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15 Best Color-Depositing Conditioners for Color-Treated Hair

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Looking for the best color-depositing conditioner? You’ve come to the right place. We’re ready to upgrade your hair with some expert advice about this magnificent product category. Color-depositing conditioners are awesome two-in-ones that nourish and moisturize the hair while also boosting, changing, or enhancing its color. They come in all kinds of shades for different purposes.

We’ve selected the best color-depositing conditioners worth a try, no matter what kind of results or colors you’re hoping for. We’ve looked at conditioners at all price points, so you can find something that’ll work for you. If you need some help figuring out exactly what you need, we also added a quick guide at the bottom that explains how to choose the right color-depositing conditioner for you.

In this article:

Our Picks for the Best Color-Depositing Conditioners

Whether you want a total transformation or just a color refresh, these are the best color-depositing conditioners you can buy.

1
Best Overall
dpHUE Gloss+ Semi-Permanent Hair Color & Deep Conditioner
dpHUE Nordstrom.com
$35

When it comes to natural hair colors, this range is the most impressive we’ve seen. It features different shades of blonde, brown, and red. There is also an unpigmented shade that gives the hair shine.

The formula acts as a hair gloss and conditioner to give the hair some added sheen while also smoothing it out. It’s easy to spread through the hair, and the formula is very versatile: you can leave it in for a while for a deeper color or just for a few minutes for a light color refresh.

However, it’s not ideal for big color changes or to cover grays. If you attempt to use one of the darker shades over bleached hair, you can end up with some splotchiness, although the blondes will look quite nice. It’s great over both natural and dyed hair, and it can also improve unintended undertones. Buy it at Nordstrom, Sephora, Ulta, or Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 6.5 oz.
  • Color Range: 11
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Great range of natural shades
  • Gives the hair a lot of shine
  • Fixes awkward undertones
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Not ideal for big color changes

2
Best Budget
CHI Ionic Color Illuminate Conditioner
CHI Amazon.com
$16.98

CHI offers a gorgeous line of color-depositing conditioners in both natural and fashion colors at one of the best price points we’ve seen. There are even purple and blue shampoo options to neutralize and enhance blonde hair!

This formula is very saturated with color, so it’s an excellent choice if you’re looking for a two-in-one that can both dye and refresh the hair. Just keep in mind that even in the shower, it’s best applied and washed out with gloves to avoid staining your hands. It’s quite strongly fragranced, and the scent is a little masculine, which is the only big drawback.

As a conditioner, the formula includes silk proteins, which add some more moisturization, and overall it leaves the hair a little softer than it was before. Get it from Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.5 oz.
  • Color Range: 11
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/No

Pros

  • Both natural and fashion hair colors
  • Strongly pigmented
  • Can dye or give color refresh
  • Slightly conditioning
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Requires gloves
  • Strong smell

3
Best for Blondes
Oribe Bright Blonde Conditioner
Oribe Nordstrom.com
$48

Oribe is a brand you splurge on, but the results, packaging, and overall luxury experience make it worthwhile. It’s a light purple conditioner that gently neutralizes yellow tones, although it’s not as strongly pigmented as the shampoo from the same set. If you’re worried about accidentally turning your hair purple, it’s a great option. 

It’s a fantastic option for regular or semi-regular use because, as a conditioner, it’s fantastic. It has a formula that doesn’t build up or weigh down the hair but still manages to smooth down the cuticle to make the hair soft, shiny, and very easy to detangle. It’s especially ideal for bleached hair or just naturally fine hair that’s more prone to damage. It’s available at Nordstrom, Sephora, and Amazon.

Key Features:

  • Size: 6.8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Incredible conditioner for fine or damaged hair
  • Light pigmentation for blonde maintenance
  • Won’t accidentally turn hair purple

Cons

  • Quite expensive

4
Runner-Up for Best for Blondes
Drybar Blonde Ale Brightening Conditioner
Drybar Nordstrom.com
$29

This is another fantastic purple color-depositing conditioner to get blonde hair shining bright. It’s not a cheap conditioner, but it’s more affordable than Oribe’s formula while still giving wonderful results.

The level of pigmentation is quite similar to Oribe’s, so it’s light enough to never accidentally dye the hair. If you’re dealing with severe yellowness, you may need to use it a few times to see significant results.

