I've dyed my hair a lot, with both magnificent and also damaging results. With some testing, I've discovered methods to deal with dye-work gone wrong.

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Did you dye your hair as well dark? Stylist mess up your shade? Don't listen to those that tell you that you have no other choice yet to bleach it out. Bleach should be supplied to correct hair color mishaps as a last resort just. There is a better means that won't fry your tresses: shade remover (or shade eraser, depending on what brand also you're looking at).

This write-up will focus on three alternatives for lightening a too-dark dye job:

Use shade remover.See a experienced hairstylist.Try resolving it up yourself at home through one of a number of DIY approaches.

First, I recommfinish you attempt shade remover.


Color remover and also a rinse might be all you must gain your hair shade earlier to your desired shade.

Picture by Abigail Lynn on Unsplash

1. Hair Color Too Dark? Use Color Remover!

Color remover, or color eraser, is a chemical that fundamentally reverses the oxidation of hair shade molecules inside the hair shaft. It smells prefer sulhair, so don't be alarmed—that's just the product functioning its magic. While it may dry your hair out a little bit, it's still incredibly safe and not remotely as damaging as bleach would be. This is one of the most efficient techniques, specifically if it's done at a salon.


First, use the remover to the hair much favor an all-over shade.Leave it to sit for 15–20 minutes.Rinse it out thoroughly via cool water and also shampoo. (Some stylists might likewise perform a test to check out if it's all out by putting developer on the hair. This will make the shade that's leftover re-oxidize. Don't worry if this happens: They'll simply re-apply the color eraser).

Note: Don't freak out if your hair isn't a beautiful color. The goal of this is to remove the dye, so you have the right to re-dye it.

If all the color isn't out, then the color used after this procedure can go right ago to the initially shade. To stop this, after all this has taken location, your following color have to be 1–2 shades lighter than the goal color, simply to ensure it doesn't simply turn super dark again.

Can I Use This?

Artificial pigments: Yes. It will certainly come out an orangey-blond shade. However before, have no fear, because you're going to dye over it.Permanent hair color: No, you cannot use color remover. Permanent colors rerelocate the organic pigment from your hair and relocation it via the artificial.Semi-permanent or henna dyes: No. These stain your hair, and also the color remover simply doesn't job-related on them.


If a skilled messed up the dye project, you don't necessarily have to go ago to them to fix it, however they are even more likely to be very accommodating.

Picture by Lauren Fleischmann on Unsplash

2. See a Professional to Fix Your Dark Hair Color

If your hair is a complete wreck, and you don't want to even think around doing it yourself, you'll want to visit a expert hairstylist for shade correction. This is probably the fastest way to gain the color you initially wanted, but it likewise is the the majority of expensive.

If the stylist is any type of good at their job, they should ask a couple of questions prior to beginning.

What Brand also of Hair Coloring Was Used?

By knowing the brand supplied, the stylist deserve to pick a color remover that will job-related well with the chemistry of what has already been used to your hair. While hair shade brands will certainly commonly occupational with any type of color remover, the compatibility might also depend on the brand also.

Was This a Home Dye Job or Did a Stylist Just Not Get the Correct Color?

If you did the color at residence via a drugkeep brand, beware! A few of them are classified as "straight dyes," definition that they might contain metallic ingredients (for shine) that execute not corun through shade remover or bleach. As such, it's crucial that you inform your stylist what kind you supplied upfront. If you don't, it might cause even even more damaged hair.

How Damaged Was Your Hair Before You Chose to Go Darker?

Your stylist should have the ability to recognize the level of damages by feeling and looking at your hair. In the majority of cases, the shade you applied may have been correct, however your hair was too porous from over-processing. Some human being, like myself, have actually naturally porous hair. The same is true for damaged hair. This can be corrected by (after making use of the color remover) using a shade that is 1–2 shades lighter than the preferred result.

Just remember to imply using a color remover (eraser) to the stylist managing the correction. Also, if they suggest scalp bleaching—run!


If the stylist is any type of excellent at their task, they need to ask these inquiries before founding to color correct your hair.

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Do I Need to Go Back to the Same Stylist?

If a professional messed up the dye project, you don't necessarily have to go earlier to them to settle it—however a perk is that they'll likely bend over backward to make you happy. At the incredibly least, they can give you a remoney if you aren't satisfied with the result.

