Blue shampoo is the purple shampoo for brunettes
For non-natural blondes, purple shampoo has been a must-have beauty product for years. The purple-tinted product helps neutralize any brassy, yellow tones that all faux blondes fear by incorporating purple pigment into the hair, creating that coveted icy blonde color. But what about brunettes who fear the attack of the brass? Enter: blue shampoo.
What does blue shampoo do?
With a similar formula to purple shampoo, but tweaked to target brassiness that brunettes dread, blue shampoo tones any unwanted brass out of the hair, leaving it looking just how it did upon walking out of the salon.
Whereas purple cancels out yellow, blue cancels out orange (think about a color wheel, these are the opposite colors), so using a blue pigmented shampoo does just the trick non-natural brunettes are looking for—eliminates orangey undertones and maintains a cool color. Blue shampoo will specifically benefit brunettes who have lightened their hair and want to maintain their tone in-between color appointments, according to celebrity hairstylist Nikki Lee, who has worked with brunette celebs like Sarah Hyland, Selena Gomez, and Emma Roberts. Blue shampoo is a quick at-home remedy that will save you from extra trips to the salon.
Are there risks to using blue shampoo?
Beware of leaving blue shampoo in your hair for too long—it can cause your hair to take on an ashy or dull look that you’re probably not going for. Overuse of blue shampoo can also lead to dryness, so try to incorporate the product into your hair care routine once every few weeks as needed.
“The right time to use blue shampoo is when you notice your toners fading or your brunette turning brassy several weeks after your color appointment,” Lee told us.
How to use blue shampoo:
Unlike a regular shampoo where you mainly target your roots and scalp, make sure to lather through your entire head of hair, from root to ends. You want the blue pigments to work on every part of your hair equally for an even toning treatment.
When first trying blue shampoo, be cautious by not leaving it in your hair for too long to avoid over-toning. Rinse immediately after lathering into your hair, and see what the effect is on your color. If you don’t see much of a difference, Lee recommends testing different amounts of time that you leave the shampoo in your hair before rinsing. Start with one minute, then two minutes, etc. until you reach your desired tone. Once you’ve perfected your blue shampoo routine, continue to use only when you notice your hair needs some extra toning. Follow up with your normal conditioner to avoid dryness.
Best blue shampoos:
1. Matrix Total Results Brass Off Color Depositing Blue Shampoo
Shop it!$14, amazon.com.
This blue shampoo has a 4.5-star rating on Amazon from 278 reviews—sounds promising to us. One thing to note about this product: it includes sulfates, which can strip your hair of color if overused, so limit usage to once a week as needed.
2. dpHUE Cool Brunette Shampoo
Shop it! $26, ulta.com.
dpHUE’s blue shampoo is super-clean: it’s free of sulfates, gluten, and silicone, making for a gentle cleansing shampoo that won’t strip or dull color.
3. Aveda Blue Malva Color Shampoo
Shop it! $54, nordstrom.com.
Although this one is on the pricier end, it’s much bigger than other blue shampoo bottles, and contains tons of plant-based ingredients like organic ylang ylang, lemon, and eucalyptus, creating a pleasant aroma.
4. Fanola No Orange Shampoo
Shop it! $12.06–$52, walmart.com.
If your caramel highlights are taking on a brassy tone, use this blue shampoo to cool the color back down. This one is a slightly harsher formula, so be careful only to use once the brass tones have snuck back in.
5. Joico Color Balance Blue Shampoo
Shop it! $15.99, ulta.com.
This blue shampoo offers not only color protection, but also minimizes frizz and maximizes shine. Count us in.