Fall Secrets – How to Keep Red Hair From Fading

how to maintain red hair

The redhead season is almost here, Fall! This is when all the beautiful shades of red come out, anywhere from auburn to bright reds to purpley reds. With thousands of different shades to choose from, it’s fun to play around with as long as you have a great stylist. Although this look is not for everyone, it looks amazing on some ladies. Well, until it starts to fade into orange and leaves you looking like this guy…

bad hair day

Don’t be that guy

Learn how to keep red hair from fading, so you can stay fabulous looking all season. Reds are a pain in the butt to take care of. If you’ve had red hair before you know this. You may never want to go back to it but others of you may be itching to bring back some of that sexy redhead look. Knowing how to maintain red hair makes it less frustrating to deal with. Here are some to keep red hair color from fading so you can enjoy being a redhead until you get sick of it!

Use Cold Water to Wash Hair

Hot water opens up hair, drying it out and washing out the color, making it dull. Cold water will help your hair hold onto that hair dye, while making it shiny and keeping it healthy.

For as long as I stayed a redhead, I took cold showers because it’s the best way to preserve your color. This was pretty painful to do but it’s worth it if you want to keep hair color from fading. If you can’t do a full cold shower, at least use cold water when you’re rinsing your hair out.



Mix Manic Panic Red Hair Dye with Conditioner

When you condition your hair, you have the opportunity to give it a boost by adding Manic Panic hair dye into your conditioner bottle. Make sure to use conditioner that has a removable lid or you won’t be able to get the hair dye into it. To know which color to get to match your hair, ask your stylist.

  manic panic


Use Batiste Dry Shampoo Vibrant & Red

The more you shower, the more your red hair color will wash out, even if you’re keeping safe by taking cold showers. You should try to hold off on washing your hair as long as you can to keep your hair looking radiant. Between showers, an awesome way to get your hair looking almost shower-fresh is to use dry shampoo.

Batiste Dry Shampoo has a special kind of dry shampoo called Vibrant & Red. This comes in a spray can and is very easy to use, unlike some other types of dry shampoo. It is a tinted spray that should match most shades of red. Some people like to use a lot of dry shampoo, some use a little. Experiment with it and see what works for you. Learn more about it here.

batiste vibrant & red


Protect Hair From Heat

Hot styling products will have any hair color looking dry and dull unless you protect your hair from heat. I’ve tried all types of thermal heat protection products which have all disappointed me. They would make my hair greasy so once I finished styling it, it would look worse than it would if I didn’t use any kind of heat protection. Bad heat protection sprays and serums caused me to completely stop using heat protection on my hair, until I found a kind that was different.


Paul Mitchell Hot Off  The Press has been my hair’s savior. Literally every other kind of thermal protection I’ve tried has done nothing but frustrated me while getting ready. This Hot Off The Press comes in a spray can, so it doesn’t shoot liquid and it isn’t a serum or lotion that will make your hair oily. I know because I have had a lot of experience with bad products. Since this Hot Off The Press also acts as a hairspray, it holds whatever style you desire, perfectly. The first thing you do is spray it all over where you will apply heat, next you’ll brush through, then style your hair however you want, then finish it off with some more spray. BAM!

paul mitchell hot off the press


My experience being a redhead

I decided to go bright shades of red twice. The first time was years ago and I surely wasn’t prepared for what I got myself into. I looked like that guy ^ up there after a couple weeks. I felt the need to shower quite often since my hair gets oily quick, and I didn’t know about Batiste Vibrant & Red. I didn’t think hot water would ruin my hair either. Also, I neglected to protect my hair from heat because I worried about products making my hair extra oily.

first red headdfirst red head

The second time I went red, I decided I wanted it a little darker shade since that would be easier to keep up with. I did everything right: The cold water, the dry shampoo, less showers, heat protectant and the manic panic in my conditioner. It lasted much much longer this time but eventually it was time to go dark again, and decrease the maintenance level by 150%. These tips above will save you and your adorable seasonal hair!

second red read

If you have any questions, ask below and also feel free to share your story in the comments!

18 thoughts on “Fall Secrets – How to Keep Red Hair From Fading

  1. Hi – Although I don’t dye my hair, I’m using shampoo to help thicken my hair called Cell u plex. I do find that it helps but time will tell whether it’s of any effect. Are their any shampoos that you could recommend to help protect and strengthen your hair?