If you've operated through them for awhile, it can be worth going ago given that you have developed an excellent rapport. Trust that they will carry out everything in their power to attempt and also solve it. Look at it as a collaborative procedure, not a confrontation.

If you're so upset or disappointed that you never desire to return tbelow again, providing them some constructive feedback may be extremely a lot appreciated by them. If you don't want to go back to your original, offfinishing stylist, look for someone that specializes in color correction.


Fixing a funky dye project doesn't always need a pilgrimage to the salon. Here are a couple of means to lighten too-dark hair at home.

Picture by Matthew Tkocz on Unsplash

3. More DIY Fixes (Other Than Color Remover)

If your hair is only a shade or so darker than what you wanted and is not a mess of fried, broken hair, correcting at house is a viable alternative. Here are some options that you can take into consideration, if so.

1. Use a Clarifying or Lightening Shampoo to Bleed the Color Out

For extremely mild instances, washing through a clarifying shampoo a few times will certainly commonly fade it to a nice shade. It may take a little bit much longer (7-10 days), so be patient if it's not fading appropriate away.

Look for a shampoo that consists of sulfates as this will help the shade fade. Make certain it's not for color-treated hair! Deep conditioners can sometimes fade a shade. Remember, also long-term hair color fades over time.

2. Use Baking Soda

If you find that shampoo is not helping enough, you can attempt to make your very own paste making use of shampoo, lemon juice, and also baking soda. You'll desire to generously apply this to your wet hair and wait at leastern 45 minutes before rinsing it out. Because lemon juice is highly acidic, it deserve to damages your hair, so usage it sparingly. Your hair need to be 1-2 shades lighter after one use.

3. Use a Color/Dye Remover

As stated over, color removers are the way to go. Most beauty stores should have actually salesworld that are knowledgeable about the product and also how to use it. Be sure to follow every one of the instructions, or you could finish up back in a stylist's chair, paying hundreds to resolve your attempt at correction. Remember, this is going to lighten the color, but it won't bring your hair ago to its original color.

4. Use Bleach Shampoo

Bleach shampoo is the one exemption to bleach usage that may work-related for those of you trying to correct your dark hair color. Make sure you use bleach shampoo just if you offered a expert line of hair color (i.e. without steel salts). A bleach shampoo can be good if you simply desire the shade to be a tiny softer, or you need it to lighten up conveniently and also intfinish to use a semi-permanent color after. A permanent shade may dry out your hair and also is not recommfinished.

5. Other Solutions

Honey and water or apple cider vinegar mixture: This combination might help lighten your hair also. Use a 4:1 ratio of honey and water or apple cider vinegar. You deserve to additionally add a tiny bit of hydrogen peroxide if you feel comfortable using that. Pour the mixture onto your hair, cover it with a shower cap, and also let sit for about 2 hours. Rinse. You have to notification a distinction after making use of it one time.Honey, cinnamon, and also olive oil: This is another way to naturally lighten your hair. However before, it is an extremely steady procedure. You may need to execute it 10-15 times to alert a difference. How does this work? Trace amounts of hydrogen peroxide end up being set off as soon as blended with cinnamon. The olive oil is a nice method to include some extra hydration.

Note: Tbelow are most various DIY options out tright here, including using chamomille tea or coconut oil, however the results have actually been incredibly hit or miss out on relying on your hair shade.

What Should I Do After the Color Fades?

If you decide to go the DIY route, make certain to treat your hair after the shade fades because the shampoo will certainly likely sexpedition your hair of crucial oils. Buy a leave-in conditioner or hair mask produced dry hair. Be patient. It might take weeks or months to get back to your original shade.

How to Avoid This Situation in the Future

Don't leave the dye on much longer than it says.If in doubt, pick a tiny bit of a lighter shade. You deserve to always darken it later. Don't mix brands or colors. Get a consultation from a skilled. They have the right to assist you discover the right shade and ensure your hair is dyed appropriately.If acquiring it professionally done, connect via your stylist. Be as particular as you deserve to be. Bringing in photos is constantly a good principle. Don't let them talk you into something you don't want. It's your hair.

