Ready to Find the Best Leave in Conditioner for Bleached Hair?

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re like us–you’ve fallen head over heels in love with platinum, lavender, Gwen Stefani punk pink, or otherwise bleached hair! You are not, however, in love with what bleach does to your hair.

Dry, broken, frizzy hair and brassy or orange tons are the sad byproducts of bleaching, but that doesn’t have to be the case! If you’ve ever wrestled with the problems associated with hair bleaching, you understand how frustrating they can be.

We understand, as well, and as a result, we’ve created the ultimate guide to help you take of your new locks, including finding the best leave in conditioner for bleached hair. We’re covering DIY conditioners and salon treatments, helping you understand how your hair got so damaged in the first place, plus how to maintain and protect your bleached hair from further damage.

It’s Not That Kind of Bleach

You might picture your mother’s cleaning products when you think about bleaching your hair, but household bleach and hair bleach are two different things. Household bleach is extremely toxic while hair bleach (lightener), is a combination of hydrogen peroxide and ammonia.

Portrait of young beautiful girl with long straight dyed hair and clean make-up

Peroxide and ammonia work together to open up the outer layer of hair (the cuticle) to allow a chemical reaction (oxidation) to take place inside of the hair shaft. It is the chemical substance melanin that is responsible for the color of your hair (and your eyes, skin, and so forth) and the process of oxidation removes melanin from your hair shaft, allowing it to rinse away.

Once all the melanin has been removed, the hair becomes white. In the process, however, fatty acids are stripped away, causing hair to become brittle, porous, and prone to breakage. If you’ve ever run your hands through your hair after it’s been bleached, and you’ve come away with a handful of broken ends, now you know why!

The second downside to bleaching is that once the cuticle is lifted, it stays lifted. Things will never quite go back to normal, which means bleached hair has a very difficult time holding on to moisture. The more you bleach, the worse the problem becomes.

Is All Hope Gone?

If you read the last few paragraphs with great trepidation, don’t be afraid! Bleached hair might mean potentially compromised hair, but if it’s a look you love, we can help you get your healthiest bleached hair yet. There are a few things you can do to help fried, bleached hair.

1. Protect Your Hair

If you want to know how to repair damaged hair from bleach, the first thing you should know is that preventing further damage is paramount. This means keeping your blow dryer, curling iron, straightening iron, and any other hot tool locked away in a drawer–for now, at least.

This might alarm you, but if you’re brand new to bleach, what you’ll find is that your new blonde hair acts completely differently from your old hair! In fact, some people love to bleach their fine hair because they feel like they get so much more texture and volume than they did before.

Regardless, heat damages hair, so the less heat you use on a daily or weekly basis, the better you’re hair will adapt to its new bleached condition.

2. Skip the Sulfates

When you’re busy trying to cram moisture into your thirsty locks, shampoos can be your worst enemies. Many are simply too harsh; in trying to purge your scalp or dirt, grime, and oil, they further compromise your hair strands.

One way you can avoid shampoo damage is to avoid shampooing your hair. As much as you might want to shampoo daily, try to avoid this. Instead, use a ballcap, dry shampoo, or a high ponytail to help extend your style one more day.

You can also opt to use a cleansing conditioner instead of shampoo. Cleansing conditioners are much gentler, carefully removing build-up without stripping all the natural oils from your scalp.

The other option is to choose a shampoo that is free of sulfates. Sulfates don’t cause harm to your hair; they also hurt your dye job. They can fade it extra fast, which is something you want to avoid as much as possible since you want to go as long as possible between bleach jobs.

Another great way to protect the integrity of your color is to use purple shampoo. The purple tinting helps to neutralize blonde that’s beginning to turn brassy, helping to keep your color bright and the tone cool.

Finally, you can use a toner. We suggest being careful, however, because if you aren’t familiar with how your hair pulls colors, a toner can easily cause more problems than it solves!

3. Condition, Condition, Condition

Your biggest ally in bleached hair repair is conditioner! You can (and should) use conditioner right after every shampoo, but one of our favorite recommendations is finding the best leave in conditioner for bleached hair and using it religiously.

Some people complain about using the best leave in conditioner for bleached hair during the winter, as they feel the liquid conditioner becomes hard and unmanageable in cold conditions. As long as you won’t be out of doors in a very cold climate for long periods of time, however, you should be fine. If it’s spring or summer, you’ll have no problem at all!

In addition to leave in conditioners, we also recommend using hair masks frequently. A hair mask does for your hair what a face mask does for your face. It refreshes and revitalizes, helping your tired strands heal and take on new life.

You should use a mask about once a week. If your hair is especially fragile, you can even apply it Saturday evening and leave it on all day Sunday!

Here are some of our favorite DIY masks:

Coconut, Olive Oil, and Honey

Hair experts love coconut oil to repair bleached hair; use this mask to take advantage! Combine equal parts coconut oil (you’ll need to warm it up first–but make sure it’s not too hot, so it doesn’t burn you!) and olive oil, then add about ¼ to ½ a cup of honey.

Honey has antimicrobial properties and has been used for beauty purposes since ancient times! You may omit olive oil for a coconut and honey mask, or you may omit the honey.

Once you’ve applied to your hair and combed through to make sure it integrates evenly, put it up in a high bun and place a shower cap over your head, trapping the heat and moisture in to up the conditioning factor.

If you’re planning on leaving it in while you sleep, make sure you place a towel over your pillow–things could get messy!

Avocado and Raw Egg Mask

This sounds gross, but trust us, it’s magic! The oils in the avocado combine with the protein in the egg to soften your cuticles and add shine to your hair. Simply combine one raw egg thoroughly with one mashed avocado.

Apply to your hair and leave in for approximately 15-20 minutes. Rinse out, but make sure you use cool water when you do so, as you do not want to cook the egg into your hair!

Here are some of our favorite drugstore masks:

Kuumba Made Rose Coconut Oil

Kuumba made has created one of the best leave in conditioners for bleached hair, though this one can also be used more heavily as a mask. It combines everything we love about coconut oil with the beautiful, light scent of rose. Its ingredients are all natural and free of artificial preservatives.

Christophe Robin Shade Variation Care Nutritive Mask

This thick, moisturizing mask is also a purple shampoo, doing double duty. You’ll want to leave it on for about half an hour, but plan to use it every other week.

Our Favorite Leave in Conditioners

bleached blonde hair, unsmooth and smooth

Image via YouTube

Masks and conditioners can both be used as leave in conditioners, but the best leave in conditioner for bleached hair will be light and flexible enough that it won’t weigh your hair down during the day while still providing deep moisture.

Briogeo Rosarco Milk Reparative Leave-in Conditioning Spray

We love this product for two reasons. First, it’s a spray, so it’s not heavy and difficult to work with like some traditional leave-in conditioners. If you have fine or thinning hair, you’ll love this.

The second reason we love it is that it’s chock full of natural ingredients, like argan and coconut oils, both of which are renowned for their hair-conditioning properties. If you’re looking for a heavy conditioner, this isn’t it; but if you want something that’s perfect for on-the-go conditioning, you’ve found your solution!

Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Nourishing Protective Oil

If it sounds scary to apply oil to your hair, it shouldn’t be! As we’ve mentioned earlier, your bleached hair is going to love a good oil treatment, and this product from Shu Uemura is light enough–yet nourishing enough–to heal your hair while you style it like normal.

Thanks to all these helpful tips and tricks, you’ll be able to go longer in between salon visits and keep your hair healthier than ever!

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