10 purple shampoos to brighten blonde hair

Blonde hair needs a lot of upkeep to stay looking vibrant and salon-fresh. But, now that we’re in another lockdown, it’s hard to know when you’ll next be able to see your stylist. To avoid your hair turning brassy in the meantime, it’s worth considering a purple shampoo.

What is purple shampoo and how does it work?

There are many external factors that work against blonde hair. In general, lighter hair is harder to keep healthy and shiny because it’s more prone to absorbing unwanted minerals in tap water, damaging UV rays and environmental pollutants. These are also responsible for bringing out those unwanted brassy yellow tones.

Purple shampoo counteracts this by delivering a temporary dose of purple pigment to your hair, neutralising any yellow tones and reviving it back to its brighter self. So, whether you’ve gone for an ice-white hue or a warm shade of honey, our purple shampoo picks should leave your hair looking and feeling refreshed.

How long should I leave purple shampoo in for?

This differs by brand so always check the instructions: some suggest leaving the product in your hair for as long as 10 minutes. You might prefer a daily formula that can replace your regular shampoo altogether, or one to use once or twice a week as a supplement to your existing routine. To prevent staining, use gloves and always wash the shampoo out thoroughly.

How we test

We recruited over 480 women to test 22 purple shampoos. They gave their feedback on the anti-brass effectiveness, how clean hair felt after use, and whether or not they spotted any unwanted purple tint.

In the Hearst Institute lab, we used a colour-measurement device called a spectrophotometer to analyse the improvements in hair tone after a one-week period. Below are the ones that impressed us the most.

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