Don't Panic Over Your Dye Job

Don't freak out too much over an unwanted color. Tbelow are methods to fix it without seriously hurting your hair. I have done it the ideal way and also (to my dismay) the wrong means.

The wrong way led to a pixie reduced that I'm currently trying to flourish out in addition to many kind of nights of sobbing over my shed hair size. But, hair grows, and also also prior to it does, you can settle the color easily! Learn from my mistakes.

Good luck!

This content is specific and also true to the ideal of the author’s knowledge and also is not expected to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified experienced.

© 2011 Rozenwyn


Vi diddit on January 25, 2019:

I picked a colour that was also dark what execute i carry out now

Lori on June 24, 2018:

I colored my hair at residence with Ion hair color and also developer. The color on package said medium intense brvery own. My hair normally is medium brvery own so this shade sounded pretty. Well it is method to dark. Althe majority of babsence. What do u recommend to lighten it to a brvery own without the black in it?

Gerri on May 16, 2018:

Hair by salon coloured my hair dark blond however it turned out quite dark and currently my roots (gray) are showing and also I want to lighten my hair. I have wamelted it many kind of times and it did obtain it a bit lighter by using Era Defy tool blond to sfrequently the dark hair but it didn't require to the roots. What need to I carry out now?

Penelope Fowler on August 22, 2017:

Iwanted light brvery own my phsco roommate locked me out of bathroom so my haircolor stayed on to long and turned and turned dark auburn so must readjust to light brow. Thanks

I am up late so stressed out bereason I acquired a $200 balayage, only for it to rotate out to be the worse shade task I have ever obtained. I am a natural level 5n-6n and also highlights rotate brassy on me incredibly quickly. I defined all this to the lady. I asked for root touch up, and also highlights in the blonde yellow-ash selection. She did my roots a 3 through blue undertones, and also my highlights through 7 through green undertones. I look prefer I have actually babsence roots and burn out dry rust colored ends. I am freaking out. I ca photo spfinishing even more money to solve this mess as this was a splurge for me to begin via.

Sondra on June 22, 2016:

I have actually colored my hair given that I was 16. I "thought" I knew hair color pretty well and also what brands I could trust WRONG! Loactual has constantly had actually trusted assets, so I trusted the name. What I didn't recognize was Loreal Feria was a completely different pet. I had retained my hair red for years and the instructions on package sassist execute the blond first, then go for the grey, which is what I wanted because I wanted to simply let my hair go natural as it thrived. Ok, I put the grey on about a month (today) after I did the blond. BTW the blond came out beautiful. Not so via the grey. After placing it on favor it sassist and waiting the proper amount of time I rinsed my now deep purple hair. I wanted to scream. I reshpooed it, nopoint. I did it aobtain while trying to find what to do. 2nd shampoo not much better. I discovered a pointer to mix shampoo with baking soda. I'm getting all set to rinse that out and also view what I've obtained. I uncovered one various other idea that had actually soda in it, however I have to go ago and also check out what the rest are. Wish me luck.

Steph, oh no! I'm so sorry that happened! I've been right there through you. Unfortunately, shade removers, choose shade b4, just work with permanent colors. A semi-permanent is more of a stain on your strands, so the remover has actually nothing to reverse. I would be incredibly mindful considering how many type of procedures are already on your hair. Unfortunately, my ideal advice is to get a harsh drugstore clarifying shampoo and also use it a few times; you have the right to even suds it up and also leave it on your head prefer a hair mask. That deserve to really assist to lighten and also sfrequently the shade. However, it won't reclaim it to your blonde hair. Anything else, choose a bleach shampoo, I would certainly recommend going to a experienced that can assess the state of your hair before attempting to lighten it more. Good luck! Let me recognize just how it transforms out.

Steph on December 28, 2015:

I was blonde, but I hated my roots, so I colored my hair through wella tool blond dye that was semi irreversible it went way to dark and had actually green in it! Then I included Loreal medium brown irreversible dye and also it didn't cover and also it went even more green! Went to my stylist and we went dark brvery own black making use of Redken shades eq. It was semi irreversible plus she included a tiny red to respond to act the green. I hate it and also want my light hair back! I have actually offered color b4 and also I liked it. But now I am not certain if I can usage it on semi permanent hair color. My hair is short so I can not afford to ruin my hair and also I carry out not desire to bleach. Not certain what to do.

