As colorists, birthing the perfect blonde means a seamless bleach application and no sign of banding. If you struggle to avoid “hot roots,” follow the bleach application tips ahead, courtesy of blonde expert and extension specialist Olivia Smalley (aka OMG Artistry). Plus, find out Olivia’s favorite bleaching tools for getting the band-free job done beautifully.
How to Avoid Bleach Banding
I always have my clients come in every four to five weeks for a bleach retouch. If they wait any longer than five weeks, their service changes from a simple root touch-up to a color correction. This is because when they have too much new growth, you can create “hot roots” due to the heat of your client’s head causing the hair closest to the root to process quicker than the rest. Banding is a common result. If you have a client with more regrowth, begin application farther from the head and then apply closest to the root to ensure even lift.
Pat the Product
Accidentally overlapping is a big no-no. I myself was guilty of this myself until I realized I was creating unnecessary damage to my client’s hair. The best way to avoid overlapping lightener is to pat the product on instead of dragging/painting it on. Work in small sections and don’t be afraid to take your time.
Bleach consistency is key when it comes to foiling and will help you avoid bleach banding. You want to make sure you have a smooth and even consistency that is not too runny or thick. Bleach with a thinner viscosity will cause your foils to lose tension. A mixture too thick can expand out of the foil and create bleeding.
My Colortrak tools are the best for bleach applications. I always use my feather bristle brush with a metal rat tail end because it’s perfect for creating small sections to work with.
I clean all my tools by first removing any product with just soap and water. For disinfection, I soak anything that came into contact with a client’s skin in Barbicide for a minimum of 10 minutes.