If you’re someone who likes to switch up their hair hue often and wants to try out a new color, then purple hair dye can be a great option. It looks chic, elegant, and classy. Even though it’s almost never the first choice for most people, it can be quite versatile especially when you start considering various shades of purple, like lilac, lavender, plum, and violet.
However, salon visits can be quite expensive — coloring your hair purple in the US can cost you anywhere between $50 to upwards of $300. Luckily, there are several at-home hair color options that can give you the purple hair of your dreams at a fraction of the price.
If you want salon-like results, you need to invest in the best purple hair dyes. It’s true that professional hair color brands are usually better than over-the-counter options, you shouldn’t use salon-grade formulas at home if you’re not a seasoned colorist or a DIY expert — says celebrity colorist Matt Rez.
Whatever product you choose, make sure to read the instructions on the box carefully and follow them precisely, advises top colorist Christin Brown.
With this in mind, we’ve rounded up the best purple hair dyes that you can try at home. Read on to learn more about our top picks!
Best Purple Hair Dyes Reviewed
1. Best Overall: Arctic Fox Semi-Permanent Hair Color
If you want to color your hair purple without damaging your strands, reach for this ammonia-free formula from Arctic Fox. It’s made up of vegan ingredients and doesn’t contain any harsh ingredients, so it won’t cause any unnecessary damage.
What’s more, it even conditions your hair while coloring. We liked that it’s easy to apply, and the luxurious formula coats each strand evenly with a rich purple color that looks elegant and sexy.
You can expect the color to last between 4 to 8 weeks on bleached hair, depending on how often you shampoo and how well you take care of your hair. The cherry on top: it’s never tested on animals, so you can use it guilt-free.
Key ingredients: Aqua, glycerine | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 3
- Gentle on hair
- Ammonia- and peroxide-free
- No harsh ingredients
- Not permanent
2. Best for Vibrant Color: Manic Panic Deep Purple Hair Dye Classic
Lusting after a bold and vibrant purple hair color? You can’t go wrong with Manic Panic Deep Purple Hair Dye. The creme formula is easy to work with — you don’t need to mix anything. Plus, we liked that it conditions your hair while leaving a beautiful deep purple shade in its wake.
To keep damage to a bare minimum, this product is formulated without ammonia. You’ll even notice that your hair feels softer post-application.
However, keep in mind that it’ll only work on bleached hair, so we recommend that you lighten your hair to at least level 8 blonde for the best results. The only thing we didn’t like about this hair dye is that it only lasts for about 4 weeks on pre-lightened blonde hair.
Key ingredients: Water, beeswax, Roman chamomile extract | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 5
- Ammonia- and peroxide-free
- Easy to use (no need to mix anything)
- Smells nice
- Doesn’t last long
3. Best Drugstore: L’Oreal Paris Feria Multi-Faceted Shimmering Hair Color
If you’re ready to commit to a shade of purple, grab this permanent hair dye from L’Oreal Paris. It adds dimension to your hair while giving you a multi-tonal deep violet color from roots to tips. The formula is designed to be moisturizing, so it won’t make your hair dry or dull.
Also included in the box is a conditioner and serum — the conditioner makes your hair soft and repairs damage while the serum adds shine to your locks.
You’ll also love that the color can last up to 8 weeks. Plus, this drugstore pick is also wallet-friendly — you don’t have to shell out big bucks to achieve the color of your dreams.
Key ingredients: Ammonium hydroxide | Type: Permanent | Cruelty-free: No | Available purple shades: 6
- Long-lasting formula
- Easy to apply
- Contains ammonia, which can be damaging to your hair
4. Best Shade Range: Lime Crime Unicorn Hair Semi-Permanent Hair Dye
This cult-favorite pick boasts an array of beautiful purple shades, like deep purple, electric violet, and dark eggplant — meaning you’ll find something that’s just right for you.
The product features an ultra-conditioning formula, so it nourishes your hair while coloring. Its super-saturated pigments give you a jaw-dropping bright color. The intensity of the color will depend on how long you leave the product on.
The formula delivers the most saturated purple color when used on lighter hair. That said, you can use it on dark blonde hair for a more subtle purple hue. Lime Crime’s website even has a helpful guide where you can see how each shade of your favorite color will look on darker strands. As for the results, the color usually lasts around 4 to 6 weeks.
