can you add developer to semi permanent hair color

Can you add developer to semi permanent hair color? People who love to dye their hair often have this question.

And knowing the answer is crucial because it can affect the results you get after a color job.

No doubt, it feels tempting to try some of those hair color trends you find on social media.

Unfortunately, they’re not always that simple to try.

However, temporary hair color sprays and semi-permanent hair dye make it possible to try out new colors without a major commitment.

The good thing is that you don’t need to worry if you don’t like the shade. Why? Because your color is going to fade after a couple of washes anyway!

But what if you’re sure about the color and simply want it to last longer than usual?

That’s when many people ask, “Can you mix developer with semi-permanent dye for long-lasting results?

No, you should not add a developer to your semi-permanent hair color because the acidic properties of the developer interfere with how the dye works.

Tip: Use semi-permanent hair dye as needed, as it's not damaging because it only deposits color onto your hair. 

Can You Add Developer To Semi-Permanent Hair Color For Vibrancy?

add developer

Using semi-permanent hair coloring, you can temporarily change your hair color without causing any damage.

It’s free of peroxide or ammonia, so there is no need for a developer or pre-mixing before application.

Gloss and luster can be added to lifeless hair using a semi-permanent hair dye.

It may keep looking good even after several washes, and the correct products may extend its life even further.

Because no bleach is used, it can even be used on previously processed hair.

Keep in mind that to get your desired results, you should only combine developer with DEMI-permanent hair color. Not following this advice would leave you with uneven and faded colors.

You can always use a clear conditioner if you need to dilute the dye.

Tip: Never leave your hair dry, and use conditioner, whether rinse-out or leave-in, especially if you have very textured, coily hair. 

How to Use Semi-Permanent Hair Color Correctly?

how to use semi permanent color

In order to get good results, you don’t have to add a developer to your semi-permanent hair dye. Instead, you need to focus more on the application process.

A semi-permanent dye can be applied with little effort to achieve a short-term change in hair color.

Using it at home is simple for anyone with the correct amount of preparation, a little bit of knowledge, and the directions on their dye. 

Step #1: Find the Right Color

Picking the right color is crucial for impeccable results.

You may find semi-permanent dyes in a wide variety of retail establishments, from supermarkets to boutiques, but the best selection is in health and beauty stores.

Choose a hue that appeals to you personally, works well with your existing clothing, and brings out the finest in your eyes and skin.

All hair colors can use semi-permanent dyes; however, the results are most pronounced on light hair.

They may only show up as a faint shimmer against really black hair.

find the right color

Step #2: Bleach Your Hair

Although this step is not always needed, it may be helpful in certain situations. 

In general, bleaching hair will result in a more vibrant hue on all hair types.

Bleaching your hair is necessary if you have darker hair and want to use bright colors. 

Step #3: Perform a Patch Test

It’s vital if you’re using a particular brand for the first time or have sensitive skin.

  • Apply some dye on a cotton ball.
  • Place it over your upper back or other exposed area.
  • Leave it for at least an hour.
  • Take it off and rinse the dye.
  • Give it 48 hours to take effect.

You’re good to go if you don’t experience any redness, itching or swelling.  

patch test

Step #4: Prepare Your Hair

You shouldn’t dye your hair right after washing it, but you also don’t want it to be greasy or filthy.

The day before you color your hair, use a scalp care/detox shampoo to remove any dirt, oil, and product buildup from your scalp.

It’s also a good idea to use a sulfate-free conditioner after washing your hair to restore its natural softness. 

Step #5: Apply The Semi-Permanent Dye

Get a pair of enclosed gloves and wear them when applying your dye to your hair.

  • Spread a generous amount of hair color over the area.
  • Gently massage the dye into a huge area of your skin and hair.
  • Use a fistful of color and apply it to your hair like shampoo.
  • Repeat the process several times with additional dye for long hair.
  • Use tint brushes if you only want to color a particularly small area.
  • Repeat the process a few times to ensure a uniform coating of color.

 Let the dye stay in your hair for up to 45 minutes. 

