Can Coloring Your Hair Change the Texture of It?

Have your once full-bodied locks turned into thinner strands since you started coloring your hair? Or have your beachy waves become straighter? When a change in your hair texture isn't due to the normal aging process or certain medications, your standing salon appointment may be to blame.

Whether it's a single process or routine highlights, the chemicals that give your hair a new look can also be stripping it of essential nutrients that keep it full of body and natural texture. "It changes from person to person depending on what service they've been getting, but major textural changes in your hair can likely show up after years of coloring, especially if you are someone who likes to change your color up quite a bit," says Cutler colorist Rachel Bodt. Celebrity hairstylist Danny Jelaca adds, "Overlapping permanent color time and time again can blast the hair cuticle open and make hair more porous and weak, which makes it lose its vitality." It also changes how your hair lays. "I find that it happens more often with highlights because the hair is really being forced open, and that can change the texture," says Bodt. With a single process, your hair isn't being pushed as far, but it can still cause changes over time. 

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Something else that's putting stress on your hair? Swapping salons. "Jumping from colorist to colorist results in layers of all different processes, which can be harsh on your hair," says Bodt. "Sticking with the same colorist allows them to pick up the same pieces from last time, which prevents overlapping and overprocessing. They will build up a sense for your hair over time and can be mindful of what it needs." 

If you are experiencing these changes, a newer type of in-salon treatment called Olaplex can be added to your color to help decrease damage associated with the process. "The compounds in Olaplex help restructure the sulfur bonds in your hair, allowing it to lighten with less damage," says Jelaca. 

Expert Tip: If highlights are your go-to, Bodt says to always follow your treatment with a gloss. "This helps bring the pH level down and shut your hair down so it's not open to more damage."

1 Comment
  • Patricia
    Posted on

    I have the thinnest most fragile that was made worse by chemo. Olaplex is amazing. I like to get highlights but it always turned my hair to straw and increased breakage, with Olaplex my hair remains silky and resilient.

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