Ask a hairdresser: What should I use to change my previously coloured hair to blonde?

Abbey Lee Kershaw - platinum blonde

The question

Reader Emily writes: 

I used to have a reddish brown sort of hair. Then I bleached it to a light brown and it had bits of blonde through it. So I put a toner in every week hoping it would lighten my hair and it did. Now I want to dye it blonde really badly. How can I achieve a blonde colour with a hair dye and what would be the best one to use?

The answer

Tony Chaar’s advice:

Interesting process. By now you have a couple of different colours, so the best way to do it would be to do a lightening bath on the ends so that you lift a lot of the reddish tone into a golden blonde tone. And then you do the roots to match the ends.

So you need to use two different formulas:

1. A lightening bath, which you create by mixing lightener with 10-volume developer (which you can buy at the drugstore). Use it on the ends only with shampoo for about 15 to 20 minutes, and then rinse it out. Then do step 2…

2. A high lift cool blonde. After you rinse out the lightening bath, use this to do the roots (you can also get it at the drugstore).

Tony Chaar is a Toronto-based hairstylist who has worked with celebrities such as Coco Rocha, Freida Pinto, LeeLee Sobieski and Kim Cattrall. Visit his salon at 11 Hazelton Avenue in Toronto or call 416-920-9965. On the web, find him on Facebook, Twitter or at

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1 Comment

Sunday, March 3/2013 at 12:15 pm

Interesting blog with fantastic ideas and tips.My ash brown dyed hair has a hint of green in the roots and ends….as I had a ballage effect that is growing out.I want to go back to a natuual brown with golden highlights scatered thorugh.Would that lightening bath work on my ends??


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