Repairing severely damaged hair?

My sister has been dying her hair around every 6 weeks for the last 7 years. Recently, she dyed it a horrible shiny shade of red, which faded to anime girl pink the first time she washed it. In an effort to get rid of the pink, she has bleached and dyed it several times in the last two weeks.

This has left her hair looking like the hair on a cheap baby doll, and with the texture of cotton. She can’t run anything other than a baby brush through her hair without the hair coming out in clumps.

Is there anyway can she fix this, aside from shaving her head and starting over? (Which is what I told her to do.) Will even doing that work, or should she just start buying wigs?

She should get to a hairdresser immediately. And btw when you screw up a home colour job the next step is not to try and fix it yourself it’s to head to a professional. She’s going to be unhappy with the texture and colour for several months but wigs damage hair too so I wouldn’t recommend one. Lots and lots of intensive conditioning, NO heat (blow dryers, curling irons, straighteners) and basically wait it out probably in conjunction with a fairly short cut. Long hair puts a lot of strain on the root.

Of course IANAHD

Regardless of what the commercials say, hair is dead, so vitamins and the like won’t “repair” it. However, a professional might be able to shape what’s left of the hair, condition it to minimize breaking/loss from pulling, that kind of thing.

Seconding that she needs to go to hair dresser. She’ll probably end up with a really short cut. There are keratin treatments that coat hair which might help but they’re pretty expensive ($200-300).

Thanks for the advice folks, I’ll pass it along.

Maybe this time she’ll listen; doubt it though.

1: third or fourthing a hair dresser. Odds are, sadly, your sister’s probably going to have to hack most of her hair off.

2: For what hair she has left, deep conditioning treatments do help. Speaking as someone who has done a lot of dumb shit to my hair, I’m an expert on making it lovely again.

My number one favorite thing to use is Hask Henna and Placenta. Yes. Placenta. It’s bunny placenta. Whatever. The point is that it looks like conditioner, smells like flowers, and will immediately make your hair a lot healthier when it’s damaged. What I do when my hair is epically fucked up is put that stuff on my towel dried hair, wrap my head in saran wrap, and blow dry all around my head (the heat helps it absorb). Then, after about 10 mins of this, I wrap the whole shebang in a towel (ideally a warm one, but it doesn’t matter much) and go to bed with the stuff in my hair. Now, the instructions on the packet say to leave it in for just 10 mins, but trust me: this really makes a huge difference. And again, I only do this when my hair is severely fucked up.

Any fatty thing is going to be good for her hair at this point, if she’s against bunny placenta. Mayo, avocados, olive oil, etc (as far as kitchen stuff goes) or any of the cholesterol treatments from the “black hair” section of the hair aisle.

(bolding mine)

This was where the problems started. Esp. doing it over and over again in such a short amt. of time. Hope she can rock the short-hair look. It’s gotta be better than what she’s got now. And of course shaving her head and starting over would work - the new hair is still gonna grow in with its “natural” color & texture, same as always.

Pics, or it didn’t happen!! :smiley:

Wow, she really screwed up. I’ve been coloring my hair since I was 15, so that’s - dang - 25 years! I would never attempt a correction on my own. I save a lot by doing it myself, but one shot is all I get. If I screw it up, I take the aftermath to the salon while wearing a hat or bandanna.

What she’s done is NOT repairable. Even conditioning the shit out of it will not repair, only make it manageable, and even then won’t make it look good. She will have to wait out the cotton-ball and hope the new grows in quickly. I see many bandannas in her (hopefully just near) future!

Little to no chance of that happening. We do not get along at all. We’re barely even civil to one another, and then only because we’re sharing a house at the moment. She’d probably try to break my camera if I tried to get a picture of her with her hair looking like this.

She’s still my sister though, so when she does stupid shit like this, I try and help out somehow.

Exactly this.

There are products that can temporarily improve the look and feel of the hair, but there’s no way to actually repair the hair. Everything will be a temporary fix until the damaged part is cut off.

Well, vitamins will help in the sense that certain things will make your hair grow in faster. Now, in this I mean oral vitamins, not conditioner.

Henna has improved the texture of my hair quite a bit, but I’m not sure I’d recommend it in this case, mine was never so bad that it was breaking off like that.

Quite true. It’ll help the hair grow but the damaged part will always be there and be damaged until cut away.

Oh sure. But at least if her hair grows faster, she wont look like a monster when she has to cut off the dead part :smiley:

I vote for headshave!

Only time this ever happened to me (after I used a much more costly coloring agent than I typically do, btw) I cut it off very short. Has recovered fine.

OMG… Your sister has SEVERELY damaged her hair, it’s now faling off??
I really recommend she stops bleaching and dying it. Otherwise it will fall of for real!
I have been using the pro naturals hair repair system products for a while now and I totally love them. They are all made with argan oil and I think the hair mask would work really good on her damaged hair =) Good luck!

But do conditioners work on zombie hair?

Tell her to run to a VERY well recommended hairdresser. Hopefully someone well known for being a fixer type. I did this once but not over and over trying to fix it so it was mostly my color that needed fixing and it was pretty damaged anyway from constant coloring. I found a wonderful lady I still use to this day. I call her my fixer because she worked miracles. Be prepared to pony up a bit of money but this is her hair! It can make or break the way you feel about yourself and going out in public.

I think your sis is probably going to have to get a shorter haircut so there is less time she has to wait for ruined hair to look healthy. Then she will have to baby it and continue seeing someone for a while to keep it under control … and have loads of patience.

In the end, it’s worth it. I don’t spend a lot of money on my hair now , and she probably won’t have to again after this because the memory will stick with her!

I’m sure it’s all better by now, this thread is over three years old. Though, zombie hair never looks good, so I hope she learned her lesson.