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FEATURES Jun 21 2012 11:32AM
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How to Care for Color-Treated Natural Hair

By Adrienne Brown

A beautiful head of colored curls can be everything to a natural. It’s the pop of blond that sets your kinks over the top, giving you a chic yet edge look. Or, it’s the subtle earth tone that warms up your face, giving you an effortless glow.
Whatever the shade, coloring your natural hair can positively transform your look and bring a uniqueness to your mane.
On the other end of the color spectrum, a newly hued do, if not cared for properly, can be the downfall of your tresses. After the color, and of course fly hairstyle, should come healthy hair care. 
Here are a few ways to keep your head of colored kinks, curls and waves in tip-top shape.

Keep It Moisturized
As you very well know, coloring/dyeing hair can be drying to your stands. As is constant in the natural hair world, moisture is everything.
Strive to maintain a proper moisture balance by straying away from shampoos that strip your strands of their essential oils. Swap that bottle of “poo” for a cleanser that will impart moisture into your tresses.
Use a leave-in conditioner before styling and adopt a deep conditioning regimen. Doing so can build your hairs moisture retention and help keep your color looking its best.

Stick to Lukewarm
Nothing feels better than washing your hair in a nice hot shower. But, that “feel so good” hot water may be shorting the life span of your new hue.
The hotter the water, the quicker the color may fade. Stick to lukewarm water when cleansing and conditioning, it will help your color stay in place and last a wee bit longer.

Protect Those Ends
The ends of your hair are the oldest part of your locs and the most fragile. Couple that with the chemicals of a coloring treatment and you have an extremely delicate area.
Experiment with protective styling, tucking the ends of your hair away, to prevent damage. Doing so will keep your colored style looking great and help you retain more length.

Don’t Soak Up Too Much Sun
The sun is a great way to give yourself a natural glow and can even boost your mood. But, as the saying goes, too much of something is not necessarily a good thing. Over indulging in those lovely rays can cause your color to fade and dry out your hair.
If you plan to spend hours basking in the sun's glory, try wearing a stylish floppy hat or scarf to block the heat. Your hair and color will thank you.

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