How to Rock Colored Hair in the Workplace

Colored Hair in the Workplace

Image via Matlachu

Let’s face it, colored hair isn’t nearly as “alternative” and “weird” as it used to be. People of all ages are rocking the rainbow, myself included. Not only that, but a lot more employers are ditching the outdated dress codes and allowing varied looks. Nice!

That doesn’t mean you can just run some green Manic Panic through your hair and think you’ll look job-worthy, though. After all, the haters out there think us color-lovers are automatically bad employees. Let’s prove them wrong, shall we?

1. Follow the Rules

You still want to keep that job, right? Check your employee manual, then check with your boss. If it’s not clear in the manual, you can always ask.

But, guess what? If it says in the employee handbook that you can’t have colored hair, make a petition for them to change it. It doesn’t hurt to ask. If you keep the presentation professional and logical, you might just get your way.

2. Keep Your Hair Polished

When I first had colored hair in high school, I have to admit, it didn’t look professional at all. You could tell from the splotches that I missed spots with the bleach. I slapped on that dye with my bare hands.

Put some more purple in with the blue this time. #animehair

A photo posted by Trisha (@trishainfinity) on

You don’t want to look like a teenager, right? Then get your hair done by a professional, especially one who has tons of experience. That’s why I go to Andrea Wyman over at Canvas Studios Salon in Missoula, Montana. She knows what she’s doing!

Now people can’t help but take you seriously.

3. Dress for Success

Dress for Success

Image via Xuan Zheng

Okay, if you have a strict dress code, like the red shirts and khaki pants of Target, there isn’t a lot you can do. But what if you work somewhere like an office that doesn’t have a uniform?

Stylish and modest is the name of the game. Don’t come into work with studs or rips all over your faded black skinny jeans. As cute as that might be in every day life, you’re at work. Dress like it.

Clean, pressed, sharp, sassy, modest, stylish. You know what to do.

4. Don’t Forget About Upkeep

Fresh. #animehair #bluehair

A photo posted by Trisha (@trishainfinity) on

The sad eventuality of colored hair is that, in a few weeks or months, your color will fade. Now, you might have chosen a color that looks good when it fades. If not, you have to be on top of it and go in for retouches.

You can actually slow down the fade, though. Remember when I talked about co-washing way back in the day? That’s when you wash your hair with conditioner, and never shampoo. While I talked about how co-washing helps curly hair in that post, it also helps colored hair. Shampoo, even the sulfate-free kind, has all sorts of nasty ingredients that strip out the color.

I haven’t used shampoo in months and my color is lasting waaaaaay longer. My hair also appears a lot less damaged from all the bleaching and heat-styling I put it through. It’s legit. I recommend New Wash and As I Am Coconut Cowash.

5. Have a Great Attitude

The most common complaint haters have is that people with colored hair have a bad attitude. Frankly, I have no idea where they came up with that, but it’s time to prove them wrong. Be the best employee you’ve ever been.

Smile at everyone, try hard, help customers, greet people even when you don’t have to, take initiative, get to know your coworkers, befriend your bosses.


Who knows, maybe if more of us rock some well-styled colored hair, crisp outfits and professional attitudes in the workplace, even more businesses will start relaxing their dress codes.

Do you have colored hair? What did your bosses think?


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