Over the years, I’ve had just about every hair color under the sun—blonde, red, brown, and most recently, black.


My natural color is a dirty blonde, and I just never liked the way it looked.  Plus, I’ve found that as a “bottle brunette,” my hair has become significantly more shiny and fuller-looking.


So, while I can’t say for certain if I’m ready to commit to having black hair for the rest of my life, I can tell you I’ve figured out how to dye my own hair like a(n unlicensed) pro and keep it looking its absolute best.


Whether you dye your own hair too, or just want to keep your color looking its best, here are some items you’ll want to have on hand:


*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.  If you purchase an item through one of my links, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.  You can read my full disclosure policy here.  If you would like to purchase any of the items I mentioned below, you can do so by clicking the corresponding photo or link!*



1. Black Bobby Pins

But not just any black bobby pins—these MetaGrip bobby pins will change. your. life.  I’ve never found a better option for holding buns/ updos in place—even when my hair is clean (which is when it tends to feel the smoothest and the most slippery), I have no trouble keeping it up and out of the way when I use these suckers.


I also like to keep short bobby pins on hand for keeping my bangs out of the way on dirty-hair days (which, let’s face it, are most days).  These are the ones I like to use:


2. Alba Un-Petroleum Jelly

If you dye your hair at home, then by now, you’ve probably heard that you can prevent funny-looking stains on your forehead and neck (you know, the ones that practically scream, I SAVED MONEY BY DYING MY HAIR AT HOME), by applying a thin layer of petroleum jelly to your skin.  But if you’re like me and don’t like the idea of clogging your pores with mineral oil, then you should check out a more natural alternative like the Un-Petroleum Jelly from Alba Botanica.


Burt’s Bees also makes something similar that I haven’t tried yet, but I’d be interested in checking it out:


3. Black Hair Ties

You just can’t go wrong with a good, metal-free hair tie, am I right or am I right?


My two favorite options that have stood the test of time are the Goody Outchless and the Scunci No Damage Elastics.


4. Salon-Quality Rubber Gloves

Not much to say here; I just like these gloves because they’re reusable and come in a convenient pack of 10.  I bought mine over a year ago and will probably never need gloves again.


5. Processing Caps

The item featured below is actually listed on Amazon as a shower cap, and while you could get away using it for those purposes, it’s definitely not the best option out there for keeping your hair dry in the shower.


It is, however, great for preventing drips and retaining your body heat while you process your hair color (or hair masks, if you’re doing a spa-night at home).


6. Shower Caps

Now these are the shower caps I like to use when I’m taking a shower without washing my hair.


I used to always buy my shower caps from Sally Beauty, but sometimes I don’t feel like driving to the store, and the last time I tried to order online, the shower caps were mysteriously removed from my order after the fact.  I don’t know what that was all about, but my card wasn’t charged for them, and I found the same ones on Amazon, so that’s where I buy them now if I don’t have time to visit Sally’s.


7. Tinted Dry Shampoo

If you dye your hair black and don’t wash it every day, then you know just how difficult—even impossible—it is to get away with using white dry shampoo.  EVERYONE and their mother will be able to tell you didn’t wash your hair… or they’ll just think you spent all morning sticking your head in dusty places.


My point is, you need dry shampoo that blends in with your artificially black hair, and this is the one I recommend:


8. Color-Safe Clarifying Shampoo

I’ve found that regular color-safe shampoo doesn’t always do the trick to remove styling products and built-up dry shampoo—for that, you need something a little bit stronger.  I’ve started using this clarifying shampoo from Kenra and find that it’s pretty good at deep cleaning my hair without making the color fade too noticeably.


9. Color-Depositing Conditioner

If you do notice your color fading too quickly, try using a color-depositing product in the shower.  Nothing looks worse than when your roots fade in-between your regular touch ups.


This color-depositing conditioner from Sally’s (also available on Amazon) is great for evening out your black hair and preserving that freshly-dyed look—just be careful to keep it out of your eyes, and maybe use gloves when you apply it, because I’ve found it can leave stains under my nails.


10. A super-moisturizing conditioner or hair masque

I ditched traditional conditioner years ago after I discovered the Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Masque—now I just use a nice, big glob of this stuff after I shampoo, and my hair’s never looked better.  Plus, I have almost zero tangles after I get out of the shower.


11. A good heat protectant spray


This one goes for anyone who dyes their hair, since color-treated locks are pretty delicate, as we all know.


I cannot even begin to tell you how many different heat protectors I’ve tried over the years.  Most of them left me feeling disappointed in some way (either they made my hair feel greasy, smell funny, or they just did nothing at all and my hair would burning and dry out like a mother***er).


This heat protectant, on the other hand, is a total game-changer: it’s lightweight, it barely has any scent, and it’s kept my hair relatively damage-free for years now.

What are some of your must-have items for keeping dyed hair looking healthy and beautiful?


Comment below, and don’t forget to share this post with all your friends with dyed hair!


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