How Do I Dye Black Hair Light Brown?

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Changing your hair color from black to light brown requires you to first lighten your hair with a chemical treatment. Hair can only go two or three shade levels lighter without damage. For light brown hair, you will need to first strip the hair of black and then apply brown hair dye. Stripping the darker color is a potentially damaging process. The dye instructions must be carefully followed.

Hair Condition

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Before you lighten your hair from black to brown, your hair must be in healthy condition. Hair that has been chemically straightened, permed or previously dyed will need at least two weeks after the previous treatment before being lightened. Any chemical altering damages the hair; if you attempt to lighten your hair too soon after a chemical treatment, you risk further damage, including split ends, brittle hair and breakage. You can lessen the impact of the damage to your hair by using moisture-rich shampoos and conditioners, using hot oil treatments that provide vitamin E, and reducing the amount of heat styling you apply to your hair.

Quality vs. Price

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Some hair products are cheaper, but they aren't necessarily a good deal. When using chemicals to change your hair, use a high-quality product to prevent severe damage. Avoid using henna to lighten your hair, as it can alter your hair to an unnatural color if later combined with chemical hair dye. When purchasing an at-home bleaching kit, buy a brand you are familiar with. Purchase a bleaching kit and brown hair dye of the same brand, so you have greater assurance that the chemicals in the products will work properly together.

The Right Color

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Find the right shade of brown that complements your skin tone. Unless you want a dramatic look, the goal is to have a natural-looking hair color. Your hair's pigment will show up when you bleach your hair, so naturally black hair will have an orange pigment when lightened. If you are attempting a warm brown color, bleaching your hair at home is suitable. But if you want light brown hair with cool tones, it is imperative to go to a professional salon instead of trying this task by yourself.

Previously Dyed Hair

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If you previously dyed your hair black and now would like it light brown, you can use a color remover to strip the black from the hair cuticle, followed by applying the light brown hair dye. Color removers are usually harsh on your hair, and you should use a deep conditioner after coloring your hair to avoid damage.