The Pros And Cons Of Reverting Back To Your Natural Hair Color

No matter what opponents of hair dyes say, color-treating your hair is an exciting experience. Not only does the dye help you hide the gray, be more creative with your personal style, and feel younger, but it also gives your tresses more volume by making your hair fibers rougher, Loved By Curls points out. For this reason, many people see coloring as a quick and effective way to experiment with a new look and enhance their appearance.


However, coloring your hair is a huge commitment, and the associated costs and inconveniences are deal-breakers for some. No permanent hair dye is actually permanent, as you'll still have to hit the hair salon every few weeks for touch-ups. And if you don't, bad hair days await. 

In case you have been rocking a color-treated mane for quite some time and you're considering reverting back to your natural hair color, this article is written with you in mind. Here's what happens when you go back to your natural hair color.

Going back to the roots means less maintenance

The commitment we make to hair coloring is a big one. When the roots start showing — which is bound to happen every few months after the last coloring session — we have to make an appointment with a hair colorist to touch up grown-out roots to maintain consistent results. Going back to our natural hair color is the only way to get off this hamster wheel. We'll spend far less on hair care and have a lot less upkeep to worry about.


"[You'll] no longer need to have your roots done every six to eight weeks," creative director for NuBest Salon & Spa Jamie Mazzei tells InStyle. Although at-home hair color kits are cheaper, many of them contain harsh chemicals that harm your hair, whereas the results also strictly depend on your dyeing technique, Hair Instructions warns. Unless you're a colorist yourself or there's a colorist in the family, don't fiddle around with home box dyes. Application of hair dye gone wrong can significantly damage your hair and ruin your look. If you want to save money and keep your hair healthy at the same time, reverting back to your natural hair color might just be what the doctor ordered.

Less chemical treatment means healthier hair

Another good reason for reverting back to your natural hair color is that your hair looks and feels much healthier once you've stopped bombarding it with products formulated with harsh chemicals. Both permanent and semi-permanent hair dyes typically consist of a mixture of pigment-stripping and color-altering chemicals such as paraphenylenediamine (PPDA), hydrogen peroxide, ammonia, and lead acetates. These substances can be pretty harsh on the hair strands and make your hair weaker in the long run. 


Dermatologist Melissa Piliang tells Cleveland Clinic, "PPDA is common in both cheap and expensive hair dyes and present in nearly all permanent type dyes." A major cause of contact allergy, PPDA typically affects women with atopy, predisposing them to symptoms such as itchy rashes, reddening, blistering, and swelling of the eyelids and scalp, per DermNet. In the meantime, the peroxide's potent coloring agent can make the hair extra dry, brittle, and more vulnerable to breakage. Permanent hair dyes do not hinder hair growth, but they can drastically damage your hair and promote hair thinning and hair loss if used too frequently. If you're battling with damaged hair, stop coloring your hair for a while to give it more time to grow stronger and thicker.


Growing your hair out might take some time

One of the most inconvenient things about going back to your roots is probably having to grow out the natural hair color. The average rate of hair growth is six inches per year, or half an inch each month, according to Kiehl's. However, some people's hair just happens to grow slower than others. And certain times of the year see your hair growing faster than the others. "Hair tends to grow a little faster in summer and slower in winter," dermatologist Dr. Alan Parks tells Today. An underactive thyroid can also make your hair grow slower, while pregnancy can expedite the hair-growth process.


If you're on medications and trying to grow out your natural hair color, consult your physician or your colorist for tips on how to make your hair grow faster. Another alternative is to slowly transition your color-treated hair back to natural by giving it a semi-permanent dye treatment to replicate the color of your roots. "The best way to grow out your natural color, especially coming from a highlight or balayage look, is to have your colorist gloss down your hair back to the natural level of the roots to allow the natural root to blend as it grows," IGK Hair Care founder Chase Kusero tells Byrdie.

Natural hair color might make you feel creatively deprived

For many of us, jazzing up our hair with different hues is a great way to express our personality and artistic inclinations. "Women who dye their hair in bright, rainbow colors are often risk-takers," psychologist Vivian Diller tells Teen Vogue. According to Diller, people with vibrant hair hues are those who "enjoy making a statement and standing out from the crowd." Not to mention, some people have skin tones that look better with hair colors that are different from their natural ones. For instance, those with fair skin with warm undertones tend to look their best wearing hair shades of platinum, champagne, or beige.


If you are always keen to experiment with new looks, not being able to perk your hair up with a new shade every now and then will make you feel creatively deprived. If you're passionate about changing hairstyles but you cannot afford to for certain reasons, you can swap hair dyes for wigs or hair pieces instead. Be it dip-dye short bobs or cascading curls with a sleek side part, you can have any look you want and go from one character to another in a matter of minutes when using hair pieces. Having some wigs in your beauty arsenal allows you to channel your inner creativity and feel more in control of your outward appearance.