How To Remove Brassy and Orange Tones from Bleached Blonde Hair
Depending on the darkness of the hair to start with, bleaching will first turn the hair red, orange and then yellow, before reaching blonde and white/ platinum tones. If the bleach is not left on the hair long enough to process all the way to a light blonde (which in most cases is not recommended as this can resultantly be very damaging and drying to the hair), the hair may be left with some orange or yellow deposits, known as brassiness. This can easily be counteracted by using toning and a clever technique known as colour neutralization.
To neutralize something means to ‘cancel it out’. Hair colour neutralization works by incorporating colours opposite to one another on the colour wheel to cancel out that colour in the hair.
For example, take a look at the diagram of the colour wheel below:
Red, red-orange, orange, yellow-orange and yellow are all warm and brassy tones that are left in the hair as a result of bleaching. Opposite these colours on the colour wheel are green, blue-green, blue, blue-violet and violet. These are all classed as cool tones and will neutralize or ‘cancel out’ the warm tones in the hair.
So, How Do You Get These Colors into the Hair to Neutralize the Brassiness?
Shampoos and Conditioners such as Scharzkopf’s Touch of Silver and John Frieda’s Sheer Blonde Color Renew both contain bright blue and violet pigments. Using these just a few times will dull down brassiness in the hair significantly and used on a regular basis, once or twice a week, will continuously freshen up your blonde shade and stop brassiness from reoccurring.
Using an Ash Colour
As well as shampoo and conditioning products, brassiness can also be neutralized by dying with colour containing an ‘ash’ tone (Ash is simply the hair industries technical term for green. Most companies chose to use a substitute name as people refused to buy their products, thinking it would actually turn their hair green).
Using ash toned hair dye is also effective on natural root regrowth that is mousy brown to darker blonde, as apposed to just bleaching, as blonde hair dye contains bleach anyway and combined with the ash tones will lighten the hair and neutralize brassiness at the same time. It is not recommended that this be done with medium brown to black shades, however.
Using a Water Filter
Finally, hard water can cause hair to become brassy due to mineral components within it. It is a good idea to fit a water filter which will reduce the mineral deposits within the water source, causing brassiness.
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