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    Can I get my natural hair color back?

    Chart of 24 different hair color swatches

    Michelle Asks about Natural Hair Color:

    I dyed my hair a light copper brown and got some blonde high lights. I highly dislike the hair color choice because I wanted a darker brown hair color and not what I actually had done. I was wondering if there is any possible way I can get my natural hair color back which is a medium brown, and how long should I wait to get it dyed to my natural hair color?


    Have you dyed your hair and are unhappy with the results? When it comes to corrective hair coloring or hair dye stripping, each case is unique, because no two hair genetics are exactly alike. In Michelle’s case she will be doing a tint-back which is an easier process than correcting a hair color that is too dark, but still tricky. These questions need to be answered:

    Do you have regrowth (roots) showing?

    • Yes? Then the roots will need to be treated separately from the rest of your hair. It helps for a hair colorist to see about an inch of regrowth to match that as closely as possible. Seeing that you want the hair color darker, the hair colorist would use a formula that will work best for tinting back the hair color that exists now. It takes some know-how to get this right, not only in the formula, but also in the application. You could do a lot more damage by trying to correct this yourself. The condition of your hair can only be assessed by someone taking a look at it. My guess is it can withstand another hair color treatment at this point.
    • No? Then you may be able to get help by calling the company hotline on the back of the box of hair color you bought. They will ask you a number of questions about your hair history and its present state. It is extremely important that you tell them exactly what you have done. This is the time to confess all of your error. Especially those that you are reluctant to admit. They will recommend the best route to take from the information you give them. Don’t do anything unless you are clear that the information you gave them was correct.


    Barb Quinn on Google+  



    1. my hair is naturally strawberry blonde i died it blonde and it started growing out finally after about a yr i miss my hair wish i hadnt done what i did help please how can i remove it to my natural color? what do i do to fix my hair ?

      Comment by amanda gray — February 26, 2018 @ 1:31 pm

    2. I went to a stylist and wanted my bleached blond hair back to a chestnut hair color. My hair turned purple or burgundy. How can I get it brown or chestnut

      Comment by Cindy — November 30, 2017 @ 2:31 pm

    3. Hi Paula,

      Believe it or not your situation is extremely common, but unfortunately there is no easy solution. Hair color cannot lighten artificial color. Because of this, every time you apply a lighter hair color, your natural hair color will lighten (often leaving you with “hot roots”), and the dark color will remain the same or get darker. The dark color on your ends will have to be lifted using a lightener or a hair color remover.

      I suggest visiting a professional that specializes in corrective hair color. The chemicals used in the procedure are strong, and someone that is well-trained can help maintain the integrity of your hair. Are you a fabulous fashionista that loves a good bargain? You can save lots of money by having your hair colored at a beauty school. is a great website that helps you find a beauty school near you. Check them out here!

      For more information check out the informative article Hair Color Too Dark Here Are Your Options.

      Good luck!

      Comment by Michelle Skye — May 18, 2012 @ 4:53 pm

    4. My hair color is naturally a medium brown. This past winter, however, I decided to dye it black. Now that I want my natural color back, I decided to just dye it a light brown in hopes that maybe the black & light brown would blemd to make something similar to my nautral color. WRONG. It was awful! So I stripped all the color from my hair & dyed it a color close to my natural color. My hair still looks black at the ends & it has a weird reddish tint at my roots. Please help!

      Comment by Paula Mettler — May 10, 2012 @ 7:40 pm

    5. Hi Kathy,

      Highlights are wonderful, and the fastest way to get them is by visiting your local salon or beauty school. Face framing highlights are a really popular trend this season. Many women love this look because it has a very natural appearance. You can learn more about this cool trend by checking out the article Spring Hair Color Trends.

      I hope that you have an amazing hair day!

      Comment by Michelle Skye — April 28, 2012 @ 11:43 am

    6. I used to have natural blonde highlights then I cut my hair really short and now it is all brown. I was wondering if it i possible for me to get those highlights back?