    • Colin,

      Well there is TIGI Bighead for Men Charge up Thickening Shampoo and Conditioner.

      There are also a supplement that I reviewed called Hair, Skin, & Nails (super cheap). These pills help to strengthen and thicken hair.

  2. I love your your theme, the background colour blends with this subject of redhead. It is interesting to know that to preserve the colour is to wash your hair with cold water, likewise adding red dye on your conditioner.

    I am a black haired person ( being asian ) and I dye my hair to hide my grey ones, I wonder if you can also include some tips on how to preserve or retain the black colour for a bit longer period of time.

    Thanks.. Jenny

    • Jenny,
      Cold water will do the same trick for black hair or for any kind of colored hair. I used to always keep my hair colored black since I think I look best with dark hair like that. I haven’t tried this but there is black Panic Manic called Raven that you could try out to mix with conditioner.

  3. Really great article on keeping red hair from fading. When I go back to red, I’ll be excited to try Manic Panic. I noticed it had Snooky’s name on the label. Is this Snooky of reality tv fame? And the other tip that I found most helpful to keep red hair from fading is to wash it in cold water. I love that tip.

    • Tiffany,

      Haha that’s interesting to notice Snooky’s name on there. I had to look this up for you. Tish & Snooky are actually musicians.. no relation to Jersey Shore. And yes cold water is the most important tip to follow when trying to hold your hair color.

  4. This is really great. Thank you for the information above. I never known that preserving red color hair have this many steps to take care off.

    I will definitely refer this page to my girlfriend as I known that she had complains about her hair color before.

    I like to help her out but as a man, but I literally have zero knowledge when it comes to hair color.

    • Lucas,

      It’s okay to not know about all the girly stuff; That’s what the internet is for!

      I hope your girlfriend finds my website useful!

  5. Although I don’t die my hair but this is a very instructional site. The layout is very clear and I like the presentation. The only drawback is that the menu is a bit long and confusing. I would put it in less categories.

    But I like the blog post because it is very specifically targeted. Anyway, good luck with everything and keep me posted

  6. Hmm, I could have done with this advice a few years ago 😉 I used to have very, very purple hair, and ended up having to dye it every few weeks just to keep it bright. I stopped in the end because I was terrified of wrecking my hair!
    Great tips though, I’ll bear them in mind if I do decide to dye my hair again in the future.

    • Chloe,

      Ah yes it’s very frustrating trying to keep up with colored hair like that, even if you do know how to keep it from fading. I’m done with the reds for now also, but I might experiment some more in the future too.

  7. Hi Gina,

    I bumped onto your site and the image of the girl and the bull drew my attention… What do they have to do with each other?
    So I start reading your page and actually I am not that interested in coloring hair, but your page was just easy to read and enjoyable… I was really surprised that hot water has an impact on the consistency of your hair, but when you think about it, it is actually very logical…
    Always nice to learn something… But I was also wondering: are there brands of hair color and if so, do they have a different quality?


    • I used the image of the bull to show what red hair looks like when it fades; orange, dull and dirty.

      I’m glad you learned something about hair and how hot water has a negative effect on it.

      There are many different brand of hair color but I recommend going to a salon to get your hair done unless you already know what you are doing with mixing hair colors from Sally Beauty.

  8. Cute picture you got there. Loving the hair as well. Is that picture taken by yourself or from the web? Truly love the way you engage your audience and speak directly to them. Thank you for the advice and insights. Really gives me some knowledge for myself as well, besides my girlfriend.

    • Maurice,

      The photos on the bottom of the article are of me. The girl on the top is from the web.

      Thanks for the compliments!

  9. Hi Gina,

    I used to dye my hair red all the time and I wish I had known all of these tips back then!! Red color is the hardest to maintain, but it’s so beautiful isn’t it?!

    Yikes – cold showers – that’s brutal, but a woman has to do what a woman has to do to look her best! 🙂

    Dry shampoo isn’t something I’ve ever tried before. I read your review on Batiste Dry Shampoo and saw that there is one for deep brown/dark hair too. I would like to try it out and see how it works!

    Thanks so much for all the great info! 🙂


    • Anna,

      It’s true, the red is so beautiful. It makes it even more pretty being hard to maintain, making it rare.

      You’ll love the Batiste Dry Shampoo for dark hair. I have brown hair and that’s my favorite one to use. You just have to remember to give it a good shake before spraying.

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