No matter the season, brassy hair is just not a look we can get behind. Even if you're religious about keeping up with your salon appointments, lightened hair can still take on orange, yellow, and red tones. Fret not if you're a salon blonde dealing with brass because there's a solution: purple shampoo. Whether you're flipping for platinum or in love with golden blonde, purple shampoo is a crucial product to incorporate into your weekly hair care routine.
Today we're doing a deep dive into the topic, explaining when and how to use purple shampoo and how this miracle product works. We're also showcasing the best purple shampoo formulas from L'Oréal’s professional hair portfolio. Keep scrolling for everything you need to know.
What does a purple shampoo?
Purple shampoo is responsible for keeping hair bright, cool, and brass-free. Purple pigments in these shampoos counteract and neutralize the yellow and orange tones that pop up in blondes over time. Check out the color wheel, and you’ll see these two hues are opposites!
What are the benefits of using purple shampoo?
Incorporating a purple toning shampoo into your routine is beneficial for several reasons. The obvious advantage is less brass, which we outlined above. It also keeps your hair looking fresher and more like that “just walked out of the salon” color (you know that feeling!). This maximizes your last dye job and can help stretch appointments between in-salon toning, foiling, and balayaging. Of course, the best purple shampoos for blonde hair also clean locks, and many boast other benefits such as strengthening, softening, and boosting shine.
Who should use purple shampoo?
Short answer: there’s a purple shampoo for blonde hair, brunettes, and the equivalent product for inky hair colors, too.
Blondes tend to have more visible brassiness in their hair compared to other hair colors simply because their hair is lighter. Still, you can also use blue or purple shampoo on brown hair to nix those unwanted orange and yellow undertones.
Additionally, you can benefit from using purple shampoo even if you have a warmer-leaning color, such as butter blonde or chestnut. We recommend using these products less frequently to strike the perfect balance of warm but not brassy.
Will purple shampoo lighten my hair?
Purple shampoo can’t lighten hair, but it can make blonde and gray hair appear sharper and brighter than before.
What is the downside of purple shampoo?
As the saying goes, everything is okay in moderation, and the same applies when using purple shampoo. If your hair starts to look darker after using purple shampoo, it may be time to take a break from toning formulas. That’s because overusing purple shampoo can also eliminate some yellow tones in strands that make them blonde, resulting in a visually darker color. Certain formulas may also dry out your hair, but choosing a salon-quality shampoo can help prevent this—more on that below!
Tips for Using Purple Shampoo
Read through these six pro tips to master the art of purple shampoo usage.
How often do you use purple shampoo?
If you want to keep your tresses as bright and shiny as possible, you may be tempted to use purple shampoo daily. Not so fast!
While purple shampoo for blonde hair is excellent at toning and keeping brass at bay, most brands recommend incorporating purple shampoo into your hair care routine once or twice a week. Those with warmer tones who want to nix brass without removing all their warmth should scale back to once or twice a month.
How long should I leave purple shampoo in?
Every product varies, so refer to the directions on the bottle and your desired brightness. However, as a rule of thumb, let it sit for three to 10 minutes.
Can I leave purple shampoo in overnight?
Purple shampoos contain toning pigments and chemicals that can be left on your hair for a short time. According to the directions on the bottle, most purple shampoos should sit on your strands for only a few minutes before being rinsed out. Therefore, we don't recommend leaving any formula on your strands overnight.
Can purple shampoo damage your hair?
The best purple shampoos shouldn’t damage your mane as long as you follow the instructions on the bottle.
Can you use purple shampoo on brown hair?
Yes, you can use purple shampoo on brown hair. The lighter your hair color, especially if you have highlights, the more difference you'll see before and after using a purple toning shampoo. However, those with all-over brown or highlighted hair will benefit more from using a blue shampoo.
Do you need purple conditioner with purple shampoo?
It’s not mandatory, but we argue that some things are better together. If you invest in one of the best purple shampoo formulas, we recommend getting the complementary conditioner to maximize its brass-busting power.
