If your hair has been dyed once or has a light color, especially blonde, you might find yourself grappling with the issue of hair turning green.
Sporadic patches of unwanted green tint in your head are unnatural and eye-catching, which can damage your look.
You might notice these green tones become more prominent especially after returning from the pool. So, why does this happen and how can you remedy the situation?
Why Did Your Hair Turn Green?
Swimming Or Showering
For blonde people, swimming can do wonders for the body yet is hard for their hair. Chlorine and copper in the pools or spas react at the same time with hair and turn it green.
It’s not just pools and spas that can turn the hair green; taking showers can also be a threat to blondes. If you shower with hard water, you are likely to end up with greenish hair for the same reason.
However, the green coloration does not manifest itself as much as in the pool, and there is usually a subtle greenish tint that appears pretty slowly with time.
Using Toner Incorrectly
Excessive Exposure Time
In the case you use green toner to get rid of the unwanted tones following the color wheel (reddish tone for example), the exposure time is excessive (longer than 30 minutes), your hair can soak in too many green pigments and eventually turn green.
Wrong ratio of green toner to developer can lead to undesired outcomes, including green tint in hair.
Thus, it is advisable to mix your toner according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Wrong Toner Shade
Another culprit that turns your hair green is incorrect toner choice.
Watch out for any toner that contains blue-green tones in it, such as ash toners. The green tones and your yellow-tinted hair will bring out a subtle or even noticeable green tint for your hair.
The problem of hair turning green might happen if you dye your hair to other cool colors:
Ashy blonde contains green-blue shades which will combine with the yellow tones of your blonde hair to create the green tones.
If you attempt to dye your hair blue, chances are you’ll see a greenish cast or undertone to the hair instead of the pure blue that you’re waiting for. Something went wrong, and the answer lies in the bleaching process.
To achieve the desired blue, you should be quite heavy-handed when it comes to bleaching, and the hair should be anywhere between gray and white.
If any orange or yellow shades are left, the blue hair dye will blend with these colors to bring out the unwelcome green tint.
If you color your bleached hair brown, it’s likely to turn green.
It is because a cool shade of brown has red, yellow, and blue as base colors, while your newly-bleached hair has no red pigments to cancel out the green.
If you bleach an ashy color, chances are the tone resulting from the bleaching is green. It is because the underlying color in the ashy tone is usually blue.
Once you apply the bleaching mixture, the hair will lighten to a yellow tone. The blue pigments in the ashy color and the yellow hair will combine to create the green color.
How To Get Rid Of Green Tones In Ash Hair?
Depending on the cause, there are different solutions to get rid of green tones from hair, for example:
- Swimming Or Showering: Chelating/clarifying shampoo, baking soda and vinegar, ketchup, lemon juice, lemon Kool-aid, aspirin, red shampoo, visit a salon.
- Using Toner Incorrectly: Select red-tone color.
- Dyeing Problem: Ketchup, aspirin, baking soda and vinegar, select red-tone color.
- Bleaching Problem: Baking soda and vinegar, visit salon.
Clarifying shampoo or chelating shampoo could save your strands from the invasion of chlorine. They usually feature ingredients that can get rid of chlorine buildup on your hair.
Using these shampoos is similar to using normal one.
The thing is: Chelating/Clarifying Shampoos are powerful as their formula contains harsh cleansers. Thus, we recommend 4 things for you to remember. They are:
- Only wash your hair with clarifying shampoo or chelating shampoo once per week to minimize dryness and keep track of the hair colors for the best result. For other times, you can alternate with other regular shampoo.
- Let the shampoo sit for a while.
- Rinse thoroughly after each cycle.
- Finish off with a deep conditioner to protect your hair and scalp.
Use Red Shampoo
Since red and green cancel out each other in the color wheel, you could use red shampoo to fix the unwanted green tones in your hair.
You should begin to notice a remarkable change the second or third time you use the shampoo, so don’t be discouraged if the green does not disappear on the first use.
For the best result, it is advisable to keep washing your hair with red shampoo even after touching up the hair with dye.
It depends on the specific brand of shampoo you will be using, but these are the general steps to use color shampoo:
- Do a patch test on your skin first.
- Prepare your shampoo mixture (if required).
- Moisten your hair.
- Section your hair with a comb.
- Apply the shampoo.
- Let it rest for the required amount of time according to the instructions.
- Massage your hair.
- Rinse until the water runs clear.
Select Red-Tone Color
Looking for a surefire way on how to remove green hair dye? Dyeing your hair with a red-toned color is the answer.
The red and green in the color wheel can offset each other, which explains why a blonde hair dye with red tones could easily cancel out the green hue on your strands.
But dyeing your hair at home on your own is always risky. Overdoing the gloss, staining your skins, and having a lighter shade at the roots are some common issues.
If you prefer to fix your hair at home, please notice that:
- Do an allergy test behind the ears or on the inner elbow.
- Protect your hairline.
- Divide your hair into sections.
- Apply the dye from the roost to the ends.
- Let it rest for the required amount of time.
Dye Your Hair With A Mahogany Tone
Mahogany is a dark red hue. So it works against green tones the same way other red shades do.
This reddish-brown color is also richer and more radiant. That means it will solve the ashy and dull issue too.
