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What Is Temporary Hair Color?

In light of the Halloween season, I have decided to write about temporary hair color today.

What is temporary color? How does it work? What are some pros and cons of temporary hair color?

These are all some questions that people may have about the stuff, and I am here to answer them for you.

Have you ever wondered what temporary hair color was and why it was different from permanent color?  Learn all about it here!

What is Temporary Hair Color?

While there are many types of hair color, temporary color is the only type that will wash right out when you are done with it (maybe… keep reading to hear more about that).

It goes on, often as a bright, vibrant color and will wash right out with your next shower.

How Does Temporary Hair Color Work?

Temporary color does not alter your hair in any way, shape or form. It simply coats your hair shaft with a layer of pigment. This is why it is so easy to wash away when you are done.

**See how other types of color work

Have you ever wondered what temporary hair color was and why it was different from permanent color?  Learn all about it here!

What Are Some Ways to Use Temporary Hair Color?

Well, the first example I’ll talk about is to do crazy Halloween costume hair without the commitment. Let’s say you want to be “The Joker,” but you don’t want to permanently commit to green hair.

Temporary hair color would be a good option for you.

Another scenario would be that you have mostly grey hair, and it has been four weeks since your last color touch-up, but your hair stylist is on vacation.

Instead of rocking silver roots, there are some temporary grey coverage colors that you can cover your roots with until you can get them fixed.

Temporary color rinses are a very popular commodity with the elderly crowd. I used to work in a salon that catered a lot to the elderly, and these little ladies come in once a week to have their hair shampooed and then styled with rollers.

Since most of them have naturally white hair, they often request that their hair have a color rinse added to it. You just apply it to their hair while it is still wet after it was shampooed.

All this does is add a little bit of tone to their white hair. Similarly, there are plain old temporary hair colors, such as chestnut-brown, that allow you to color your hair without the commitment.

Last, but not least, there are such things as “spray highlights.” They may sound too good to be true, but from what I have read, they are pretty awesome.

How Do You Apply Temporary Hair Color?

Temporary color comes in a wide array of ways to use it. You have probably seen or maybe used the spray colors before. You just spray them in your hair like hairspray and comb them through.

Speaking of that, they also come in “comb-in” type colors, where you literally just comb the color right through your hair.

Another popular trend is “Hair Chalk” which gives you vibrant coverage.

Have you ever wondered what temporary hair color was and why it was different from permanent color?  Learn all about it here!

Beyond that, temporary color also comes in crayons, mousses, rinses, gels, etc. What type you use is entirely up to you.

Will Temporary Hair Color Damage My Hair?

It will not damage your hair. Like I said earlier, it only coats your hair with pigment. This is because it does not contain any ammonia and will not alter your hair chemically, in any way.

What Are The Pros / Cons of Temporary Hair Color?

The pros:

  • You can try a new look without the commitment
  • It will create a temporary look for a short-term event such as a costume party, etc.
  • You can use it to cover unwanted outgrowth temporarily
  • It does not damage your hair
  • Not too expensive

The cons:

  • If your hair is light to begin with, especially if it is very porous and damaged, it will likely cling on to the color. For instance, a bleached-blonde may end up with a shade of pink after they wash their hair.
  • It may not show up as well on really dark hair colors, but that depends on the product.
  • The color will run if it gets wet while raining, etc.
  • It could be messy– I had a piece of hair chalk break once and fell all over my carpet, and it was really hard to get out.

How Do You Get Temporary Hair Color Out of Blonde Hair?

If it did manage to stick around after your shower, I would recommend washing it again with a good clarifying shampoo. This should help remove it the rest of the way.

If not, give it a few more shampoos and see if that helps. If it still does not come out, a slight soap cap will definitely help.

Is there anything I left out? Do you have any experiences with temporary hair color? I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments section below (:


Thursday 26th of October 2017


I have naturally strawberry blonde hair which I have been dying semi permenanlty medium-dark brown for about 5 years. How can I go back to my natural colour without damaging it!

Hollee Wood

Saturday 28th of October 2017

Well, technically, semi-permanent should eventually fade but it might be hard to get it to come out since you've been doing it for so many years with a dark color over light hair. I would try to start letting it fade out first, and see how much will come out. You can try using clarifying shampoo or color stripper... which might dry it out a little but won't damage it (make sure do use a good conditioner after). If you can get most of the color out (it might take some time), you could probably color your hair with a shade similar to your natural and then let it grow out from there. It probably won't be exactly like the new growth, but if you can get it close, it won't be as bad as it grows out. Sometimes it's a pain to get back to your natural color, but you can get there eventually. Good luck!