Our 8 Best Purple Shampoos and Conditioners to Try Now
If you’re searching for the best purple shampoos the industry has to offer, get a peek some e of our favorites from the L’Oréal portfolio of brands, then scroll for the scoop on each one.
Redken Blondage Color Depositing Purple Shampoo
Calling anyone with bright white locks! Redken Blondage Color Depositing Shampoo is key to keeping your blonde hair cool and bright and works in just five minutes. The salicylic acid in the formula helps strengthen and repair hair from the core, leaving hair soft to the touch. And the ultraviolet pigments help to preserve blonde hair color between appointments by keeping undertones at bay. We suggest pairing the shampoo with the Blondage Color Depositing Conditioner.
Matrix Brass Off Blue Shampoo
Whether you’re a highlighted brunette or a dark blonde, Matrix Brass Off Blue Shampoo is, in our opinion, one of the best purple shampoos for newly lightened hair. This shampoo deposits blue-violet pigments when you wash your hair so brassy tones are neutralized, and you can extend the time between salon visits. Double down on your brass-nixing efforts with the line’s Brass Off Custom Neutralization Hair Mask.
Matrix So Silver Purple Shampoo
Looking for the best purple shampoo for gray hair? We know just the formula. Matrix So Silver Purple Shampoo clarifies, cleanses, and counteracts unwanted brassy warmth all in one go. It also illuminates highlights on blondes and adds shimmering brightness for color-treated and natural hair ranging from gray to white shades. Use as a complete system with the So Silver Conditioner to achieve the best results. Watch this hack to see how to put the system to use!
Biolage Professional Color Last Purple Shampoo
Formulated with fig and orchid, Biolage Professional Color Last Purple Shampoo keeps your blonde healthy, conditioned, and brass free until your next salon appointment.
For bleach-damaged hair that needs more TLC, follow it up with Biolage Professional Hydra Source Conditioning Balm. The moisture-retaining abilities of the aloe plant inspire its hydrating formula.
Kérastase Blond Absolu Bain Ultra-Violet Shampoo
Kérastase Blond Absolu Bain Ultra-Violet Shampoo is the purple shampoo for blonde hair you’ve been waiting for. This deep indigo, iridescent shampoo reduces brass with blue and purple dye for instant illumination and undertone neutralization. It’s perfect for shades ranging from orange-yellow to very light yellow and gray. After shampooing, use the matching Blond Absolu Cicaflash Conditioner.
Shu Uemura Art Of Hair Yubi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo
Give brass the boot via this richly pigmented formulation from Shu Uemura Art of Hair. The Yubi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo is made with violet dye and Japanese white peony to create brilliant, cool-toned blondes. It also conditions the hair fiber for a silky smooth finish. Pair it with the Yubi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Hair Mask, a double-duty purple hair mask that nourishes bleached and highlighted hair.
Pureology Strength Cure Blonde Shampoo
Often, the best purple shampoos for blonde hair work double-duty to mitigate the damaging effects of bleach. Consider picking up Pureology Strength Cure Best Blonde Shampoo for hair that often feels dry and brittle. Created with violet toning properties, this sulfate-free purple shampoo helps tone blonde hair and neutralizes and brightens ashy, brassy tones.
Formulated with keravis, astaxanthin, purple orchid toning pigments, this purple shampoo also strengthens and rebuilds damaged, brittle hair while preventing dryness and further breakage. Plus, the exclusive AntiFade Complex protects against heat damage and keeps highlights bright and vibrant while refreshing yellow tones. Use it alongside the Strength Cure Blonde Conditioner for even better results.
L’Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Silver Purple Shampoo
Whether you have gray, white, or blonde hair, L'Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Silver Shampoo is a must-have. This color toning formula contains violet micro-pigments that eliminate brass to help restore cool tones to your salon color. Swap this with your regular shampoo once or twice a week for noticeably brighter, softer, and shinier strands, and complete the routine with the brand’s Blondifier Gloss Conditioner to enhance shine.