      Comment by Kathy — April 22, 2012 @ 11:21 am

    7. Hi Brittenet,

      Unfortunately, Sun-In permanently lightens your hair. Some shampoos have colored tints, but it sounds like a temporary hair color rinse would be your best bet. These products generally only last until the next shampoo, although it may last a little longer on porous hair, and they create wonderful results. Check out this type of product here.

      Good luck!

      Comment by Michelle Skye — March 9, 2012 @ 10:22 pm

    8. I used sun in and I have dark brown hair now its blond and I dont like it. Is there a way to git it out with out dieing it, or letting it grow out (because it would look bad). Is there a shampoo I could use?

      Comment by Brittnet — March 7, 2012 @ 8:15 pm

    9. Hi Sara,
      Highlights would be the best way to go back to blonde. When you go to the salon, ask the hair colorist to give you an all over, heavy highlight. If you want platinum highlights, make sure that you let the hair colorist know in advance. A heavy highlight will leave you with a gorgeous hair color that is primarily blonde.

      Balayage highlights are really popular right now. Take a look at this article to see if this highlighting technique is right for you.

      Thank you for your comment. Do you have any other questions about your hair? We are always here to help our readers.

      Comment by Michelle Skye — February 9, 2012 @ 9:44 pm

    10. Back in September I had my blonde hair done at a salon and dyed it a brownish/red color, then again in November I had it touched up. I love it, but I really want to go back to blonde, however I wouldn’t mind having a mixture of the platinum blonde and brownish/red, but mostly blonde. My roots are about an inch or inch and half showing. I am most likely going to go to a salon, just not sure what I should do.

      Comment by Sarah — February 8, 2012 @ 1:17 pm

    11. Hi Jean,
      I can give you some advice, but it is hard for me to give you the complete process on how to color your hair back to ash brown without actually seeing your hair.

      This article provides informative content on how to avoid orange hair. It is an excellent article to bookmark!

      When in doubt, seek a professionals help. Professional hair colorist specialize in coloring hair without compromising its integrity.

      Comment by Michelle Skye — February 9, 2012 @ 10:10 pm

    12. I pretty much always dye my own hair at home, since I cannot afford to go to the salon right now. This evening, I decides to color my hair, and boost the red and gold tones for something new. Bad idea, because I hate it! I would like to get my hair to a nice ash blonde color. What is the best, and most cost effective way to do this on my own, without turning my hair completely orange?

      Comment by Jenn — February 7, 2012 @ 8:19 pm

    13. Hey Ellie, I was a natural red head too. & I’m telling you don’t dye your hair. Because ontop of it fading and having to redo it & spend MORE money; If you ever want to go back to your natural color, it is like impossible. No matter, how much it grows out, it will never have the same tint that once caught everyones attention…<3 That's what hppend to me. I died it blonde & black but then covered it up afterwards. & now it's been 2 years… & It's not even near the color it used to be… Which I miss… It used to be a orangey red one. now its like burnt dark red brown.. /: I advise you not to dye your hair just because you have the uniquest hair color of all<3

      Comment by Mary — January 11, 2012 @ 10:19 pm

    14. 34.Hey, Im a natural “redhead” or “ginger” or whatever you want to call it, but im sick of my hair, and when i have dyed it..The Dye comes out of hair, well it fades and dissapears, anyone got any good ideas on how to keep my hair dye in longer, max days keept dyed was 7 days..
      Thanks Anyways xx

      Comment by Ellie — December 25, 2011 @ 5:45 pm

    15. Hey, Im a natural “redhead” or ginger or whatever you want to call it, but im sick of my hair, and when i hae dyed it..The Dye comes out of hair, well it fades and dissapears, anyone got any good ideas on how to keep my hair dye in longer, max days keept dyed was 7 days..
      Thanks Anyways xx

      Comment by Ellie — December 25, 2011 @ 5:44 pm

    16. I have dyed my hair over 5 times, my hair colour now is dark brown, will i be able to get my hair stripped to my natural colour?

      Comment by Luccyyyyy — October 24, 2011 @ 8:48 am

    17. if you have some red in your hair and your trying to go a light brown can it come out purple?

