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What is a strand test and why is it important?

If you’ve dyed hair before then you’re probably aware of what’s a strand test. But if you’re new to it then we’ve got answers for the questions you’ve got – what is a strand test and how do you do it?

What is a strand test

A strand test is done when you’re dyeing your hair in a certain colour and need to know how the dye will affect your hair, and how many shades will it lift or darken. The strand test can be done with a hair dye or even with bleaching, just to find out how long do you need to keep the dye on your hair in order to achieve the tone that you like.

When you’re bleaching your hair, the strand test will come extremely handy because bleach can damage hair badly if left on too long, or if it’s applied onto hair that’s weakened by previous treatments.

You can read more about how to bleach hair right here on Hair-Bun.

If you decide to do a strand test before bleaching then you’re playing it safe and smart. It’s also advised to do this when you’ve previously bleached your hair and would like to avoid any unnecessary damage.

How to do a strand test

While the strand test itself is easy, there’s a few things you’re going to need before actually applying the dye onto the hair.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Scissors
  • Small strip of tape (1– 2 in long)
  • A small piece of cloth that you can throw away as you’re done
  • Bleach or dye mixture

Snip the ends of the hair

To get the necessary hair for the strand test, all you need is a very small amount of hair. The length of the hair you should use should be enough for you to tell how the color sticks to it, so under a half an inch of hair should completely do.

The tape and the hair

Take the hair you snipped off and lay them onto the small strip of tape that you got ready. Try to arrange them in a way that they don’t overlap with each stand too much.

Apply the dye

Take the small amount of hair dye or bleach, and apply it onto the hair. You should let the dye set for about 5 minutes, then take the cloth piece and wipe the dye off.

By this time you should see how much the dye will affect your hair, and if you should keep it on for longer, or maybe cancel the plans and skip it.

The strand test with hair extensions

When you’re planning to dye hair extensions, then the strand test is almost mandatory. Human hair extensions will not grow out nor replenish their healthiness which makes the strand test very useful. It’s better to try the dyes on a strand, rather than ruin the whole set of the extensions.

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