Many people with dark hair want to go blond, and likewise, those who are blond sometimes find themselves wanting a darker hair color. But while it is fairly easy to darken hair that is already light, taking your hair color from dark brown to strawberry blonde is not an easy task. Lifting dark hair to a light blond color requires multiple processes, which will unfortunately cause hair damage. Since dryness, brittleness and increased porosity is inherent with hair coloring, you will need to take special precautions to minimize damage to your hair.
Deep condition your hair for at least one week prior to trying to color your hair--two weeks is optimal. This is essential because you will need to use multiple coloring processes, and they will weaken your hair and make it more brittle, porous and dry. Using a deep-conditioning treatment that contains protein will help prepare your hair and minimize damage.
Purchase three boxes of hair color from your local beauty-supply, grocery store or supermarket. You will need a light brown color, dark blond and strawberry blonde. For consistent results, it is best to make sure that all of the shades you buy are from the same brand, permanent and ammonia-free--ammonia-free hair color will do the least damage to your hair.
Read the instructions for all three boxes of hair color carefully and perform their recommended allergy test with the light brown shade. Many people have allergic reactions to the chemicals found in at-home hair coloring products, so it is important to make sure they are safe for you to use before you apply the color to your entire head of hair.
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If you find you are allergic to the hair color brand you test, wait at least two weeks, then go buy three shades (light brown, dark blond and strawberry blond) of a different brand. Perform another allergy with the new brand of hair color to see whether it is safe to use.
Apply the light brown hair color to your entire head, ensuring that you follow the recommended processing time and application instructions. Give your hair a deep conditioning treatment the day after you apply the light brown color. Try to minimize the amount of heat styling you use during the next four days, and only use sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, so you don't strip the new color or natural moisture from your hair.
Use the dark blond hair color five days after you apply the light brown shade. Deep condition your hair the next day--this will help keep your hair from becoming too brittle and porous, which is what naturally happens when it is colored multiple times. Again, take care not to use much heat styling, and only wash your hair with sulfate-free shampoo.
Apply the strawberry blond shade five days after you have colored your hair dark blond. At this point, your hair should be the shade you desire. Make sure you continue to deep condition your hair at least one per week for the next month to rebuild your hair's strength.
Do not use hair coloring that comes with bleach or that requires a bleaching phase--bleaching should only be done by a professional hair stylist, and you risk severely damaging your hair if you try to bleach it at home.
Melinda Gaines has been a freelance writer since 2006, with work appearing online for YellowPages and other websites. Her areas of expertise include business, beauty, fashion and sports. Gaines attended the University of Houston where she earned a Bachelor of Science in sport administration.