8 Winter Hair Coloring Tips and Tricks

Changes in season inspire change in ourselves. We set new goals and try new adventures. We update our makeup and explore new hairstyles and colors. Variety is the spice of life, after all! If you’ve been thinking about refreshing your look with a new winter hair color, we’ve got eight tips and tricks that will  help brighten your look through the dullest winter days ahead. 

1. Strengthen Your Strands First

Before you try out a new color this winter, it’s important to fortify your hair. Even though winter hair dyes aren’t super harsh, it’s essential that your strands are the strongest and healthiest they can be. This is especially important for aging hair, which is prone to dryness, brittleness and breakage, particularly when the air turns cold and dry. 

For an instant hair strengthening option designed for aging tresses, we love our Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo and Conditioner. This powerful duo contains Bamboo, which is high in silica and mineral content to help strengthen hair strands and support moisture retention. And when used together, they are clinically proven to reduce breakage by 98%. We also love our Superpower Fortifying Hair & Scalp Serum for its Centella Asiatica (or tiger grass), which helps strengthen and activate hair follicles over time. Stronger, active follicles are vital for healthy hair! 

2. Undo Damage with a Darker Hue  

In the summertime, it’s no secret that highlights reign supreme! When the weather is warm and sunny, we love a sun-kissed style to match. But highlights can be hard on our hair. 

In winter, changing up your color can give your hair a reprieve from the harsher processes of highlighting and bleaching. Lightening treatments strip color from hair, which can damage the hair shaft. This is especially problematic for curly hair, which is even more delicate. But with darker hair dyes, color is added to hair, making the coloring process far less damaging, and the redeposited pigments actually help revive tresses for an instantly healthier look.

In need of some winter hair color ideas? Winter season colors like chestnut browns, warm auburns and dark toffee blondes are perfect on-trend choices for your locks this winter season! And if you just can’t part ways with the look of highlights, consider winter highlights. Toned-down highlights can be a striking way to keep the definition you love while showing your tresses the care they crave. 

3. Choose a Winter Hair Color That Complements Your Complexion

As we age, our skin’s undertones can change, which means that hair colors that looked great in the past won’t necessarily be as flattering now. A quick way to check your undertones is to look at the veins on the back of your wrist. If your veins have more of a purple or bluish tint, you likely have cool undertones. If your veins appear to be more green in color, you have warm undertones. 

Cool complexions tend to look great in shades of ashy blonde and copper, while warm complexions favor shades of mocha and honey blonde. If your complexion has changed with age, be sure to reevaluate whether your undertones have remained the same. Whether your undertones require a cool winter palette or warm winter colors, you want to be sure that your winter dye colors are complementary! 

4. Moisture Matters More Now—Especially for Curls

Our hair and skin become drier with time. And while we know to tailor our skincare routine to our changing needs as we age, we often don’t give the same attention to our hair-care routine. If you’re coloring your hair—and especially in the winter months—it’s critical that you keep your strands hydrated! 

This is especially true for curly hair, which tends to be drier. Our scalp provides the majority of our hair’s natural moisture, and oils have a harder time reaching the ends of strands when they have to travel through tricky curl patterns, especially with longer hair. (They’re furthest from the source, after all!) To protect your curls as they age, try super-hydrating products like our Bounce Back Super Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner for Curly Hair, designed to revive curls with a weightless moisturizing boost that brings back their definition and bounce! 

5. Space Out Your Hair Washes

Frequent washing strips hair of its natural oils and can irritate the scalp. Spacing out washes not only helps prevent dryness but will also keep your cute winter hair colors vibrant! 

So how frequently should we be washing our hair in the winter, especially if we have color-treated hair? As we age, our scalp’s sebaceous glands produce less oil, which means we can usually go two to three days between washes. 

To maximize the longevity of your winter hair dye, be sure to wash your tresses with the coolest water you can stand. (This can be hard to handle when it’s cold outside!) Washing with cold water is especially crucial if you opt for a shade of red, as this color fades the fastest. Cool water washes and washing less often will help keep all your cute winter hair colors looking salon-fresh as long as possible!

6. Ask Your Stylist for "Color Blending"

To extend the time between touch-ups on your new winter hair color, ask your stylist to color blend your hair. This involves weaving color into gray roots for a natural, blended effect. Using balayage, lowlights and minimal highlights (in those winter season colors you’ve been eyeing), your stylist can camouflage gray hair by blending each color in with your natural gray

As we head into the winter season, when we’re already short on time with work, family and holiday obligations, the last thing we need is an extra unnecessary salon appointment! Ask for a color blend at your next appointment to maximize the time between color retouches. 

7. Add Dimension and Volume with Winter Colors

To create the illusion of volume, ask your stylist about using a multidimensional hair color palette for some “hair contouring.” Hair that’s only one color can look thin, flat and lifeless. Lowlights from the same chromatic range are a great option to create a sense of fuller hair—something thinning tresses will surely welcome! 

If you have any lingering highlights from last summer or fall, you’re in luck, and you can likely get away with using a single winter dye color. In this instance, you’re still working with a multidimensional hair color palette because of the variety of shades already in your hair. The result? The one color you choose will set differently on your existing colors, giving you beautiful dimension with less salon time and effort. 

8. Use Color-Safe Hair-Care Products

In addition to cool water washes and washing less frequently, be sure to use color-safe hair-care products on freshly dyed winter hair. These are vital to maintaining lasting color and protecting the hair shaft of dyed locks. 

Always look for products free of parabens and sulfates, as they can dry out hair and cause major color fade. Opting for shampoos and conditioners without these chemicals will protect your hair from dryness and help you retain your true winter hair color longer! And if you have blonde hair, or any warm winter color for that matter, our Silver Lining Purple Brightening Shampoo will help keep your hair looking fresh by preventing brassy yellows from setting in.  

Let Better Not Younger Take Care of Your Hair This Winter

Harsh winter weather takes a toll on our hair. For those of us who color our hair, these effects are amplified. The constant changes in temperature—freezing outside and warm inside—coupled with dry air make a perfect environment for winter hair issues. Better Not Younger has hydrating, volumizing options as well as great winter hair color ideas to help all hair types and colors look gorgeous this winter! 

Tell us: What winter hair colors are you loving this season? Share your favorite winter styles in the comments below! 

Like what you read and want more hair-care content delivered directly to your inbox? Sign up to receive our weekly newsletters for the latest hair intel and exclusive promotions for your aging hair needs!