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Bye-Bye Box Dye: Here’s How the Experts Remove At-Home Color

Switching up your own shade always sounds like a good idea in theory. But in practice…there are ups and downs. Bad round of box dye? At-home color gone awry? While DIY dye issues may seem like the end of the world, there’s no need to fear. We sat down with Vancouver-based colorist Tammy Chan and Unlistd’s Kelsey Boisvert to find out how experts tackle box dye hair color removal at home. Read on to find out what you can do at home (and what you can ask for in-salon) to banish bad box dye.

Ways to Get Box Dye Out of Hair

Try a Clarifying Shampoo

“The safest and gentlest way to go is using clarifying shampoo and leave it in for around 15 to 20 minutes,” Tammy suggests, a treatment that can be repeated a few times. She recommends following up with a repairing hair mask like Olaplex No. 8 or Wella Fusionplex to combat any dryness that might result from this method.

Consider Scheduling a Salon Appointment

As always, when it comes to color-related services, a salon appointment might be the surest way to get the results you want. “I wouldn’t suggest trying to get box dye out of your hair at home because you’ll need to use bleach and/or colour remover and if your hair is layered with box dye you’ll more likely than not end up with banding and unevenness,” Boisvert explains. “I always do a test strand with bleach and/or colour remover to see how much pigment will lift out of the hair and to check the hair’s integrity,” she says. “Once we see the results of the test strand, typically I’ll go in with fine sections and bleach in foils to maximize lift and evenness.”

Use a Color-Removing Product

Using a color removal product prior to bleaching is another option our experts gravitate towards. “I try to use the forgiving form of colour removal before reaching for bleach in colour corrective services,” Tammy says. “Malibu C CPR is a vegan pigment remover that can remove up to three levels of colour without shifting the base of the hair.” Products like this are ideal for clients with darker bases so as not to lift or change their natural hair color. “For very dark box dye colour corrections, I use bleach but don’t reach for anything over 20 volume so as not to compromise the hair further,” Tammy further explains.

Products We Love for Box Dye Removal

1. Malibu C CPR

$18.50 at Walmart.com

Both of our experts recommend this color removal product for stylist in-salon use. This vegan pigment remover is an excellent alternative to bleach, removing up to three levels of color while keeping your natural shade in tact. We want to stress that you shouldn’t use this on yourself at home, unless you’re a hairstylist yourself.

(Image Source: Walmart.com)

2. BlondMe All Blondes Detox Shampoo

$19 at Amazon.com

“This formula is gentle but effective in brightening existing colour,” Tammy says.

BlondMe All Blondes Detox Shampoo | Mane Addicts

(Image Source: Amazon.com)

3. Pulp Riot Cream Bleach

$27.50 at Walmart.com

Another great option for stylists who deal with in-salon color removal. “[M]y go to bleach would be Pulp Riot’s cream bleach for its consistency along with strength,” Boisvert says. She likes to use this product alongside Olaplex’s and “the Redken Acidic Protein Amino Concentrate to keep the hair’s integrity.”

(Image Source: Walmart.com)

4. Ouai Detox Shampoo

$30 at Sephora.com

Simple, elegant hair care power’s Ouai’s cult-famous line. This clarifying shampoo does what is promises—detoxes those strands with apple cider vinegar while keratin helps strengthen hair.

(Image Source: Sephora.com)

Now that you know the secrets of removing box dye for your hair, it’s only fair we tell you how to do it correctly. An expert explains how to properly box dye your hair HERE!



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