Planning to make a big change by dyeing your hair? If you want to achieve the best color results, especially if you have dark hair, you’ll likely need to bleach it first. The good news is, it’s easy to do at home!
Just remember to be safe and follow the instructions on the product packaging so you can get the results you want rather than ending up with a catastrophic mess. For example, while you can go crazy in experimenting with hair color creams, bleach and developers are a completely different issue.
Read also related articles: How long can you leave 30 volume bleach in your hair?, 1B hair color, soap cap, How to Get Rid of Yellow Hair After Bleaching, and Best Professional Hair Color to Cover Gray Hair Strands.
- What is the right ratio of bleach to developer?
- Tips on how to get the perfect bleached hair
- To Conclude
What is the right ratio of bleach to developer?
It is recommended to maintain a bleach and developer ratio of 2 is to 1, with 1 part bleach and 2 parts developer, which will result in a shampoo-like consistency. This is regardless of whether you are using a 30 volume or 40 volume developer.
The good thing is, when you buy a hair lightener, it will typically come with the right amounts of products that you need, so you just need to mix the bleach and developer properly in order to get a fairly runny mixture that will be fast and easy to apply to your hair. This consistency is also what ensures that the mixture will evenly cover your hair, rather than resulting in patches.
How does developer volume affect the developer-to-bleach ratio?
Again, the ratio of developer and bleach in your hair lightener should always be 2 is to 1, regardless of the developer volume, which is usually 30 volume or 40 volume. The developer volume does not influence the mixture ratio, rather, it affects how light your hair will be after bleaching.
A 30 volume developer can make your hair up to three shades lighter, whereas a 40 volume developer can reach up to four shades.
Why is the developer-to-bleach ratio always the same?
A 2 to 1 ratio of bleach and developer is important since this is what makes the mixture the right creamy consistency, much like when baking a cake- make it too thick and lumpy, or too thin and runny, and it just won’t cook right.
When it comes to bleaching, the mixture should be creamy yet fluid and runny enough that it’s easy to apply and will spread evenly. Think hair conditioner. This consistency will give you more time to work on your hair while also making the application process faster and more accurate.
Should you make the mixture thicker?
Unless you are experienced in bleaching hair, always stick to the recommended mixture ratio. The only time you can change up the ratio and make it thicker is when working over a small area, like a dark regrowth, or when doing a balayage, like highlights.
In this case, you’ll need to mix one part bleach and one part developer. The resulting mixture should be creamy but not drippy. Make sure to mix it with the color brush until it has a smooth gravy-like consistency.
Tips on how to get the perfect bleached hair
Bleaching hair is hard, but not impossible. Armed with the right techniques, tips, and tricks, you can achieve perfect bleached hair by yourself right in the comforts of your home.
First things first, it’s important to remember that bleaching is a dangerous chemical process that can damage your hair, especially if you’re not careful. It’s a must that you make sure to not leave the bleach in your hair any minute longer than the indicated length of time (usually 20 minutes) so as not to damage your hair. Better yet, check your hair every 5 minutes.
Here are other tips you can follow:
- Use plastic utensils for preparing and mixing -these are usually included in the package, such as the Manic Panic Flash Lightning bleaching kit
- White bleach powder is better for blonde hair, while blue bleach is better for dark hair
- Medium to long hair needs twice the amount of the bleach and developer mixture, but still in the same ratio
- Dispose of any leftover mixture as it is toxic and won’t work in bleaching your hair 20 minutes after mixing
- Moisturize your hair with coconut oil to minimize damage and breakage (you can do this after bleaching, or during, by adding a few drops of coconut oil into the mixture)
- You can also use a purple shampoo and conditioner, or a hair moisturizing cream
How to use a 30 volume developer
If you want to achieve a somewhat lighter color on your natural dark hair, or if you want to lighten blonde hair, you can use a 30 volume developer to make your hair three shades lighter. Simply apply the bleach and developer mixture to your hair and leave it on for a maximum of 20 minutes.
If 20 minutes have gone by and your hair is still not as light as you’d like it to be, don’t leave the bleach in for longer. Wash it off, prepare another mixture, and reapply. Better yet, look for other alternatives. Otherwise, you risk permanent hair damage.
You can also try to start with a 20 volume developer especially if you’re only working on regrowths or do not want a drastic color lift.
How to use a 40 volume developer
A 40 volume developer should not be used if you are not experienced in hair bleaching and coloring. It can result in drastic color changes, and more importantly, can negatively affect your hair’s structural integrity and cause serious damage.
That said, it can lighten your hair for up to four shades, making it ideal for those with dark hair and who want to achieve a very light hair color.
When using a 40 volume developer, it’s important to be attentive to your hair throughout the entire process. Check every 5 minutes to see if you’ve already achieved your desired lightness, at which point you can wash off the bleach. Make sure to moisturize your hair afterwards.
To recap, what is the ratio of bleach to developer? It’s always 2 to 1, no matter what developer you are using. Do make sure to use a good quality bleach and a 20 to 30 volume developer, unless you are experienced in coloring hair.
A 20 volume developer should be enough for working on regrowth as it can lift hair up to two levels, while a 30 volume developer is best for the entire hair length. The bleach should ideally lift your hair to a pale yellow. If you see any orange or brassiness, you need to reapply bleach.
To prevent this from happening in the first place, however, make sure your bleach mixture has the right consistency, and apply it first on the darkest and brassiest parts of your hair.
Sources: Hair coloring