how to remove brassy tones from blonde hair

How To Remove Brassy Tones From Blonde Hair | 5 Tips For Fixing Bleached Hair

If you want to know how to remove brassy tones from blonde hair then check out this article to know how to tone brassy bleached hair to a perfect ash blonde shade!

Some of the most popular hair color shades in the past few years have been lighter colors like platinum or ash blonde or “funky” tones like pink or blue. 

But the thing is, the only way to get these hair shades is to bleach your hair first, especially if you have a darker base hair color.

Bleaching is not that harmful if done right, but there is one side effect that can get really annoying – brassy hair!

A lot of hair (especially dark brown or black hair) have warm undertones in shades of copper, red, dark yellow, etc. 

When you lighten your hair, the peroxide and bleach mixture gets rid of your base color by removing the melanin in your strands.

Related: How To Get Rid Of Brassy Hair Without Toner

Related: What Does Brassy Hair Look Like

But sometimes, the warm undertones are left behind. And this is what causes brassiness. 

Basically, brassiness in blonde hair is the presence of underlying orange and copper undertones that pop up after a bleaching session.

Some women genuinely don’t mind this coppery look. However, these brassy tones can be an issue if you want a clean, platinum base to color your hair or if your goal is a cool blonde shade. 

brassy hair before and after
Source: Instagram@ericanthonyhair

So in this article I’ve listed out some easy tips on how to remove brassy tones from blonde hair and. Check it out! 

How To Remove Brassy Tones From Blonde Hair

Use A Purple/Blue Hair Toner

The easiest way to get rid of brassy tones from blonde hair is to use a hair toner.

A hair toner comes with blue pigments (or purple pigments) and is often in the form of a hair mask.

As the color blue neutralizes orange, using a blue toner can help remove brassiness from hair almost instantly. 

All you need to do is to keep the hair toner on for 10-15 minutes after bleaching and then wash it off. 

See also  How To Get Rid Of Brassy Hair Without Toner: Expert Colorist Reveals

The best part of using a hair toner is that it’s a non-abrasive, non-damaging way to tone your hair. 

So if you want to get rid of brassy tones from blonde hair without damaging it, a hair toner is a much better option then bleaching it again or using an abrasive to remove dye pigments. 

Also, there are other hair toners or rather hair glosses that add both pigment and shine to your hair. These pigments get deposited on your hair strands and cover up the warm undertones in your tresses. 

Or Try A Purple or Blue Shampoo Instead

how to tone brassy hair at home

A lot of people with bleached blonde hair go without using a hair toner as it’s considered a lot of maintenance. Also, the pigments in hair toner can be very strong. 

So if you don’t want to use a hair toner, you should try a blue shampoo instead.

These shampoos are available in both sulfate and sulfate-free varieties, and contain blue pigments just like toners.

But the pigments here are not very strong, so instead of toning your hair often, you can simply substitute your regular shampoo with a blue shampoo instead. 

Rinse Your Hair With White Vinegar

how to get rid of brassy hair without toner

Yes, you’ve heard that right. If you don’t have blue hair toner or shampoo at hand (or don’t want to use it) you can try this home remedy instead.

Vinegar is acidic in nature (even its technical name is ascorbic acid!) and has a pH of 2-3. And most acids are very efficient bleaching agents using a vinegar rinse will help remove the warm undertones from hair. 

Mix 2 cups of white vinegar with an equal amount of water and soak your hair with this solution. I suggest keeping it on for at least 10-15 minutes before rinsing it.

Do not forget to dilute the vinegar solution as the strong acidic nature of vinegar can leave hair and scalp too dry if used directly. 

Note: White vinegar is actually very strong. So if you’re worrying about drying your hair out after using it, you should use apple cider vinegar instead. It is not only milder, but actually much better for your hair as it helps control frizz and remove buildup from the scalp. 

Dye Your Hair The Right Shade Of Blonde

will light ash blonde cover orange brassy hair
Source: Instagram@redken

If you have just lightened your hair using bleach and haven’t dyed it yet, then the simplest solution to brassy hair is to color it the right shade of blonde.

