How to Dilute Hair Dye?

Need to make your boxed hair dye lighter but don’t know how to do it correctly? Relax and sit back, we will provide you with a full guide!

Written by Kate Holmsy. Updated on How to Dilute Hair Dye

Dyeing your hair may only seem to be an easy procedure! Perhaps, those who have never done this before think that you only need to mix all the components that come in a box of dye, and then apply the mixture onto your hair and wait until the color comes out. Well, basically, it is like this.

But the reality is that you need to be aware of quite a few nuances and additional factors that may influence the final result of the coloring process!

And the most frequently asked question that the hair dyeing newbies ask is how to dilute box hair dye. Additionally, there comes a whole bunch of other inquiries, such as “Is it necessary at all?” and “What are the benefits of diluting my hair dye?”.

So today we decided to make it clear once and for all! In this article, you will find the answers to all the questions you have regarding the topic.

We will tell you how to dilute your hair dye, whether or not it is mandatory, and also, you will learn about several alternative methods of how to do it correctly.

And in addition, we will provide you, our charming ladies, with a few handy tips that will help to make the most out of such a simple procedure as hair dyeing! So stay with us and enjoy!

How to Dilute Hair Dye to Make It Lighter

Imagine you want to change the color of your hair and you finally find and buy the box dye that matches your wish perfectly…except for one tiny nuance.

The color seems to be a bit too dark/bright! What shall you do in this case? Apply the dye as it is and then wait for God knows how long until the pigment fades? Of course not! The easiest and the quickest way you can do it is by diluting the dye you have.

But here is where you stumble upon the next question: how to dilute my hair dye without a conditioner? Why not use a conditioner, you may wonder?

See, if you skip the conditioner, the whole process is going to be way more straightforward. Moreover, instead of a conditioner, you can use plenty of other products for making your hair dye lighter! For example, you can make use of the following most frequently used ones:

  • shampoo
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • hair oil
  • color developer

However, it is important to consider that, depending on which one you choose, the procedure of diluting may vary, and sometimes it may vary quite significantly.

So in order to teach you the right things, we are going to explain in detail what you should do in each case when using these substitutes for hair dye dilution.

How to Dilute Hair Dye to Make It Lighter
Credits: alenkadr, via

Dilute It With Shampoo

To achieve the best results when using this method, you will need a white shampoo to do it well. We would recommend you avoid colored shampoos though, as this can lead to all manner of unforeseeable crazy results!

Diluting the hair color with shampoo creates a loosely known shampoo (for example, DIY toner). Although the violet hair color is generally used in most commercial shampoos.

However, it is entirely based on your target color to mix the amount of shampoo and hair dye needed for your mixture. And usually it does not matter whether you mix for a single application or for multiple applications.

Shampoos of toning are used to last longer for your hair. You use that to make your hair brighter and to make your color look dynamic. This is not to dye your hair from scratch.

Dilute It With Shampoo (2)
Credits: Denisfilm, via

For diluting a dye with a shampoo, you will first need to prepare the following tools and materials:

  • A color tube that is matching your hair
  • White standard shampoo
  • A bottle or a bowl
  • Gloves

The whole procedure will take you very little time. You will just have to take several easy actions.

  1. Fill the empty bowl or a bottle you have with the white shampoo until it is half full. Then, add a half hair dye tube.
  2. Shake until the dye and the shampoo are thoroughly mixed.

This method can be used for making your current hair color last longer several times a week. It will depend on the color of your hair and the frequency with which you dye your locks.

However, we would like to admit that this toning shampoo is not suitable for daily use, so you’d better apply it every time you wash your mane.

Dilute It With Shampoo
Credits: cottonbro, via

Use Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is another, rather effective option for those who need to dilute their hair dye in order to get a desired color. To do it safely and correctly, follow the next steps:

  • Buy a hair coloring kit that contains hydrogen peroxide
  • Mix the coloring carefully with hydrogen peroxide until you reach the proper consistency
  • Make sure that the mixture is not too light or too thick!
  • Follow the kit instructions, or dye your hair as you like

When working with hydrogen peroxide, avoid getting in direct contact with it too much, especially with your bare skin! Otherwise, you can get it damaged.

Cotton Candy Pink bob | HOW TO: Dilute pink hair dyeCotton Candy Pink bob | HOW TO: Dilute pink hair dye

Make Use Of Hair Oil

If you decide to stick to this option, keep in mind that you should always make use of the pure natural oil. If you use a different oil, you put it at the high risk of containing silicones or even chemicals that can react negatively with your colored hair dye.

Another advantage of this product is that your hair oil protects your locks against dry post-coloring.

