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I often get asked how to remove direct dyes from the hair (for example Kenra Creative Blue or Teal). While lighteners are great to lift out color and direct dye lifters can do most of the job, sometimes you are still left with a much lighter version of a blue or teal. SO…. how do you tone that out?
Have you ever heard of “browning out” the color? It’s when you take the complimentary color you are trying to remove and brown it out to make a neutral shade. Let me show you.
Let’s start out by coloring level 9 hair swatches with blue and teal. 20 minutes later, you have pretty, vibrant blue and teal.
Now that your hair is blue or teal, and you want to remove it, we have the option to use lightener. However, if you use lightener over blue, you will get a very light blue. Toning out light blue can be rather difficult, don’t you think? I’d much rather lighten hair that pulls warm or neutral because it is much easier to tone or color into the desired shade. The above picture shows Kenra Color Demi-Permanent applied over the Blue and Teal swatches. I chose demi because it is ammonia free and we are just going for deposit, not lift. I used 5C over Blue and 6R over Teal. Kenra Color Demi is processed for 5 to 25 minutes. The longer you leave it on, the more saturated the end result. Since I was going for max deposit, I left it on for a full 25 minutes.
Now that the hair has been “browned out” It’s time to lift out the color!
I decided to use Kenra Color Transparent Lightener mixed 1:3 with it’s dedicated Transparent Activator. What I love about the product is that it not only gives you up to 5 levels of lift, but it is clear! You can see each stage of lift as the product is working. Which makes this an awesome product to use in this scenario. As you can see, the lightener is lifting out both red/copper and blue/teal at the same time giving you a much easier shade to tone.
Here is the after! I left the lightener on for about 20 minutes and this is what it lifted out to! Now don’t you think that blonde swatch looks like a much easier color to work with?