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How To Dye Your Hair With Kool-Aid

Updated on August 1, 2016

If you’re looking to dye your hair a crazy colour but don’t want a permanent shade due to school, college, or work commitments then Kool-Aid dyeing can be a great alternative. Many semi-permanent dyes are hard to get out of your hair, even after the colour has started fading - not always ideal. If you are only looking for dyed hair for a short period of time: for the holidays, a costume, or to test out a colour, then temporary dyeing your hair with Kool-Aid may be a good idea for you.

Dyeing your hair with Kool-Aid is short-term, relatively easy to remove, and can provide you with the hair colour that you are looking for – without having to commit!

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Less Harsh Than Alternatives

Another benefit of using Kool-Aid to dye your hair is that it doesn't contain harsh chemicals. If you (or perhaps your parents or guardians) are worried about traditional hair dyes in case they damage your hair or scalp, then this can be a great alternative.

Hate dyeing because of that chemical smell lingering in your hair? Using Kool-Aid on your hair not only eliminates this, but you will get to smell like the flavour that you used! Delicious!

Even on fairly dark hair, many people have found that Kool-Aid gives them some colour. This can vary - some people have managed to dye dark hair bright and bold with Kool-Aid, whereas others have achieved more of a shimmer or tint to their normal colour. Although hair varies, as a general rule, the lighter your hair is the more the Kool-Aid dye colour will show.

Selecting Your Kool-Aid Mix

When buying your Kool-Aid mix make sure that you go for the unsweetened packets. This is because the sweetened ones may leave your hair a bit sticky afterwards, which will not only make it look less fantastic, but will also leave you feeling a bit like a giant lollypop. If you want a specific shade that none of the packets will create alone then you can mix them together in order to create the color that you are looking for. Remember, also, that if you have long or thick hair then you will need more packets of Kool-Aid.

Make Sure That You're Only Dyeing Your Hair!

Remember that you are using the Kool-Aid to stain your hair, so it may also stain other things, such as clothing or skin. Ensure that you are wearing clothes that you aren’t worried about getting ruined or alternatively cut head and arm-holes into a garbage bag and use that to protect you. Investing in a pair of rubber or plastic gloves may be advisable so that you don’t stain your hands, and smearing petroleum jelly around the edges of your forehead and on your ears will stop the Kool-Aid dye from dyeing your face so much – not a good look!

Doing The Dyeing

One way of dyeing your hair with Kool-Aid is to add a small amount of water to the mix (and conditioner, if you’d like, which helps the color to sink in) in order to make a paste. Then apply this to your hair and cover your head with a shower cap. This method takes a while for the Kool-Aid to show good results, so keeping it on overnight is advisable for the bright color that you are looking for. You may want to cover your pillow with an old towel in case the shower cap comes loose as you sleep. Taping around the cap may also help ensure that you do not stain anything, and will also help the dye permeate the hair by keeping your head warm. To remove, simply wash your hair as normal with shampoo and conditioner.

An alternate way of using Kool-Aid to dye hair is one that is only ideal for dip-dyes or streaks, but it takes considerably less time. For every packet of Kool-Aid that you use add one cup of water and boil it in a saucepan. Once boiling, pour the mixture into a bowl (ensure that this is heat-proof). Then dip your hair into the Kool-Aid mix and leave it in for five minutes. You will need to cover any and all surfaces for this method, or you may want to try it outside. When you remove and dry your hair you should have the bright color that you are looking for! If you are going to do more sections of your hair then you will need to boil the Kool-Aid again so that it remains hot enough.

Depending on your hair, dyeing with Kool-Aid should last between two and six weeks. If your hair has been chemically permed, straightened or relaxed, or has undergone a lot of damage, then you may find that it lasts longer than expected. Kool-Aid can be a wonderful alternative to semi-permanent dyes if you are looking to ensure that your hair will not be damaged by chemicals or if you are worried about the long lengths of time that some semi-permanents take to fade and wash out.



