Most of us might have experimented with colouring our hair at home, which is relatively easy with the various brands who offer safe, rich colours that are quick, convenient and so easy to use. But how many of us have attempted bleaching our locks? Not very many it would be safe to assume given that the consequences of not knowing the right way to do this can prove disastrous for your hair. So, if you were part of the beauty brigade who believed that a bleach hair option was a salon-only treatment, we are here to show you how to bleach hair at home safely and with fantastic results.
How To Prepare Your Hair For Bleaching
To prep before you bleach hair you have to know how bleach works, and what exactly it does to your hair. It penetrates the shaft of your hair to oxidise the melanin granules there. These melanin granules are what give your hair its pigment or colour. This is why it is essential that you take utmost care of your prep stage before you bleach hair at home.
- The first step before you bleach hair is to assess the health of your hair especially if you have coloured or treated your hair with chemicals often in the past. If you have hair that has been minimally treated, it would be the best slate to start with. On the other hand, hair that is dry and frizzy is best left to the care of professionals.
- Irrespective, utmost care is needed in the weeks leading up to when you want to bleach hair. The first step before you bleach hair pamper your locks with a hot oil hair treatment to infuse them with moisture. Coconut is gentle and hydrating and is a good option but you can also use almond, jojoba, or argan oil.
- Avoid heat styling tools for a week or two before and opt to air dry your hair to avoid causing any heat damage before you bleach hair.
- You should anyway opt for a hydrating colour safe, sulfate free shampoo, conditioner and hair mask with coloured hair, and this becomes even more important to keep your hair as healthy as possible when you are thinking of opting to bleach hair.
- While you do need to pamper your hair with the right products, in order to bleach hair, stay away from washing it for a couple of days before you bleach them. A little texture will give you better results than squeaky clean locks.
Hair Bleaching Products
When buying hair bleach products to bleach hair, it is key to invest in reputed beauty brands and a good quality hair bleach colour brand who have a stellar reputation behind them. Here’s what you will need for lightening hair.
- Gloves, which should come in your bleaching pack and are important to wear all during the bleach hair process.
- A dye brush for application and a bowl to mix your bleach hair product in.
- Bleach powder, which if you pick a blue or purple one, will lessen the chances of your strands turning brassy, which is one of the biggest fears when choosing to bleach hair at home. The biggest scare comes when you pick the wrong bleach colour and after you bleach hair, you find that instead, of being a rich, vibrant shade as you imagined, your final colour resembles brass and looks burnt. To avoid this, be smart while picking your bleach powder
- Developer, which is the peroxide that lightens your hair, and comes in different strengths. Vol 10 is not suitable for dark hair as it can lighten the strands up only a bit; vol 20 is a little more intense and is capable of lightening your hair about three levels; vol 30 and vol 40 are progressively more intense and can lift your hair several shades from the original colour. But this isn't child’s play; these are powerful chemicals that require you to take care and follow the instructions on the box carefully.
- A toner is optional, and helps give you the exact shade you want when you bleach hair.
- As far as possible, use the most natural, gentle at home hair bleach kit you can find to bleach hair.
- Also make sure you have the right shampoo, conditioner and mask for after bleach hair care, and a set of old towels to protect your skin and clothes from the hair bleach colour.
Steps To Bleaching Your Hair At Home
Here’s how to bleach hair at home without damage.
- After you put on your protective cape and gloves, mix your at home bleach hair product in the bowl by following the written instructions. Generally it is one part bleach powder to two parts developer.
- To bleach hair, divide your hair into small sections, evenly clipping them back with hair clips.
- Start applying your product by finishing the harder to reach areas such as the back of your head first. If you can coax someone into helping you at home, it will go much faster.
- Wait for the required time once all your hair is well covered by seeing what is written on your bleach kit. 40 minutes is generally the maximum you can keep the bleach on your hair. Wash out for any signs of redness or irritation, which signal that you must wash it off immediately.
- Step into your shower, and flip your hair over so that no part of your skin comes into contact with the bleach. Use cold water for the first rinse. Then follow up with a shampoo and conditioner. Let your strands air dry.
- If you want to avoid the chemicals altogether, opt for natural bleaching agents. If you want to know how to lighten hair naturally, you can try using lemon juice mixed with honey and conditioner, and spray on your hair. Crushing a vitamin C tablet in water and spritzing it on your hair can also do the trick. A saltwater spray or even apple cider mixed in water and sprayed on your hair can give you lightened, beachy waves, while a mixture of honey and cinnamon mixed with some olive or coconut oil to protect your hair can help lighten your strands. How effective these natural methods are depends on how dark your hair is naturally. Also, just because they are natural does not mean that they aren’t potent. The same care is to be taken as you would take with chemicals, do not leave them sitting on your hair for too long and follow the same pre and post bleaching care.
Hair Care After Bleaching
It’s not enough to just know how to bleach your hair at home, you also need to know what to do after bleaching.
- To bleach hair, you need to take the same care post bleaching as you did pre bleach. Use gentle, hydrating, (organic if possible) products and rich hair masks to nourish and add life to your bleached strands.
- Dilute your products by emulsifying them in your hands before applying them.
- Keep heat styling down to minimum; if you can avoid them altogether, your hair will certainly thank you for it.
- Give yourself a weekly hot oil hair massage; your hair certainly deserves the pampering.
Does Bleaching Damage your Hair?
Bleaching your hair frequently will result in more and more damage. When it's time to touch up the bleach at your roots, apply it only to new growth and don't re-bleach your entire head. Repeated bleaching of your entire head will result in hair breakage and hair loss.
There you have it, your lowdown on how to bleach hair safely and effectively right from the comfort of your home.