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How to Remove Brassy Tones from Brown Hair?

How to Remove Brassy Tones from Brown Hair?

Sun exposure and chlorine wreak havoc on your hair—and brassiness can be challenging to deal with.

Having hair color touch-ups at the salon might be a quick fix, but if you don’t want to shell out the extra dollars, keep on reading for our step-by-step guide on removing brassy tones from your brown hair.

How to Remove Brassy Tones from Brown Hair? For a quick fix, use a blue shampoo once or thrice a week to get brassiness out of brown hair.

You may also incorporate a hair toner and a gloss treatment in your routine once a week. If you like to go natural, use toning solutions made from baking soda, vinegar, tea, and lemon juice.

Can You Use Purple Shampoo On Brown Hair?

Yes. Purple shampoo neutralizes orange and yellow tones regardless of your base color. It works best for brown hair with highlights, but if you have dark brown hair, it might not be the best remedy to fix brassy tones.

Just like your typical shampoo, purple shampoo cleanses your scalp while counteracting unwanted tones. If you’re a brunette who lightened your brown hair, the purple pigment will help return your color to a cooler tone. However, you should use it once to thrice a week—not every day. 

When using purple shampoo, always follow the instruction on how long you should leave the product on your hair. It’s best to use it with a purple conditioner and wash with cold or lukewarm water. When conditioning, focus on your strands and ends, not on your scalp.

Ways to Fix Brown Hair That Turned Brassy

Use a hair toner for brown hair

A hair toner is basically a color corrector that counteracts orange and yellow tones in your brown hair.

You can choose a toner that only deposits pigment to your hair or a semi-permanent one that uses an activator to penetrate the hair. There are hair toners that come in the form of shampoo, conditioner, gloss, glaze, and so on. 

If you want something versatile that will turn your typical hair products into a toner, opt for IGK Mixed Feelings Leave-In Brunette Toning Drops(link to amazon).

It is designed to eliminate brassy tones from your hair while making it shiny. Just add the desired number of drops to your shampoo or conditioner and use it as usual, but do not apply it directly to your strands.

Consider a gloss treatment

If you’re looking for at-home gloss treatment, John Frieda Colour Refreshing Gloss(link to amazon) is ideal for you. It can be used once a week to lessen the brassy tones in your brown hair. A great thing, it doesn’t contain peroxide and ammonia. 

  • After shampooing and conditioning, apply the product on your hair evenly.
  • Leave the in-shower treatment for at least three minutes, then rinse.
  • Opt for blue shampoo to neutralize brassiness.

If you’re wondering about the difference between purple and blue shampoo, the first one neutralizes yellow tones while the latter cancels out orange tones. Naturally, dark hair has warm orange tones while light hair has warm yellow tones.

If you’ve got a dark brown hair, it’s best to use blue shampoos like Matrix Total Results Brass Off Shampoo and Fanola No Orange Shampoo(link to amazon). However, if you want to go natural, opt for Aveda Blue Malva Color Shampoo(link to amazon) that is formulated with plant-based ingredients gentle for your hair.

Experts recommend using blue shampoo once to thrice a week depending on the brassy tones you want to remove. Generally, you can leave the product on your hair for three minutes before rinsing—but don’t leave it for too long as it can dry out your hair.

Switch to a sulfate-free shampoo

Do you know sulfates can strip color and moisture from your hair, making it look brassier? On days you don’t need a purple shampoo, this Alterna Caviar Anti-Aging Replenishing Moisture Shampoo(link to amazon) is a great product to have in your rotation. It’s sulfate-free and doesn’t contain parabens and phthalates.

If you want a gentle shampoo that helps reverse hair breakage, Olaplex No.4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo(link to amazon) is proven to repair split ends, minimizing your trip to the salon. Just wash your hair as usual, but skip the hot showers that will only fade your hair color and dry out your strands.

Also Read: How to Neutralize Green Hair: 3 Ways That Actually Work!

Natural Treatments to Get Rid of Brassy Hair

If you have an affinity for all things natural, these DIY treatments can lessen the brassy tones in your brown hair. However, these toning solutions work best for light brassiness, not on strong orange and yellow tones. If you need a little color correction, these can be great alternatives without breaking the bank.

Baking Soda

If you have a brassy at the same time oily hair, baking soda can be a natural remedy. To make it work for brassy hair, mix it with a sulfate-free shampoo and a blue or purple food coloring that will reduce the orange tones. However, better look for other remedies if you have a sensitive scalp and dry, brittle hair as baking soda is a bit abrasive.

  • Prepare the mixture of baking soda, blue or purple food dye, and sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Use the mixture as your shampoo and massage it to your hair.
  • Leave it for 10 to 15 minutes, then rinse.
  • You may use a conditioner to replenish lost moisture in your hair.


Do you know vinegar can strengthen hair and improve the scalp’s condition? It can be a great remedy for itchy scalp, dandruff, and even brassy hair. However, you might consider an apple cider vinegar since it contains amounts of acid and minerals good for your hair. 

You may also add coconut oil, olive oil, sunflower oil, argan oil, or almond oil to nourish your strands. Apart from lessening the brassy tones, it can also bring back the shine in your hair. If you think the sour scent is off-putting, you can apply a fragrant conditioner afterward.

  • Prepare a solution of vinegar, water, and essential oils.
  • After shampooing, use the vinegar solution as a rinse.
  • Massage it into your hair and leave for 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Rinse thoroughly, and apply a conditioner as usual.

Tea and Lemon Juice

Do you know tea mixed with lemon juice can be great to lessen brassiness in your brown hair? You can use any type of tea, but chamomile has a calming effect and softens the hair. This toning solution works best with repeated use, around three to five times a week. 

  • Boil 4 tea bags in 2 ½ cups of water to make a strong tea.
  • Let it cool and add lemon juice.
  • Apply the toning solution after shampooing and conditioning.
  • Leave it on your hair for 30 to 45 minutes then rinse.

Maintaining your dream hair color is a big challenge, but with these tips, fixing brassiness no longer requires a trip to the salon.

Also Read: How to Remove Hair Dye from Scalp?

Related Questions

Does a cool-toned brown hair better than a warm-toned brown hair?

When it comes to brassiness, warmer brown hues like butterscotch and chestnut tend to look brassier than cooler brown hues. If you want to lessen the risk of getting brassy tones, you may think of cool hues of brown like espresso, mushroom brown, and ash brown. Neutral hues like chocolate brown, toasted caramel, and nude brown are great too.

How to prevent getting brassy hair?

Avoid sun exposure and heat styling tools that alter your hair color. As much as you can, cover up with a hair scarf or a wide-brimmed hat, and use a heat-protectant hair spray when going outdoors. Instead of using curling iron and blower, opt for hairstyles that won’t damage your strands like braids and ponytails. 

Apart from using a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo, you should wash in cold or lukewarm water, as heat fades your hair color. If you don’t have a problematic scalp, you don’t need to wash your hair too often. Shampooing thrice a week can be great to maintain your dream hair color.