Lighter hair tones are notoriously high-maintenance, and they come with the unwelcome truth that brassiness will inevitably occur. That’s why starting with the best purple shampoo items is the first step in keeping your texture safe and preventing those annoying yellow and orange tinges from dulling your shine.
Although purple shampoo won’t make your hair lighter, it can help you tone down the color you already have—especially if you’re doing an at-home dye job or going to the colorist less frequently.
Best Purple shampoo can help counteract the unwanted warm tones that build up and take the brightness out of your bleach platinum, mushroom, or cool blonde hair, thanks to the color wheel: Shades on opposite sides of the circle balance each other out, which effectively means purple shampoo can help counteract the unwanted warm tones that build up and take the brightness out of your bleach platinum, mushroom, or cool blonde hair.
Purple shampoo products work best on dyed hair, whether it’s ashy, icy, shadow core, or tweed-like, but even natural blondes can use them once in a while to brighten up their color.
Of course, anyone who has previously experimented with lighter hair knows how many items are needed for maintenance—and there’s no chance you’re going to use some purple shampoo after investing in a beautiful blonde balayage or gray-blending cream.
That’s why we asked women with gorgeous blonde and gray hair about the toning shampoos they use in between hairstylist appointments to nourish and refresh washed-out yellow and orange tones. Our editors handpick all of the items that appear on Glamour. However, we can receive an affiliate fee if you purchase anything through one of our retail links.
What triggers brassy hair in the first place?
Brassiness is arguably blonde hair’s worst enemy. What causes this to happen? L’Oréal scientific director Steve Shiel says, “Lighter strands always fail to appear shiny and stable.” ‘This is because the coloring process causes free radicals to break down protein, causing blonde hair to become porous.’
Since bleached hair is brittle, it absorbs unwanted minerals and metals from tap water and develops a yellow tinge over time. ‘It also means that blonde hair absorbs light rather than reflecting it, making it more vulnerable to injury,’ Shiel adds.
What is purple shampoo, and how does it work?
Simply put, violet-hued shampoo is like a stern bodyguard for your hair. Between color appointments, it guards against dullness and unwelcome warm tones.
Josh Wood, a celebrity colorist, explains, “Purple shampoo neutralizes the yellow in blonde hair, leaving a creamy to ash result.” ‘This is because yellow and purple are on the color wheel opposite each other.
The violet-tinged formulas are best for blondes who want a more cool or neutral look, but they’re also perfect for light brown, silver, or highlighted hair, according to O’Connor. Replace your standard shampoo with this one every couple of weeks or if you want to brighten your color or reduce brassiness or yellowing.
When you wash your blonde hair with this particular shade of shampoo, it deposits purple pigment to counteract any yellowy tones that emerge.
What is the best way to use purple shampoo?
This may seem self-evident, but a violet-based shampoo isn’t meant for everyday use. Just use it once a week if you bleach your hair and live in a hard water environment (which causes more mineral build-up on strands). Meaning, one bottle will last you at least until your next color appointment.
Purple Shampoo for Women Beautiful Blonde & Gray Hair in 2021
Blond Absolu Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo by Kérastase
This is what I’ve been using since I first started coloring my hair. This shampoo’s texture makes it easy for my hair to absorb the formula, and it works its way into each of my hair cuticles. I use this daily and have noticed a strong tone in my hair as a result. The formula, like many other Kérastase products, is extremely hydrating, so you can feel and see the difference.
Purple Shampoo and Hair Toner by Pantene Silver Expressions
Pantene’s Stunning Silver Collection, which was just published, is simply stunning. To begin with, this silver shampoo range is salon-quality but is easily accessible at local retailers around the country for about $10 per bottle.
Second, the outcomes are self-evident. The formula brightens while also neutralizing any yellow tones, and it doesn’t turn my hair purple. This line’s moisturizing conditioner also enhances the texture and tone of my hair, leaving it looking shiny, luscious, and full—and the results last for days between washes.
L’Oréal Brass Toning Purple Shampoo by EverPure
Purple shampoo is a must-have for blondes, but brunettes may also benefit from color-toning. Purple shampoo from L’Oréal is ideal for calming warm tones in brown hair. It also won’t dry out your hair because it’s sulfate-free. Coming out of the shower, you’ll also feel good knowing that it’s vegan and cruelty-free. Plus, the price is unbeatable!
Brass Blonde Purple Shampoo by Amika
My hair can get brassy in between highlights and living in the Miami heat. I’m a big fan of Amika’s hair products because of their nourishing formulations, and I’ve been using this sulfate-free shampoo for a few months now. A few general tips for my highlighted fine blonde hair: Use purple shampoo just twice a week to avoid going too cool, and match your usual shampoo with a purple one if you’re worried about your hair absorbing too many violet pigments.
Clairol Shimmer Lights for Professionals
My blonde locks can be expensive to maintain, which is why I swear by Shimmer Lights! When I wasn’t using purple shampoo regularly, people would still praise my strawberry blonde hair, which I had paid a lot of money to avoid! To reduce brass and my natural orange undertones, I use this shampoo twice a week. In between salon visits, it keeps my hair looking healthy and vibrant.
Violet Brightening Shampoo by Playa
I’m suspicious of purple shampoo because I like my hair to be on the yellower side of blonde (think Elle Fanning), and a lot of toning shampoos leave me with a gray or purple tint. My color needs a boost now and then, particularly during the pandemic, when I’m going to the salon every six months instead of three.
This Playa cleanser is so light that I could get away with using it every few washes if I wanted to. It has a faint violet tint that makes my skin look lighter and more youthful, never ashy. It also has a clear tint, which means it won’t make a mess in the bathroom. This one smells like the beach and leaves my hair so fluffy, much like the rest of the Playa goods.
Tone-Correcting Shampoo by John Frieda Sheer Blonde
Since middle school, I’ve had various shades of blonde hair, and John Frieda’s purple shampoos were among the first I used to keep my color and eliminate brassy tones. Over the years, I’ve used both Sheer Blonde Color Renew and Violet Crush.
Redken Blond Shampoo with Color Extend Blondage
Curly hair necessitates extra attention. Although depositing pure violet pigment into each strand, this purple shampoo contains hydrating and strengthening ingredients to keep curls bouncing and secure. This is also the option for you if your bleached hair is fragile and breaks easily.
Yubi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo by Shu Uemura
If I need immediate results or want to lighten my hair in between salon visits, I swear by this recipe. Since my hair is delicate, I use this product with caution; the saying “a little bit goes a long way” is what I live by. This shampoo is one of my favorites because it reduces brassiness after only one use and has one of the best shampoo scents on the market right now.
Graydient Shampoo Redken Color Extend Color
I switch between purple shampoo and normal shampoo since my natural hair color is a combination of Scandi tones—gray with blonde, or “gronde”—and one of the best purple shampoos I’ve found is Redken’s Color Extend Gradient. This substance counteracts and cools the color of my white streak at my side parting as it becomes yellowy.