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    Lighten Hair Color That is Too Dark

    A woman who's hair color turned too dark

    Lighten hair color when your hair color is too dark

    Here is a typical comment from one of my most popular articles, Hair Color Too Dark:

    Hi. i had blonde hair. i just dyed my hair “cola brown” but it turned out almost black! not what i was looking for. how can i lighten hair color fast? i wanted brown but not black! i leave for school on Saturday, so it must be fixed. i also planned on dying more reddish-gold-brown or quote “cocoa brown” into it, but haven’t done so yet. what should i do? please help.


    There are many causes and considerations for home hair coloring going wrong when attempting to lighten hair color. When your hair color gets too dark, well, you now have “a horse of a different color” to contend with.

    “Let the Professionals Lighten Hair Color”

    In the last couple of years, celebrity hairstyles have been leading the way to a new surge in “beautiful brunettes.” The hairstyles are gorgeous with drizzles of colors in hues named, caramel, creme brulee or cafe au lait, that bring out surface strands and give a depth or warmth to the hair, unmatched by any single step hair color you can do at home.

    It’s not uncommon for those coloring hair at home to end up with a head of hair much darker than that which was intended. Home hair coloring kits fly off the shelves and into the hands and hair of the unexperienced. Top that off with the fact that reading directions is moot and . . . bingo . . . you’ve got problems; enough said.

    My absolute best advice is . . . carefully search for a hair colorist who is familiar with lightening hair color. Do not try to lighten hair color yourself, you’re sure to make matters worse, resulting not only in more expense, but more importantly, damage to your hair. A hair colorist who is experienced in how to lighten hair color can remove the unwanted dark dye pigment on a damaged and unruly head of hair, leaving it ready for corrective dimensional hair coloring. This is an extremely tricky procedure and to try this yourself is a sure accident waiting to happen.

    In my article, I give some home remedies you can try, but I give them reluctantly, just read directions and be careful!

    Barb Quinn on Google+  



    1. hi, i dyed my hair black myself but i want to lighten it bk to a lighter color.. what would be the best thing to do with out going to a salon as i have been quoted nearly €200 and i dont have that kind of money.
      please help

      Comment by Nicole Farrelly — December 2, 2011 @ 12:11 pm

    2. If it is hair color you are trying to remove, start shampooing with a clarifying shampoo which will strip some color out. Be sure to condition your hair well after using a clarifier as it may dry it out too much.

      Comment by Barb Quinn — April 25, 2011 @ 4:12 pm

    3. Hi, I have darkish brunette hair, but I need a few ways to lighten my hair naturally, no dyes, and that works very quickly. Any ideas?

      Comment by Victoria k — April 21, 2011 @ 9:07 pm

    4. Donna,
      Excellent question. I will write a post for more detail on your question.
      The biggest mistake we see made is that consumers expect the color on the box to be the color they will get and that is simply not true. You need to use the chart on the back of the box to determine the right shade.
      But, like I said, that is the most common mistake made . . . but there are other considerations to make, like your hair color now, and the porosity of your hair and more. I will write an article on your question . . . it will be out soon.

      Comment by Barb Quinn — September 28, 2009 @ 1:36 pm

    5. Although I got color that is MUCH darker than I intended, the color I got is similar to my natural haircolor (which I had forgotten what it looked like). I don’t care to foolaround correcting it (I will live with it) my question is” Why did it happen? What are some of the causes? This is not the first time this has happened to me.
      Thanx for you expertise!

      Comment by Donna — September 27, 2009 @ 9:19 am

    6. Carolina,
      Our skin tone changes slightly as we age and black hair can be especially harsh. What once looked good can now age you and be not complimentary.
      I suggest start lightening your strands, first with highlights, foils, that lighten your hair by one or two shades. Carmel colored browns, warm reds might be where your colorist would take you. But let a professional do this to get it right to begin with.
      Hope this helps!

      Comment by barb — January 23, 2009 @ 12:41 pm

    7. I have dark brown eyes, my skin is like a medium to light complexion with rosy undertones and black hair. what is the best hair shade for me? ive been dying my hari black for over 12 years, but i suddenly feel old. any suggestions?

      Comment by carolina — January 14, 2009 @ 8:23 pm

    8. I have blue eyes,fair skin and kind of auburn red hair. It is beginning to fade and get a lot of gray in it what kind of color should I use? I also have thought of getting highligts.

      Comment by sandra — July 31, 2007 @ 10:28 am

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