I get asked two questions pretty regularly regarding my hair:
1. Is it for something? Like, Halloween?
No, this is my every day hair. Also, every day is Halloween, so...
2. How did you do it? Do you have to bleach it?
This blog post is in response to the second question. I figured I'd go step-by-step so that when people ask I can be like, "I wrote a blog about it!"
I wrap my hair in foils when I bleach it to a) keep it warm and from drying out, and b) bleach is dangerous for skin and clothes. I also wear cheap little latex gloves, and use one of those salon bowls to mix up the bleach. Also wise: rolling up bathroom rugs, and wearing clothes you don't care about. It gets messy.
For actual supplies, my favorites are the 'N Rage White Out Kit because it comes with a toner and does a good job lifting my hair. As far as the actual color, my all time favorite is hands-down Wella's Color Paints in Blue. It's affordable, and it lasts significantly longer than any of the other brands I've tried (less blue showers and longer between dyes, YAY).
2. Section it off.
I know my hair pretty well, so I guestimated where I wanted the blue to show. I know how it falls and how I part it, so I knew which parts would show through day-to-day. Also, since I'm extremely lazy, I picked parts under the main part of my hair so I can let the roots grow out quite a bit in between bleachings.
I like to pull the rest of my hair back and get it out of the way so I can just focus on the sections I need to bleach.
3. Apply bleach.
After mixing up the bleach, I usually just use my fingers (inside the gloves, of course!) to apply it to the sections of hair. I have a brush that I use as I get closer to the roots, but I never apply it directly TO the roots (another bonus of peekaboo placement--no one notices or cares if it doesn't start directly at the roots!).
After the bleach is on, I wrap it in foil, then keep a close eye on it. It takes a long time to lift my naturally dark hair enough, but I don't want to over-fry it. About 30-40 minutes is usually long enough for me.
When the bleach is done, I wash it out.
After the bleach is washed out, my hair is generally this orange/yellow color. Color theory is important, you guys. If you have yellow or orange and add blue to it, you get a weird greyish green color. Hence toner.
Toner is this weird purple inky stuff you put on your hair to TONE it down to a whiter shade (purple negates the warm tones, hence why platinum blondes are recommended to use a lilac conditioner to maintain their color). The 'N Rage toner has a thick consistency which makes it nice and easy to apply. I put it all over the freshly bleached parts and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. Then rinse! Check out the before and after toner difference:
Getting it whiter makes a nice base to apply BLUE!
5. The blue dye
With my hands in gloves again, I just squeeze the color like toothpaste onto my hair and work it in with my fingers. The Wella hair dye is super easy to use that way. Also, since it's pre-mixed and sealed in a tube, you can save whatever you don't use for later. I get at least two, sometimes three, dyes out of a single tube.
Once my hair is well covered in blue, I clip it up and wait about half an hour. Then rinse, shampoo, condition, and...
That's it! I say "that's it" like it doesn't take me almost 2 hours every time I do the full bleach process. It does. However, I go as long as possible between bleaching it (2-3 months) and just touch it up every few weeks with the blue, which takes significantly LESS amount of time.
Hope that's helpful. Also, if you have any tips and tricks to share, please do!