      Comment by Sandraaa — October 15, 2011 @ 1:17 pm

    18. Hi Camille,
      It takes more work and skill to remove a darker color from your hair and return it to it’s natural color. You could get a couple estimates from reputable salons but I think they too will come out to bed about the same. If you have trust in the professional you may already have experience with, it might be good to go with them. Another cheaper alternative would be to go to an advanced training salon where the professionals are going for additional traing after being liscensed. They can get the right course of action to take from their educators.
      Good luck and thanks for your question!

      Comment by Barb Quinn — October 4, 2011 @ 2:54 pm

    19. Hi,
      My natural hair color is a really light blond, I dyed it brown about 3 months ago and I really want my natural hair color back. I went to a professional and she said it would cost 140$. Is this reasonable? Or should I talk to someone else? If anybody knows how to do this cheaper or thinks I should wait longer or what please comment back!

      Comment by Camille — October 2, 2011 @ 1:56 pm

    20. I have naturally blonde hair but over time it turned dark brown! I want my natural color back, anyone have any suggestions?

      Comment by Netnies — September 27, 2011 @ 11:56 am

    21. Toyin,
      You will need to use a permanent hair color if you want to totally cover the white. Use a shade or two lighter than your natural color.
      If you want the white hairs to just look highlighted you could use a semi-permanent hair color 2 or 3 shades lighter. The semi-permanent hair color is easier on your hair than a permanent color.

      Comment by Barb Quinn — May 20, 2010 @ 1:18 pm

    22. i need what i can use to dye my hair to darken hapened i started havin whte at the age of 14 and am just 27 now aldeady have much hair on my hair ,pls i serious need what can be use to darken it .looking forward to see your reply

      Comment by toyin — May 14, 2010 @ 6:34 am

    23. may people have commented on problem which is trying to let colored blonde hair grow out to natural gray. i see all the comments but no solutions can someone help me? thanks.

      Comment by sally — March 3, 2010 @ 11:00 am

    24. i’m 13 and im a natrural redhead i was bullied so i dyed blonde in april 09 and june 09 and then dyed it brown in july 09 but i’m desprat for my beautiful red hair back is there any colour strippers and how much will the hair dresser cost? please help

      Comment by becca — October 9, 2009 @ 4:56 am

    25. Sarah,
      Putting more color on your hair is not the answer. You may be able to lighten it a bit using clarifying shampoo or a harsh shampoo like Prell for a while. If you do that be sure to follow up with a good moisturizing conditioner.
      If that’s not enough, the color will need to be lifted out of your hair. Possibly subtle highlights may be able to get you there. Talk with a colorist who can look at your hair.

      Comment by Barb Quinn — October 5, 2009 @ 2:28 pm

    26. Hey, ive died my hair a redi brown colour and i really want it back to my natural colour which is light brown. i have put two light brown die’s on my hair and it went darker :s. what can i do?

      Comment by sarah — October 1, 2009 @ 10:23 am

    27. Angela-Lousie,

      Sorry, yours is delicate problem. But check out this link ;
      Also consider seeing a colorist, who can see how bad your problem is.

      Comment by Barb Quinn — September 28, 2009 @ 1:50 pm

    28. i dyed my hair black but i dont like it … i want it back to my natural colour but i dont want to get it bleached … anyone got any ideas on how to do this ?

      Comment by Angela-Louise — September 27, 2009 @ 9:11 am

    29. hi.i died my hair with sun in and i want to dye it brown black.can i do that or do i have to wait for it to grow back out before i can color with a box product

      Comment by scarlet — June 6, 2009 @ 8:06 am

    30. i have naturally ginger hair and i really want to try a wash in wash out brown die in it but i dont want it to mess up my hair and me being left with dirty browny’ginger hair. help? please!
      from izzie,14

      Comment by izzie — October 30, 2008 @ 1:33 pm

    31. Crissie,
      Talk with a colorist before doing anything more. Your natural color and every other color on your hair contributes to what your end result will be.
      Don’t make the mistake of thinking the hair color on the box is what you will get!!
      See my other “related articles” listed at the end of this article, they may be of some help.
      Hope this helps!

      Comment by Barb Quinn — October 8, 2008 @ 12:06 pm

    32. Im not sure what my natural hair color is but I dyed it to a dark blonde. But it looks grey. So I bought a Medium Brown. Any advice on what color my hair might turn out if I die it? Please Help!

