The 3 Best Semi-Permanent Dyes for Covering up Gray Hair in 2020 and beyond

The 3 best semi-permanent dyes for coloring your gray hair are the following:


But before you run to buy your dye, let me ask you this question:

 Are you sure semi-permanent dye will cover your gray hair? Keep reading to find it out here. 


dyes to color them

When you find gray hairs, whether they are the first few or the ones invading like white aliens, you’ll have to decide about dying them.

And to do it, you’d need to use semi-permanent or permanent dye.

 If you’re not ready to cover your gray hair with permanent dye, given that it causes damage and permanently modifies color, your best option is a semi-permanent dye. 


And the three best brands are the following:

  • Natural Instincts by Clairol, ideal for damaged or unhealthy hair because it contains coconut oil and aloe vera, which hydrate your hair while infusing it with color pigment. Also, if you have a sensitive scalp, you shouldn’t hesitate to go with this option, and later I’ll tell you more about why.
  • Wella’s Color Touch is ideal for those looking for a wide variety of colors for covering up gray hair, given that you can pick between 77 shades of different colors.
  • Colorista by L’Oréal, specially designed for people who like to cover their gray hair with blonde dye. You can choose from an extra light blonde to pastel rose.


Do you know the difference between semi-permanent and permanent dyes?


Semi-permanent dye doesn’t contain ammonia and doesn’t use as high of a volume developer. For this reason, they are a great option for women who don’t want to change their color permanently.

However, by not acting on the most internal part of hair fibers, because they don’t contain ammonia and only use 9 volume developer, you have to touch up your color more often. 


Depending on how often you wash your hair, semi-permanent dyes can last for up to two weeks, while permanent dye needs to be redone every 4 to 5 weeks.

Are you still unsure of how to decide between these three brands?

If so, don’t go anywhere, because I’m going to tell you:

  • How the semi-permanent dyes Natural Instincts, Color Touch, and Colorist are different from each other
  • Why these semi-permanent dyes are the best at covering up gray hair


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How the semi-permanent dyes Natural Instincts, Color Touch, and Colorist differ from each other



does not ruin hair

More than two years ago, Clairol improved their semi-permanent dye formulas for covering up gray hair, adding the molecule ME +, to replace the allergens known as PPD or PTD.

What does this mean?


First, if you have damaged or dry hair, some ingredients, like aloe vera and coconut oil, will hydrate your hair while the dye covers the gray.

Are you allergic to dyes or sensitive to unusual ingredients that itch or irritate your skin and scalp?


Then, this a great reason to choose this semi-permanent dye because it will cover your gray hair without irritating your scalp.

Its texture makes the dye easier to apply and leaves your hair extra shiny because it’s formulated with 80% natural ingredients.



ammonia free

A classic among semi-permanent dyes, which you can also find in whatever store selling hair products.

And the best part is that it provides you with an extensive palette, 77 shades to be exact, so you won’t have any problem covering your gray hair with whichever tone you desire.



comes with special comb

Do you have blonde hair, and you’re bothered by the gray that takes away from your golden shine?


Colorista is designed to cover up gray hair for blondes, and its texture makes application very simple. So, if you’re blonde and don’t have much experience with coloring, this is a great option.


Do semi-permanent dyes work in all hair types?

  • Semi-permanent dyes are excellent at concealing gray hair for all people who don’t want to change their color or unnecessarily damage their hair permanently.

Now, I don’t want to mislead you.  If your hair is more than 75% gray, unfortunately, the semi-permanent dye won’t work, and you should use permanent dye. 

Do you know why?


  • Because gray hair doesn’t have melanin. And if you have many gray hairs, that is 75% or more, you’ll need the ammonia and the developer to absorb the dye pigment. 

And these ingredients, which you can find in permanent dyes, aren’t in semi-permanent ones.


  • Another thing to consider is that semi-permanent dye will cover your gray hair for approximately two weeks, so after this time has passed, you’ll have to dye it again.

Even though semi-permanent dye doesn’t damage your hair as much, you must repeat the application two times per month. Do you think that’s good for your hair?


  • To answer that, you need to keep in mind the number of volumes in the developer used with semi-permanent dye.

The majority use developer of 9 or 10 volumes. Therefore, if you apply it two times per month, we’re talking about 20 volumes monthly.

Permanent dye uses 20 volume developer, and its application is also monthly. So, what’s the difference? Why does semi-permanent dye produce less damage than permanent ones?


  • Simple, the semi-permanent dye doesn’t contain ammonia. For this reason, it’s less harmful to your hair.
 If you’re a lover of fantasy tones and you’d like to use them to cover your gray hair, I recommend two excellent brands, Manic Panic and Punky Color. 


  • Manic Panic has a palette of 60 colors and also a line of conditioners and toners so that your hair maintains its intense hue.

It doesn’t require any mixing because you can apply it directly to your hair due to its smooth and easy-to-manage texture.

As for Punky Color, it has a smaller color palette, given that it offers 30 shades, in addition to shampoos, conditioners, toners, and color rinses.



As you can see, semi-permanent dyes are ideal for covering up gray hair with the least possible amount of damage to your hair. That said, remember that you shouldn’t have more than 75% gray in your hair to get the perfect coverage.

  • If you have a sensitive scalp or damaged hair, go with Clairol Instincts.
  • If you’re looking for a line of semi-permanent dyes with a wide range of shades for covering up your gray hair, the best is Color Touch Wella.
  • And if your hair is blonde and you want to cover up your gray hair, the best semi-permanent dye you can choose is Colorista L'Oréal.[/ su_list]


So, what semi-permanent dye will you choose to cover up your gray hair?

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