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10 of the most common mistakes with DIY dyes

Have you dyed hair or are thinking about it?

Most of us can relate to dying hair – it’s a trend that allows us to change our looks by as we wish. And needless to say, there’s a few things that can go wrong with it. We’ve listed the most common mistakes with DIY dyes that can also have happened to you.

1. Ombré box dyes

Surely Ombré box dyes are out on the market for home dying? Of course, but you really have to know the instructions and outcome. On a bad case, you can become stuck with a very blunt, straight Ombré that makes you embarrassed of your hair, but generally a lot of the dye jobs don’t end up like that.

You can also read about how to dye your hair Ombre right here on Hair-Bun.

2. Covering up gray hair

With covering up gray hair, it’s important to keep in mind that the hair have lost their pigment, and applying a normal dye onto it can make it look dull. When you’re choosing a color at the store, look for a dye that contains warm, golden tones: from blondes to golden browns. The reasoning behind this is simple – the golden spark brings life into the gray hair, making the dyed hair look natural. It’s all about shading with the right tones.

3. Doing your own highlights

Doing this by yourself can end up with very heavy, blunt highlights. To fix this you could purchase an add-on ash shade color for gloss. Once that’s done, put it over the highlights, it will change the tone of the highlights without messing about with the rest of your hair.

4. Bleaching

Deciding to go from dark hair to blonde sounds awesome. Achieving it on the other hand is everything but easy – that is when you don’t want to burn your hair off your head. By bleaching your hair more than once within 2-3 weeks will probably result with your hair falling out, dryer than a bone and also damaged beyond any repair. On extreme cases it literally burns the hair off your hair, leaving bald patches and VERY irritated skin.

To avoid irreversible damage, there’s a few things you can do:

  • Don’t use bleach. Use a color removing kit instead, look it up on the internet and try to go with that instead.
  • Coconut oil. Soak your hair in it overnight, after that wash it out and leave your hair as it is for 1-2 days. After that you’ve got a green light to dye them, because the coconut oil locks moisture into your hair, reducing the damage from bleaching/color removing.
  • Do one bleaching session at the time. Leave 2-3 weeks between sessions, and use a toner (silver shampoo) to reduce the orange tone.

5. Trying to achieve too extreme colors

Going from dark to light tone can have disastrous results. It’s the same with going from light to dark in one session – the results are quite traumatizing. Most common mistake people do is Ombré dyes, buying a box dye and hoping for the best. It usually ends up dull and uneven.

6. Picking the incorrect tone to dye with

How many times have you dyed your hair on your own, but the outcome of it is different from the picture on the box? It’s a common mistake made by the makers of the dye, assuming all hair are virgin hair. Bleaching your hair doesn’t make it blonde, it often leaves it orange. Dying your hair brown ends up looking black.

This is because of different chemicals in the dyes. When you haven’t dyed your hair before, you will most likely achieve the color that has been advertised out. But if you have dyed your hair before, then you just need to be sure which box dye you should be choosing.

I would recommend Syoss dyes, as they’ve literally turned out to be as they advertised out on the box. Price wise they’re a bit higher than other colors, but I was 100% happy with the outcome. They left my hair soft and fine by texture, while in the past Garnier colors have caused me to cry over my decisions (I dyed my hair from blonde to light brown, outcome was deep, dark brown – only kept the color on for 10 minutes).

7. Dying hair frequently

Dying your hair frequently can lead to damaged, thinning hair. If you decide to re-touch your regrowth and end up dying the whole hair instead, you’ll dry the already dyed hair out. No matter what amount of coconut oil or hair masks will bring your hair back from the dead after that.
The time that should be left between dying falls between 2-4 weeks MINIMUM. This is for the safety of your hair, to avoid causing unnecessary damage.

Also just to put this out there, over-dying your hair slows down the growth speed of your hair. This is coming from a woman whose hair stopped growing for 4 years, until I gave up trying to be blonde, and let my natural light brown hair grow out. It took literally a year, to grow out the bleach blonde, cut it all off and boy did the new hair sprout. I’m not too fond of the tone, but they look absolutely healthy and grow faster than ever.

8. Toning the roots of the hair with the wrong tone

Although dying your roots is a simple job, picking the right tone is not. During the break when your hair is growing out, the grown out dye changes tones, usually turning lighter. When the hair dye overlaps with the old dye, your roots will be lighter than the rest of your hair.
Using only the same tone

When you buy just one box of dye and use it to color your hair, you’ll end up with a “hair-helmet” as they say. It means your hair will look dull, all in the same color as if you’d be wearing a helmet.

To avoid this, you could buy 2 dyes, with very close toning and try layering. As an example dark brown and brown – it’d give your hair more dimensions, making it look natural and effortless.

9. Poorly sectioning your hair

Let’s say you’re about to dye your hair from dark to light, and are feeling a bit lazy. You start applying the dye onto your hair, and 10 minutes in you get bored – you just start applying the dye as shampoo and massage it in. The mistake with this is that you won’t reach every section, leaving darker spots into your hair. I can assure you that the hair on the sides and on top of your hair will look perfect, but on the back of your hair you’ll have darker spots near the roots.

This comes from applying the dye poorly; it won’t reach some sections at all. To avoid this you must have patience, section your hair properly and go layer by layer with each and every section. To make sure that the job is done correctly, you can take a wide tooth comb and very gently comb through them. If you apply too much pressure you could break the hair.

10. Having clean hair before you start dying

Of course it’s a good idea to start with clean, dry hair.. right? Sadly it’s not so. By washing your hair before you dye them, you remove the natural oils from your hair that would protect your scalp AND your hair. Without it, the dye damages the hair more than it should. Instead you should leave your hair as it is from 1-2 days before dying, letting the natural oils build up, and take the hit from the dye. It won’t look nor feel good, but trust our research – this does work, and protects your hair.


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