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How To Fix Your Bleached Hair If You Think You Ruined It

I like to look my best. Fashion and self-care are two things I prioritize, and I like to share my tips with others.

What if bleach ruined your hair? Tips for how to fix your hair if you think your ruined it with chemicals.

What if bleach ruined your hair? Tips for how to fix your hair if you think your ruined it with chemicals.

What to Do If Bleaching Ruined Your Hair

If you recently bleached your hair and fear that you ruined it, find out what you can do to get your hair back to health. From fried, dry hair and breakage, to orange hair, striped hair, ugly roots or ruined color, here’s what to do to reverse the damage and get your look back.

I've bleached my hair throughout the years and have dealt with most of these scenarios. Figuring out how your hair handles color and how to correct it is everything. When you do a bad bleach job, there are a number of issues you might be noticing:

  1. Your hair is fried
  2. You look like a zebra
  3. Your hair is orange, yellow, or brassy
  4. You have hot roots
  5. Your color is dull or bland

Which one are you dealing with? Find out how to correct it by reading more below.

1. You fried your hair and it's dry and breaking.

Bleach breaks your hair molecules down in order to penetrate the shaft to take the color out of your hair strand. When you bleach your hair, you are basically compromising your hair’s protein structure, this is why your hair probably feels like straw or you might notice that it is falling out in clumps. Because you have compromised it’s protein structure, you might want to try a protein filler like Aphogee Two-step Treatment Protein for Damaged Hair (I have used this on my hair when it is damaged and it works really well). This product only works on damaged hair that has been bleached, dyed hair, or basically hair that has been treated with chemicals. If your hair is naturally dry, this product likely won’t help. A lot of people also swear by Olaplex which repairs the damaged chemical bonds in your hair.

Don't Wash your Hair as Much

If dryness is really an issue for you, you might want to try a deep conditioning mask or if you have longer hair or can afford to lose some length, go to the salon for a standard trim. You might also consider skipping washing your hair for a few days to let the natural oils rebound. Moving forward you will also want to develop a routine of washing every other day rather than daily as to not dry your hair out further. Also make sure you use sulphate-free shampoos and rich conditioners to help your hair recover.

Silicon and Oil Serums

After you get out of the shower and your hair is still wet, you can use a silicon or oil serum on your hair. Despite rumors that your hair becomes “dependent” on silicon and it can make the condition worse, silicon is actually proven to really help improve hair condition. You might look for a serum that has both oil and silicon combined.

2. You literally look like a zebra.

If you look like a zebra at this stage because your hair is all striped, you will want to get that fixed. You might decide to carefully bleach the sections of hair that you didn’t get the first time. If you take this approach, make sure you do not bleach what’s already been bleached or you might cause more damage. Here’s what to do:

  • Take the dark sections one by one and color them by putting foil on them.
  • Use a lower level volume (no higher than 20)
  • Make sure you check the sections and them wash them out when they like ok to you.
  • You might have to wash some sections out sooner than others to balance the color.
  • Finally, tone your hair.

3. Your hair is bright orange, yellow or brassy.

If your hair is bright orange, yellow, or brassy, make sure you first check out its condition before proceeding. If you hair feels damaged and like its about to fall apart, follow this advice:

  • Damaged? Don’t go lighter: You cannot go lighter. You need to wait until your hair’s integrity is restored.
  • Orange hair: Find a blue toner and use volume 10 developer (or lower)
  • Yellow/orange hair: purple/blue toner and use volume10 developer and lower
  • Yellow hair: purple toner with volume 10 developer or lower; you can find a bunch of these on Amazon.

4. Hot Roots

If you went and bleached your whole head at one time and did not do the roots last then your probably have hot roots. Here are some things you can do.

If you like your hair color otherwise, do a root smudge and simply darken your roots. Make sure you read item 3 above and that you have toned your hair and are happy with its final look. If your roots are too bright, you can fix them.

What level is the rest of your hair?

Is your hair level 6,7,8, or 9? Maybe you want to do one shade darker at your roots and try going golden. If your hair turned out to be medium blonde in color, for example, go for medium golden blonde in the roots (not ash or it will turn a gray color). In instances where you remove the warmth in your hair, use a golden shade or else it will look funny. Volume 10 or lower will work for the root smudge. To do this, lightly put the color on your hair and brush it out so that it will blend with the rest of your hair. This is a helpful video below.

5. Your hair looks bland and lost its dimension or you want to grow it out to look more natural.

You will have to add in some lowlights to fix your issue. Adding lowlights might help add dimension to your hair. There’s a really helpful video that you can watch for this that I've included below. If you don’t want to try to do this yourself (adding lowlights), go see a professional. If you are comfortable doing it yourself, you can go with a toner that is two shades darker than your hair color and go for something golden (don’t go above volume 10 developer).

Start by taking small sections of your hair and paint the toner onto it. Follow the directions on the box for how long you should leave it on there. Test a small strand of hair to see if the toner is the desired color. If you find that it is too ashy, go for something with more orange. You can add some drops to the mix and remove some of the ashy color or again go for something that is a little more golden.

When to Go to a Professional

You can always go to see a professional. It might just be worth it rather then fussing with different products and going through the trouble. Also, don’t be too upset. Hair is just hair, it’s not a permanent thing (other people deal with way worse in life, so be thankful this is just temporary). In most cases, your hair will go back and everything will be fine. You will also have learned a valuable hair lesson. Next time, try going to a good salon and spending the money to really get what you want. Share your advice below.

© 2020 Brynn B Lewis

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