Now Reading
The fading red hair dilemma: should I dye my hair more ginger?

The fading red hair dilemma: should I dye my hair more ginger?

Being a child with bright copper hair isn’t always a bundle of laughs, but as you grow up, you realise the genuine awesomeness of having red hair. Leafing through childhood photos makes you notice how much your ginger shade has actually changed over the years – whether darker or lighter, you wish you had felt proud of it when you were younger.

You wish you were more ginger.

Kid ginger - Ginger Parrot

It’s not about being in denial of getting older. But having ginger hair is a huge part of your identity, and it’s worth clinging on to if you can.

But how do we tackle The Fading Red Hair Dilemma? Questions and worries spiral out of control: “Is there shame in dyeing my natural red hair, even if it is to be more ginger? Does that make me a fake redhead? What if the hair dye makes me look like a fake redhead? What products should I even use??

Well, dear gingers, both existing and fading, we took the time to chat with other natural redheads who’ve faced The Fading Red Hair Dilemma head on. And it all comes up smelling of…gingerness.

As I’ve got older my hair has definitely got lighter, I’ve been dying it on and off for years (I’d say I probably dye it about 3 or 4 times a year), and I only ever use non-permanent dye as I don’t want horrid roots.

I used to worry about how it would turn out but luckily I was never disappointed.

Sarah James

My hair was starting to darken and it made me sad! I loved my hair when it was vibrant ginger. I was terrified to use commercial dyes as I didn’t want to damage my hair.

Then I found Lush henna in Caca Rouge and I have never looked back! It was natural so I wasn’t nervous at all, it is very messy but the result is amazing!

Kelly Galloway

My red started to fade and I wanted it to stay my natural red color. Demi permanent looked fine but faded quickly. Redken permanent color chemically ruined my hair. I now use Davines and love it. It looks like my childhood color.

Heather Rushing

I use a colouring conditioner to combat fade (and to hide the platinum highlights that are developing at my temples). It works like a dream! I’m plucking up the courage to go for a stronger colour next time.

Fran Harrison

Portrait of red-haired girl close-up

I have light ginger hair, but I’m a massive fan of Lush Caca Rouge henna hair dye – messy, but worth it. It makes my hair super coppery and the cocoa butter leaves it shiny.

Audrey Gillies

I’ve always had really red hair but as I got older it was getting darker. One day my then 4 year old son drew a picture of him and I and he drew me with brown hair!!

I said to him, “Mummy doesn’t have brown hair”, and he replied “Yes you do, look”. I looked in the mirror and realised that to him my, what was now very dark auburn hair, probably did look brown. Yikes!

So now dye my hair back to its original ginger!

It’s such a part of who I am, I always will.

Emily Brouder

I have a ginger son aged 12 and as my red hair fades I want him to feel reassured and confident so colour my hair to match him.

Jo Quinn

See Also

I went through all the colours of the rainbow with my hair, until I decided that I was born to be a ginger!

Unfortunately my natural red hair had faded to dark after all my dye jobs, so I began dying it a bright tinge of ginge! I was worried at that my eyebrows wouldn’t match and that my hair wouldn’t look natural but I really love the colour I am now.

I am so glad that I’m back to my natural(ish) hair and I wanna remain a ginger forever – I recommend all of L’Oréal Nice ‘n’ Easy’s red shades.

Joanna Xiourouppa

Now in my late 40s, as the pigment starts to fade away, I occasionally add a semi-permanent colour to my hair conditioner to brighten my colour a wee bit.

It is not that I am afraid of going grey (well, white) and signs of age. It is just that I love my ginger hair. It makes me feel strong, vibrant, sassy. I know all of that is within me, I just wear it proudly with my hair.

Paula Luther

So there you have it. Whether you choose to believe it or live in denial, red hair does fade over the years. AND IT’S OKAY.

There’s plenty to keep your ginger shade topped up: henna-infused hair products for redheads, pure henna dye, high-street permanent and semi-permanent dyes, and even cranberry juice does the job.

Thanks to all of our readers who got in touch with their stories of battling The Fading Red Hair Dilemma. Keep holding on to the ginger dream!

By Emma

READ: The Perils of Being Ginger But ‘Not THAT Ginger’
READ: Redheads and Achromotrichia: Do Gingers Go Grey?
Scroll To Top