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      Laura 3 months ago

      What if you swim will it ruin it?

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      CUPCAKELOVER 7 months ago

      One thing is u can use regular koolaid packs with the sugar in them but first u might wanna get a container put coditioer and water mix it together let it sit for 20mjnutes then add the color packet let that sit t or 10minutes after you stir then put it on and let it sit in your hair for 2hours and then take it and *pow* ur done it wont be sticky and it will smell like the flavor it is MAGIC!♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ and kt lasts for 2 months i did in january and still km hav it in b although it is fading it still beautiful mwa ur welcome peace out peeps love en ya guys♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥:) :) :) :) :) :)♥♥♥♥♥♥

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      Lacey 10 months ago

      For dying my whole head orange how what color kool aid do I use? My hair is a medium brown, please help.

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      Anonymous 12 months ago

      So I have really light blonde hair and I want to try this! But I'm scared that the Kool aid will not come out of my hair. Or that my hair will turn a different color help me

      Ps. My hair is fine too and just get a hair cut that is short but would like it to be a light purple!

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      Reena 13 months ago

      My friend has black hair. I'm not sure what color to do. Do u guys got any colors that work??

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      CourtneyHingley 2 years ago

      Jasmie, I would imagine that the paste method would be better for just doing the underneath

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      Jasmine 2 years ago

      I am trying to dye the underneath of my hair purple, should Iusethe paste method or the boiling one?

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      CourtneyHingley 3 years ago

      Leaha - I'm very glad your kool-aid hair dying went as planned!

      Rebecca98 - I hope it all went well!

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      Rebecca98 3 years ago

      Thank you so much! Most useful article I have found on the internet! I am going to do the dip dye method this afternoon with pink lemonade on my medium brown hair. :) Cant wait! I am going to do a strip of hair in the under layer of my mid-back length hair. I hope it turns out how I am imagining it... ;)

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      Leaha 4 years ago

      I have dyed my hair with kool aid for a few months and it works perfectly and I was giving advice to my friend about it, I find it an easy way to dye your hair without damaging it at all.

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      CourtneyHingley 4 years ago

      As long as your hair is lighter than the colour you're aiming for, yes. But I would recommend leaving it as long between dyes as you can just to leave your hair some recovery time

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      lilly 4 years ago

      Would this work out if i dyed my hair rcently like 3 weeks ago?

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      CourtneyHingley 4 years ago

      Elizabeth - I'm not religious, but I can't imagine that it should be too much of an issue; you can worship no matter how you look & so can the younger children :)

      Bob - This will work best on light shades of hair.

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      Hi 4 years ago

      So I really want to do this and really should tell my parents thx for the tips =)

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      kalee 4 years ago

      thxx just did it looks so cool!!

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      bob 4 years ago

      Will it work on blond hair?

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      Elizabeth 5 years ago

      I dont know if I should do this, I'm very known in my church so I wouldn't want to send the wrong message to kids that are younger than I am, I would never dye my hair with chemical-base products, but I've always wanted to do something different to my hair other than a new haircut.

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      BiancaMary 5 years ago

      I'm going to try it now, wish me luck!

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      Trouble333 5 years ago

      My 11 yr old daughter has a costume party this weekend and needs Pink hair for her costume. She hates to wear wigs (can't blame her; we both have enough hair for 3 people each, it gets really hot under wigs), so I thought I'd try this method. Any suggestions for Pink? She has blonde to light brown hair (dirty blonde), we can only leave it in for a day b/c of her school. Any suggestions to get it out FAST?

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Priscilla, Joey & Caty - It says in the article - between 2 & 6 weeks on average.

      Kallie A - It won't last forever. You can always buy hair dye removal products if you want it out immediately.

      Meghan - I've not heard any stories of Kool Aid leaking when swimming in chlorinated water, but I'm not sure how much this could vary individually/based on how recently it was dyed.

