Despite your best efforts and care during bleaching, you somehow ended up with hair that is uneven and full of orange and red tones – a far cry from the vibrant, light bleached look you were probably going for. While this is an unfortunate situation, try not to panic! Odds are, you can still rescue your hair.

There are several steps you can take to fix your uneven bleached hair and bring it back to looking its best. In this article, we’ll discuss the potential reasons behind this unpleasant occurrence and give a thorough breakdown of the methods available to fix it.

The Reasons Behind Uneven Bleached Hair

Before we talk about how to fix your uneven bleached hair, it’s important that you understand the reasons that could have caused it. This knowledge will help you in the future if you decide to bleach your hair again.

Dark Starting Color

One of the top causes of uneven bleached hair is having a dark starting color. Whether your hair is naturally dark or is dyed that way, these colors tend to have more red and orange underlying pigments. As the bleach sits on your hair, it lifts the darker color but leaves behind traces of these undertones, giving you an uneven, streaky look.

For dyed dark hair, you may want to use a hair color remover before applying bleach. For naturally dark hair, you should consider investing in a heavy-duty lightening powder. Keep in mind that to go from very dark hair to light bleached hair can be a challenge and potentially damaging to hair.

Using the Wrong Product

Using the wrong type of developer for your hair can cause an uneven bleaching. When choosing which developer to mix with your bleach, take into account your natural hair color and the level of lift you want to achieve.

If you are looking for a gentler lift or already have fairly light hair, a volume 10 or 20 developer would be best. For more intense lift or if you have darker hair, volume 20 or 30 can be a good choice. 40 volume developer is available to provide extreme lift, but it is very strong and may not be the best if you already have damaged or dry hair; using 40 volume developer incorrectly could cause your hair to break off.

Keep in mind that you can combine developer volumes to get a number in the middle. Simply add the volumes together and divide by 2 (for example 20 volume + 30 volume gives you 25 volume). This can be helpful if you want to customize developer specifically for your hair type.

Uneven Application

When bleaching your hair, it is important to fully saturate every strand. This prevents a patchy or uneven final appearance. Make sure that you have enough product available to completely cover all of your hair and coat each strand so that you can easily see the bleach sitting on it.

Applying Roots First

Applying bleach at the roots first will give you uneven coloring because roots always process faster than the rest of your hair. This is due to the heat emanating from your scalp. When using bleach, or any hair color, you want to apply it to the mid-shaft and ends of your hair first and complete this process all over your head. Once this is done, you can return to apply bleach to your roots.

This method of application can save you from ultra-bright roots and a darker head of hair.

Fixing Your Uneven Bleached Hair

There are two effective methods that you can use to fix your uneven bleached hair. Both of them have their own pros and cons.

Method One: Dyeing It a Darker Color

If you need a quick fix for your uneven bleached hair, you may want to consider dyeing it a darker color to cover up any mistakes. Colors such as light or dark browns, or more creative colors such as dark reds and blues, can help hide a streaky or patchy appearance in your hair.

Be aware that you should probably not try to dye your hair a lighter color than what you ended up with after bleaching. This can cause a reaction with the existing uneven pigments in your hair and may end up leaving an unpleasant shade of green or grey behind.

Check out this video on how to successfully color your hair if you want to understand more about the dyeing process.

Method Two: Re-Bleaching

The most reliable way to even out your hair color, re-bleaching your hair can also be potentially hazardous. You should wait at least 2 to 3 weeks between bleaches in order to give your hair time to repair itself; bleaching multiple times too closely together can cause your hair to become brittle, dry, or fall out, and it may burn your scalp.

That being said, re-bleaching is the best way to even out streaks or patches in your hair. If your hair is uneven all over, you may want to reapply bleach to your entire head. Only re-bleach the roots if they are too dark for your desired color and apply the bleach here last.

You can also use a bleach bath on all of your hair to even out color. This method of applying bleach dilutes it and lightens your hair slowly. It is great for lightening your hair 1 level gently.

If you have a small number of patchy or uneven areas, you may want to only re-bleach these spots to make them match the rest of your hair color. You should use foils during this process to keep the re-bleached hair separate from the rest of your hair. Be aware that hair wrapped in foils will develop faster.

Can Toner Even Out Uneven Bleached Hair?

Toner is a hair coloring product that helps to increase the vibrancy of colors and improve the overall tone of your hair. It can be used to eliminate brassy tones in bleached hair. Keep in mind that purple shampoo or conditioner is not a toner.

Using a toner to even out bleached hair may work, and it may not. It all depends on how uneven your hair is and if there are still darker undertones or not. If you have streaks of dark hair or deep oranges and reds, a toner will most likely not work for you. It will counteract the brassiness of your hair, but it will not lighten the dark areas or give you an overall uniform appearance.

If your hair is mostly light after bleaching, a toner may be a good option for helping you neutralize any unwanted unevenness; this will only work if you have a few patches of brassy color, or light yellows or orange tones in your hair.

Because using a toner is such a hit or miss process on very uneven bleached hair, you may just want to stick to one of the two methods mentioned above to ensure you avoid any further hair disasters.
hair treatment in bowl

Caring for Bleached Hair

After bleaching your hair, it will likely be very dry and damaged. There are a few things you can incorporate into your haircare routine to help repair your hair and return it to a healthy state.

Use Conditioning Products

Hydration is your best friend, and after bleaching your hair you should try and step up how much you condition your hair. At-home conditioning treatments, leave-in conditioners, and certain hair oils can help moisturize your hair and improve its softness.

Avoid Hot Water

Hot water has the ability to further dry out or even scald hair. These effects can be even more damaging on hair that has been bleached. Try using only warm or cool water to rinse your hair to promote shine and strength.

Enhance Your Diet

The best way to improve your hair is by improving your diet! Incorporating a wide range of vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids in your diet can boost both your skin and hair health, leaving your hair soft and strong.

Achieving the Best Bleached Look

Bleaching your hair is a process that can easily go wrong, even when you are using the utmost care. However, even if your hair ends up uneven, there are steps you can take to fix any kind of hair mistake. Just make sure to familiarize yourself with the products and application process of your chosen correction method, and you’ll have flawless bleached hair in no time.