Can I rinse my hair with cold water after dyeing it?

woman screams in the shower when rinsing the dye with cold water

  • The best thing to do after coloring your hair is to rinse it with cold water.
  • Because cold water will close the cuticles, retaining the dye pigments. Then the color will last longer.
  • It’s also a good idea to always use cold water for the final rinse every time you wash your hair afterward.
  • Also, rinsing color-treated hair with cold water has other important benefits that I’ll tell you more about later.


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When rinsing out hair dye, do you use conditioner?


 Feel like you won’t be able to stand rinsing your hair with cold water after dyeing it? 


Come on woman!

I’m not talking about standing under the spray of ice-cold water in the shower in the middle of winter. I’m simply talking about the final rinse.

Let’s see what I mean.

What do you do when you color your hair?


You apply the dye, wait for the exposure time to elapse, and then rinse.

And this is where I want to stop for a moment.


Because it’s important you don’t use shampoo to rinse the dye.

What you should do is wet your hair, massage it a little bit and remove what’s left of the dye with warm water, and finally  do a final rinse with cold water. 


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This rinse is very important because the cold water will seal the cuticles, retaining the color. But of course, you don’t need to be in the shower when you rinse the dye with cold water.

And you shouldn’t underestimate the benefits of rinsing your hair with cold water after dyeing.

Want to know what they are? Keep reading.


Why it’s important to rinse hair with cold water after dyeing

choose cold water to rinse out the dye

Before we get to the nitty-gritty of the benefits, I want to clear up two important things:

  • I recommend you  use cold water for the final rinse when you finish coloring your hair, and whenever you wash it again. 
  • It’s also important you use cold water to rinse the dye out whether you use permanent or semi-permanent dye.


And on this point, I want to remind you of something important.

  • Permanent hair dye opens up the cuticles to leave the color in your hair. Therefore, it’s important to use cold water when you rinse the dye out so that the cuticles close and the color is trapped inside the hair.
  • What about semi-permanent dye? Although it doesn’t open the cuticles to leave color in your hair, the dye is heat sensitive.  Therefore,  if you use hot water to rinse it out, some of the color will fade. 


So one of the most important benefits of rinsing out the dye with cold water is that the lower water temperature closes the cuticles, meaning they can better hold onto the dye pigments.

Therefore, the dye will last longer.

But the benefits don’t end there.


  • When you rinse dye with cold water you increase blood flow to the scalp.

The thermal difference between the water and your scalp provides a shock of energy that gets your blood flowing more easily and vigorously.

This increased blood flow causes more nutrients to circulate through your scalp and hair follicles. And that promotes hair growth.


  • When you rinse dye out with cold water, your hair will have more shine and less frizz.

Hot water is the worst enemy of hair, whether the hair is dyed or natural. That’s because the high temperatures of both hot water and heat tools dry out the hair and cause cuticles to break.

And when the cuticles break, you’ll get more frizz.

Cold water doesn’t break the cuticles. Rather, it increases the flow of nutrients. That’s why you’ll notice your hair is shinier and frizz-free when you rinse it with cold water.


As you can see, rinsing with cold water is an undeniable ally of color-treated hair. Why? Because it will make the color last longer. But it will also stimulate blood circulation in the scalp.

Is there an ideal way to wash color-treated hair to make the color last longer?

Yes, and I’ll tell you about it below.


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The ideal routine for washing color-treated hair

woman with long red dyed hair

 It’s also important to wash and rinse your hair with cold water after applying the hair color. 

If you can’t stand cold water in winter, I suggest you wash your hair with lukewarm water and then rinse it with cold water.


In addition, by alternating the water temperature, you’ll unclog the pores in your scalp which will keep it healthier. On the other hand, the nutrients from the shampoo and conditioner will penetrate the semi-open cuticles, deeply moisturizing your hair.

After rinsing out the shampoo and conditioner,  run cold water through your hair for three minutes to help your hair cuticles close. 

And don’t forget that to make the dye last longer, it’s always important you do the last rinse with cold water.



Once you finish coloring your hair, you should rinse the remaining dye out using cold water to close the cuticles and make the color last longer.

And each time you wash your dyed hair afterward, wash it with lukewarm water and do the final rinse with cold water.

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