      Emma - The more your hair is washed, the quicker it will fade. Your hair will be your natural shade underneath the dye.

      Beastly457, Melaniee^_^, Jay.* & Devanae - It depends individually. You can strand test to be sure.

      Sandra & Sarah - It says in the article - keep it in for 5 minutes.

      Nicole - You can strand test to be sure how long the colour lasting varies depending on amount put on & whether it looks good.

      Cat - You can straighten your hair once it is dry. Any application of heat will make the colour stay in for longer.

      Matilda - This will vary. Strand test to be sure.

      Amy - This can be done on clean or dirty hair.

      Sparkle - Whatever conditioner you usually use should be fine.

      Anna - Just add as much conditioner as it takes to make a nice paste.

      Jrpslp - Do whatever colour you prefer. I would suggest using the other method if you're not dip-dying. I would recommend strand testing if you want to see what the colour/fading time is like, as well as to ensure that the mixture will not irritate you.

      Leah - This will vary between people.

      Karina - Yes, just shower normally. Shampoo & condition your hair.

      Kara - I'm not sure what you mean by this.

      Jen - Strand test different flavours or mixtures of flavours.

      Sonika - Strand test to see what shows up best & use differing volumes to see whether using more is helpful.

      Gabby - I've heard stories of people ending up incredibly uncomfortable & sticky using sweetened Kool-Aid, so I wouldn't recommend it!

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      Gabby 5 years ago

      Could you use sweetened koolaid? Or would that just leave your hair in a big sticky mess

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      Devanae 5 years ago

      If my hair is dark brown would I be able to dye it with grape kool aid?

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      Sonika 5 years ago

      Hi! Okay, i have very thick curly black hair....what color do you think would show up the best? And if i just do all my hair tips with a lot of Kool aid at the same type would you think that would work out?

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      Jen 5 years ago

      Which Kool-Aid flavor should I use for blue tips? thank you xx

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      Kara 5 years ago

      I want to mermaid dye my hair using this method... Any suggestions????

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      jay:* 5 years ago

      are there colors that stay in longer than others?

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      melaniee^-^ 5 years ago

      i got red highlights in my hair (Dark Brown) ihad to put bleach in my hair....but then i dyed the color out and now its back to the normal color....would the bleach in my hair effect the kool-aid color in any way.... im thinking of gettng the tips red..

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      Caty 5 years ago

      How long does the dye last?

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      karina 5 years ago

      mmm when you dye your hair like that && you leave it all night what do you do when you wake up take a shower normally? or how please help me!!

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      Kalgal3 5 years ago

      COOL-._.-

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      Sarah 5 years ago

      After you dip dye your hair , do you leave it in all night as well?

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      Joey 5 years ago

      How long does it last for roughly?

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      bailey 5 years ago

      One cup of water...

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      huuuhh 5 years ago

      How many cups of water do I put in for juat one packet?

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      Leah 5 years ago

      I kind of forgot to put cOnditioner in the solution. Is it gonna stay?

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      Meghan 5 years ago

      Should I wash my hair before i dye my hair.

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      Jrpslp 5 years ago

      Im gonna try this underneath my hair so when I have high ponys or buns in, it'll show:) should I do red or purple? They're both unsweetened and I don't really care if it fades. My hair is darker brown underneath but super light on the bottom and I have blonde highlights! I'm thinking to dip dye it but I don't know how I'll get all the way up my hair in the bowl. ( I don't want to miss an inch or two way up) any ideas?? Also is it okay not to do a strand test? I am wanting red to fade to pinkish orange to so that doesn't matter to me:) thanks!!! And try to respond soon cause I may be doing this tonight.... I'm 13 btw

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      Nicole 5 years ago

      I have light/medium blonde hair and about a year ago I mixed Berry Blue with a drop of green food coloring to make aqua/turquoise. It stayed in for about a month and a half and stayed fairly bright for that time. I left my hair soaking for 20 minutes instead of 5. Also, I washed the stranding the sink after taking it out. I really enjoy this fun, easy, and natural way to dye hair!

