Bleaching your hair at home becomes super easy if you know how to mix developer and bleach and if you get the bleach powder and developer ratio right. So here’s how you do it!
I have bleached my hair at home many times and trust me if you don’t get it 100 percent right, things can go south very quickly.
With hair colors like pastel pink, ash, platinum blonde, etc. getting popular a lot of women are turning to bleach to lighten their dark hair.
While going to a specialist is the best choice, you can bleach hair at home if you don’t want to spend a bomb on bleaching sessions.
But to properly bleach your hair at home, you’ll have to get all the ingredients and procedures right.
And the first step to this is to know how to mix developers and bleach the right way and in the right ratio.
So let’s get started, and let me tell you how to bleach hair at home.
Mixing bleach and developer the right way is important if you want to prevent hair damage!
How To Mix Developer And Bleach
If you are new to bleaching your hair at home, I highly suggest you get one of the at-home hair bleaching kits that are easy to apply. These come with all the accessories you need to bleach hair and contain bleach and developer in the right ratio too.
Also, if you already have previously-bleached or processed hair then really just to a stylist instead to prevent damage.
But if you’re sure about bleaching hair at home, here’s how you do it. And the first step to getting it right is to know how to mix developer and bleach the right way.
First Get The Bleach Powder and Developer Ratio Right
The foremost thing you need to know is that bleach won’t work on its own, and neither can hair dye. Both products need to be mixed with hydrogen peroxide (which is essentially what a developer is) to get activated and lighten or color your hair.
The creamy liquid form of the developer also adds moisture to hair to prevent bleach from drying out. Bleach stops processing hair when it dries, so you’ll need to keep strands wet and the developer does this job as well.
Also another important aspect is to get the ratio of bleach and developer right.
When mixing developer and bleach make sure it is in the ratio 2:1. This means, for every 2 parts of the developer you need to add one part of bleach. For example, if you’re taking 2oz of bleach, you’ll need 4oz of developer and so on.
The volume of the developer you’re using doesn’t matter here. Even if you’re using a strong 40 vol developer or a gentler 20 volume developer the ratio will still be 2:1.
However, if you’re a beginner I’d highly recommend not going above a 30 vol developer to lighten hair. If you have dark hair you can bleach it multiple times instead of using a powerful developer in one sitting.
Get A Plastic Bowl And Measuring Tools
If you don’t have measuring tools then you just buy an easy-to-use, at-home hair lightening kit which contains the bleach and developer in the right ratios.
Once you’ve got developer and bleach in the 2:1 ratio, mix them together in a plastic bowl.
You can also use an old ceramic bowl from your kitchen. But never mix bleach or peroxide in a metallic bowl as there are chances of these ingredients reacting with the metal and oxidizing.
Also, you do not want to get bleach on your hands! So don’t forget the plastic gloves!
Make Sure To Get The Right Consistency
When you’re mixing bleach and developer do not forget to make it the right consistency. If you’ve got a very runny mixture on your hands then it will drip down your hair and cause a mess.
And if it’s very thick it won’t adhere to hair properly or coat the strands well. So your hair won’t get lightened evenly.
Getting a smooth mixture is important while bleaching hair!
Create A Homogenous Mixture Without Clumps
Another important thing to consider while mixing bleach and developer is to make sure there are no clumps in the mixture.
If your bleach-developer mixture is not homogenous then it won’t lighten hair well and will leave darker spots due to the clumps. And you do not want that!
Pro Tip: To prevent bleach-developer mixture from getting clumpy and to make sure it mixes well DO NOT pour bleach and developer at the same time in your bowl. First take the entire bleach powder in the bowl and then add developer liquid by parts. Don’t forget to whisk the mixture continuously as you pour the developer to prevent clumps.
Difference Between Bleach and Developer
A lot of people confuse bleach and developer to be the same thing. But they are not!
They both might be lightening agents but they are completely different compounds.
To get technical bleach is Sodium Hypochlorite, a salt that is commonly used as a lightening agent and as a disinfectant. The chief ingredient of a developer, however, is hydrogen peroxide.
And while hydrogen peroxide can lighten hair up to 2-3 levels (depending on the volume used) it’s not as powerful as bleach.
So if you want to lighten black hair or dark hair to a platinum shade you’ll have to mix bleach and developer together.
And before you ask…No, you cannot use bleach on its own to lighten hair. It needs an activator to start processing hair and removing pigment from it. A developer acts as this activator in both bleach and box hair dyes.
Another important difference is that bleach is just sodium hypochlorite, nothing else. But developers can contain other ingredients like oils, silicones, etc. to moisture hair.
The volume or concentration of hydrogen peroxide in developers also differ. So you can have a 20 vol developer with a lower amount of peroxide that doesn’t lighten hair too much.
And you also have a 40 vol developer with a greater concentration of peroxide that lightens hair to a higher level.
FAQs about Mixing Developer and Bleach
Can you mix hair dye with bleach powder and developer?
No you cannot. A lot of at home hair dyes come with developers to lighten hair and color it at the same time. However, if you’re bleaching hair then the ratio of bleach to developer must be just right. If you add hair dye to the mix then the ratio gets messed up. Also bleach takes time to process hair and lighten hair. So if you add hair dye right at the beginning, your hair strands won’t take it up as the bleach wouldn’t have worked yet.
Can I mix bleach with any developer?
If you mean can you use any brand of developer then yes. You can use a different brand of developer and bleach without a worry. However you must get the ratio right. But if you’re talking about the volume of developers then I suggest using a 20 vol developer for on-scalp applications of bleach and a 30 vol developer for off-scalp applications. Anything higher can be too strong and damage hair or cause scabs on scalp from the bleach.
How much 30 volume developer to mix with bleach?
The strength of the developer (measured in volumes of 20, 30, 40, etc.) doesn’t matter. It’s the ratio of the developer to bleach that you need to keep consistent. This ratio is 2:1 where you add 2 parts of developer to every 1 part of bleach. So the amount of 30 volume developer you’re adding to bleach should be twice the amount of the bleach taken.
How to measure bleach and developer without a scale?
If you don’t have measuring scales or a scoop at home, you can simply look at the packaging of the bleach and developer and buy products that fit the ratio 2:1. For example, if you don’t have measuring scales then simply buy a developer that is twice the size of the bleach packet or bottle. If the bleach packet says the powder is 15g, then buy a developer (of whatever volume you want) which is 30g in weight. Just make sure this excludes the weight of the packaging itself.
How much is 1 part bleach to 2 parts developer?
Don’t be confused about ratios when it comes to mixing bleach and developer. One part bleach to two parts developer simply means you have to take twice the amount of developer for every volume of bleach. So if you have 2oz of bleach, then you’ll have to mix 4oz of developer. And if you have 4oz of bleach, you need 8oz of developer, and so on.
Final Thoughts on How To Mix Developer and Bleach
The trick to mixing developer and bleach the right way is to get two things right – the ratio of each ingredient and the consistency.
Just remember to add one part of bleach to every two parts of the developer. So if you’re taking 10g of bleach, you’ll have to add 20g of developer.
If you want the bleach to do its job effectively then you should also make sure the consistency of the mixture isn’t too runny or too thick.
Also, make sure you have all the other accessories like plastic brushes, gloves, etc. handy when you’re applying bleach at home.
It’s also worth noting that if you have chemically processed hair (permed, relaxed, etc.) or dyed hair or just thin or fragile hair in general, go to a specialist.
They will usually stretch your bleaching sessions over a period of time to minimize damage.