Whether you’re curling, ironing, or coloring your hair, you subject it to various stages of damage. We’ve already equipped you with some basic essentials like the right way to clean your hairbrush; some rehab for your tresses; a fix for hair fall; and, a step-by-step on washing your mane the right way too.

While this serves as a great checklist for everyday haircare, a few modifications may be required for chemically treated strands and colored/dyed tresses; although we really urge you to use more natural alternates.

That said, add this instruction manual to your beauty routine, for it will limit your bad hair days, never mind the treatments and styling tools you’ve subjected your strands to:

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Step 1: Make sure you use a product that’s suited to your specific hair type (read the label). For those who dye their hair often, opt for a shampoo-conditioner combo that contains nourishing ingredients, which especially cater to color-treated locks. Alternately, why not make your own concoction for a natural, yet custom solution?

Step 2: Indulge in an at-home hair spa, once every two weeks. By delivering protein doses through deep conditioning, the session is guaranteed to replace the nutrients lost through color processing. This will help strengthen your locks, hydrate and moisturize them, and invigorate your roots by improving blood circulation.

Step 3: Using leave-in conditioners is mandatory. They help seal-in the moisture, which, as you may have noticed, tends to lack in colored hair. This is evident by the increased frizziness, dry ends and frequent occurrence of knots in your strands. We recommend something easy and quick to whip up, simply because store bought conditioners contain chemicals of their own.

In the end, knowing exactly what you need to do will not only protect your hair from chemicals and pollutants in the environment, but it will go a long way in keeping your color looking beautiful for longer, saving you yet another expensive trip to the salon.

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Charlene Flanagan is a lifestyle journalist whose love for language drove her to earn her Bachelor’s degree in English literature, as well as pursue her Masters in Arts. Over the last five years, she’s contributed to a number of leading publications, and has particularly enjoyed reviewing books and restaurants, as well as interviewing celebrities. Her recent switch to a holistic lifestyle has her looking at her food choices very differently—although she won’t admit it. When she’s not busy writing up about workouts, home remedies, and skincare essentials, she spends her time being the quintessential city girl who’s excited to see what life has in store for her.