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      Anna 5 years ago

      how much conditioner should i mix with the coolaid, like what's the recipee for this?

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      sparkle 5 years ago

      what kind of conditioner should I use????

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      amy 5 years ago

      can you do this with dirty hair and then wash it or should u take a shower before

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      Matilda 5 years ago

      Does this work with generic brands of fruit juice mix?

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      Cat 5 years ago

      I Want To Do The Conditioner And Water Way But Can You Straighten Out Your Hair When You Do This? Thanks (:

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      Nicole 5 years ago

      I love this! my friend has medium brown hair just like me and used 2 packets of red. i only want it to last about 2 weeks should i use 1 or 2 packets? i have long thick medium brown hair. Will the purple look good in my hair? thanks:)

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      livie 5 years ago

      when i dyed my hair with koolaid i washed it first then put my tips in the koolaid for twenty minutes and dried it and then straightened the tips i dyed.i have brown hair and did red koolaid and it looked awesome and lasted for five-six weeks even when i went swimming and washed my hair!love it!!(:

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      Sandra 5 years ago

      i want to dip dye my hair and my mom said yes because it is tempoary and i dont want my hair dyed for school and school starts in about 4 weeks how long do i keep my hair in the bowl ?

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      beastly457 5 years ago

      does this work o darkkkk hair?

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      Emma 5 years ago

      I want to dip dye my hair..but I really want this to last for only about a week! When I wash it a lot will it fade? And if it does fade will it go back to my natural colour hair(dark brown) or will it fade to a different colour? I have school so I really need to wash out within a week! I have no chemicals in my hair..never did! :) Can you reply asap!

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      Rojo 5 years ago

      I did red on my hair and its a light brownish kind of dark. We boiled it and i left it in for about 10 minutes and it showed up perfect!!!

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      Meghan 5 years ago

      If you do the dip dyed hair and then go swimming in chlorine filled water, will it leak into the pool? Please answer

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      Kallie A. 5 years ago

      Also I wanted to know if it was bad for your hair? Everyone is saying it stays in FORVER. And that really scares me. I dip dyed my hair with the cherry color and I have blonde hair!!!! I'm REALLY NERVOUS! HELP!

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      Kallie A. 5 years ago

      Kallie A.

      I used the cherry color and I put 2 packets in, I have blonde hair but I'm nervous it won't come out for a long time! Think it will last forever?!

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      priscilla 5 years ago

      How long dose it last i mean.

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      priscilla 5 years ago

      How long dose it ?

    • CourtneyHingley profile image
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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      HannahAlexis - You're just boiling water. It's boiling when it's bubbling, if that helps. Water boils at 100 degrees celcius, but there's no hob setting for 'boiling water' because you just heat it until it's boiled.

      The article tells you 'For every packet of Kool-Aid that you use add one cup of water' (you can find converters online if you don't work in cups).

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      HannahAlexis 5 years ago

      When you boil the Kool-Aid, What's the temperature it needs to be on? And how much water do you put in it?

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Maddie - I wouldn't imagine so, but it is possible. I would suggest strand testing & continuing to use mousse to evaluate

      Magda - Results will vary on everybody, this is why it's suggested to strand test with the colour that you will be using some time beforehand. I hope that you're not too disappointed with the results - you could buy hair dye removal products or try some home remedies?

      Melanie - To go a lighter shade than your hair would require bleaching, for any kind of dye, Kool-Aid or otherwise

      Alyce7 - I don't know. Can anybody offer any advice?

      Eden - It will depend on your hair

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      eden 5 years ago

      never mind. if its not to hard to answer it, but thanks mlpfim for the answer u gave 2 Carly7.

