DIY Dye? Avoid Hair Coloring Disasters At Home With These 7 Tips From The Pros

DIY Dye? Avoid Hair Coloring Disasters At Home With These 7 Tips From The Pros
Image by @valuavitaly / Freepik

This community quarantine somehow turned people into bakers, gardeners, and business owners. For some, the lockdown just made them want to color their hair. In fact, a survey conducted by OnePoll and Garnier revealed that during the quarantine, one in three women have dyed their hair for the first time at home, and most of them turned to the Internet for instructions.

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"There was a lot of DIY fun colors happing in 2020 since everyone was pretty much stuck at home. Silver-blonde, teal, and a lot of pink were a few of my top favorites," says celebrity hair colorist Nikki Lee.

There is a lot of content on YouTube and Instagram about hair tutorials, but how do we know if we are just setting ourselves up for a quarantine hair disaster? Here, we break down all the tips and tricks of at-home hair coloring by New York City-based hair stylists Brad Mondo and Lauren Grummel.

Tip #1: Assess your hair’s current state.

According to Lauren Grummel, generally speaking, it is safe to color your hair at home. However, if you are planning to do drastic color changes, like going from black hair to platinum blonde, it is best to consult a professional colorist to avoid damaging your hair.

The most important part of dyeing your hair is being honest with yourself: Can your hair take it? Is it already too dry? What will happen to your hair after you apply all these chemicals?

“It's not safe to color or bleach your hair at home if your hair has been through a lot of processes,” says Lauren, “or if it’s very damaged to begin with. Be honest with yourself—otherwise your hair can break off.” Touching up gray hair or going two shades darker is usually safe, she adds.

Tip #2: Do not wash your hair before you dye it.

Brad Mondo emphasizes the importance of this step. “What you do when you wash your hair is you make tiny little abrasions on your scalp. This is going to make coloring your hair very painful.” You have to be careful especially when using bleach, as it can seep into the tiny cracks in your scalp, and it can “sizzle and burn.”

Brad suggests leaving your hair unwashed for two or more days before coloring or bleaching it.

Tip #3: Brush out your hair and section if off.

“Get all those tangles out before you color your hair,” says Brad. If you do not brush your hair beforehand, you might find weird spots and uneven color after washing it out, so don’t forget to use that brush!

After you have removed all your tangles, section your hair into four. “Part your hair in the middle, all the way back, down to the nape of your neck. And then, go to the apex, and make a section from the apex to behind the ears.” This ensures that the hair color will be applied evenly.

Here’s a tutorial on how to section your hair by professional hairdresser Madison Reed:

Tip #4: Do your research on hair developers.


The liquids that you mix with bleach or hair dye are called “developers”, and they have different levels, depending on how light you want your hair to be. You can buy 10, 20, 30, or 40 volume developers in stores.

Brad explains that if you are planning to permanently darken your hair, you can use a 10-volume developer as it does not have lightening capabilities. If you just want to cover up gray hair, a 20-volume developer can do the job. However, if you are planning to lighten your naturally dark hair with bleach, you can opt to use a 30- or 40-volume developer. Take note: if you are lightening your hair for the first time, do not use a developer higher than 30 volume!

Tip #5: Do not color your roots first.

Brad explains that you have heat on your scalp. If you color or bleach your roots first, you will have what hairdressers call “hot roots.”

“The root area develops more than your midsection and ends, and it ends up with an orangey warm color because of the heat from your scalp,” says Brad. It’s similar to when using bleach -- if you don’t want your roots to be so much lighter than the rest of your hair, start applying the bleach or dye on your ends.

Tip #6: Rinse your hair with lukewarm water.

“Don’t use cold water to rinse off lightener,” Brad emphasizes. After applying chemicals, cold water shocks your hair and can cause breakage. Lukewarm water is best when rinsing off the dye, and don’t even think about scrubbing your scalp either! Your hair and scalp are very fragile, so it is best to be gentle.

Tip #7: Take care of your hair.

Your hair just went through a lot, so the next thing to do is to take proper care of it. Do not wash your freshly colored hair for 72 hours, and make sure to use sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner to avoid damage.

If you want the full Brad Mondo hair color lesson, watch his YouTube video here:

Where can I buy hair coloring products?

Ready to color your hair? You can buy them online!

  1. Bleach: Shine Moist Bleach Powder


    Add to cart for Php 287.65 on Lazada.

  2. Developer: SPH Manila Set


    Add to cart for Php 110 on Shopee.

  3. Hair dye: SPH Manila Luna Colors


    Add to cart for Php 170 on Shopee.

  4. Purple shampoo: L’Oreal Serie Expert (to neutralize hair brassiness)


    Add to cart for Php 555 on Shopee.

  5. Conditioner: Human Nature Moisturizing Conditioner


    Add to cart for Php 175 on Shopee.

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