As a conditioner, it’s a rich formula that works well for medium and thick but damaged hair. It smooths the hair and makes it very easy to style. For those with fine hair, it can weigh things down a little, in which case you might prefer a lighter formula, like Oribe or Aveda. Pick it up from Nordstrom, Sephora, Amazon, or Ulta!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/No

Pros

  • More affordable than competitors
  • Offers a light purple tint
  • Brightens blonde hair with regular use
  • Excellent conditioning effects

Cons

  • May require multiple uses for big results
  • Can weigh down fine hair

5
Best Lightening
John Frieda Sheer Blonde Go Blonder Lightening Conditioner
John Frieda Ulta.com
$11.99

While it’s technically not a color-depositing conditioner, we still wanted to include this lightening formula as another option for those hoping for a change. It’s designed with chamomile and citrus fruits, which help to gently lighten the hair.

It’s designed to be used along with a peroxide-based lightening spray, as part of a system. The results aren’t particularly dramatic when you use it alone, although it does help blonde hair retain its brightness. The other benefit to this formula is that it’s quite affordable, so it’s not a great loss if it doesn’t work for you. Find it at Ulta, and Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.3 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No/No

Pros

  • Designed to help lighten the hair
  • Very affordable
  • Helps bleached hair retain brightness

Cons

  • Works best as part of a system

6
Best for Brunettes
Redken Color Extend Brownlights Blue Toning Conditioner
Redken Ulta.com
$23

Brunettes can also benefit from neutralizing conditioners! This gorgeous blue conditioner helps to camouflage orange tones in the hair and helps to cool down brown hair, giving it a more sophisticated look. It’s especially ideal for preventing a balayage from turning brassy.

It’s not very pigmented, so the results are subtle. If you’re dealing with serious brassiness, you may need to use it a few times before it’s completely neutralized. The benefit is that it’s easy and not too messy to use, and it doesn’t stain for the most part (except for maybe the nails).

As a conditioner, this formula is very middle-of-the-road. It does the job and makes the hair more manageable but not much beyond that. Shop for it at Ulta, or Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 10.1 oz. or 33.8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No/No

Pros

  • Neutralizes orange and brassy tones
  • Easy to use
  • Not messy

Cons

  • Results may require multiple uses

7
Runner-Up for Best for Brunettes
John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Color Deepening Conditioner
John Frieda Ulta.com
$11.99

This is another gorgeous, budget-friendly conditioner from John Frieda. It’s designed to bring out deeper tones in the hair without necessarily neutralizing or changing any of the colors. It’s very lightly pigmented, so when used alone, the results are subtle. However, if you combine it with the full Color Deepening system, which also includes a shampoo and treatment, you can darken your hair by a few shades.

As a conditioner, it’s phenomenal. It smooths down the hair cuticle and makes brunette tresses shine beautifully! You can purchase it at Ulta, or Amazon.

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.3 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No/No

Pros

  • Budget-friendly
  • Deepens hair without changing undertone
  • Excellent conditioning and shine-boosting effects

Cons

  • Dramatic results require using the whole system

8
Best Vegan
oVertone Haircare Vibrant Coloring Conditioner
oVertone Haircare Amazon.com
$25

oVertone is a cult-favorite color-depositing conditioner with impressive results but a high price point. This is one of the most pigmented conditioners on our list, and since it comes in a jar, it’s ideal as a light, non-damaging semi-permanent dye.

The shade range is incredibly cool, with options formulated specifically for different base hair colors. For example, there is one rose gold formula for blondes and another for brunettes! Make sure to look at the strand photos before purchasing so you know exactly what kind of results to expect. The formula is vegan and cruelty-free, so it’s great for all animal lovers. Order it from Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8 oz.
  • Color Range: 9 
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Intensely pigmented
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Shade range with options for light and dark hair

Cons

  • Pricey

9
Best Metallic
Celeb Luxury Gem Lites Colorditioner
Celeb Luxury Amazon.com
$35

Celeb Luxury’s metallics are to-die-for. They’re shimmery and beautiful, with shades that sit somewhere between fashion and natural to fit in any environment. This formula is more of a gloss or neutralizer, with light pigmentation that enhances your hair color and refreshes faded dye. For dramatic results, use it in combination with the brand’s color-depositing shampoos.

The price point is a little higher compared to some of the other options on our list, but the shades are so pretty and unique that the cost might be worthwhile for some buyers.