Now that you have learned how to dilute your hair dye without using a hair conditioner, we would like to explain what you should do in case you decide to use the conditioner no matter what. Like this, you will have a complete list of possible options to choose from.

Make Use Of Hair Oil
Credits: robertprzybysz, via

How to Dilute Permanent Hair Dye Using a Conditioner?

To be precise, if you want to know how to dilute a permanent boxed hair dye with the use of conditioner, you need to take into account that you will also need a developer for that. But since the majority of commercial boxed hair dyes already contain both a conditioner and a developer, you will have everything you need after just buying a box of dye which color suits your wish and purpose.

So what will you need in order to undergo this procedure correctly?

  • A hair dye kit
  • A developer form that hair dye kit
  • Your go-to conditioner
  • A plastic bowl and a spoon for mixing the substance
  • One pair of reusable latex gloves

The procedure itself is very easy and it will not take you much time.
Start with adding the developer to the hair dye according to the instructions on your hair dye kit.

Then, combine the two ingredients together and mix them well.

Now, add your conditioner to the mixture, and repeat the stirring process to mix all the components evenly. Once ready, apply the mixture onto your hair as usual and just let it settle for up to half an hour, but not less than twenty minutes.

This method will help you to create a diluted hair dye solution while still maintaining a shade of hair color you desire.

How to Dilute Permanent Hair Dye Using a Conditioner
Credits: 279photo, via

Extra Tips And Tricks When Diluting Your Hair Dye

Now that you already know how to dilute permanent hair dye to make it lighter, and you have learned several different methods of doing it, you might think that there is nothing left to know about. However, this is not quite true!

In such a complex process as hair dyeing, there are always some hidden and minor nuances that most of us usually skip and pass by. But those nuances often tend to play the same important role as the key moments of the dyeing process!

So below we would like to share a few tips with you that will help you to dilute your hair color the best possible way!

Extra Tips And Tricks When Diluting Your Hair Dye
Credits: skynesher, via

Remember to Do a Patch Test

If you want to try a new hair dye kit and have never used a specific brand before, we strongly recommend that you apply a patch test first before you proceed with applying the dye onto the tresses!

First of all, it is needed for checking whether you have any allergic reactions to the dye.

If you are allergic to the brand, it is easy to tell. Another advantage is that it allows you to see if the new shade will work for your skin tone.

Remember to Do a Patch Test
Credits: puhhha, via

Dilute the Dye Using Water In Order to Make the Color Lighter

This may sound like crazy, but it works! The color of your hair will not dilute or lighten the water (which is what most of us are so afraid of).

Many people may think that the dye normally paints the water, but it is not. Because of the production of hair dyes, they do not chemically react to water.

So it won’t become lighter, regardless of how much water you add to the hair dye. At worst you will have to make a further purchase of your hair dye.

Dilute the Dye Using Water In Order to Make the Color Lighter
Credits: danielgonzalezphotographer, via

Use Toothbrush to Achieve Highlights

This toothbrush trick is for you if you want to do it in an effortless way. Apply the hair dye simply with a toothbrush on small parts of your hair.

The toothbrush bristles contribute to the application of a delicate color and ensure an even application!

Use Toothbrush to Achieve Highlights
Credits: RobertoDavid, via

Dilute Your Hair Dye With Hair Oil If You Have Dry Hair

Hair oil prevents hair dryness greatly. So if you already have hair that is prone to dryness, or you just want to make sure that your locks will not get too dry after being dyed, stick to the hair oil for diluting the color.

Well, now you are aware of each and every nuance and aspect regarding such a thrilling question as diluting your hair dye for coloring the strands!

We tried to do our best to provide you with all the possible information on this subject.

You have learned how to dilute the box kit hair dye using several different methods (with shampoo, hydrogen peroxide, and more), and also, we have shared a few more secret tricks with you regarding the dilution process.

With all that in mind, you are now well aware of what can be done and what is better to be avoided when you decide to make your hair dye thinner. Use our guide wisely, and may your locks be shiny and smooth!

Frequently Asked Questions

⭐ How to dilute semi permanent hair dye?

Try using conditioner or plain water.

⭐ How does diluting the dye contribute to healthy hair?

Diluting makes the pigment less concentrated and thus less harmful for the hair.

⭐ Can I mix bleach and hair dye to lighten it?

Never combine these two since bleach wil strip the new pigment off!

Written by
Kate worked in "The Fashion Magazine" for four years as a freelance writer and loved to consult and help people with their style. How to create your own style, how to look beautiful, and select trendy colors for your hair - these are just a few of many issues Kate will happily explain in Beezzly Beauty blogs!
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here.
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