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Best conditioner for color-treated hair

Which conditioner for color-treated hair is best?

The first week after you color your hair is the best. Your hair is bright, shiny and luxurious. The color can fade fast, but using the right products can help you keep colored hair gorgeous long-term. Nexxus Hair Color Assure Conditioner For Color Treated Hair is top-rated because it keeps your hair soft and maintains color with protein-enriched ingredients that are sulfate- and paraben-free. 

What to know before you buy conditioner for color-treated hair

Conditioner for color-treated hair 101

Conditioner is the second step in the hair cleansing routine after shampooing. If you have dyed your hair with permanent hair color, conditioning is a vital step, since hair dye can strip hair of its natural oils and break down hair follicles. Conditioner helps replace the moisture that's lost and prevents further damage.

Conditioner for color-treated hair is designed to protect the hair from exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays, which can cause hair color to fade. The conditioner lets you retain the color as much as possible. 

Your hair type

Knowing your hair type will help determine what conditioner for color-treated hair is best for you. Those with dry, thick hair should opt for deep conditioners that penetrate hair follicles, delivering hydration throughout your hair and scalp. Curly hair can be tricky but it needs the same hydration and moisture, though thick conditioners can weigh down curly hair. Fine hair can get oily quickly, so consider a lightweight conditioner.

Condition when you shampoo

Conditioning should be part of your hair care routine if you have color-treated hair. After leaving the salon with a fresh new color or doing it at home with a kit, it is recommended to condition every time you wash your hair. Conditioners help color-treated hair stay moisturized and vibrant. 

What to look for in a quality conditioner for color-treated hair


Sulfates are chemicals used to create a sudsy lather in cleaning products such as shampoo, detergent and body wash. The most commonly used sulfates are sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate. Products with sulfates wash out hair color more over time than those formulated without sulfates. Sulfates can also dry hair out and remove oils from the hair and scalp.

Sulfate-free products have less lather and let you use less product. Conditioners for color-treated hair made without sulfates are less harsh on your hair color overall. 

Non-residue feel 

Some conditioners can leave your hair feeling greasy or weighed down. There is no clear reason why this happens, especially since it varies from user to user, but it can be caused by the fragrances or types of moisturizers used. Search for a conditioner that provides moisture without weighing your hair down 

Multiple benefits

Aside from adding moisture to your hair, conditioners for color-treated hair should also provide protection from heat and the sun's ultraviolet rays, as well as being anti-frizz and offering extra shine. 

How much you can expect to spend on conditioner for color-treated hair

This type of conditioner ranges in price from $10–$80.

Conditioner for color-treated hair FAQ

How long should I leave the conditioner in my hair?

A. Instructions vary from product to product, but usually it is three to five minutes. It is important to also take your hair type into consideration. For example, if you have dry, coarse or thicker hair, you may want to leave the conditioner in for longer than the suggested time.

Can conditioner fix damaged hair?

A. Damage cannot be reversed. However, hair can be protected from further damage by using proper hair maintenance techniques such as brushing and detangling your hair and being careful with heated styling tools. Conditioners made without harsh chemicals and sulfates can help protect your hair from future damage when used regularly. 

What are the best conditioners for color-treated hair to buy?

Top conditioner for color-treated hair 

Nexxus Hair Color Assure Conditioner 

What you need to know: This deep conditioner keeps color-treated hair looking vibrant and protects it from fading. 

What you’ll love: It is enriched with quinoa protein and is sulfate-free to keep hair strong, shiny and healthy, delivering salon-worthy results. 

What you should consider: It can make hair feel greasy or weighed down after using. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

Top conditioner for color-treated hair for the money

Derma E Restoring Vitamin E Conditioner

What you need to know: It encourages volume and shine while helping to prevent color from fading.

What you’ll love: Formulated with an array of naturally derived vitamins, proteins and oils, this conditioner strengthens hair while leaving it feeling soft. It's gentle and safe for color-treated hair. It has a vegan and cruelty-free formula.  

What you should consider: Some people find that using too much of this conditioner leaves their hair feeling overly greasy. 

Where to buy: Sold by Ulta Beauty and Amazon

Worth checking out

It's a 10 Miracle Daily Conditioner

What you need to know: This is a moisture- and antioxidant-packed lightweight conditioner made for daily use.

What you’ll love: In addition to the many benefits it provides, it's made to help prevent hair from damage and fading.

What you should consider: This conditioner is pretty pricey compared to other brands. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

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Shelby Sears writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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