      Comment by Crissie — October 7, 2008 @ 10:19 pm

    33. hi, is aloe vera good for rubbing on the hair?
      and why?

      Comment by JJ — August 19, 2008 @ 10:08 am

    34. hi i dyed my hair brownish redish color (herbal estances) but it turned out to be really red on my roots but the rest of my hair turned out brown with red “high lights in it kinda” what are some things i can do to lighten the dark red roots with out damaging my hair is there any thing i can use at home? please help…….!

      Comment by brittany — April 5, 2008 @ 10:53 am

    35. Nicole,
      Good question, you are not alone!
      I wrote an answer to your question that should get posted today! Look for it shortly.
      Good Luck!

      Comment by Barb — March 21, 2008 @ 3:55 pm

    36. i have natural medium ash brown hair and have been trying to get it back to its natural color and out of these red brassy tones! i dyed it a med ash brown and it looked awesome but then it faded to a brassy light brown! how do i fix this?!

      Comment by nicole — March 20, 2008 @ 2:35 pm

    37. I have brown hair and have been getting light brown/blonde highlites as well as lowlights for a couple of years now. Recently i got completely bored with my hair and decided to dye it. i dyed it a dark golden brown but it went horribly wrong. my roots turned bright orange. so to fix it i dyed it an espresso dark brown, now my roots are brown with an orange undertone and my ends are realllly dark. i’d like to go back to my natural brown hair colour. what should i do? help!!

      Comment by Lailah — January 23, 2008 @ 2:13 pm

    38. i dyed my hair with sun in and i hate it! is it safe to dye my hair back to dark brown ? will my hair eventually go back to my natural colour if i dye it back?. and will it look healthy when it is growing back?

      Comment by christine melnike — November 5, 2007 @ 2:03 pm

    39. I have dyed blond hair with about 1 inch of root growth a much darker brown. I would like to return to my natural color. I am tired of touching up the roots. Can I do this my self by just matching my root color to a home coloring kit?

      Comment by cindy — October 22, 2007 @ 11:29 pm

    40. Like Kerry, I want to let my natural (almost pure white) hair grow in. I have very healthy, coarse-textured fairly long hair that I have been coloring honey blonde for years. Is there a way to match this bright white hair with some kind of streaks or highlights? Lately — on TV — I have been seeing young men with beautiful white or silver hair, so it must be possible — surely they could not have gone completely white/grey at such an early age! A couple hairdressers have suggested bleached highlights — but they say they cannot achieve a match with the white that is my natural color — it will just have to grow out, they say. Is this true? What do you suggest I do, especially to avoid damaging my hair?

      Comment by Laura — January 18, 2007 @ 7:19 pm

    41. My hair is a natural dirty dish water blonde and i dyed my blonder but then this yr i tryed 2 darken it and my hair turned grey so i tried 2 cover it up by putting a dark brown in it but now its dark brown and it still has grey in my hair i dont know what to do plz help me!!

      Comment by Kristy — January 5, 2007 @ 6:41 pm

    42. I want to have streaks of grey hair to match my roots (out one and a half inches). My hair is long and colored blond. Is this possible? I think grey hair is not a bad look, and I want to do streaks first and let it grow out. My natural grey hair is mixed, mostly white but some dark grey. The closer to my face the lighter it is.



      Comment by Kerry — October 16, 2006 @ 2:38 pm

    43. ok. my hair is dark blue, and i want to get yellow, purple and pink streaks. how do i get the hight of yellow to show up?

      Comment by Roberta — September 1, 2006 @ 5:14 pm

    44. If I have had my hair weaved for years with highlights and low lights, can I use a store bought product for all over color?

      Comment by Julie — August 25, 2006 @ 4:16 pm

    45. ok so my natural hair colour is brown. over the years i have been getting blonde highlights. about 6months ago i decided go to dark brown. now i really want to go to platnium blonde…like paris hilton’s colour. is this a good idea? what should i do?

      Comment by Kelly — May 25, 2006 @ 6:08 pm

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