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How to Fix a Hair Color Disaster

Don't panic if your dye job was a disaster -- a repair is possible if you take action quickly.


  • Step 1: Consult a hair color professional as soon as possible to fix a hair color disaster if you are unable to remedy it yourself.
  • Step 2: Get a short haircut to remove as much of the hair color disaster as possible if all else fails.
  • Step 3: Avoid future disasters by choosing hair dye within 2 levels of your current color and conducting a test on a strand of hair before applying the dye to your whole head. Using your head when coloring your hair will ensure your crown remains gorgeous.
  • FACT: The chances of your hair graying increase 10 to 20 percent every decade after the age of 30.
  • TIP: Use a hair dryer to speed the process.
  • Step 4: Use a mixture of 1/4 cup of 20-volume peroxide, 1/8 cup of shampoo, and 1/8 cup of water applied to darkest area of color first. Wrap your head in plastic wrap and check every 5 minutes for desired color and shampoo and condition as usual.
  • Step 5: Hasten the fading process by washing the hair with a volume shampoo and hot water. It is not possible to wash out permanent hair color, but washing your hair can make the color fade.
  • Step 6: Use a clarifying shampoo immediately to fix a hair color that is too light or too dark and repeat as needed.
  • TIP: Use a shampoo with UV filters and antioxidants to correct a brassy look.
  • Step 7: Act quickly to fix a hair-color disaster before the color sets. Applying corrective steps within 24 hours will be more likely to be effective.

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