Ask an Expert: How Do I Get My Natural Hair Color Back?

Augusta Falletta

brunette hair

When you work in the beauty industry, it pretty much comes with the job description to be bombarded with beauty questions on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis from friends and family. Since we are lucky enough to work with a bevy of experts who drop excellent tips on us without blinking an eye we figured it was due time to share them with the rest of you. With Ask an Expert, we’ll be reaching out to some of our favorite pros in the industry with the beauty questions that you send in via social media (with the hashtag #BeautyHelp). So please, send in your critical beauty questions and we’ll get them answered for you!

Sometimes, we get so caught up in dyeing, bleaching and highlighting our hair that we lose sight of what we really want. Whether you just started coloring your hair or you’ve been playing with hair colors for years and years, sometimes, all we want is to go back to our natural hair color. Considering that process is a little difficult — and most of us know exactly what that’s like — it helps when you’ve got a professional’s advice. Below, hairstylist Michael Dueñas explains how to go through the process and make it out alive.

MORE: 10 Things No One Ever Tells You About: Coloring Your Hair

Q: I want to go back to my natural mousey brown color and I’m dark brown at the moment. What way would you do this at the salon? – @Iamjesshughes

A: To get back to your natural color, you have to lift the artificial color out of your hair, so I’d recommend a bleach wash. A bleach wash is traditionally done with a low peroxide and hair bleach mixed with shampoo.  You gently wash the hair and it will cause a slight lift in the hair color. It’s gentler than any other way to get the color out of your hair, unless you can get your hands on a color remover (but they are few and far between). A color remover shrinks the artificial color molecule down and allows you to wash most of it out of your hair.  Once your hair is to the same level or lightness or darkness of your natural hair, a toner should be deposited.  A toner neutralizes any unwanted tones in the hair, such as, red, orange, gold and so on.  Use the opposite color of what the hair lifted too, to achieve a neutral tone.  You can they play with the color to make it mousy if your natural color has that natural mousy hue to it as well. – Michael Dueñas, Celebrity Hairstylist and CEO of Hair Room Service

Image via Istock


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