4 At-Home Glosses That’ll Add Shine To Your Post-Winter Strands

After this winter—this long winter—I certainly feel the urge for a refresh. I want to slather my skin in hydrating, and glow-inducing facials. I want to break out the brightest, funnest eyeliner and lipstick I have available. I want, well, to do my hair again. I’m ready to add a little shine back to my routine and look. 

I’m not alone. I’ve been getting the same questions from friends, coworkers, and family alike: How do I add a little oomph back to my look, while you know, still at home and on a budget. Certainly, there’s a lot of routes to take (I encourage you to choose your own adventure here), but one answer to look into is an at-home glaze or gloss

“A glaze is basically a semipermanent color that coats the hair shaft with shine and lasts up to a few washes,” says celebrity colorist and Redken brand ambassador Matt Rez. As the pigment sits atop the shaft and can be made with light-reflective nutrients, they are often used as a way to add luster to otherwise dull hair. A gloss on the other hand is a bit more permanent, and tends to alter the color a bit more. (In some traditional examples, it will use ammonia to open up the cuticle to deposit color, however, we’ve avoided that here.) Regardless, both are low-stakes options to alter your hair color for a little post-winter fun. 

If you feel that’s just what the beauty editor ordered, here are my favorite better-for-you options.

Kevin Murphy Illuminating Gloss Color Enhancer Treatment

The hair salon I go to in Brooklyn uses Keven Murphy coloring products, so I can confirm first hand that these do the trick. The collection has four options, each for a different coloring purpose, that adds a healthy wash of brilliance. The key players to tout? Olive leaf extract to mimic your scalps natural oils, green tea extract to add antioxidant protection, and grapeseed oil, which is high in linoleic acid to help hair retain moisture. 

Crystal Angel Illuminating Gloss Color Enhancer Treatment, Kevin Murphy ($29.99)

kevin murphy hair gloss


Madison Reed Glassa

Madison Reed mastered the art of at-home color care. (As for the clean front: They skip most of the more egregious hair dye ingredients, like resorcinol, ammonia, and several preservatives.) This gloss comes in several colorways (from auburn and black to clear) to revive color in one-go.  

Glassa, Madison Reed ($25)

madison reed hair gloss


dpHue Gloss+

A brand famous for its color-care (and apple cider vinegar rinse, which is heavenly), this option has 11 different shades available. The pigments gently “stain” the strand, so you get a hint of color payoff while conditioning and shine-inducing ingredients amp up the shine. 

Gloss+, dpHue ($35) 

dphue gloss


Kristin Ess Signature Hair Gloss

A nice budget-friendly option (that’s also silicone-free!) helps keep hair fresh whether you dye your strands or not. The conditioning agents add a layer of vibrancy, and then the formula protects strands with an antioxidant complex. 

Signature Hair Gloss, Kristin Ess ($14)

kristin ess hair gloss


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