As a conditioner, the formula is about average, offering some added softness to the hair. Star Sapphire is one of our favorite shades here since it’s an unusual cool-toned brown with some gunmetal touches, but every shade here is a winner. Shop for it on Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.25 oz.
  • Color Range: 21
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Gorgeous shimmer metallic shades
  • Light, gloss-like formula
  • Decent conditioning effects

Cons

  • Not very dramatic on its own
  • A little pricey

10
Best Pastels
Lime Crime Unicorn Hair Color Conditioner
Lime Crime Nordstrom.com
$16

If you dream about unicorn hair, this is the color-depositing conditioner for you. Sure, you can buy one of the more saturated fashion color formulas and then just dilute it. However, if you want to save yourself the fuss, this is a no-brainer at a reasonable price point.

As a conditioner, this formula is fantastic. It softens the hair, making it smooth and easy to handle while also increasing its shine factor. As a dye, it can work, although it’s not ideal because results can be splotchy. It can make quite a difference if your hair is already bleached, but it’s not as nice as using a dedicated dye. Over dyed hair, however, it’s the perfect color-enhancer or extender, which is great because pastels tend to fade very quickly.

Finally, we want to mention the lovely scent, which is sweet, refreshing, and tends to linger in the hair. If you’d like to try it, it’s sold at Nordstrom, Ulta, and Amazon.

Key Features:

  • Size: 8 oz.
  • Color Range: 6
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Very conditioning
  • Easiest method of refreshing pastel hail
  • Excellent conditioning effects
  • Beautiful scent

Cons

  • Can be splotchy if used as a dye

11
Best for Gray & Silver Hair
Aveda Blue Malva Color Conditioner
Aveda Nordstrom.com
$28

This gorgeous blue-violet conditioner is an ideal choice for silver, platinum, and white hair. It cools down yellow and orange tones to give the hair a silvery look. The formula is a blue-violet shade, so it’s quite versatile.

It’s a great color-depositing conditioner for regular use because it’s not overly pigmented. It helps to improve the brightness and clarity of your hair gradually and over time, without ever overdoing the blue-purple tones. 

As a conditioner, it has a creamy, lightweight formula that moisturizes gently. While it does work on its own, if you have severe brassiness, it’ll work better with the brand’s matching shampoo to double up on the color. You can get it at Nordstrom, or Amazon.

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.5 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: Yes/Yes

Pros

  • Versatile blue-violet tone
  • Neutralizes hair over time
  • Gently moisturizing

Cons

  • Requires progressive use for results

12
Runner-Up for Best for Gray & Silver Hair
Redken Color Extend Color Depositing Graydiant Conditioner
Redken Ulta.com
$23

If you want a very icy gray, this is a fantastic choice. Compared to Aveda’s blue conditioner, it’s more pigmented, so you can expect a dramatic change in your hair quickly. You’ll want to be careful not to overuse it, but if you have very persistent warm undertones to neutralize, it’s a powerful solution that’ll work fast.

Its color is also a much more neutral-blue without even a hint of purple, which is the reason why it gives such a clear, icy color. This also makes it a decent choice if your discoloration leans more towards orange than yellow.

Finally, as a conditioner, it’s simple yet excellent, and it’s especially ideal for fine or high-porosity hair types that need a lightweight formula. Pick it up at Ulta, or Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 10.1 oz. or 33.8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No/No

Pros

  • Fast results
  • Gives gray and platinum hair a very icy tone
  • Excellent conditioning effects

Cons

  • Too pigmented for regular use

13
Best for Red Hair
Joico Color Infuse Red Conditioner
Joico Amazon.com
$19.99

If you’d like to amplify red tones in your hair, Joico’s got you covered. It has subtle pigmentation to enhance red tones and prevent red hair color from fading. It’s not as intensely pigmented as the red conditioner from CHI, but that makes it a great day-to-day choice.

As a conditioner, it’s lightweight but not dramatically conditioning, so you may want to supplement it with a deep conditioner once or twice a week. It does still help the hair since it contains UV-absorbers that prevent red hair from fading in the sun and mitigate damage for long-term vibrancy. Order it from Amazon, or Ulta!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8.5 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: It’s complicated (they’re PETA-certified, but other sources say no)/No

Pros

  • Keeps red hair vibrant
  • Prevents red dye from fading
  • UV-protectors prevent sun fading

Cons

  • Not very conditioning

14
Best Red Neutralizer
Matrix Total Results Dark Envy Conditioner
Matrix Ulta.com
$17

On the opposite side of things, what if you want to hide some red tones in your hair? In that case, nothing beats the color green. This green conditioner neutralizes red tones to give brunette hair a clear, deep undertone.

The Matrix formula is actually not overly pigmented since it’s meant to be used with a more intense matching shampoo. On its own, results are extremely subtle, but on the other hand, it has a magnificent conditioning effect on the hair that adds a lot of shine and softness. Shop for it at Ulta, or Amazon!

