How long should I wait to wash my hair after getting it coloured?

Updated April 17, 2017

Whether you use a boxed hair colour at home or you get it done professionally at a salon, the recommended wait time before washing your hair is 24 hours. If you use a double-process colour (such as a base colour and highlights), try to go 48 hours without washing your hair to allow your hair and scalp to build up their natural oils again.

Wash immediately

If you have unexpected results such as an overly vibrant, dark or ashy colour, the professionals at Schwarzkopf (a leader in the hair colour industry) suggest washing your hair immediately.

Bottom line

Wait a minimum of 24 hours after any colour process for best results, unless you want to tone down the colour-in, in which case wash it immediately. Always follow up with a deep conditioner to restore moisture to the hair.


The first day after colouring is your best chance to get rid of it, if you change your mind about the colour.

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About the Author

An accredited makeup artist, Stacey Richardson has written for various fashion, beauty and lifestyle publications since 2007. Her work has appeared both in print and online for a variety of international companies. Richardson has a Bachelor of Design, honors, with a major in fashion communications, and a TEFL diploma, specializing in business communications.