How to Lighten Your Hair Using Vitamin C Pills

Updated on March 13, 2016

Lighten Your Hair Without Damaging It

I have a very short attention span. I'm the person who was always lost during field trips and who never knows where she put her keys. Consequently, I tend to change my hair color every couple of weeks. It's one of the perks of not being "conventionally employable," and I like to enjoy it.

Getting vibrant colors can be a chore, however. It usually involves quite a lot of bleaching and pre-lightening. For that reason, I decided to research some alternative methods of lightening hair.

For All Occasions

This trick is not only for making your hair lighter, but it is also great for if you're just trying to go a few shades lighter than your natural hair color or if you accidentally dyed your hair too dark.

Methods

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Honey and lemon juice
  • Vitamin C
  • Bleach
  • Color stripping kits

Why Vitamin C?

  • Hydrogen peroxide works, but it damages and dries your hair.
  • Honey and lemon juice work well on natural hair—especially when subjected to light—but do next to nothing for already colored hair.
  • Meanwhile, bleach and color strippers don't tend to work well on vegetable-based dyes like Special Effects and Manic Panic.

This left me with vitamin C, which seemed bizarre, but I'm always up for a challenge.

Step One: Crush Up Pills

  • The pills that you need are just ordinary vitamin C tablets. However, make sure you don't get the ones with flavoring.
  • The ones I received were 500 MG, and I was advised to use 5 of them. However, I like to overdo things, so I ended up using 10 of them instead.
  • Crushing is fairly easy. Using a soup can or rolling pin is the fastest route. When crushing the pills into a fine powder, make sure that you are thorough. If the mixture is gritty rather than powdery, it will be difficult for you to mix.

Step Two: Mix With Shampoo

  • Your crushed pills should now be mixed with enough shampoo to lather your entire head—usually a one-to-one ratio.
  • You want to mix it very thoroughly. I used a plastic bag to do this.

Step Three: Lather and Cover

  • Work the mixture through your entire head, focusing especially on your roots and around your ears as these are the areas most commonly missed.
  • If you feel any grit while you lather, keep going until the graininess dissolves. The foaming action of the shampoo will help, but take care not to use too much water; you don't want the mixture to get runny.
  • Once you've finished lathering, cover your head with a shower cap.

Now the waiting begins.

Tip

While not common, some people experience burning or itching when using this method. If you start to experience this, stop immediately!

Step Four: Wait and Rinse

  • You should wait at least an hour before washing this mixture off. However, if any time you experience irritation or burning, you should rinse it off immediately. You may be having a bad reaction to the vitamin C.
  • Once the hour has passed, you should rinse off the shampoo mixture completely. However, you likely won't be done yet.

Original hair color.
Original hair color.

Step Five: Repeat

The only downside to using this method is that you normally need to repeat it at least two or three times. However, don't get discouraged if your hair doesn't seem light enough. You actually only need to lighten your dye to a reasonable level if you're interested in dying your hair a different color. Many people mistakenly lighten their hair too much, damaging it unnecessarily.

Hair color after two washes.
Hair color after two washes.

Step Six: Dry Completely

Remember to dry your hair completely between lightening. There are two reasons for this:

  • applying a lightening solution to your hair while wet is not as effective as applying it dry,
  • and you may not realize how light your hair actually is until it's dry.

Step Seven (Optional): Dye It Again!

After you've lightened your hair enough, you can feel free to do it again! Always do a test if you're not certain. Sometimes you may be pleasantly surprised with the results.

After dyeing again!
After dyeing again!

Is Vitamin C the Best Solution?

There are a few things I want to note about vitamin C.

  • It can dry your hair and your scalp--it isn't a completely non-harmful method of lightening your hair.
  • Further, a color stripper can be a fantastic solution if you have conventional hair dye in, such as a deep brown or black.
  • However, for vegetable-based dyes, vitamin C is definitely the most gentle and least harmful option that I've used.

Questions & Answers

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • profile image

        Meagan 

        8 months ago

        I found this very helpful. I have a peekaboo and the blue turned into a color that was not for my liking. I ordered a new color but was scared that the color would not come through completely because of the color of my hair. I tried this and it worked, though it says use like 10 pills, I ended up using more than 28 pills. It did work, but I’m going to do it again and then dye my hair. For the safe side.

      • profile image

        Jayne 

        10 months ago

        Can i use vitamin c tablets to lighten my hair that have citrus bioflavonoids??

      • profile image

        diy momma 

        14 months ago

        thanks for the info!! I'm an over-doer too so its good for me to find out any possible mis-steps or outcomes of "over engineering" as my husband calls it! lol

      • profile image

        birds 

        21 months ago

        does this work for lifting out a green-blue teal color? it's very green based and i just need to lift out the leftovers from washing it out.. i'm going dark purple and don't want any icky undertones from the turquoise.

      • profile image

        Brandy 

        21 months ago

        Does this work on black hair dye?

      • profile image

        felicia 

        21 months ago

        It does work. I just did it last night. It doesn't actually "lighten" hair though... if you have dyed hair it will strip the dye. It won't do anything to hair that has not been colored.

      • profile image

        Kym 

        22 months ago

        I went from vibrant blue using this method :) Is it as effective from going from dark brown to blonde?

      • profile image

        Sky 

        2 years ago

        Whats the reason behind getting the unflavoured tablets?

      • profile image

        Kaitlin 

        2 years ago

        So do you put the mixture on your hair dry or wet?

      • profile image

        nancy 

        3 years ago

        Why is is pink and blue?

      • profile image

        Shamika 

        4 years ago

        Oh yes! It works great on African American natural hair perfectly.

      • profile image

        Andrea 

        4 years ago

        do you need to wet the vit C/shampoo solution to lather it on your head first?

      • profile image

        bluh 

        4 years ago

        it doesn't work

      • Life and Luxury profile image

        Life and Luxury 

        4 years ago from South Beach, FL

        This is very unique. I have never heard of this. I am sure a lot of readers will be using this method to lighten their hair for Summer. Great hub!

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, bellatory.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://bellatory.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)