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Lemley's avatar

How do I lighten my hair without destroying it completely?

Asked by Lemley (285points) July 7th, 2016

So, a few months ago I bleached my hair to almost white (to dye it blue), but after some weeks I decided to dye it black because I was tired of the color bleeding everywhere and getting too weak, too fast (I generally knew it would happen, since I have been doing this for quite some time, but the colors I wanted don’t reach my country anymore, so I had to settle with a worse brand, blah blah blah). Anyway, now my hair is dyed black, which I totally regret. Is there a way to get rid of the black dye without using actual bleach (since that would probably damage my hair beyond any hope for repair)?

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18 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Can you do highlights so you aren’t bleaching all of your hair? I would have a professional do it to get a good color. Bleaching from black you could wind up with a highlight color you don’t like.

Advice for the future: when you go very dark use semi-permanent dye, so if you hate it, it will mostly wash out in a month.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

Don’t discount the option of shaving your skull and starting over.

The kind of person who can go with blue hair can also go bald and proud for a while.

Lemley's avatar

@JLeslie Thanks.. I never thought of using a semi-permanent dye for a “normal” color..

@Call_Me_Jay Yup, I’ve already thought of that. The only problem is that I used to have really short hair in the past and I looked like crap :p

Aethelwine's avatar

I almost thought you might be my daughter because she’s in a similar situation. She’s gone from midnight blue to red to black the past three months. She also wants a new color now but is stuck with a semi-perm black. Her natural color is light brown. I don’t really have an answer, but I’d like to follow to see what others have to say.

Lemley's avatar

@jonsblond Midnight blue, makes me think of Manic Panic? (wish they still imported those around here, now I’m stuck with Directions that do nothing). How did she change from blue to red? (I mean, how did she avoid all the purple?)

Aethelwine's avatar

She bleached her hair twice before dying it red. The red ended up being very vibrant. It was Manic Panic!

Lemley's avatar

@jonsblond And she used just regular bleach? I mean, how did it work? (Any bleaching tips will be sooo appreciated, I’m kiiind of desperate).

Also my hair now looks a bit greenish where it used to be blue, unde the black layer (if that changes anything concerning the color removal thing)

ibstubro's avatar

Lemon juice and the sun?

#2 for @Call_Me_Jay‘s “Don’t discount the option of shaving your skull and starting over.”
You looked worse than you do now, is the test.

Aethelwine's avatar

We bought a bleaching kit at a beauty supply store. I can’t remember the brand name, but the employee at the store was very helpful.

Stinley's avatar

There is a product called ColourB4 that removes dye and takes your hair back to the colour it was. This, for you, will be the bleached colour plus any root regrowth in your natural colour. I did buy it once but the instructions looked too complicated. I looked them up and they have a facebook page for USA

NerdyKeith's avatar

There are a few natural remedies you could try. Such as a lemon juice spray.

They may lighten your hair somewhat.

BellaB's avatar

Don’t discount the shaved head option.

I went that route the year I turned 30. I’d been colouring my hair for about 12 years at that point and decided to start fresh. Like you, I’ve never really liked how I looked with short hair but it turned out I had a great melon for shaving. Growing it out was entertaining. I was lucky that it was a time when very crazy cuts were the norm (that sounds weird but the 80’s were weird). First I grew out the bangs (and put temp colour in) while keeping the rest shaved. Next I grew out one side into a bob while keeping the other side cropped. Finally grew it all out. It was fun.

Actually since undercuts are popular now, this might not be a bad time to try it.

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NerdyKeith's avatar

In regard to the suggestion of others to shave your head. You don’t necessarily have to shave your head to have natural hair again. You could simply just grow out your roots for about three months, but keep getting it trimmed every one month. After that time, you could possibly go for a shorter style (not shaved). Then grow out your hair again.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

Growing it out was entertaining…First I grew out the bangs (and put temp colour in) while keeping the rest shaved. Next I grew out one side into a bob while keeping the other side cropped. Finally grew it all out.

I’ve done the reverse of that a couple of times, growing a beard and selectively shaving it off over a few days.

Mutton chops were good, I wish I had kept a picture. But the best was the Fu Manchu porn ‘stache. I couldn’t have a conversation, nobody could talk to me without laughing.

BellaB's avatar

@Call_Me_Jay – Since you need photos of the mutton chops, you should probably re-do that project.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

@BellaB My beard grows in white now and I look like Papa Smurf and it makes me feel old. So no. Nope.

Lemley's avatar

@Stinley Thank you, I’ll see if I can find a similar product around here :)

@BellaB and @NerdyKeith I have already cut it a few times (it looked sick sick sick) but I definitely don’t want to cut too much… I’d look like I’m wearing a helmet (after a while, at least) and that’s not what I aim for :p

Thank you all guys! (any ideas on my more recent hair problem would be soooo welcome)

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