Bleached Blonde To Brown Hair

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

I have returned... to the dark side! After months of lusting over photos of beautiful brunette hair, ombre hair, and balayage highlights, I finally took the plunge. I am a bleached blonde no more.

There's no question, the bleached blonde look was fun for a few years BUT I had to face the facts... my hair hated it, it was over highlighted, damaged, breaking, lost it's natural shine and started reminding me of steel wool... it wasn't looking good folks. That's when I decided it was time for the change and it needed to happen pronto! 

I had already spent months mentally preparing and obsessing over photos of how I wanted my hair to look. I knew I wanted to start growing out my natural roots but I also knew I didn't want just a typical dark brown dye job. Been there, done that (this is the second time I've gone dark from blonde), I didn't love the look of grown out roots and faded dye when it's suppose to appear as if it's all one color. Fading on me is guaranteed, it happens remarkably fast when you spend a lot of time in the intense tropical sun and surf.

So what's the plan of action? How do I fix this hot mess and hot roots I've gotten myself into?
Ombre! A brilliantly low maintenance style. Where roots can grow out in peace, where dye can fade as it pleases and highlights can be easily maintained at the ends with regular trims. 

Of course this had to happen in two parts. First, ditch the bleached blonde that took over the top of my head like a brown hair eating bacteria. So I went to my local beauty supply store and picked up Wella Color Charm 6N/611 Dark Blonde, Clairol 10 Volume Developer and Neutral Protein Filler. 

It's important to let you know why I chose each of these products, which I also explain briefly in the video. 

 Mixing Bowl, Tinting Brush, Hair Clips, Rat Tail Comb.
*Measuring/mixing, application & sectioning hair.

Chemical Cape & Gloves
*Protect clothes/body & hands from dye and chemicals. 
(I started out with a towel around me but switched to a cape, they're lightweight, easier to work in and worth the investment if you plan on doing your hair yourself regularly.

Colorful Neutral Protein Filler & Spray Bottle
*Helps color adhere more evenly and predictable on porous bleached hair. Spray bottle makes application easier.

Wella Color Charm 6N/611 Dark Blonde
*I chose to go a couple of levels lighter than my actual goal since porous light hair can pull too dark. I chose a neutral tone because an ash tone would have turned my hair green/gray and a gold tone would have been too warm, since I already had a lot of gold and warmth in my blonde hair.

10 Volume Developer
*For depositing color only, not lifting it any further. 

Step-by-step video on how I went from bleached blonde to brown at home.

Continued in the next post, Part 2: Balayage Highlights

Have you gone from bleached blonde to brunette?...or from brunette to bleached blonde? Was it a success or a trial and error learning experience? Share in the comments!


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  1. I love how hair is so versatile, if you mess up and hate it, hey, it'll grow back. You can color it, curl it, straighten it...ah, so many options.

    You look great either way. Love the video and all your tips. :)

  2. I just found your videos while looking for help with my hair. You are fabulous! I love your hair and you give me hope!:)
    I'm now wanting to see how your hair turned out with it darker.

  3. I have bleach blonde hair and love the effect when my roots grow out, mostly I think because I love seeing my healthy virgin hair again. I've been wanting to darken my roots but keep my bleached ends (I can't totally part with my blonde yet) so that my natural color will grow out healthily but I've never known exactly what was needed or what color to use. This post and video is excellent! I too have a blog,, and I'm going to be posting my results in a few days. Check it out! Thanks for the great info.

  4. I really love your hair, and the videos are awesome! Hair is definitely the girls crowning glory, so I'm not surprised why every woman wanted to change their hair style and color more often.

    - Mary
    Cold fusion hair extensions fanatic :).

  5. After 20 years paying a salon $100+ for highlights/lowlights, I am attempting to take over my own maintenance. My first attempt, left bme an all over almost platinum blonde :-/ UNACCEPTABLE!! So I am trying to get rid of the platinum and do a little something like you...sans the full ombre for now, because I don't have the length for that. I was so aggravated and tired of trying, that I actually have a salon appt to fix it. But now that I have found this blog, I am thinking I may get my money back and try this...I am trying to find "Part 2: Balayage Highlights" I do not usually read blog posts on the blog websites, So I am unsure where to find it...Any help on that? I have joined the page, but am def a!

    Much Love From East Tennessee