Bleaching applications lighten your hair by up to eight shades whether your natural hair colour is medium blonde or light brown. Special bleaching applications for very dark hair (medium brown to black) still lighten dark hair by two or three shades without undesired red tinges. It helps to know how bleaching applications work. First, the hair’s smooth cuticle layer is disturbed to make it permeable to the bleaching solution. This allows the hydrogen peroxide in the bleaching application to penetrate deep into the hair shaft where it oxidizes the existing pigments. This renders the pigments colourless. The available bleaching applications contain different concentrations of hydrogen peroxide and therefore bleach the natural pigments to different degrees. The bleaching occurs in several steps and the hair colour changes gradually as well, progressing from dark to light hair. When you lighten dark hair, the hair changes from its natural colour via various shades of red and yellow before it reaches the final blonde colour. You should therefore be sure to select the right bleaching application for the colour of your hair and the desired blonde shade. Then you must adhere to the prescribed leave-in times (30 to 45 minutes) to prevent colouring your hair blonde with a reddish or yellow tinge because the bleaching process was interrupted prematurely. Leaving the bleaching agent in your hair too long is not going to lighten your hair to any significant extent but it will damage the hair, leaving it straw-like and porous.
Hair Hungers for Extra TLC after Bleaching
Part of knowing how to lighten hair is realizing that bleaching applications come with a package of rich conditioners for bleached hair. Be sure to apply these conditioners to your freshly bleached hair for 3 minutes immediately after bleaching and rinsing your hair. The nourishing ingredients strengthen the hair and provide it with silky luster. Did you recently perm or chemically straighten your hair? If this is the case you should wait at least two weeks before you apply any bleaching application to your hair. Otherwise, you could wind up with excessively processed damaged hair. In case bleaching your hair is part of your regular routine, you naturally don’t always have to apply the bleach to your entire hair. Applying the bleaching formulation only to the newly grown part of your hair is much gentler and it will lighten your hair the same amount as if you distribute the application in your entire hair for the last two to five minutes of the total leave-in time.
Setting Highlights with Blonde Streaks
There is more than one way to lighten dark hair - you may prefer perking up your hair colour with a few well-placed blonde streaks to bleaching your entire head. The streaks can be bleached two to six shades lighter than your natural hair and you also have the choice of highlighting different parts of your hair. Streaks work well for light blonde to medium brown hair. You may also like to give streaking applications a try, which colour streaks in blonde and in caramel tones at the same time. The playful light reflections from these streaks are attractive and intriguing. Bleaching only streaks of your hair is far less stressful for your hair than committing to lightening your hair entirely. If you create streaks in your hair for the first time you may like to consider asking a friend for assistance. A second pair of hands can be helpful especially for setting streaks in the back of your head.
The Simplest Way: Bleaching Hair Spray
Subtle nuances can have the most amazing effects. Blonde sprays are ideal for going blonde in baby steps or for just adding dazzling brilliance to your hair. A gentler way to lighten dark hair, these sprays lighten hair by a quarter of a shade with every application. Heat or the sun’s rays intensify the bleaching effect and tend to make hair lighter. Blow-drying therefore enhances the effect of bleaching sprays. Since the hydrogen peroxide concentration is low in bleaching spray, the application is relatively gentle to your hair. Still, bleaching sprays are not meant for continuous daily use but rather for use over a limited period. If you want to rescue your hair from looking dull between bleaching applications you may like to reach for bleaching spray as a convenient solution. It is important to treat your hair to some extra care while spray-bleaching it. A conditioner after every shampoo and a mask once a week keep bleached as well as spray-bleached hair healthy looking and shiny, and is vitally important for maintaining your hair's health when learning how to lighten hair.