools opens up the cuticle and allows the dye to escape. If you want to steer clear dye bleeding from hot tools, limit heat styling and use a heat protectant before using any hot tools. 

We hope that you've found all the information you were looking for! Good luck!


Author: Andrea Reyes

Andrea is a mother, wife, writer, and natural hair enthusiast of 15 years. Currently on her natural hair journey, she’s been trying countless products and techniques to understand and embrace her natural hair. She is the creator of NaturallyTextured.com, a new website featuring informative articles that share tips, tricks, and techniques aimed to help others learn to love their hair through proper hair care. She writes with the hope of making hair care easier to understand and implement.

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