DIY: How to Lighten a "Too Dark" Color Job

Bridget Anderson — March 24, 2021

Coloring your hair - be it at home or in a salon - can be tricky. What happens if you absolutely hate the color? What happens if you accidentally end up with brightly-colored pink curls when you were going for burgundy? Or what about those brown semi-permanent rinses that look jet black because you left it on too long? It’s happened to us many times, so we’ve listed three easy ways to strip color without ruining your curls.


1. CASTILE SOAP FOR BOTCHED RINSES: You may have seen dishwashing liquid listed as an easy way to strip color from your hair but the harsh detergents will also severely strip the natural moisture from your hair. We recommend trying castile soap, which is also a natural version of dishwashing liquid. We recommend adding baking soda to this mixture and washing (and rinsing) your hair at least 3 - 4 times.

2. ANTI-DANDRUFF/CLARIFYING SHAMPOO: Anti-dandruff and clarifying shampoos work well to lighten dark colors. If you’ve made a mistake and left your color on too long, either of these shampoos will help remove excess darkness after 3 - 4 washes (and rinses).

3. VITAMIN C POWDER: This is the best botched color fix. Take a tbsp of Vit C powder and mix it with an anti-dandruff shampoo and wash your strands. This powerful mixture helps lighten or subdue even the worst color job.

4. CONDITION LIKE A MANIAC: Because a process like this can dry out curls, you'll need to condition WELL after using any of these mixtures. Your ORS Max Moisture Deep Treatment Conditioner restores moisture with each use!

How do you fix a botched color job?