Hair-dye often contain harsh chemicals, but none are as bad for your hair as bleach or peroxide. If you want a hair color that’s a few shades lighter than your natural or current color, you won’t be able to get it done without bleach.

If you choose to color your hair at home, you’ll be able to protect it better than by getting it done at a salon. At the very least, do your roots at home so you’ll be able to minimize the negative effects of bleach. Find out how to stop bleach from damaging your hair and care for it before and after dyeing it in order to get the perfect shade.

Change Your Hair Color Gradually

If you plan on going for a lighter shade, you need to be realistic with your expectations in order to minimize damage to your tresses. When you’re going from dark or red to blond, you may need to take an extra step in between your current color and your dream shade. If you’ve had highlights or lowlights done recently, you should wait for at least 3 weeks before bleaching your hair.

Bleaching Hair Highlights

When you’re wondering how to stop bleach from damaging your hair, you should know that you also need to wait at least 4 weeks if your hair has been subjected to any other chemical processing, including relaxing or perms.

Always Trim Your Split Ends Before Bleaching

Dyeing your hair can make it more prone to split ends and bleaching will always create a few split ends, even on the healthiest hair. In order to make sure your hair won’t go through any more breakage, make sure that all the visible split ends have been trimmed before bleaching.

Keep Your Hair Chemical-Free

Before you apply any peroxide on your locks, you need to know that keeping the chemicals from hair products to a minimum before you dye is a great way to stop bleach from damaging your hair. Don’t use hairspray in the 48 hours before the process and try not to expose your tresses to any heavily chlorinated pool water for at least 7 days before. In order to reduce the chances of a problem, use a clarifying shampoo more than once before dyeing your hair.

See also: How to Bleach Hair at Home

Always Follow the Instructions on Your Hair-Dye

Stick to a good brand of hair-dye and don’t improvise. Tricks like using a hairdryer to somehow make bleach change the color of your hair faster are a bad idea, and so is keeping the peroxide in your hair more than the recommended time. If you’ve got a lot of hair and you want to do it all at once, you might need some help, so the bleach is applied quickly and evenly on your hair.

Try Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil

Probably the best answer to the question of how to stop bleach from damaging your hair is using coconut oil before applying peroxide on your tresses. That means applying it all over your hair, letting it sit for around 30 minutes under a shower cap, then applying some more right before the bleach. Warm the coconut oil between your fingers to liquefy it, then apply all over your hair and scalp. This simple trick will help you hair avoid a lot of damage.

Deep Conditioning Treatment

In the days before and after bleaching your hair, use a deep conditioning treatment. You can find plenty of products for colored hair, but coconut oil will do the trick as well, if you keep it on for half an hour before rinsing it away.

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Stop Exposing Your Hair to Heat

Since the bleaching process will leave your hair very dry, any kind of heat can damage it further. The right thing to do when you want to know how to stop bleach from damaging your hair is to put away your hair dryer, or at least use it on the cold setting. No curling or flat irons after bleaching. If you absolutely must use a little heat, make sure you use good heat protection products before.

Detangle with Leave-In Conditioner

Blonde Hair

Even if you’ve never used leave-in conditioner before, you might really need to start the next day after you’ve bleached your hair. It will provide more moisture for your hair and it will make detangling much less damaging.

Protect Your Hair From The Sun

One of the most important things to know when you’re learning how to stop bleach from damaging your hair is to protect it from UV radiation. Try sprays and other products that protect your hair from the sun or keeping your tresses under a hat when you’re out.

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