Key Features:

  • Size: 10.1 oz. or 33.8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No/No

Pros

  • Incredibly conditioning
  • Gives hair a beautiful sheen
  • Helps diminish red tones in hair

Cons

  • Very subtle when used alone

15
Best Splurge
shu uemura Yūbi Blonde Nourishing Conditioner for Blonde Hair
shu uemura Sephora.com
$59

Finally, if you’re ready to drop some coin, this purple conditioner from shu uemura is our favorite splurge. It’s expensive, and it’s not necessarily better than some of the other purple conditioners on our list, but it might become your Holy Grail.

This conditioner has a light lavender tint, so it’s one of the subtlest color-depositing options you can find. It’s fantastic for heavily bleached hair because it’s designed with super-light but sealing and smoothing amodimethicone. It leaves the hair extra soft and strong while also gradually diminishing yellow tones. It’s not dramatic, so there’s no risk of overdoing it. Purchase it at Sephora!

Key Features:

  • Size: 8 oz.
  • Color Range: 1
  • Cruelty-Free/Vegan: No

Pros

  • Wonderful for bleach damaged hair
  • Gradually neutralizes yellow tones
  • Subtle for regular use

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Results take a while


What to Look for in the Best Color-Depositing Conditioner for You?

Not all color-depositing conditioners are made equal, and that’s perfectly okay! Some are more suitable for specific purposes than others, so here are the factors you should consider when choosing yours.

Purpose

The first thing to consider is what you want your color-infused conditioner to do. Are you using it to dye your hair completely, or are you looking to color-correct?

Refresh

The classic reason to use a color conditioner is to refresh a hair color that’s starting to fade. Whether you’re a natural redhead or brunette fighting the effects of the sun on your hair, or you love to dye your hair quick-fading fashion colors, a color-infused conditioner offers an easy way to keep your color vibrant.

For this purpose, it’s best to choose a conditioner with medium pigmentation, like DPHUE, although if you pick up a more saturated formula, you can always dilute it with your regular conditioner for similar results.

Neutralize

If you’re looking to color-correct your hair’s undertone, a neutralizing color conditioner is what you’re after. Neutralizing conditioners are designed with the color wheel in mind. These formulas are usually not extremely pigmented, so they won’t dye the hair a strange color.

Once they coat the hair, they neutralize the shade that’s complementary to them on the color wheel. Blue hides brassy orange tones, purple hides yellow, and so on. The result is hair that looks cooler, more neutral, or brighter, without a big change.

Dye

Color-depositing conditioners, like semi-permanent hair dyes, technically don’t dye the hair. Instead, they stain the outer part of the cuticle. That’s still a very effective way of coloring the hair, as long as you choose a very pigmented formula.

In general, color-depositing shampoos tend to be better for this job than conditioners. Some formulas, like the CHI Color Illuminate and the oVertone Coloring Conditioner, actually excel at coloring the hair.

Shade

The color of your color-depositing conditioners is probably the most important thing to consider! Some color-depositing conditioners come in wide shade ranges, while other brands sell their different colors individually. No matter how a product is sold, here are our tips for finding the right color for you.

  • If you’re refreshing a natural hair color, simply choose a matching conditioner. There’s not much more to it.
  • For touching up dyed hair, make sure that the shade matches well and has similar undertones. A slightly off-color match can actually alter the undertone of your hair, especially if it’s been lightened.
  • If you’re a blonde wanting to reduce yellow tones in your hair, opt for a purple conditioner.
  • If you have silver or graying hair, a light blue will give your hair a more silvery sheen.
  • If you’re dealing with orange tones in your hair, blue will neutralize them best.
  • If you want to counter red tones, opt for a green conditioner.
  • For platinum blondes, blue or purple conditioners can help deal with yellow or orange undertones while also giving the hair added brightness.
What to Look for in the Best Color-Depositing Conditioner for You?
@overtonecolor

Conditioning Level

Color-depositing conditioners are rarely amazing when it comes to conditioning the hair, but some are certainly better than others. If your hair is damaged from bleaching or sun exposure, you’ll definitely want a better conditioner that helps to soften and strengthen the hair but without weighing it down. On the other hand, if you have normal or oily hair, you might be willing to compromise.

In general, the more pigmented the color-depositing conditioner, the less effective it’ll be at conditioning the hair. That’s mostly okay since the rest of the time you can use a deeper conditioner instead. Our list does include some lightly pigmented options that act as wonderful conditioners.

Photos via Sephora, Ulta, Amazon, Instagram