Tuesday, August 28, 2012

DIY Dark Blonde Ombre Hair

Let me just say, so glad I did it but won't be messing with my hair for a while.

After a summer of mermaid streaks, red underneaths and now ombre, I am officially giving my hair a rest. It helps that I really LOVE how it looks right now and this is a super low maintenance hair color.

This was a process. I started Thursday night and officially finished with it last night. Doing a little bit each day and letting the hair rest in between. If I didn't have the red bottom layer, this would have been much easier. So, you can skip until after the first photo if you are just looking for tips on Ombre hair.

Some important tips, I got all of my supplies at Sally's. I have a lot of this stuff on hand already but you will need:

Hair color (if you are going darker)
Bleach powder
Creme Developer (in 2 different volumes, 30 for the ends, 20 for the toner and hair color)
Plastic Mixing bowl
Color Brush
Plastic hair clips
Old towel and shirt (they will get ruined)
Toner (preferably ash or lavender toned to avoid gold ends)
Deep Conditioner

Firstly, I chose my colors. I decided to try to match my natural color as closely as possible. The whole point of me doing ombre is to let my hair grow and ease the transition from blonde to my natural color. I chose Clairol Pro Creme haircolors in 6NN (Dark Rich Neutral Blonde) and 5NN (Lightest Rich Neutral Brown) with a little tiny bit of 6G (Dark Gold Blonde) mixed in. I used 20 vol Clairol developer with this. You have to have the correlating Clairol Soy developer with these colors or it won't turn out.

I had to get rid of the red underneath. I did a strand test with 6NN and it didn't change the red, literally at all. So I decided to lift some of the red out and go from there. I mixed a packet of bleach with 30 vol developer, clipped up the blonde layers and then covered all of the red and let it do it's magic for about 30 minutes. It was flaming orange, as to be expected. I washed the bleach out, dried it and applied the 6NN mixed with the 5NN to the bleached section. I didn't used the 6G for this, there was already enough GOLD in the hair from the red. Left it on about 45 minutes, rinsed and it was perfect.

After covering Red Underneath

I let it rest Friday and Saturday morning the real work began. I mixed up 1/2 5NN, 1/4 6NN and 1/4 6G with 20 vol developer. I left out a thin layer of blonde around my face, super thin. Then, I applied the color to the top portion of my hair, the blonde bits. I had about an inch and a half of roots and did not apply color to those. I knew it would go hot because it was virgin hair so I chose to leave my roots alone. Got all of the blonde covered and let it sit for about 45 minutes. I rinsed with cool water and dried to see the color, it was pretty much a perfect match to my roots. THANK GOODNESS.

I then mixed up SalonCare Prism Lights Blue bleach packet with 30 vol developer. I divided my hair into 2 sections like pony tails, brought them over my shoulders and basically just applied the bleach mixture to the bottom 2 inches of my hair. Saturated the ends really well and rubbed what was left over up the length of my hair another 1/2 inch to avoid a harsh line of bleach. I let that process about 15 minutes and then applied more bleach to the ends and repeated the process up another 2 inches of the length again. I let that process another 15 minutes. I didn't cover it and did not use heat because I wanted to really watch it process to make sure it didn't go too blonde and also wanted the change to be even and uniform so it looked more natural. I wanted it to slowly fade from dark to blonde, not having any harsh lines of demarcation. After total processing, the ends had 30 minutes of bleach total and the middle had 15. I rinsed that out and towel tried and could see it was too "warm" for the look I wanted.

So I mixed up Wella Color Charm T18 Lightest Ash Blonde toner with 20 vol Wella developer and applied to the dampened bleached ends of my hair. It turns super purple, so be warned. I left that on for about 15 minutes. The directions say you can leave it on up to 30 but check it often. I washed it all, dried it and was pretty pleased. The underneath that had been red was still a little bit too warm but the top layers of my hair were perfect.
After going my natural color, tips still too "warm"

I left it alone Sunday and then last night finished the underneath layers. I did the whole bleach process again to that portion of my hair, 30 on the ends and 15 on the middle and toned it all again with leftover Wella toner. I left the toner on 20 minutes this time and got perfect results. I did a deep conditioning treatment on it last night and will probably do another this weekend just to eliminate any drying from the bleach. As with any bleach treatment, this will be damaging to your hair.

So, there you have it. How I went from blonde with red underneath to dark blonde ombre. Hope this helped and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask!


  1. So helpful thank you!

    1. So glad it helped! It's scary doing your own hair, especially something a little more out there like this!

  2. That's so lush just given me such brilliant idea as am natural dark blonde, and I want my natural in but want to keep my lighter blonde lengths