Finally, it’s vegan, cruelty-free, and Leaping-Bunny certified.
Key ingredients: Hydrolyzed African baobab seed extract, glycerin | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 4
- Gentle and conditioning formula
- Smells good
- Not long-lasting
5. Best Color-Depositing Conditioner: Keracolor Clenditioner Hair Dye
Wouldn’t it be great if you could color and cleanse your hair in one step? Say no more! This color-depositing conditioner from Keracolor is a multi-tasker that colors, conditions, and even gently cleanses your hair at the same time.
The application is pretty straightforward — use it like you would your regular conditioner (make sure to distribute evenly), and let it sit in your hair for about 20 minutes. You might need multiple applications to achieve the desired results, especially if you have a dark base to begin with. Plus, if you’ve already dyed your hair purple, this product is great for maintaining color.
We liked that the formula is packed with keratin, which makes your hair stronger, frizz-free, and more manageable. In addition, there are other moisturizing ingredients, like coconut oil, jojoba oil, and almond oil.
Key ingredients: Keratin complex, coconut oil | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 2
- Very easy to use
- Strengthens your hair
- Conditions your hair while coloring
- Might need multiple applications for maximum intensity
6. Best Permanent: Garnier Nutrisse Hair Color Cream
If you want long-lasting results, Garnier Nutrisse Hair Color Cream is an excellent choice. The formula delivers an intense violet shade that lasts 6 to 8 weeks, depending on well you care for your color-treated hair.
The kit contains a grapeseed fruit oil ampoule, which you pour directly into the dye. Grapeseed oil nourishes your hair and has antioxidant properties to reduce oxidative stress. This encourages hair growth and prevents breakage.
In addition, you’ll also get an after-color mask, which contains a boatload of shea butter, olive oil, and avocado oil. These ingredients are extremely moisturizing and make your hair softer, shinier, and more manageable.
You’ll have a rich purple color from roots to tips.
Key ingredients: Grapeseed and olive oil | Type: Permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 2
- Long-lasting formula
- Delivers a rich, bright color
- The application can get a bit messy
- Contains ammonia
7. Best Bargain: Adore Creative Image Semi-Permanent Hair Color
If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on coloring your hair, meet this budget-friendly pick from Adore Creative Image. This semi-permanent hair dye is formulated without ammonia, alcohol, and peroxide, so you can use it on your hair even if you have a picky scalp.
It’s pretty easy to use as it’s a direct dye — you don’t need to add a developer or additional products. However, you can add your conditioner if the color’s too bright for you. A conditioner will also help nourish and soften your tresses during the process.
The result? Each strand of your hair is coated with a vibrant, luxurious purple hue that will make your heart swell. Plus, the results typically last 4-6 weeks.
Key ingredients: aloe vera, hydrolyzed collagen | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: No | Available purple shades: 4
- Pleasant smell
- Nourishing formula
- Can stain your hands
8. Best K-Beauty: eZn Pudding Taeyeon Semi-Permanent Hair Dye
Included in this kit is everything you need to achieve a cool ashy lavender tone. You get a mixing container, hair dye agent, oxidizer, gloves, ear caps, hair treatment pouch, and even a shoulder gown. Seriously, what else could we ask for?
It’s easy to use, too. Use your hands to apply the color to your hair — no brush required. The consistency is thick, so you don’t have to worry about dripping or staining your clothes.
We liked that it has a fast-absorbing formula that gives a vivid violet color with a pretty finish. Plus, it’s fortified with fruit and seed oil to keep your hair healthy. No more dry and dull hair. Key ingredients: Oat extract, oleic acid | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 1
- Infused with keratin for stronger hair
- Ammonia-free formula
- No-drip formula
- Offers a single shade of purple
9. Best Wash-Out: L’Oreal Paris Colorista 1-Day Washable Hair Color Spray
Not sure if you’re ready to commit yet? Try this spray-on temporary hair color from L’Oreal Paris. The color washes out when you shampoo, so it’s an excellent choice if you’re just experimenting with different colors. It’s also a great choice for Halloween costumes and festivals.
This wash-out color offers the easiest and quickest way to get a purple hue in your hair. All you need is a couple of sprays, and you’ll have beautiful purple highlights or streaks. We liked that you don’t need to wear gloves. However, make sure to wrap a towel around your shoulder to prevent the product from getting onto your clothes.
