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How Long to Wait to Dye Hair After Bleaching?

How Long to Wait to Dye Hair After Bleaching?

Colouring hair can be exciting, especially if you’re doing it in the comfort of your home. No matter if you decide to colour your hair at home or a professional studio, you’re always anticipating to see the result. This is why it’s very disappointing when you don’t like the results.

Either it’s too light or too dark, or maybe something else is wrong, getting the wrong results is annoying. The annoyance is so huge that you want to fix your hair ASAP. Can you do it the same day? The question that many people wonder is how long to wait to dye hair after bleaching? It turns out that you don’t have to wait. You can do it the same day but it’s suggested to wait for a few days.

Scroll down and let’s discuss what happens if you dye your hair right after bleaching it. And why experts recommend waiting for a few days or even weeks before you put colour on bleached hair.

What Happens if You Dye Your Hair Right After Bleaching it?

First and foremost, let’s learn what bleach does to your hair.

Before bleaching your hair, you need to know that it’s never going to be the same. The bleach will break into your hair shaft and destroy the pigment molecules to give you light hair.

To be able to destroy the dark pigment, bleach has to break down the organic fatty acids on your shafts, which is what can make your hair dry, prone to damage and easily breakable.

This is why it’s recommended to wait a few days or even weeks before you put dye after bleaching your hair. Bleached hair is prone to damage and dye can only worsen its condition.

Can I Dye My Hair After Bleaching it the Same Day?

It depends on the state of your hair if you can dye it after bleaching it the same day. As I already stated, bleached hair is prone to damage, dry and easily breakable.

If you feel your hair damaged from the bleaching process, you should deep condition before taking other steps. Otherwise, you will end up with very dry, damaged hair.

If you notice many split ends after the bleaching process, it’s recommended to let your hairdresser cut off a few inches. Generally, there is no right time to wait before dyeing.

If your hair doesn’t feel too damaged or dry after bleaching, you can use a deep conditioner to restore some moisture and prepare your hair for the dye application.

However, stay cautious and use only 10-volume developers or weaker in the colour mix. You don’t need an extra lift to the colour. Make sure the colour mix is as gentle as possible on your hair.

Bleach and Dye Hair at the Same Time

It’s completely fine to colour your hair after bleaching it if it’s in good condition.

However, it’s suggested to wait until your hair recovers from the bleaching process. Otherwise, the colour can wash out fast because your hair cuticles will be very open.

If your hair isn’t that damaged and you were to use treatments to shut the cuticle, then the bonds would be sealed too tightly and the dye wouldn’t penetrate your hair.

This means that the colour will wash out faster, even if you’re using a permanent dye. You can dye your hair if it’s not damaged at all. But if it is, wait and do the deep conditioning.

Things to consider before you dye your hair after bleaching it include:

  • How damaged is your hair after the bleaching process?
  • What dye are you going for after the bleaching process?
  • Does the dye need a developer? If so, what level? Using a high volume developer for dyeing and bleaching can melt or fry your hair.
  • Is the dye made to be used on bleached hair? Some products can react badly or not at all on bleached hair.
  • If you’re applying a fun colour or direct dye after the bleaching, you will get better results if you wait for 2-3 days.

Waiting a few days or even weeks before dyeing your hair after bleaching it allows the cuticle to close to a more normal state. It also allows your hair’s PH to get back to normal.

However, if you want to proceed with colouring your hair right after bleaching it, please follow this step-by-step on how to do it right. It includes 6 ways you can dye bleached hair.

Semi-Permanent Hair Color After Bleaching

You can use a demi or semi-permanent hair colour after bleaching. However, keep in mind that it will no longer perform as a temporary colour.

On the unprotected and open cuticles of the hair, temporary colours become permanent. It’s also good to know that any dye is conditioning your hair, not damaging it.

It’s recommended to wait two days before applying box dye on bleached hair. This way, you will prepare your hair for the colour application and get better results.

How Soon After Highlights Can I Dye My Hair?

Generally, you have to wait for a couple of weeks (4-8) before colouring your hair again. However, it’s not always mandatory to wait for that long if your hair feels healthy.

If your hair isn’t dry and damaged from the bleaching and colouring processes, you can dye your hair after a couple of days after getting your highlights and get good results.

You can place semi-permanent dye over your highlights without trying to bring back the natural colour of your highlights. The method of dying hair over highlights is difficult.

You will need a wide knowledge of hair shades and experience in colour matching if you want to get a good result. Please, watch the following video on how to do it right.

Why Should You Wait Between Coloring Hair?

It’s obvious why you have to wait between colouring your hair. Any chemical process damages your hair. And colouring is no exception.

Exposing your hair to strong chemicals isn’t good. However, if you’re persistent to change your hair colour and get the hair of your dreams, bleaching is necessary.

You can lighten your hair in natural ways but don’t expect the same results as you would get with bleach. If your hair is weak and fine, it’s more prone to damage.

Bleaching will only make it weaker and very brittle. However, if you do deep conditioning after bleaching your hair and wait for some time before colouring it, it will recover.

This is why waiting between colouring hair is recommended by hair experts. Hair breakage and split ends are two of the most common consequences of frequent colouring.

Tips for Coloring Your Hair After Bleaching

It’s recommended to give your hair at least 4 weeks between colouring.

That’s the minimum recovery time your hair needs to recover moisture and PH to a normal level. Experts suggest that you wait between 6 and 8 weeks if you care about your hair.

If you have dry and weak hair, I kindly suggest that you listen to this advice. However, if your hair is not that damaged, 5 weeks should be enough to wait before colouring it.

Deep conditioning is also a good way to help your hair recover from the bleaching process. Practice deep conditioning at least a few times a week to help your hair recover.

Keep in mind that accomplishing a darker shade is always easier than going lighter. If your hair is strong, and you’re going for a darker shade, you should wait less than 4 weeks.

It’s also important to read the instructions on the hair dyes before using them. Let’s not forget that the people who make the dye are the ones who know best about how to use it.

Ask yourself if you need to do a full re-dye only because a part of your hair is in a different shade? How about colouring only your roots that have re-grown since the last colouring?

If you want to switch tones usually then perhaps just use a semi-permanent dye. However, don’t use it right after bleaching your hair. Otherwise, it will perform as a permanent dye.

A semi-permanent dye will save you a lot of time. Also, you will be able to remove the semi-permanent dye in one day which is not that easy with a permanent hair dye.

If you don’t want a fully different shade but just want to lift a level or few, then you can use a mild 10 or 20 volume colour. This way, you won’t need to wait too long.

Final Words

How long to wait to dye hair after bleaching? Hair professionals recommend waiting between 4 to 8 weeks before colouring hair after bleaching it.

However, as you just learned, it’s not always mandatory to wait that long if your hair feels strong. Use a colour that’s mild and your hair will be fine.

In my opinion, it’s better to wait a couple of days or even weeks before colouring your hair after bleaching it. Prevent instead of heal, right? But it’s your choice.

Your hair, your rules. Anyways, regardless of your hair type, you can never know how your hair will turn out after going through all those chemical processes.

If you love your hair, wait for a few days or even weeks. Give it time to recover before you put it through another chemical process. Take good care of your hair.

Hopefully, my article addressed all of your concerns. If you find this information useful and fun, share it with your friends. Also, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.


Thursday 29th of July 2021

Thank you , yes I will wait since true bleach it's strong , it breaks hear too if not careful.!

Alawna Widener

Sunday 28th of June 2020

This article was very helpful, so I bleached the right side of my head so that way the pink I got would show better and I didnt know how long to wait until I dyed it! ???? Thank you so much