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      eden 5 years ago

      will the die come off in the pool?

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      Alyce7 5 years ago

      What is the best flavor for a pink streak in dirty brown hair?

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      melanie 5 years ago

      my hair is dark brown . almost black . and I want to dye my hair cherry red with the koolaid .. would I have to dye it ?

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      magda 5 years ago

      I just did the boiling method and it turned my hair a dark green! I tried it again and it made it a little bluer so now it's blue-green! Is this normal or supposed to happen. Also I have dirty blonde hair.

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      Maddie 5 years ago

      Um, my hair is extremely curly an bright blonde naturally. I want to do this, but I use mouse to let my hair curl up right after a shower. Is that going to affect it?

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      mlpfim 5 years ago

      Imblonde,

      I think you could use Berry Blue. :3

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      mlpfim 5 years ago

      Carley7 ,

      My friend told me about "kool-aid dying" the day I went over to her house for a pool party, and hers didn't even come out a little when we went swimming. In fact, it looked great ;)

      She used the boiling method.

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      Carley7 5 years ago

      can I go swimming after or will it come out?

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      Addy 5 years ago

      How long do u keep it in for?

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      Imblonde 5 years ago

      Ok so I'm blonde and I want to get a bright blue! What colors would I get it flavors?

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      Isabel 5 years ago

      They should make a product called Kool-Aid Dye for your hair and I totally think this is way better that color hair spray. Kool-Aid would prob. last a little longer I think

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      Autumn 5 years ago

      Ok thanks

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      adorablegirl 5 years ago

      I luv koolaid dye. Works so good.

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      Isabel 5 years ago

      I'm 11 years old and I tried convincing my mom to let me have red highlights but she said your too young and I told her my friend has them and my mom said no. So I'm definitely gonna try to convince her to let me do this... She'll have to say yes because it fades (but i dont know about my dad) and I have to say Kool Aid can be pretty cool for your hair :) Thx A Lot Courtny Hingley Wish Me Luck!

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Shampoo does wash out the dye quicker, Michaela, although most people will agree that after putting something as sticky as Kool-Aid onto your hair that it would be a good idea to wash it out pretty thoroughly, including using shampoo.

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      michaela 5 years ago

      It wasn't that good of a hub because you aren't suppose to wash your hair with shampoo takes out a lot of the color and takes almost all of the dye out. But if you have dark hair you should use red koolaid bcuz the blues and purples don't show up as well!!! But everyything else about this hub wasn't that bad

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Hannah - Yes, you can if you want.

      Rachael - I wouldn't see why not, unless the consistency changes as it cools or anything.

      Sydney - It should for human hair extensions, but I'm not sure about synthetic ones. You could strand test?

      Dayday - Lemon juice will not bleach your hair. You can use a hair dye removal product (ColourB4 in the UK or Color Oops in the US, for example) to remove the dye.

      Alex Moore - With that method, it is ready to go once it is dry. Also, the video is not mine, I just embedded it from Youtube.

      Jess - I'm not sure - you could strand test to find out.

      Isabella - Kool Aid will not bleach your hair. Any shade lighter than your hair colour will not work. It will definitely wash out, but the time period of that is different for everybody.

      Autumn - Either method should work. I can't say how long it will last, it differs - the timescale in the article is an average, though. You can wash your hair whenever you like, but the more that you do, the quicker it will fade. Usually people tend to just aim to wash their hair less frequently than what they are personally used to.

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      Autumn 5 years ago

      Also, how often should I wash my hair?

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      Autumn 5 years ago

      I did this at 11 o'clock this morning and it's 7:30 in the afternoon. I'm going to wear it all night... I used the paste method for the bottom of my hair. I have dirty blonde hair, how long do u think it will last? And also do u think that I did the right method? Or should I have used the boiling one?

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      Isabella 5 years ago

      will it permanently change the color of my hair if I have dark brown hair naturally? Will it bleach it at all or change from the original color after being washed out

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      Jess 5 years ago

      Do you know if crystal light drink mix would work the same way?

