How can I lighten my roots?

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Basically I'm a natural blonde but I used to bleach my hair to make it more blonde. I stopped bleaching it and changed to a normal blonde hair dye, but now when I just touch up my roots they go ginger and it's different to the rest of my hair.

My hair is now slightly darker than bleach from using normal hair dye, which I like, but I wondered if I could add a little bleach powder to the hair dye to make my roots a little bit lighter?

I have tried the lightest blonde and they still go ginger.

Please help!

Anon, UK

Hi Anon UK,

If you want less ginger tone to your roots, try using a more ashy, slightly more silver-blonde, then applying a toner like Luocolour P01 or P02 to counteract any remaining gingery warmth. It's always best to do it in a salon though.

Hope that helps!

Alice Gazagnes, SWH Team Senior Stylist & Colourist,

Hi Anon UK,

It sounds as if the colour you're putting on the roots isn't quite strong enough to lift your colour the amount you need, causing it to be warmer than you're aiming for. I'd suggest going to a professional salon to get it done with a 'high-lift tint' because this is stronger than normal tints but not as harsh as bleach.

A good colourist will be able to match the roots to the lengths and ends of the hair to avoid striping or banding, but using a toner or semi-permanent glossing at the end of the service will make absolute sure that you get an even colour all over.

Good luck!

Hannah de Frateschi, SWH Team Stylist & Colourist,


I would never recommend mixing two products together, as they are likely to cause an adverse reaction if they are not designed to be mixed.

The problem you have is that the tint is not lifting as light as you would like - tint will never get the level of lift that bleach can achieve. If you add a bleaching powder to a tint then you are effectively bleaching your hair.

You will need to either go darker all over or back to a blonde to achieve the desired effect. I would strongly recommend that you visit a salon to get the colour required, as with home colouring you cannot personalise the mix to be perfect for your hair type, and it could end in disaster!

Good luck,

Simon Daniel, Salon Director of Belle Toujours, Cardiff

To get rid of the band of colour you could try breaking the overall colour up with some lowlights. The bleached hair is always going to look lighter than the all over colour you are putting on your roots, making it look darker and warmer than the rest.

Leah Butler, Owner of Leah Durrant Hair Salon, Chertsey

Transitioning from bleach to a tint blonde and encountering a 'ginger' hue is a common problem. Bleach removes pigment from the hair, including all the underlying yellow and orange natural pigment that is present. A blonde tint lightens the natural hair, but doesn't remove all these natural elements, but it should neutralise and tone them down.

Use an ash or violet based tint or high lift tint and follow the manufacturers’ instructions, leaving it on for the recommended full development time and using a developer (9-12%) that is best for your hair. 

Never mix bleach powder into the colour mixture, bleach will destroy the action of the pigments and render the tone in the mixture useless creating an unstable cocktail. 

If none of these methods work, maybe you should stick to being a bleach blonde.

John Clark, Head of Colour at Brooks+Brooks, London 

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