If blondes have more fun, then why is it so hard to get the perfect color, free of brassy tones? Too often the icy blonde we were hoping for ends up with yellow or golden tones- a dull disappointment. If you don’t know how to get yellow out of bleached hair, rest assured that the tips below will help you get the cool blonde you’ve always desired. But first…
How does the process for going blonde work, anyways? To reach that platinum color, pigments have to be removed from the hair. If you’re hair is red or brown, this can be a difficult task because all color has to be lifted from the hair using bleach (weakening hair in the process). When bleaching, first hair turns different shades of orange, then yellow, then a white, ashy color.
Using bleach alone on dark hair will most certainly result in yellow blonde hair, especially if you’re trying to go blonde for the first time by yourself. But it’s crucial not to overcompensate by bleaching too far and burning your hair from all of the chemicals. To avoid a mess altogether, you should definitely be using a toner.
Using a toner for blonde hair is an great way to remove yellow from hair. Applying a toner after bleaching hair cancels any unwanted colors and fills in excess porosity (that weakened hair). It’s basically a finishing coat that seals and protects hair. If you’ve gone to the salon to go blonde, they may have referred to the toner as a gloss.
A toner will last anywhere from 2-8 weeks, depending on how often you wash your hair. Once it’s gone, this is when even natural blondes who color their hair will take on a brassy tone. You can extend the life of your color by applying you own toner to lengthen the time in between trips to the salon. All drug and beauty supply stores carry toners, but be sure to choose one with a purple color. Purple will neutralize the yellow tones because they are opposite each other on the color wheel.
#2: Quality Shampoo and Conditioner
There is never a more important time to invest in salon quality shampoo and conditioner than when you’ve bleached your hair. Hair care specifically designed to maintain hair color will protect your hair for longer keep your blonde fresher.
For blondes, the best option is a purple shampoo. The same color theory applies! Biosilk Color Therapy for Cool Blondes is a great choice because it’s free of sulfates and parabens, giving hair that cool shine without all of the chemical junk. Some are for every wash use while other are for just once a week, so carefully read instructions. It’s best to treat purple shampoo as a toner, (it has the right smell to it!) unless you want to end up with purple hair. Be sure to condition hair after as well, as it can be very drying. If you’ve just gone blonde, you should always be conditioning thoroughly!
#3: Choose the Right Tones
When dying your hair at home, choosing the right tones in your coloring process is essential. You’ll first want to purchase a more icy toned dye. This will neutralize pale yellow tones and enhance the silver ones. Next, you’ll need to buy dye for ash blonde hair, so look for ashy or bluish tones. They will reduce that unwanted brassiness.
For the right combination of dyes, there is a go-to mix every hopeful blonde should make. Take 2 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide, 1/3 tube of the cool blonde dye, and 1 teaspoon of the purple ash blonde color and make a paste. Dilute the paste by adding water until you have enough to cover all of your hair. Once you’ve washed the dye out, wash hair twice to rinse off the excess tint to bring out the best of the color.
#4: Shower Filter
Believe it or not, minerals found in water can contribute to brassiness in hair. When washing, these mineral deposits work hard to dull your ash blonde hair. Combat the drama with a shower head filter. Bed Bath & Beyond or any hardware store should carry one that can be easily attached to any shower head.
#5: White Vinegar Rinse
White vinegar has been used around the house for ages, but did you know it can be used to enhance ash blonde hair? (FYI, to bring out auburn tones in your hair, use apple cider vinegar). The sour smelling solution has the ability to restore hair to its proper pH while also clarifying and conditioning.
To use, shampoo as normal and rinse hair with cool water. Then, dilute 2 tsp vinegar with about two cups of water. Apply white vinegar diluted to your damp hair, working it in from root to tip. It’s too harsh to leave on your hair indefinitely, so rinse out after about 15 minutes. Condition as normal and enjoy the beautiful effects!
#6: Wash Less
Your hair, that is! As described before, washing hair breaks down the toner and ashy white color of blonde hair. To combat this, it’s helpful to cut down on the amount of days you wash your hair. It can be hard if you’re used to washing daily, but this will only bring on brassiness quicker and dry out your blonde hair in the process. Try washing every other day or just a few times a week. Rock a cute ponytail or half-up style on the days your hair feels dirty. If you wash less, your bright blonde highlights will thank you.
Achieving that perfect blonde can be a struggle, but once you’ve reached that perfect platinum, nothing feels fresher! It may be a bit of work to maintain, but combatting yellow blonde hair is totally doable if you can commit. With the use of toners, purple shampoo and the occasional vinegar rinse, you’ll notice that ash blonde lasting longer!