You can wear mahogany hair as both a warm and cool color. Adding a little violet into your mixture will help you skew cooler. Meanwhile, a warmer red dye promises extra richness.
The detailed process is similar to the above step-by-step guide for red-toned dye. Here are some worth-noting tips to get the desired mahogany tone at home:
- Gradually layer the color to create depth and pigment. Aim for a moderate amount of red-violet tint or an intense red-brown for your dyeing mixture.
- To turn light or medium brown hair mahogany, apply the new deep red tone directly over the top.
- For dark brown hair, you will need to do some lifting with a pre-lightener.
Bleach And Re-Tone Your Hair
With the inadequate bleaching mentioned above, you could give your hair another bleach with the standard 10 volume developer.
Or you can use a toner with purple pigments to neutralize the yellow tones of your bleached hair before dyeing again to remove green tones.
Baking Soda And Vinegar
A quick tip on how to fix ashy green hair color or swimmer’s hair is using baking soda and vinegar.
- Mix baking soda, 1/2 cup of water, and 1/4 cup of vinegar.
- Wash your hair.
- Apply the mixture to every green spot, massage it into your locks.
- Let it sit for several minutes
- Rinse your hair with your shampoo and conditioner.
If the smell lingering on your hair somewhat bothers you, another way is to swap vinegar with shampoo. Spread the shampoo-baking soda mix to your locks and repeat the remaining steps above.
You must get it down at this point – red pigments in ketchup balance out green tones. Besides that, the condiment also can break down copper because it is slightly acidic.
If you don’t have ketchup in your pantry, a bottle of tomato juice or a tube of tomato paste will get the job done. The process is very simple.
- Add a thin layer of ketchup to your hair.
- Spread out the condiment with a wide-toothed brush.
- Let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Rinse your hair.
- Shampoo or continue with your hair routine.
Lemon juice is not red but is acidic. As mentioned above, acidic products can help break down the brassy tints of pool hair.
There are 6 steps to follow when using lemon juice.
- Prepare enough lemon juice to coat all of your hair.
- Pour it over your hair.
- Rest for 5 minutes.
- Massage your hair.
- Rinse with water.
- Repeat if necessary.
- Mix a package of lemon Kool-Aid with water
- Apply the mixture to the greenish blocks.
- Wait for about 10 minutes before you can rinse your hair
- Shampoo, and condition normally.
Often used to make a bleaching agent, baking soda is a solution for this case too. But there is one thing to keep in mind when using it.
Baking soda has high pH and makes your hair dry. So follow the treatment below with a conditioner that has low pH.
- Create a runny paste of ½ cup of baking soda and water.
- Apply it to your hair.
- Massage your hair.
- Let it rest.
- Rinse with water.
- Shampoo your hair.
- Repeat if necessary.
Aspirin is also an answer because it has salicylic acid. This acid will offset the alkalinity of chlorine.
- Crush about 8 to 10 aspirin tablets.
- Dissolve them with water.
- Lather the mixture over your hair.
- Let it sit for 15 minutes.
- Continue with your normal routine.
Visit A Salon
Above are some of the fastest ways to deal with your green hair problem if you do not have enough time to seek professional help. Otherwise, you may want to go to a hair salon to sort things out.
It would help if you informed the colorists about your hair status, what kinds of activities you have been involved in lately, and how you take care of it at home.
If necessary, they can suggest you have a dyeing session to conceal the undesired green color.
You’re sure to get rid of the frustrating green tone and receive the right hair care that you sometimes cannot afford at home.
Tips To Prevent Your Hair From Turning Green
The water in your house contains chlorine and copper, which bond together and stick to the proteins on the hair shaft, causing the green tones.
Thus, the best way to deal with blonde hair turning green is to remove the copper from the shower altogether by installing a shower filter.
This item will go a long way to eliminate the negative effects of chlorine on your blonde hair and even skin.
As mentioned, copper and chlorine bond together to create a film that hangs on each hair strand, leading the hair to turn green.
Therefore, it is recommended to give your hair a layer of protection against chlorinated water in the pool.
So, the advice is, before jumping in the pool, it pays to wet your hair thoroughly, best with an oil coating or leave-in conditioner, to minimize the absorption of pool water.
For more protection, wear a swimming cap and use a leave-in conditioner to reduce the likelihood of your hair turning green.
Otherwise, washing your hair once you finish swimming with clarifying shampoo also supports getting rid of chlorine and copper.
Your bleached hair will benefit from a bonding agent, reducing the hair porosity and preventing breakage. High porosity hair, as mentioned, are more prone to green tints.
To keep your hair in good condition, you should also use a shampoo specifically made for bleached blonde hair.
When Dyeing/Toning Hair
Knowing color theory will help you choose the right shade of hair dye without any greenish tint showing up afterward. Warm-based colors such as mahogany, auburn, or copper introduce the red colors to combat the green and neutralize it.
So how to remove green tint from hair will depend on what’s available in your house and the status of your hair, any of these tips can help you get rid of the unwelcoming green tint.
If the next time your locks get green (be it dyed or bleached), there’s no need to panic as you already know the 12 ways to fix green hair color quickly before seeking professional help.