The traditional process of bleaching hair involves dry hair, and many people will shrink at the thought of bleaching wet hair. While it is possible, it is more challenging than you may think. You must first understand how it will affect your hair and learn how to do it safely.
- Bleaching wet hair produces a subtle color change.
- Wet hair is weak, making it prone to damage.
- Bleaching wet hair is unpredictable, and you should let a professional stylist handle it.
- Bleaching agents penetrate the cuticle and oxidize and decompose the melanin.
- Use natural lighting when bleaching hair.
Bleaching wet hair can be a great way to achieve a subtle lightening effect. Wet hair is more fragile and requires extra care during bleaching. A trained colorist has the knowledge and experience to properly dampen and apply the bleach to your hair to minimize damage and maximize the desired result. They will also be able to determine the appropriate amount of bleach to use based on your hair type, texture, and desired outcome. So while it is possible to bleach wet hair, it is recommended that you leave it to the professionals.
How Does Hair Bleaching Work?
Hair bleaching involves stripping your hair of its pigment to give it a lighter shade. It happens through oxidation. Hydrogen peroxide and ammonia are the most common oxidizing agents in the market today. Manufacturers mix them because they are unstable and slow when used separately.
Hair bleaching can cause several changes to your hair, including a change in texture and color. Also, regular bleaching can cause a permanent change in hair texture.
Related: Can You Put Toner On Wet Hair?
Can I Bleach Freshly Washed Hair?
The quick answer is yes, you can bleach wet hair. However, it is good to understand the science behind bleaching before thinking of bleaching damp hair. It is best to avoid bleaching hair right after washing it.
Your hair contains natural oils that protect your scalp, preventing irritation during and after bleaching. In most cases, if you want the hair bleached wet, your colorist will only give it a quick rinse before bleaching.
Some experts advise bleaching hair that’s a little dirty. The dye doesn’t spread evenly in clean hair. Don’t apply too much hairspray or gel, as the chemicals hinder the bleach from working as it should.
What Happens if I Bleach My Hair Wet?
When bleaching wet hair (also known as wet balayage), the results are less dramatic, giving a subtle color change. The water dilutes the bleaching agent.
You may want to bleach wet hair for several reasons:
1. For Faster Results
Wet hair happens to lighten faster and will save you time. If you are in a hurry, you can ask your colorist to bleach your wet hair. Bleach processes faster in wet hair because the cuticles are open, forming weak bonds.
Don’t do it yourself because you may not know the amount to apply and how to do it. Home bleaching products have instructions you must follow, and they don’t recommend bleaching wet hair.
2. A Slight Color Change
If you want a subtle color change, your colorist will apply bleach on wet hair. Other than diluting the bleaching agent, the water spreads the bleach evenly. Your hair will have a uniform light appearance without harsh transitions.
3. Brighter Hair Ends
You may want your hair ends to appear lighter than the rest. After highlighting your hair and leaving the foils to process, rinse it. Adding bleach to the wet hair ends will produce a lighter complexion.
Risks Involved in Bleaching Wet Hair
Dyeing wet hair has some drawbacks, which include the following:
- Water dilutes the dye: Your hair absorbs water when you wash it. The water settles in the hair shafts, leaving no room for the dye to penetrate. The result will be a subtle color change.
- Uneven application: Water helps to distribute the dye in your hair, ensuring it reaches every part evenly. However, the color application is different because some parts of your hair will contain more water than others. You may end up with uneven pigmentation.
- It can damage your hair: Hair contains natural oils (sebum) that protect hair strands and the scalp. Bleach may not work efficiently on wet hair. Additionally, wet hair is weak and prone to breakage and damage.
How Long to Leave Bleach on Wet Hair?
The amount of time depends on the effect you want. Leave the bleach in your hair for 15 minutes if you want a pure blonde base. If you want a lighter effect, you can leave it for up to 30 minutes.
Note that the bleaching is seriously damaging. If you leave it for a long time, it damages your hair more, breaking and wearing away the strands.
The Proper Way to Bleach Hair
Hair-bleaching agents penetrate the cuticle, oxidize the proteins and decompose melanin. It is advisable to do it on dry hair. Wash your hair and allow it to dry entirely before bleaching.
With dry hair, the bleach gets distributed evenly, giving your hair a uniform effect.
Remember to let someone else apply the bleach. Consider working with a professional colorist.
Follow the tips below to bleach your hair safely:
- Use a hair protectant: Bleaching is a damaging process, and you must protect your hair. To prevent the bleach from penetrating the scalp and causing irritation, apply a hair protectant before bleaching. We recommend using organic protectants.
- Exercise caution when using the dye: The dye contains chemicals, so you should be careful. It can stain clothes. Wear gloves, and don’t splash the bleach around, as it can cause skin irritation.
- Do a patch test: The results of bleaching can be unpredictable. Therefore, try a test patch to see if it produces the desired results. If the results are how you want them, complete the dyeing.
- Use natural lighting: It will help you see the exact results better than fluorescent light. Don’t do it at night, as you may not like the results the next day.
- Consult a professional stylist: Get the answers from a professional whenever you are unsure of what you are doing. It will save time and prevent frustrations.
Can You Bleach Hair Twice?
You can bleach your hair twice but do it 4 to 6 months apart. Hair bleaching causes dryness, breakage, and discolored hair, among other side effects. Always work with the advice of a professional colorist.
Should I Bleach Wet Hair at Home?
Wet hair is fragile. You may think you have the knowledge to bleach wet hair at home, but it is a risk. It can cause serious damage if you don’t do it right. The process is also unpredictable, so it’s best to work with a professional stylist.
Can You Bleach Wet Hair FAQs:
- Does Wet Hair Bleach Faster?
Wet hair bleaches faster than dry hair because the cuticles are open, forming weaker bonds. However, it only produces a slight color change because the water dilutes the bleaching agent.
- Should I Bleach My Hair Wet or Dry?
We advise bleaching your hair dry. Natural oils in your hair will protect your hair and scalp, minimizing damage and irritation. Wet hair is weak and can be damaged easily.
- Can I Bleach Wet Hair at Home?
While you can bleach wet hair at home, it is advisable to let a professional colorist do it. Wet hair is prone to breakage and other forms of damage. Bleaching agents are also dangerous, and you should let qualified personnel handle hair dyeing.
- Can You Bleach Roots With Wet Hair?
Yes, you can bleach your roots with wet hair. You must be careful during the process to avoid causing severe damage. We advise doing it at the salon, where professionals handle the entire process.
- Can I Bleach My Hair With Dry Shampoo in It?
Don’t bleach your hair with dry shampoo in it. The shampoo has chemicals that can interfere with the dyeing process, producing a different shade than you expected. The chemical build-up can also damage your hair. Wait for 48 hours after using shampoo for you to dye your hair.