Omg... so I had actually to come compose below after analysis short articles about my devastating night. It's 5 am and I couldn't also sleep due to the monstrosity my hair had end up being with the dark purple SPLAT. I freshly did the blue and was in love through it, I was ready for another shade (I have a number of I purchased to try), and was concerned around the blue /black the was left in my hair. A lil backstory, I did the blue on my natural shade then decided to bleach the front strands and a little part of my underhair. The blue hadn't wamelted out yet so I chose to rebleach the front and under hair, and prefer an idiot, determined to bleach the rest of my hair for a quick 10 minutes to acquire the blue out totally. Well I certainly effed up the bleaching everywhere however was favor Screw it! I'll dye it the purple, no1 will certainly notice! Divine hell balls it was horrific! I'm not sure if it was the purple, the bleach job or god informing me your to old to dye your hair, however it was a mess! I wish I had actually a pic but I was bappropriate purple in the front and underhair and also a really stselection cranberry pink/purple for the rest! So after trying to go to sleep, failing miserably!, I started looking up how to acquire this out. .. being that splat is a straight dye, the majority of points don't job-related. I tried color oops previously to gain the blue out and that did nopoint. I figured my only hope was either washing my hair strongly for days or re bleaching it aget... and also my hair is thin, I knew it would certainly break off if I did. So ive been relooking and also what I tried was 

* johnsons baby shampoo

* a small hydrogen peroxide

* some baking soda thrown in

* and also I provided a tablespoon, possibly even more, of the base for the bleach that comes through splat. 

To be even more certain, not the packet of bleach, but the bottle of oxide you ADD the packet of bleach to.

See more: The Measure Of Dispersion Which Is Not Measured In The Same Units As The Original Data Is The

I brumelted it over the front and under hair for 10 minutes and then did remainder of my hair. Put a cap on my head and also left it for 15- 20 minutes. 

Lemme tell you folks,,, about 80% of the color came out! !! If not more! ! The front and also underhair that i bleached blonde is now a lavenderish color and the rest of my hair is ago to the light brvery own shade from when I bleached for ten minutes. .. still a mess.. BUT holy crap what a difference! ! Much better then what I began off with lemme tell you! I really wanna perform somepoint with what's left however rather put on a deep extensive conditioner and im leaving it on for a couple of hrs. Hopetotally this helps for anyone else with the exact same issue!

Mel on December 13, 2012:

Hi this was an excellent read many thanks. i have a vague colour correction question some advice would be welcome. While I understand also just how colour functions my salon life is not as a colourist so any knowledgeable advice would be right.

My friend that lives rather a distance from me chose stupidly to bleach her listed below shoulder size medium (5/6) brown hair blonde. Well of course the outcomes were predictable as brvery own lifted a pair of shades and left her via orange/yellow. Now this is wright here it gets complicated as I'm unsure to what she had done following. She seems uncertain to what the salon used to make her dark, dark brvery own almost black but currently obviously hates this result. I've told her to go earlier to the salon directly away to have actually it corrected. However I don't understand the salon and am unsure of the correct procedure to help her lift this dark brvery own a couple of shades lighter to as close as possible to the original tool brown that she begun with?

If feasible please have the right to you explain what the procedure would certainly be if this dark brvery own was either irreversible or a semi irreversible colour? For example my alarm bells would certainly be ringing if the salon argued more bleach (on such long hair) am I correct in this and also what's the finest directions I have the right to give her?

biancalyne on July 16, 2012:

I did this when, and also it's constantly awful once you go to dark! The first time I checked out the salon and they told me they'd need to bleach it out and also cut all my hair off.. that was a sad, sad day. After reprospering all my hair I did it aobtain and it came out almost black once I had actually picked a light brown. I did my reasearch that time as I did NOT want to have actually my hair bleached and chopped off aobtain, I uncovered this awesome stuff dubbed Color Opps. I used it favor a hair dye and also wamelted after fifty percent an hour and also the shade faded to an awesome lighter brown! I'm suprised even more civilization don't understand these assets exist and also resort to the bleach and also reduced method. I didn't recognize they were accessible till it was suggested to me online and my stylist didn't understand around it either! (Or perhaps they simply make most money from DIY screw ups). Either method, great post! Thanks :)