7 possible reasons why your hair is changing color by itself (and what can you do about it)

red undertones

Is your hair changing color by itself? I’ll help you find out the possible reasons why your hair is changing color and also tell you what you can do about it.


Let’s start with a quick list of some possible reasons why your hair is changing color by itself (for no apparent reason):

  • Your hair can become lighter due to the effect of the sun’s rays, water, styling iron, blow dryer, or hair products you apply.
  • It can also change its color due to stress, health, or the appearance of gray hair.
  • In any case, you can always do something to prevent hair color change and to keep it radiant and colorful.


If you love your hair color and don’t have gray hair yet, but you notice that your hair color is changing by itself little by little, maybe you’re wondering:

Why does my hair lighten by itself?


I’m going to talk to you about 7 reasons that may change your hair color:

  1. Sunlight
  2. Sea or pool water
  3. Excessive heat
  4. Stress
  5. Health
  6. Gray hair
  7. Hair products


However, firstly I want to tell you how hair pigments work.

Then, I’ll explain in detail the 7 reasons that may change your hair color and give you solutions. I’ll also discuss how to prevent your hair from changing colors by itself again.

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Did you know that melanocytes are responsible for your hair color?

exposure to sea water

There are two main types of melanin in a hair follicle: eumelanin and pheomelanin. According to the hair color, there’ll be more of one or the other.

For example, eumelanin prevails in brown and brunette hair. In turn, pheomelanin prevails in red to blonde hair.

Then, when hair lightens naturally, one pigment prevails over another.


Now that you know what’s responsible for your hair color, let’s look in detail at the 7 reasons I listed above.

You might be wondering:


What can I do to stop my hair from changing color by itself?


1- Use sunscreen or sunblock

Outdoor sports, walks under the sun, and a lot of vacationing can be some of the reasons for the color change.

Outdoors outings, plus the sun’s rays, cause damage to your hair: it changes tone and reveals the warmth of the undertones.


What color can my hair get when it’s exposed to the sun?

When natural hair gets lighter, undertones prevail

  • If your hair is very light brown, the prevailing undertone is orange-red. Therefore, your natural hair will most likely end up with slight reddish highlights in some areas.
  • If your hair is light blonde, the undertone will be orange-yellow. So, your hair will change around those colors.
  • If your hair is dark, it’ll have dark undertones. Those tones are stronger and more resistant to color changes. However, there are exceptions. To avoid them, you should take some precautions.


How do I protect my hair from the sun’s rays to avoid color change?

Think about taking care of your hair the same way you take care of your skin. I mean taking care of your hair to avoid sun exposure. You should also use sunscreens or sunblock that prevent your hair from oxidizing.

If you don’t have access to these products, you could use a hat or scarf to protect it.


2- Wear a swimming cap to protect your hair from chlorine or sea salt

The pool and the sea are enjoyable but don’t forget that the pool has chlorine and the seawater has a lot of salt. They are all bad for your hair color, especially if you swim every day or very often.

That’s why wearing a swim cap helps reduce your hair’s contact with chlorine chemicals.


After swimming in the pool or in the sea, I recommend that you rinse your hair to remove salt and sanitizers as quickly as possible. Also, there are really good shampoos specially designed for swimmers.


3- Avoid excess heat from the flat iron, curling iron, or hairdryer

If you love to have super straight or wavy hair and you use the flat iron or curling iron very often, that may be the reason for your color change.


Excess heat dehydrates hair and may make it look worn out. It results in a color change.

You can prevent the wear and tear of your hair color by using a heat protectant, which will also help you look after your hair.


YOU CAN ALSO BE INTERESTED IN: Can I use the flat iron and hair dryer if I have dyed hair? Can the heat ruin the color?


4- Avoid stress

to stop hair loss

Living on the run or stressed out also affects the hair.

That’s why you have to get a good rest and maintain a healthy lifestyle.


5- Take care of your health

In addition to stress, your hair color may change if you are under medical treatment or taking medication.

Here again, I recommend that you try to live a relaxed lifestyle with healthy eating and exercise habits.


6- Find a solution to gray hair

ammonia free

Are you sure that your color change is not due to the appearance of some gray hair?


A genetic factor is the main cause of this color change.

Unwanted gray hair appears in our lives without asking for permission. To solve it you can apply hair dye. 

You can choose hair colors with or without ammonia according to the effect you want to achieve and with the advice of your trusted stylist.


7- Read hair product labels

application at home step by step

Some hair products can cause a color change.  That’s why I always recommend reading the labels with their components. 

For example, try to avoid moisturizing sprays with chamomile because they alter hair color.


What can I do to recover the lost color? A color refresh

Now that you know why your hair can change its color, I’m going to show you a magic recipe for restoring shine and color without having to dye it!


Let’s prepare a color refresh. You’ll need:

  • 1 ammonia-free dye of your natural tone
  • 1 10-volume developer
  • 1 brush
  • 1 plastic container
  • The conditioner you usually use
  • 1 protective apron
  • Gloves not to stain your hands


  1. Pour the dye into the plastic container and add the 10-volume developer.  The proportions are not that important, as we are not going to dye the hair. We’re just going to restore the color that faded for one of the reasons I told you about above. 
  2. Add two tablespoons of conditioner to form a cream.
  3. After shampooing, wash your hair with this cream, massaging it so that it penetrates all the hair.
  4. Leave it on for 20 minutes.


You’ll recover color and shine instantly with this color refresh!



You’ve already seen that there are many reasons why the color of your hair may change. It’ll be easy to fight against them if you identify them and know how to counteract their effects.

I invite you to try the color refresh and then practice what you’ve learned.

You’ll see how your hair recovers its radiance and color!

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