How to Get Rid of Orange Hair After Bleaching

Discovering that your latest bleaching endeavor has left you with unexpected orange tones in your hair can be disheartening, to say the least. This common phenomenon stems from the underlying pigments that become prominent once the top layer of color is stripped away during the bleaching process. If you find yourself facing this unexpected shade of sunset, fret not.

This guide promises not only to explain the reasons behind the orange undertones but also to reassure you that this hair hiccup is not only common but comes with a variety of effective solutions. Whether you’re tackling this for the first time or looking for more insights, you’re in the right place to transform those brassy tones back to your desired shade.

Understanding Why Your Hair Turned Orange

When you bleach your hair, the goal is often a lighter, brighter shade, but sometimes the result is an unexpected orange tint. This occurs because of the underlying pigments in your hair. Everyone’s hair contains melanin, which is responsible for giving your hair (and skin) its color.

There are two types of melanin in hair: eumelanin (which can be black or brown) and pheomelanin (which is red or yellow).

Bleach works by removing the color from your hair through a process called oxidation. It strips away the darker eumelanin, but if not left on long enough or if your hair is particularly rich in pheomelanin, the result can be that surprising orange or brassy hue. This is because the bleach has removed the darker pigment, but the yellow-orange pheomelanin remains, revealing the warm tones underneath.

Understanding this process is the first step towards correcting that unwanted brassiness and achieving your desired hair color.

Immediate Solutions

Toning Shampoos

One of the first and most accessible solutions to counteract orange tones in your hair post-bleaching is reaching for a toning shampoo. Toning shampoos, particularly those in hues of blue and purple, are specifically designed to neutralize unwanted warmth in bleached hair. How do they work, you might wonder? It all lies in the color wheel.

Blue and purple are directly opposite orange and yellow tones, meaning they effectively counterbalance each other. When you wash your hair with a blue or purple toning shampoo, these pigments mildly deposit onto the hair fibers, canceling out orange and yellow shades. The result? A cooler, more ashen tone that brings you closer to your desired hair color.

These shampoos are a fantastic immediate solution for those looking to correct brassy tones gently, making them an essential staple in the bathroom cabinet of anyone loving their blonde or bleached hair.


Another critical step in correcting orange tones post-bleaching involves the use of hair toners. Toners are semi-permanent dyes designed to neutralize unwanted colors by adding cool tones back into the hair. The beauty of using a toner lies in its ability to finely tune your hair to the precise shade you’re aiming for.

Whether you’re looking for an icy blonde, a soft ash, or simply a natural-looking highlight effect free from brassy undertones, toners can achieve this. They work on a principle similar to toning shampoos but offer a more lasting and targeted solution, making them perfect for anyone looking to get rid of orange hues decisively.

By carefully selecting a toner with the right base color, you can effectively counteract the orange and ensure your hair color looks fresh, vibrant, and exactly as you desire.

Box Dye Fixes

Turning to box dyes can be a tempting quick fix for those undesired orange tones after bleaching, but it’s crucial to proceed with caution. While box dyes offer a convenient and cost-effective solution, selecting the right shade and formula to correct your color without causing further damage or undesired hues entails a meticulous process.

First and foremost, when choosing a box dye, aim for a color that’s one shade lighter than your desired outcome. Box dyes tend to develop darker than they appear on the packaging, and this approach helps mitigate the risk of ending up with hair that’s too dark.

Secondly, opt for dyes labeled as “ash” tones, as these contain green or blue undertones that can effectively neutralize the brassy, orange tones in your hair. However, a word of caution—overuse of box dyes can lead to hair damage over time.

Thus, if you’re not confident in your hair coloring skills, or if your hair is already compromised, it might be wiser to consult a professional. Remember, the goal is to restore your hair’s vibrancy and health, not compromise it further.

Salon Treatments

For those grappling with more severe cases of orange or brassy tones after bleaching, professional salon treatments stand out as the gold standard for correction. These professional solutions, which include advanced toning, color correction, and even Olaplex treatments to repair bleach-damaged hair, go beyond what home remedies can achieve.

Consulting with a professional hairstylist is crucial; they possess the expertise and experience to assess the health of your hair and recommend a tailored solution that targets your specific needs. A stylist can mix custom toners to precisely neutralize unwanted tones, ensuring your hair not only reaches the desired shade but also maintains its health and integrity. The importance of this professional assessment cannot be overstated; it’s the difference between risking further damage with a DIY approach and achieving your hair color goals safely and effectively.

Salon treatments offer a blend of immediate results and long-term care, making them an invaluable option for those in need of drastic correction.

Preventing Orange Hair in Future Bleaching Sessions

To prevent the unwelcome surprise of orange hair in future bleaching sessions, a strategic approach to pre-bleaching care, coupled with careful selection of materials and timing, is essential. Pre-bleaching care is paramount; ensuring your hair is in optimal condition before the process can significantly reduce the risk of undesirable outcomes. This includes regular conditioning treatments to strengthen your hair, avoiding harsh chemicals or heat styling in the weeks leading up to bleaching, and ensuring your hair is properly hydrated.

The importance of using quality bleach and developer cannot be overstated—opt for high-grade products, even if they come at a higher price point, as they are formulated to minimize damage and promote even lifting of your hair’s natural pigment. Equally crucial is the right timing and conducting a strand test before full application; this not only helps you gauge how your hair reacts to the bleach but also allows you to determine the precise amount of time needed to achieve your desired level of lightness without veering into brassy territory.

By adhering to these guidelines, you’re far more likely to enjoy a successful bleaching experience that brings you closer to your desired hair color while maintaining the health and integrity of your locks.

Natural and Home Remedies

For those inclined towards a more natural approach or seeking slight adjustments to their hair color, exploring natural and home remedies can be a viable option. Common kitchen ingredients such as apple cider vinegar, which can enhance the brightness and shine of your hair, or lemon juice, known for its subtle lightening effects under sun exposure, offer gentle ways to tweak your hair color.

However, it’s crucial to understand when to use and not to use these home remedies. Natural solutions are best suited for minor color adjustments and enhancing the health of your hair. They provide a subtle, gradual effect rather than drastic changes.

On the other hand, for significant color corrections or dealing with extensive brassiness, these remedies may fall short.

In such cases, professional advice and treatments are recommended to achieve the desired outcome without risking further damage to your hair. Always consider the condition of your hair and the extent of the change you’re aiming for before deciding on a home remedy route.


In conclusion, navigating the challenge of removing orange tones from bleached hair requires a measured approach, whether you choose to tackle it at home or opt for professional help. We’ve explored various solutions, from the precision of toner applications and the cautious use of box dyes to the expert care offered by salon treatments.

For those facing severe brassiness or seeking significant color correction, consulting with a professional hairstylist can ensure not only the achievement of your desired hair color but also the maintenance of your hair’s health. On the flip side, minor adjustments can often be managed with home remedies, provided they are executed with care and consideration of your hair’s condition.

Remember, whether stepping into a salon or navigating the course at home, the goal is vibrant, healthy hair that reflects your true self.

Now, we’d love to hear from you! Have you battled the dreaded orange hair after a bleaching session? What worked for you, and what didn’t? Share your experiences, tips, and any questions you have in the comments section below. Your insights could be the very thing someone else needs to read right now to solve their hair dilemma.

Whether it’s a DIY fix that got you through or a professional treatment that saved the day, your contribution is invaluable to our community. Join the conversation and help others regain their confidence and achieve their desired hair color.

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