By: Sassy Auburn

We’ve all heard it and might be reminded about it daily: 2% of the world’s population is born with natural red hair. That’s not a lot. I can happily say that I was one of those lucky ones. Then some terrible trends started. I was a young, fashionable adult during the decades of tormented hair. You name it: perms, drying, aerosol hairspray, bleaching, the over-processing list goes on and on. I don’t think I re-embraced my sunset tresses till I was an adult. I am so happy to say I did.

Between becoming older and the years of chemical abuse, my hair needed a bit of color and shine to embrace the shade of red that is closest to my natural color. Sometimes in the summer I add a bit of copper, and in the fall I sometimes put in a little burgundy. Although the solid red color remains the same, I like to give it some pizazz once in a while with bolder underlying hue.

No matter what I do to my hair though, the fact remains it likes to fade. And fade fast!

RELATED: Natural Tips for Keeping Red Hair Vibrant

Most people can go 6-8 weeks without a color touch up. But us “enhanced” redheads find ourselves needing a boost about every 4 weeks. That can get bothersome… and expensive.

My fabulous beautician Maria is my savior. She helped me get my hair back into fabulous shape. My split ends are gone, my hair is healthy, it has a ton of body, and it is so shiny.  Since she has her own salon, she is very particular about the products she uses and suggests for her customers to use. She takes into consideration what the problem is, and then she suggests the best products for the job. Over the years, she has suggested the perfect products to help my hair look beautiful and stay the perfect shade of red for, at times, over 6 weeks.

That’s AWESOME for an “enhanced” redhead. These items not only the color red I want for the season but also keeps my auburn tresses from getting damaged.

So what redhead tested and approved products will you always find in my collections? These are must-have necessities:

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1. pure BLENDS Color Depositing Shampoo: This shampoo is fabulous. It is the only cleaning shampoo that I know of that also deposits pure pigments of the color you want while you are lathering up. An added plus is it does not contain stripping agents like sulfates and sodium chloride. This is part of pure blends line of products that prevents fading and hydrates with herbal blends. I use the Red as a base and depending on the season or the hue I want, I can add Marigold for a copper tint, Cherry for a slightly burgundy tone or even a combination of them. Not only did I find a shampoo that doesn’t strip the color from my hair, but also helps to keep it bright and shiny with shades I can blend easily myself!

RELATED: 2015’s Best Color Depositing Shampoo for Redheads

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2. Pravana NEVO Color Enhancer Treatment Hair Color: I love the fact that I get two special treatments from this little gem. Not only does it coat my hair for a short, color refreshment but it is also a gentle conditioner that helps keep your hair soft and healthy. It is good to know that while it is intensifying your hair’s shine, it is also strengthening your hair with soy protein. This is another product that I like to mix up depending on my shade. I always use Radiant Red as my base color but depending on the mood or season, I choose to add Brilliant Copper, Deep Burgundy or a mix to get the shade I want. Application is easy–just coat all of your hair, from root to tip, with about a tablespoon of color(s) you want. Let it sit on your hair for about 5 minutes and rinse out with cool water. No other product is needed for conditioning!

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3. Paul Mitchell Ultimate Color Repair Thermal Protection: When I first saw my stylist grab this product, I thought she was about to put some kind of salad dressing on my hair because it is made with quinoa. The top layer protects your unique hair against heat damage that can lead to dull, faded tresses; the bottom layer conditions with a Quinoa complex to keep your hair healthy, shiny and vibrant. Because the layers separate when they sit for a while, you want to make sure you SHAKE WELL before each use! I really notice a high shine with no frizzies when I use this product. It makes it soft, manageable and easy to style while protecting it from heat damage.

This product was also featured in the 2015 November H2BAR Subscription Box! See more here. 

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4. Agadir Argan Oil Hair Treatment: If you take care of your red hair with the right shampoo, conditioner and protection, you really do not need to do much more. There are times, however, that after an excessively sprayed updo, a frequent high pony, or maybe too many days using the flat iron, your hair might feel a little frayed on the ends. You want to catch that FAST before the dry hair begins to frizz up or the split ends get too bad. This fabulous oil treatment is perfect to do the mending when needed, as needed. Sometimes I only need to use this once or twice a month. When I do, though, I notice it catches potential damage quick before it gets out of hand. The thing I have noticed with this product is to not overdo it. Just a quarter-sized drop will do the trick. Put it in the palm of your hands, rub them together, and grab your hair like a ponytail rubbing the oil down, focusing on the tips. Use this product like it’s a medicine for sick hair. I find that using it too much can actually make my hair feel heavy and sticky. Just use it where the problem is–which is usually right on the ends. This helps to mend any damage that over-styling, weather, sun or harsh waters can create. You will see a difference very quickly. I know I did.

There you go, redheads, my four must-have hair products to keep me enhanced red hair looking fresh, flowing, smooth and shiny in between visits to the salon. You will never go into my beauty bag without seeing these little gems without fail. They do the basics and they do them well: wash, condition, protect and repair all while keeping my tresses soft and bright. If you are looking for a way to keep your hair rocking? These are the four treasures will never be far from me. Ever.

Rock it like a Redhead! 

By: Abigail Bobo Photography © How to be a Redhead. Rock it like a Redhead 2015 Event in Nashville.