Bleaching; How to

Jelly.ViJelly.Vi Posts: 103Registered Users
So Before anything, i'd like to say im NOT a professional, and by no means take any resposibility to any wild crazy mess you make with your hair. This is just a sort of 'guideline'. Im but a mere teenager who's been dying and bleaching her hair for the past 2 years. And this is just some of the useful info ive gathered. My aunt who has been a stylist for 10+ years, and works with the kinky curlies up in new jersey also gave me some of the advice stated beelow.

Once again, IM AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL, THESE ARE GUIDELINES. Do's and dont's, as well as personal experience. Change as needed, if you have anything useful to add, please post below, and ill add it to the list(:

Anyways, a few things about bleaching:
Bleaching strips the hair of colors, while dyes put the color in the cuticle. When i think of bleach, i think of sulfate shampoo. Its like sulfates on steroids. It blows holes into your cuticle, makes it dry, frizzy. Its SO stripping that it even sucks the color out of your hair. Super sulfate. So really think about it, before playing around. I think thats a pretty good analogy :D

Before, During, And After:

Like there was no tmrw! Your hair should be in the best possible shape you can get it! PT if it needs it. DT like there was no tmrw guys. Cant put enough emphasis on this. If your hair is an inch away from snapping/breaking off, and you stick bleach on it, you might as well wave byebye!

During: A lot of people use a protein filler before processing. It helps fill in any existing 'holes' to make absorption even, and help protect the hair. Here's the one i use:,default,pd.html?cgid=Hair05-07

After youve done the protein filler, youre ready to add the bleach! Which brand? What volume developer?

Here's where auntie dearest came in.

Developer comes in 10, 20, 30, and 40. 10 being the weakest and least 'lifting' and 40 being ther strongest and more 'powerful' developer.

Note: I'd suggest using a lighter vol on your roots, than you use on your lengths, because your roots develope faster. Try using the next lightest, or even the one after. Example:30 on length 20 on roots.

Personal experience: i had vol 40 on my lengths for about 30-40min (light blonde dye not bleach, more info below), and put vol 30 on my roots to begin processing, and within 15-20minutes, my roots had caught up, and were actually even lighter than my lengths!

I suggest, from personal experience, as well as reviews online:,default,sc.html?prefn1=brand&prefv1=ION for lightening. Ion color brilliance poweder lightener + sensitive scalp developers. Check it out!

Most dark haired (black/dark browns) who want to bleach their hair to a light blonde do it gradually. I reccommend this for anyone and everyone. Its safer and not as extreme. I suggest the highest developer you use if youre light brown to black, is 30. You may or may not get to blonde on your first try. In which cause you should do gradual bleaching. I do not suggest bleaching with vol 40 for anyone, even with those with jet black hair. Its extremely damaging. Gradual bleaching is safer, but does take more time. If you wanna go for 40, go ahead, but dont say i didnt warn you. For lightening with a color (lightblonde) its more leniant using vol 40. Youve been warned!

Moving on...Gradual bleaching is exactly what it sounds like. If you have dark hair, and want to get to light blonde, and dont want to do it in one go, or the first procesing doesnt get the results you wanted, heres what i suggest.

Use a developer 30 this will lighten your hair some, (but obviously not as much as 40 vol.) After bleaching, let your hair/scalp recover. Wait 1+ week before rebleaching. More if you'd like. Apply PTs Dts, ect. Recondition your hair, make it as healthly as possible before your next bleaching, remember, after any processing, your hair will need lots of tlc! After youre ready, apply the 20/30 again. If you STILL havent gotten the result you want, just keep the gradual bleaching up til youre there. Make sure you do in bewtween treating to your hair to prevent it from over processing.

Now that you have to background, here's the 'steps'.
Prep: I suggest you read any and all instructions first. Do a strand test to make sure you dont have a bad reaction. Get your materials together. USE GLOVES! DUH! I suggest buying some cheap clips al sally's. Divide your hair into small detangled sections to make application faster (that way your hair develops at the same pace). i usually do 6-8 sections, my hair's above the shoulder. Make sure you do this in a well ventilated area. Try not to get it on your clothes! (obvious reason). ANYWAYS,

1. Apple protein filler as advised on bottle(optional and recommended)
2. Mix your Powder/Developer. (In a well ventilated area)
3. Starting from the back(nape) of your head apply 1-1 1/2 inch AWAY FROM THE ROOTS, through the lengths. Go as quickly as you can, without making a mess of it. If you take your sweet arse time, your hair will develope at a different pace all around, and you may end up with different shades.
3. Place a plastic cap around your head, and go about your business, MAKE SURE YOURE KEEPING TIME!
4. After about 30-45 minutes start applying your lower vol developer on your roots. Put your cap back on. After youve done that, i suggest you keep a good eye on your hair. checking it every few minutes (3-5). You'd be suprised how fast your roots develop!
5. Once youre satisfied with the roots catching up to your lengths, rinse out! If youre not satisfied, but youve reached 60 minutes, RINSE OUT! I do not suggest, you process your hair over 60 minutes at a time. If youre not satisfied then do gradual bleach! If its burning way too bad, RINSE OUT! do not 'bleed it out, to get things a bit lighter' 5 more minutes is NOT okay. There'll be other opportunities.
6. Wash hair with a ph balanced shampoo. Or another cleanser. Make sure its all out. I suggest you get right to rebuilding your hair asap. Start PT and DTing your bum off that very day. condition!
7. If youre satisfied (or have done gradual bleaching and are satisfied) but theres a brassy/orange tone to your hair, you use a toner. This clears out those underlying 'dyes' and helps get an even color.

'Neutral/white/gray' toners have been known to leave your hair gray. Wella color charm(ivory lady) and Shimmer lights(shampoo and condish) are suggested .

The conditioner is 'cone free as far as i can tell, but the shampoo has sulfates. <wella toner, comes in different shades, ivory lady is suggested, with vol 20 developer.

Very important: MAKE SURE YOU DONT PROCESS YOUR HAIR MORE THAN 60 MINUTES WITH BLEACH/TONER/COLOR. If youre planning on going lighter, or reprocessing, wait a week or 2 in between to let your scalp calm down, as well as treating your hair.

Still not sure about bleaching? You can use hair dye to lighten also (ive done this once, it works) However, colored dyes deposit color, whereas bleach strips. ( or so ive been told) Go to sally's pick out a light/platinum hair COLOR, and do the same thing as the above, following the developer vol guidelines. Apply as stated above :P It might be the same thing, but idk. It works though, so if youre more comfortable using a blonde color, instead of bleach, thats what i suggest.

Remember that after any process, you should treat your hair. You know what your hair likes/needs, and what it best reacts to. CONDITIONCONDITIONCONDITION.

Here are some great bleaching videos:
(i suggest being a bit more careful than last link.. she just slapped it on there root to ends, notice her white roots)

Enjoy your bleached hair ladies! Its great for trying 'unnatural colors'. I suggest manic panic. Which is semi permanent, so you can keep rotating with the colors! never boring, and dont have to process with harsh chemicals everytime you wanna change dye. Theyre vegan, and contain no harsh chemicals. Theyre also reusable. (:

If you wanna add anything, post below! Happy hair bleaching.
and remember, CONDITION!

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