Step #6: Rinse It Out

rinse it out

You can lessen the likelihood of skin staining by rinsing in the sink, but doing so may be uncomfortable.

The shower is generally a better option for rinsing, especially with dark colors.

  • Put your head under running water and really drench your hair.
  • Use a color-safe shampoo and wash your hair gently.
  • Keep rinsing until the water becomes clear.

Anything your hair comes into contact with will be stained if you forget to rinse out the remaining color. So, be sure to rinse properly.

Moreover, you should also use a conditioner because maintaining adequate moisture in your hair is essential after dyeing.

And finally, don’t use the blow dryer; Just let the air dry your hair to get better results.

So, that’s all you have to do to apply the dye and change your hair color. And did you notice something?

Yeah, there’s no developer! You don’t need any with your semi-permanent dye! 

How To Take Care of Your Freshly-Colored Hair?

care of freshly colored hair

Depending on the hair’s porosity, your freshly dyed locks can survive anywhere from four to 10 washes before fading.

Consider which new shade you want to test because the color may fade over time and change tones with each shampoo.

Here are a few tips to remember to help your color last longer:

  • Stay away from water for as long as you can.
  • Never expose your hair to water for at least 72 hours.
  • Change your hair-wash routine, and don’t do it daily.
  • Always rinse your hair with cool water and avoid hot showers.
  • Limit or avoid heat styling completely for long-lasting results.
Tip: Use a sulfate-free shampoo suitable for your hair color, like silvers and blondes can benefit from using a purple shampoo. 

How to Intensify Your Semi-Permanent Dye without Developer?

Can you mix semi-permanent hair dye with developer? If you ask this question, it means you’re basically looking for a way to make your color more vibrant.

dyed hair

The truth is that you don’t have to use a developer to achieve that refined look.

Here’s how you can make your shade rather intense. 

Leave It in Your Hair for Longer

The more time you give the dye to soak in, the deeper the color will be.

Since semi-permanent colors are so mild, some people even leave them on their locks overnight. 

A Word of Caution

Leaving the dye on for a more extended period may increase the amount of color that comes out, but we don’t advocate leaving it in overnight.

It’s recommended to let the dye sit for at least 30 minutes, but up to 45 minutes for the brightest results.

Dye Your Damp Hair

Though semi-permanent dye can be applied to dry hair, the color will be absorbed more fully if applied to damp hair. 

dye damp hair

Because semi-permanent dyes don’t typically include ammonia or peroxide, used to open the hair cuticle, water must be used instead.

Towel-dried hair is optimal for dyeing since it is damp and absorbs more dye than either soaking wet or dry hair. 

Opt for the Right Brands

The amount of pigment in different types of semi-permanent hair dye varies greatly.

 Using a highly pigmented dye is essential if you want your color to hold up for an extended period of time.

Although most semipermanent colors only persist through eight washes, some can withstand up to 42 washes.

Therefore, choosing the appropriate hair dye brand can extend the life of your color by a factor of three or more! 

Make Use of Color Depositing Products

Color-depositing conditioners and shampoos work like semi-permanent dyes by adding more pigment to the surface of your hair strands.

color depositing products

When you use a color-depositing product, you may expect your color to remain true for about 5–15 washes before showing significant signs of fading. 

Quick Points

  • Leave it for an extended period for better effects
  • Not Recommended to leave in your hair overnight
  • Leave it on for 45 minutes for vibrant color
  • Use on Towel-Dried Hair for effects
  • Highly-pigmented dyes last up to 42 washes
  • Color Depositing products increase longevity
Tip: Be sure to go for touch-ups and re-apply another coat as soon as you notice the color fade to ensure it keeps looking good for long. 


Semi-permanent hair dye is a harmless way of coloring your hair.

But, as it fades quickly, many people want to know, “Can you add developer to semi-permanent hair color?” 

You don’t have to, as it’s not going to change the outcomes, and it may actually hamper the coloring process.

Just leave it on your hair for longer and follow aftercare for long-lasting results.

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