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      Alex moore 5 years ago

      So all we have to do is what you said in the video, do you have to wrap it overnight or anything? Or is it ready to go once its dry?

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      Dayday 5 years ago

      If i want to get the color out before school and my hair is blonde then can i just soak it in lemon juice to bleach it back to blonde?

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      Sydney 5 years ago

      Will it come out with extensions ?

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      Rachael 5 years ago

      Thanks- another question though; on the strand testing, can I reuse the koolaid I heated up for dying again?

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      Hannah 5 years ago

      Can u wash ur hair with shampoo and coindtioner if u did the boil method

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      Rachel8371 5 years ago

      I am doing blue highlights in my hair but i have to go somewhere the next morning what should I do!!

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Hannah12014 - I presume that you mean once you've washed the Kool-Aid mix out of your hair & are just left with the colour? That would be fine.

      Rachael - Splat is a semi-permanent hair dye & one that does last a fairly long time (a lot of people like it for this reason), whereas this should probably be more temporary. However, it will vary in how long it stays in from person to person. I would suggest either strand testing or buying a hair dye removal product in case you want to remove the colour.

      Hannah - with light hair any colours are likely to work fairly well on your hair. If you are in any doubt then try dark shades (dark red for example) as these may yield better results.

      Madi - I would suggest a hair dye removal product, or perhaps try with Head & Shoulders shampoo since many people say that this fades hair dye quickly.

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      Madi 5 years ago

      I did it and the blue turns out grey. Tried everything to get it

      Out but nothing work not even fading what should I do

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      MZF13zmt 5 years ago

      If your wondering about if it will last in a swimming pool:

      My grandma is a professional, and when she dyes my hair with real dye she says to rinse my hair with regular water before going into a chlorine pool. I don't know if it's the same with kool-aid, but I suggest you try it to be safe. It may fade a bit though, I'm not 100% sure.

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      Hannah 5 years ago

      I have a really light brown hair that's almost blonde. What color would you say works best? And also, which method (boiling water and conditioner) last longer?

      -thanks :)

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      Rachael 5 years ago

      I want just a streak for a week or two this summer, but I'm kind of afraid to try. My friend, with the same colour hair as me, tried using Splat and it would not come out even after going to the salon. I am scared this will happen to me with koolaid, and suggestions? Thanks

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      Hannah12014 5 years ago

      will your hair burn if you curl it with the koolaid in it?

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      You can't do much to make it show, unless you want to bleach your hair, Yasmin.

      Lalala, yes, they do.

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      Lalala 5 years ago

      Do they have different colors?

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      yasmin 5 years ago

      I'm planning to use red kool aid for the tips of my hair so if I have dark brown hair will it show? And if it doesn't what can I do to make it show?

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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      I would recommend strand testing with colours & selecting the one that turns out best, Rachel. & yes, you can use curling tongs or straighteners after you have dried your hair - in fact, it should help seal in the colour for longer.

      There are two methods in the article, Hannah - one is using water and conditioner, & the other is boiling just water. I think you're probably looking for the first. If your hair is dark then try to select a darker colour, also.

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      Rachel8371 5 years ago

      Also Can you curl or straitened your hair with the kool aid in it

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      Hannah12014 5 years ago

      does it also work if u put in conditioner instead of water? because i watched another video and it said conditioner instead of water. imma not sure. also what color do u recommend for dark brown hair? thanks!

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      Rachel8371 5 years ago

      Courtney what colour would you recommend for light brown hair

    • CourtneyHingley profile image
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      CourtneyHingley 5 years ago

      Some people have found that dying their hair with Kool Aid leaves a sticky residue, whilst others have not - it can be washed out, though - it's not permanently sticky!

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      Hannah12014 5 years ago

      Does this leave your hair sticky?? imma not sure