See also  Why Does My Hair Fall Out When I Massage My Scalp? 5 Surprising Reasons

I suggest choosing a dye with bluish undertones as it will automatically neutralize the orange shades on hair.

As such, the ash blonde or gray blonde tones are the perfect choice if you want to directly dye your hair without toning it first.

Do A Bleach Bath To Lighten Hair Further 

Okay so this is more of a last-ditch effort so I highly recommend first trying a hair toner. And if you’re still not satisfied with the results then consult your hairstylist for the bleach bath.

Like I’ve explained before, the reason why you have brassy undertones in hair is because the bleach hasn’t removed the warm undertones when it got rid of your base hair color.

So the most effective way to get rid of brassiness is to bleach your hair further to remove the undertones as well.

But as saturating your hair with bleach and hydrogen peroxide again can be highly damaging, it’s best if you simply try a bleach bath instead.

A bleach bath is a less-abrasive, milder form of hair lightening where bleach is diluted and mixed with shampoo before applying it to your hair.

How To Tone Yellow Hair To Ash

how to tone yellow hair to ash
Source: Instagram@knoxdesign10

Orange, brassy undertones are not the only issue bleached blonde hair has to deal with. The warm undertones on bleached hair often include shades of yellow as well. 

If you’re worried about hair looking yellow instead of platinum even after you’ve got rid of the brassiness, then you can tone it using a purple shampoo.

Just like blue cancels out orange tones from hair, purple or violet pigments can help remove yellow or golden undertones from your hair. 

FAQs About Removing Brassiness From Bleached Blonde Hair

There has always been a lot of doubt surrounding bleaching your hair blonde, especially when it comes to removing the brassy, orange tones from strands. So I’ve tried to answer a few of your frequently asked questions here. Take a look! 

What cancels brassy tones in hair?

Brassy tones in hair are generally orange, coppery undertones that are left behind after bleaching. As the color blue is opposite to the orange in the color wheel, blue pigments can cancel out brassy tones in hair. So using a blue toner either in the form of a toning hair mask or blue shampoo can remove brassy undertones from bleached blonde hair. 

How does vinegar get rid of brassy hair?

Vinegar is acidic in nature. Its low pH levels make it a good bleaching agent. So when you apply an apple cider vinegar or even white vinegar rinse to your hair, this acidity helps remove some of the warm undertones from hair, leaving brassy hair lightened. 

Should blondes use blue or purple shampoo?

Well, it depends on the state of your blonde hair actually. If you have brassy (that is orange and coppery undertones) on blonde hair after bleaching then you should try out a blue shampoo. The blue pigments help cancel out the orange from hair. 
But if you have yellow-golden undertones on blonde hair that you want to remove, you should use a purple shampoo instead. This is because purple cancels out yellow tones. 

Does purple shampoo damage blonde brassy hair?

No of course not! Purple shampoo helps remove yellow undertones from blonde hair the same way blue helps remove orange tones. Using a shampoo won’t damage blonde brassy hair, in fact it can help by removing some of the warm undertones. 
However, you shouldn’t use too much purple shampoo as the dye pigments can sometimes build up on hair causing blonde hair to appear lilac. Also you must be careful to select a mild, sulfate-free purple shampoo as using a harsh surfactant-based shampoo is bad for your hair. It doesn’t matter if it’s purple or not.


If you’re bleaching your hair, then brassiness or yellowness of hair is inevitable. 

But a simple fix to getting rid of brassy, orange tones from your hair is to use a hair toner. 

The blue pigments in the toner neutralizes the orange undertones and gives you a perfect platinum shade of blonde hair in minutes.

If you don’t want to use a hair toning mask once a week, you can invest in a blue shampoo so that there is less maintenance.

And if hair toning is not your cup of tea, there are several home remedies for toning brassy hair like apple cider vinegar or lemon juice that can lighten hair just enough to remove orange tones. 

Also Read:

How To Fix Orange Hair

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