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The Science of Men's Hair Dye

True Sons is a foam-based men's hair dye committed to helping men dye right. We're bringing you this series of blogs to help educate and inform the men’s hair dyeing community. Reach out with any comments or questions to

There is a wide variety of hair dyes in the market.

Aside from the shade or the brand, several types of hair dyes are available:

  • Permanent
  • Semi permanent
  • Demi-permanent

This variety offers men the freedom to decide on a permanent switch or explore new looks without any commitment, but it can be confusing deciding which one to choose.

Here it is in a nutshell.

Permanent Hair Dye for Men

Permanent hair dye is the most common hair dye for men, especially for those whose intention is to fully cover their grays. However, this dye is also the most damaging and needs the most maintenance. 

Permanent dyes use a developer and activator, which are combined with the permanent hair dye. This mixture opens the hair cuticles and deposits the dye deep inside the hair shaft. The blend comprises ammonia and hydrogen that work together to penetrate the hair cuticle. The cuticle then closes up to seal in color. 

Permanent drug-store dyes have a reputation of overdyeing, giving a "shoe-polish" effect, while damaging hair, leaving it dry and weak.

Semi-Permanent Hair Dye for Men

Semi-permanent hair dye is a deposit-only, temporary hair color that stains hair for about 3 to 6 washes. Sometimes called gloss, this dye also adds shine and changes the tone without lightening or darkening the hair. Men often use this dye to add shine or revive previously colored hair between retouches.   

Semi-permanent men's hair dye does not contain any ammonia or hydrogen peroxide, and so it does not permanently change the hair color. For maximum effect, the semi-permanent dye goes onto freshly cleaned hair. Semi tends to be darker on the hair than it appears in the bottle. 

Demi-Permanent Hair Dye for Men

Demi-permanent dye has no ammonia and less peroxide than permanent dyes. This allows the dye to open the hair cuticle for absorption. It gives a rich hue to the scalp and beard hair and is gentler than permanent color. It lasts for 10 to 14 days. 

Demi-permanent dyes are considered the best option for men who want the most control over their grays. When using a demi-permanent dye like True Sons, you can leave it on for 5 minutes to gauge the results, then reapply easily with the no-mix, foam solution.   

Choosing a hair dye to use a home

Check the variety of shades

Hair color preferences vary from one person to the next. There is a wide variety of hues of hair dyes. Try to match your shade as closely as possible to your natural hair color for the best results. Know a woman in your life who dyes her hair? Ask her advice. 

Choose your preferred style

Coloring hair dye at home can be fun. Don't be afraid to experiment with different styles to find the right one for you. Choose between dyeing out all the grays or leaving some in for the Clooney effect. 

Pick demi-permanent hair dye

Demi-permanent hair dye is the best option for a few reasons. It is a perfect blend between semi-permanent and permanent dye. It gives natural-looking results and works with your natural color to slowly phase out the gray. Demi-permanent dyes last for up to 24 washes. 

True Son's is a demi-permanent hair dye foam that comes out from the bottle like shaving cream and wipes up effortlessly if it gets onto the skin. It can be used both on head and beard hair to cover up grays. 

Looking for more help, advice and tips? Check out our blog for regularly updated content to help you dye like a pro.