How to Dye Hair Blonde
What You Will Need
- Quality powder lightener
- Blonde dye
- Tinting bowl and brush
- Sectioning clips
1. Assess Your Hair
Before you can dye your hair blonde, you need to assess the condition of your hair. Hair that is in poor condition is not a candidate for bleaching and it is best to avoid putting it through the misery of further damage.
The use of heated styling tools and prior chemical processing can all reduce the integrity of your hair, so if you've recently either relaxed or permed your hair, bleached it, or dyed it one too many times, you shouldn't be applying bleach or blonde dye.
You will also need to approach the process in a different way depending on what you've previously done to your hair and its current color.
If you've dyed your hair black, a professional salon is your next step, because the stripping process is outside the scope of unqualified hair enthusiasts.
This isn't the case with hair that is naturally dark, however. Natural black hair is significantly easier to lighten than black dye is, and the process can be completed in the comfort of your own home.
Once you've ascertained whether you're a candidate for blonde hair, you'll need the materials listed above in order to complete the process.
When bleaching your hair, you'll end up with superior lightening and less damage if you use a high quality professional brand of bleach powder rather than the cheapest one you can find.
This is important because the degree of lightening will determine how blonde your final result is, and less damage to your hair is always a good thing.
Quality brands include salon products like:
Blue vs. White Bleach Powder
Whether you use a white- or blue-colored powder is completely up to you and doesn't really matter in terms of results.
The intention with blue powder is to add tone to the hair whilst it lightens, but it rarely works to that regard.
In fact, the blue color can work to the contrary by making your hair look lighter whilst it's in the hair, causing you to remove it too soon and making you end up with hair that is brassy and problematic for toning.
Details on the Supplies
In order to apply the product, you'll require an assortment of sectioning clips and a good tail comb to part the hair, and a tinting bowl and brush.
You will also need a blonde dye which will be applied after you've bleached your hair. This tones the hair to take it from bright yellow to whatever shade of blonde you desire.
All hair dyes and bleaches should be applied using gloves, and either vinyl or nitrile gloves are superior for this purpose.
Latex tends to cling to hair and hurt.
3. Applying the Bleach
What Kind of Developer?
Bleach powder needs to be mixed in a one to two ratio with developer. In this sense, if you were to use 30 grams of bleach, you would need to mix it with 60 milliliters of your developer.
The developer is ranked in terms of how much hydrogen peroxide it contains, which is qualified in terms of the volume of oxygen that is produced.
The only thing you really need to understand about this is that 30 vol developer has a greater oxidizing capacity than 20 vol developer.
If your hair is dark and in good condition, you'll achieve the best results by using the 30 vol developer, whereas if you have lighter brown hair, 20 vol developer will be sufficient to lighten it to blonde.
Before you mix the bleach together, section your hair into four quadrants.
The first part should be made all the way from the middle of your forehead to the nape of your neck. The second part should be made from eye to eye.
Once this is done, you'll have your four sections, and this makes it easier and quicker to apply the bleach.
- The quicker you can apply bleach, the more even the result will be.
- When you're ready to begin applying the bleach, start at the back of your hair at one quadrant, using the brush to apply ample amounts of the product.
- You should apply the bleach in thin sections of hair from the top to bottom of the quadrant, using the tail of the tinting brush to lift and part sections as you work.
- When you complete that quadrant, move to the other back quadrant and continue in the same fashion before repeating the same process on the front two quadrants.
- Work as quickly as you can whilst ensuring you don't miss any areas.
- When you're done with the application, you have your first chance to rest and recuperate.
- You can use this time to prepare shower items and laundry so that you're ready to rinse it out as soon as the processing is complete.
Whilst this video details an application of hair dye rather than bleach, the application is exactly the same. Notice the way the hair is parted, and the way sections are taken from the top of a quadrant, applying the product from top to bottom.
More Information on Bleaching
- The bleach should be checked every 5 - 10 minutes to gauge lightening, and this can continue for up to an hour or more.
- Bleach becomes weaker the longer it's in your hair as the chemical reaction taking place slows down. If the bleach is no longer lightening and you haven't reached your desired level of lift, you may need to bleach it again.
- This should never be done on the same day. Leave at least a week between bleach applications and only apply a second time if your hair is able to withstand it.
- You can apply an ash toner to counteract warm tones while you wait to bleach it again if this becomes necessary.
Rinsing It Out
- When your hair reaches the color of a banana, it's sufficiently light to remove the bleach. Of course, you can rinse it out sooner if you're aiming for a darker blonde.
- The key for lighter blondes is to make sure that you have reached the yellow stage, or for darker blonde you have reached a yellow-orange stage.
- Hair that hasn't been lightened long enough will end up looking overly dark orange or red in shade, and this can not be toned to blonde because it is still too dark.
- To remove the bleach, wash all the bleach out with an ample amount of lukewarm water. Maintaining a cooler water temperature will help soothe the scalp and prevent irritation after bleaching.
- Ensure that you have removed all the bleach before shampooing your hair twice to remove any residual product.
- Application of conditioner is unnecessary and will reduce penetration of the toner.
Toning Your Hair to Blonde
Now that you've stepped out of the shower and your hair is a thorough shade of yellow, this is where the magic really happens and you're almost ready to step out into the world with blonde hair.
The last step to dyeing your hair blonde is to tone it so it goes from yellow to an alluring shade of beige or platinum.
What Kind and What Color of Dye to Use
The dye you use should be a quality salon brand just like the bleach powder. Drug store dyes simply aren't up to the task and won't offer you the best results.
The shade you use will determine the shade of blonde you end up with, and you can choose anything from a pearl-beige to an ash tone.
Warmer tones shouldn't be used because your hair already has too much warmth after bleaching. Even if your goal is a golden shade of blonde, you need to tone it with a cool-toned dye to eliminate some of that warmth and achieve a natural color.
- Application of the dye is as simple as following the sectioning method you used to apply the bleach previously.
- The dye should be mixed in a one to one ratio of dye to developer unless the manufacturer specifies a different ratio.
- In contrast to bleaching, you will only need a low volume of developer like 5 or 10 vol to tone your hair because you do not need to lift out any more color.
- When you tone your hair, you're depositing color only.
- You'll need to pay more attention to the dye as it processes, as it is easy to over-tone your hair if you just leave it unwatched.
- Apply the dye and watch it carefully until it has processed to the desired shade, then rinse the product out and condition your hair.
Do you dye your own hair blonde?
Nobody will ever be able to prove that blondes have more fun, but now that you are one, you can test the theory for yourself. You might never look back.
Do you need more help dyeing hair blonde? Leave a comment for tailored advice.