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Add This To Your Shower Routine For Instantly Softer, More Vibrant Strands

What is a hair gloss?

A hair gloss is a semi-permanent treatment that deposits pigment, boosts shine, and simultaneously moisturizes strands. While it can add slight tweaks to your color (like more richness and dimension), it won’t technically alter your go-to hue. Rather, it “allows you to easily give your color and vibrancy a boost in-between your salon visits,” says celebrity colorist Justin Anderson, co-founder of hair and color care brand dpHUE. “This is a great tool to extend the life of your color, add softness, and give you a ton of shine!”

Who should use it?

People tend to use hair glosses for a variety of reasons: to color-correct an undertone, temporarily blend grays, transition highlights, extend time between coloring appointments, or just subtly enhance uncolored hair. Yes, anyone can use a hair gloss at home, says Anderson, whether you have color-treated strands or not.

“[It’s] a great way to bring some life back to your hair if you feel that your color is looking a little dull, needs a dose of shine, or some extra T.L.C.,” he adds. “If you do get your hair professionally colored, this is a great tool for extending the life of your color and keeping it looking salon-fresh until your next appointment.”

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How to use hair gloss at home.

Great news: At-home hair glosses are incredibly user-friendly, making it a great option for those looking for a cost-effective product that gives you shiny, vibrant hair results. Many formulas come pre-developed (like this Gloss+ from dpHUE), which means it’s as easy as applying a hair mask.

“Simply apply to clean, damp hair, making sure to fully coat your strands, and let it sit for up to 20 minutes for maximum results,” Anderson says regarding the dpHue formula. (Of course, all glosses come with their own set of instructions, so be sure to follow your specific label.)

The gloss also serves as a deep conditioning treatment (especially if you choose a hydrating, ammonia-free formula), so feel free to swap it in for your conditioner whenever you’re craving some extra richness and shine. The pigment typically lasts up to four weeks or 10 washes, so you can reapply whenever you notice your strands looking dull.

Just know that glosses will not completely transform your hair color–if you have lighter hair, using a darker gloss might deepen the color a bit, but it’s not permanent. Glosses won’t exactly lighten your hair, either; it’s mainly for enhancing the pigment you already have or adding richer tones. If you’re hoping for more of a stark change, it’s better to head to the salon, anyway. “I will always suggest leaving the hard work, and full color transformations, to your professional colorist!” Anderson adds.

My results.

Like a true beauty journalist, I decided to test dpHUE’s Gloss+ myself (and, OK, my strands were looking a little dingy). I snagged the dark blonde shade in the hopes of enhancing the lighter tones in my non-color-treated hair–for the record, I’m not blonde, but I feared the brown gloss would darken my natural highlights. Although, I might try a darker shade next time to really compare the difference.

dpHUE

dpHUE Gloss+$ 37

After shampooing my hair as usual, I raked the gloss through my strands, coating my entire mane from root to tip. I then twirled my hair in a claw clip and let the gloss marinate for around 10 minutes. (Multiple customer reviews noted that a little product goes a long way; very few waited the whole 20 minutes.)

While the gloss didn’t stain my shower at all, it did stain my palms a teeny bit–but the pigment cleared as soon as I scrubbed in my body wash. If you do notice a lingering hue on your hands, a little soap and water should do the trick.

I did what I could to pass the time (body scrub, shave, contemplate life), until I reached the 10 minute mark. As I rinsed my strands, I immediately noticed how much silkier they felt; my detangling comb slid through them with ease.

To see the immediate effects (I’m impatient), I opted for a blow-dry. Take a peek at the photo below and notice how much richer and shinier my color looks–granted, I have air-dried hair in the “before” photo, but blow-drying usually mutes my color (since the blast of heat often strips my strands of moisture). With the gloss, my strands appeared way more vibrant and smooth; I can actually notice some auburn undertones peeking through. Who knew!

Image by Jamie Schneider / mbg beauty editor

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The takeaway.

Whether you’re in between coloring appointments or simply looking for a (slight) enhancement, an at-home hair gloss is the perfect low-lift venture. It’s as easy as sliding on a hair mask, and it infuses moisture and shine into your strands–whether you have virgin or color-treated hair, it’s a worthy investment.

dpHUE

dpHUE Gloss+$ 37

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