It’s packed with pure pigments that deliver a bright purple color. In case you got spray on your hands, don’t worry! You can easily wash it off — no need to worry about staining.
Pro tip: Hold the spray 4-6 inches away from your hair and do not spray too much product at once.
Key ingredients: Trimethylsiloxysilicate | Type: Temporary | Cruelty-free: No | Available purple shades: 1
- Offers great coverage
- Washes out with one shampoo
- True to color
- Can make your hair stiff
10. Best Soft Shade: Brite Pastel Purple Semi-Permanent Hair Color
If you’re eyeing a soft shade of purple, you’ll love Brite Pastel Purple Hair Color. This hair dye leaves your hair with a dreamy pastel purple shade that turns heads. The creamy non-drip formula stays put as you apply it, so there’s no unwanted staining.
On top of that, it leaves your hair feeling soft and silky smooth. The color lasts up to 30 washes. And we really like that it’s vegan and animal-cruelty free.
It works best on lighter hair, so make sure to bleach your hair before applying it. Plus, it’s wallet-friendly. For less than $10 a pop, you can get a soft purple color that looks cool, funky, and fun.
Key ingredients: Aqua, citric acid | Type: Semi-permanent | Cruelty-free: Yes | Available purple shades: 1
- Non-drip formula
- Hydrates your hair
- Not suitable for dark hair
What to Look for in a Purple Hair Dye
When shopping for the best purple hair dyes, here are some of the things you look out for:
How Long it Lasts
There are mainly 2 types of hair dyes: Semi-Permanent and Permanent. Semi-permanent hair dyes typically last 4 weeks, whereas permanent ones can last up to 8 weeks. Depending on your needs, you can choose either of them. For example, if you’re ready to commit to a color, then permanent hair dyes are usually a better option. On the other hand, if you’re not sure, you should go with semi-permanent options.
You should look for formulas that don’t cause unnecessary damage to your hair. Semi-permanent hair dyes do not penetrate hair shaft, so they’re usually less damaging to your hair. In addition, make sure your purple hair dye doesn’t have toxic ingredients, like PEGs and parabens.
Choose a purple hair dye that contains nourishing ingredients, like jojoba oil and shea butter. This ensures that your hair won’t be left dry, brittle, and dull post-application. Plus, these ingredients can make your hair shinier and more manageable.
Many permanent hair dyes contain ammonia, which can damage the cuticles and allow the moisture to escape from your hair. Plus, it can cause irritations. Using ammonia-based hair dye once in a while may be fine, but repeated use can be bad for your hair. And if you have sensitive skin, you should avoid ammonia-based hair dyes altogether.
FAQs on the Best Purple Hair Dyes
Is there a permanent purple hair dye?
Yes, there are many brands on the market that offer permanent purple hair dyes. We’ve listed 2 permanent hair dyes on this list: Garnier Nutrisse Hair Color Cream and L’Oreal Paris Feria Multi-Faceted Shimmering Hair Color.
Both these dyes can last you up to 8 weeks. So, if you’ve decided to commit to purple hair, then these 2 can be great options.
Can I dye my hair purple without bleaching it?
Yes, it’s possible to dye your hair purple without bleaching it. Many products like Garnier Nutrisse and Lime Crime Unicorn Hair Dye allow you to dye your hair purple without having to lighten it first.
That said, it’s usually a good idea to bleach your hair if you’re trying out rainbow colors. That’s because the color may not come out as expected, especially if you have a dark base. So, it’s recommended to lighten your hair before you experiment with crazy colors.
What hair color does purple fade to?
Purple hair typically fades to a lighter version of the color. However, you can also expect a bluish or slightly reddish tint, depending on the shade of the purple you used to color your hair. Some violet shades often oxidize to green. In addition, the quality of the hair dye also plays an important role in how the hair dye will fade.
Your hair can make or break your appearance. Certain hair colors, like purple, can have a positive impact on your looks and overall personality.
But with so many options, it can be difficult to find the right product. Luckily, we did all the hard work for you. We consulted experts, sifted through hundreds of user reviews, took some products for a spin, and compiled our list of the best purple hair dyes.
Hopefully, this guide will help you achieve the purple color of your dreams.