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How to Use Hair Color Waxes on Natural Hair

Red hair on Monday, blue hair on Tuesday.
16 Jun 2022
There’s something exciting about getting a fresh dye job, but what if we said there’s a way to sport a new hair hue without the commitment? Yes, you read that right, having purple hair for the weekend is totally possible thanks to this new viral hair trend. Enter, hair waxes.

Like temporary hair dye, hair waxes are an at-home way to color your strands without using any harsh chemicals or spending hours in the salon. Curious, yet? We have all in’s and out’s of this new trend, including how to use hair color waxes, how long they last and the exact way of using them on natural hair.

What are hair color waxes?

Hair color waxes are the secret to sporting any new hue without commitment. Hair color waxes are typically made using temporary pigment, petroleum jelly and beeswax, similar to natural hair dye. The simple formula makes this temporary hair color ideal for those who want to steer clear of ammonia, bleaching and other harsh chemicals.

Hair waxes typically come in a pot or jar and can be used as is. Even though it’s called a wax, you apply it like a cream (more on that below). And voila! Your curls are now ‘dyed’ the color of your choosing. The good news is you can use hair wax as often as you please. We’re talking pink locks on Monday and blue curls on Tuesday. And it doesn’t matter if your hair is naturally dark or even black. Hair waxes don’t work like traditional hair dye, so there’s no need to bleach or lighten the hair to pick up the pigment.

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How long do hair color waxes last?

Though vivid upon application, the truth is hair waxes don’t last forever. Consider this a temporary solution to achieving your desired hair color. After applying hair waxes, you can expect the color to disappear the next time you shampoo.

Technically, the color is sitting on top of the hair shaft, so it can even fade if you don’t protect it while you’re sleeping. But if losing the color is disappointing, just reapply the wax after your next wash day.

To properly cleanse the hair of the colored wax, you may want to use a pre-poo treatment or double-cleanse. The Goddess Strength Ultra Strength Pre-Poo With Castor Oil followed by Black Vanilla Moisture and Shine Sulfate Free Shampoo is a great choice since it replenishes moisture and adds shine; follow it up with Hair Milk Nourishing & Conditioning Styling Pudding for even more moisture.

How to use hair color waxes

Warning, this hair-coloring technique can get messy, so don’t open your jar and get started without a little preparation. You want to wear an old t-shirt and even grab a pair of plastic gloves. Trust us, the end result is well worth it.

You also want to wash and condition your hair before applying hair wax. For especially defined and hydrated curls, apply a deep conditioner like the Goddess Strength Repairing Cocoon Mask. Once your hair is cleansed, apply a light-to-medium weight styling cream. Choosing a product that is too heavy can affect how the wax applies, so stick to a curl cream or leave-in conditioner like the Black Vanilla Hydrating Leave-In Conditioner paired with the Goddess Strength Divine Strength Leave-In Cream.

Once your hair is cleansed, conditioned and styled, it’s almost time to apply the wax. Depending on how thick and long your curls are, it’s best to divide the hair into sections before applying the hair color wax. In most cases 4-6 sections should be doable. If your hair is very thick or very long, feel free to divide it into smaller sections to make it more manageable.

Grab a small, dime-sized amount of the wax and apply it to the first section. Remember, a little goes a long way with hair waxes. They are saturated in color, so overapplying the product can cause flaking and peeling. If you’re not satisfied with the color payoff 10-15 minutes after the first application, feel free to add more. But the color is truly buildable, so remember you can always add more, but you can’t take away.

Once all the sections are complete, you can style as desired or even diffuse to set the color into place and give your curls some volume.

What do I do if my hair color wax fades?

Remember, hair color waxes are temporary, so the color will likely only last a few days to a week. If you find that areas of your hair are fading sooner than your next shampoo session, you can reapply color as a spot touch up. Just remember, to start with a very small amount of hair wax. Adding too much wax can cause flaking and result in stiff, stringy curls. If you have to, revive them with Hair Milk 4-in-1 Combing Cream or Coco Creme Curl Shaping Cream Gel.

Interested in more curly hair tips? Check out How to Wash Curly Hair.

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