Do You Shampoo After Toner?

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A toner is such a savior for brassy hair. Canceling out that orange rusty or yellowish hue of your bleached highlights or your entire hair is done by applying a toner. That’s why you should know what toner to use and how to apply it properly. 

Although toners help remove the brassiness, it is also possible to over-tone your hair due to prolonged exposure. Prevent that by carefully timing your toning session then rinsing the excess toner. 

But how do you properly rinse out the toner? Do you shampoo after toner? Well, that depends on the toner that you’re using! Creams may be harder to remove so you may need to shampoo them. 

However, if the toner is runny, then you may just rinse it out with water, and then condition it. Also, rinsing it out with or without shampoo will depend on the instructions per manufacturer. 

Below, we’ll further discuss shampooing after using a toner. Plus we’ll also give you tips on properly using hair toner. 


Do You Shampoo After Toner?

Rinsing it out with shampoo will depend on the kind of toner you use. Some can be simply rinsed out of the hair with water.

Others need to be fully cleansed from the hair with shampoo. And you should probably be conditioning as well.

Always follow the instructions on your toner, as different products work in different ways.

Which Type Of Toner Are You Using?

Toners help improve the tone of your hair by canceling out the unwanted undertones with the color that’s opposite on the color wheel. That is why most toners are purple in color because it cancels out the yellowish undertones.

It is important to choose the right toner or else you’ll end up with a color that you might not like because the unwanted undertones aren’t canceled.

Professional-grade toners

Hair Toner

Professional grade toners are often mixed with a developer. The mixture includes ammonia, which could be damaging to the hair, especially during prolonged exposure. 

That’s the reason why you should carefully time your toning session. If you don’t, you risk over-toning your hair. 

There’s also a reason we labeled these “professional grade”. They’re not necessarily better, but you need to know how to use them. If you don’t know how to use these toners, do not use them. Use a toning shampoo instead (see below). These are much better for those who didn’t go to cosmetology school.

After toning, it is important to remove the excess toner. It also prevents further exposure to ammonia. The shampoo helps prevent the ammonia residue from staying in the hair and causing damage. 

However, when shampooing your hair after using a toner, you should only be using a mild or No products found. one. That one would be enough to wash off the excess without washing too much of the toner off.

There’s also a reason we labeled these “professional grade”. They’re not necessarily better, but you need to know how to use them. If you don’t know how to use these toners, do not use them. Use a toning shampoo instead (see below). These are much better for those who didn’t go to cosmetology school.

Hair toners don’t penetrate deep into the hair shaft, unlike hair dyes. When shampooing to rinse the toner out, don’t use a clarifying formula or you could remove more of the toner than you should. If you do, the brassiness may not be efficiently canceled out. 

In some cases and as per manufacturer instructions, there is no need to shampoo your hair. You just need to thoroughly rinse out the product. 

At-Home Hair Toners 

Hair Mask

Most at-home hair toners come in the form of a mask  or a hair shampoo . When using these kinds of toners, you don’t need to rinse them out with shampoo. Just rinse with plain water. 

At-home treatments can be done usually once a week to help maintain the beautiful blonde or ashy hair.

Aside from helping in maintaining the tone of the hair, most of the products are hydrating and nourishing to further improve the appearance of your hair. 

When to Wash Hair After Toner

Like the question of how to wash your hair after a toner, the timing also depends on the type of toner you’re using.

Typically you want to wait 1-2 days after using a true professional toner to allow the toner to fully process in your hair. But again, follow the instructions on your specific toner.

For color-depositing shampoos, should be able to rinse the shampoo from your hair and then shampoo with a regular shampoo 3-4 days later.

No need to use a color depositing shampoo more than once per week.

Tips On Using Hair Toner

Tip 1: Identify The Toner You Need

One of the first things you have to identify is the type of toner that you need. Professional-grade toners are more potent, however, you don’t always need them

Most of those who use them are those who just had the hair bleached into a lighter color. In order to remove brassiness and turn the hair into a beautiful blonde, for example, a professional-grade toner can be used. 

However, some people who’ve had their highlights or blonde hair color at the salon can just maintain the tone by using once-a-week treatments. Some people use hair toning shampoos every day but you don’t really have to.

You can use it alternately with your color-friendly, No products found.

Tip 2: Toner Color Is Important

Not all hair toners come in one shade or color. Purple is the most popular because it cancels out the yellow or gold tones for blondes. 

However, there are other toners that can cancel out other unwanted tones in the hair. Some of those who have rusty orange undertones can be canceled by a blue-tinged toner. 

It is important to know how to use the color wheel to get to the color and shade you want. If not, it would be best to have your hair toned by a professional to avoid mistakes. 

Tip 3: Carefully Time Your Toner Session

Overtoning can be disastrous! Follow product instructions with how long to leave it in your hair. Usually, it takes 5-20 minutes for the brassiness to be toned. 

It would be best to start at 5, then try to rinse out some parts of the hair to check. That way, you are less likely to end up with purplish hair.

Tip 4: Rinse Thoroughly 

Rinsing after the allotted time stops the reaction and removes the excess hair toning solution. As mentioned above, there are some cases when you need to rinse with shampoo. 

Aside from preventing over-toning the hair, rinsing also helps prevent too much exposure to ammonia. Ammonia could damage the hair, especially if you use professional-grade toners.

Tip 5: Don’t Forget To Condition After Toning

The bleaching and hair toning can cause damage to your hair, especially bleaching. That’s why you need to replenish the moisture that is lost. There are purple conditioners but you can use regular sulfate-free ones too.

Final Thoughts

Toning the hair cancels out the brassiness by reacting to the surface of the hair. That is why it usually fades out gradually. 

When toning, it is important to properly rinse your hair to remove the excess toner. To do that, you could either use a mild shampoo… or not.

That will depend on the manufacturer’s instructions, as well as the hair toner you are using. 

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Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).