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View Full Version : Bleached hair - HELP



elina333
January 25th, 2010, 05:30 PM
Oh you almighty LHC:ers... Please share your wisdom! :cheese:

My hair has been bleached for many, many years (like 8 or so). I used to be über-blonde when I was younger but have now turned dirty blonde and I dont like it (which is why I keep bleaching it). I stopped the all-over bleaching a couple of years ago (thank God) and now only do highlights. But its still very damaging to my dry, wavy/curly, 24 in long hair... :disgust:

EDIT: Since many of you are asking: I have pretty fine hair but got LOTS of it. My ponytail is about 4.5in in circumference. Its kind of fragile though, because of the texture. I ONLY highlight my roots and do so every 3 months.


So my question is: Do you think my hair can still grow long? I mean like waist? I would do almost anything for my hair to be at waist, but I CANT stop highlighting it... I just cant! :shrug: But Im doing everything I can otherwise, like:

- Sleeping on a satin pillowcare
- Not brushing
- Never blowfry
- No metal accessories
- S & D (occassionally)
- Etc etc...

Do you have ANY ideas on what I can do? Maybe something more gentle than the salon bleach? Something I can do at home? Is there still hope to grow long hair even though I bleach it..? Please help! :pray:

TIA!

FrannyG
January 25th, 2010, 05:37 PM
We have a few of members here at LHC who have waist length hair and have bleach highlights. I hope that they chime in.

I would suggest that if you want a gentler formulation, ask your hair colourist about it. There is no way to get good highlights more safely at home than in the care of a good colourist.

Otherwise, it sounds like you're doing all the right things.

In any case, yes, with excellent care, you can have long hair with your highlights. Keep growing. :flowers:

Fractalsofhair
January 25th, 2010, 05:39 PM
Do you like any other colors than blonde? You might want to look into only getting highlights on the top of your head in small amounts, as to not leave roots. With my hair type, no, I couldn't grow it long, because it would break an inch away from my scalp. But my hair hates a lot of things, and has broken off from the use of certain conditioners from thigh length to shoulder length.

If you like red... There is HENNA!!!(Since you're a dirty blonde, you could get pretty bright. Tone it down with Cassia and other stuff as well) If you like brown, there is Henna. If you like black, there is Henna and indigo. Those are pretty harmless. Same deal with manic panic and the like, though don't bleach before hand.

Ask a salon to use 20 volume peroxide or less as opposed to the 40 some use on blonde hair.(Oh yes, when I had highlights, my naturally very light hair got a 40 volume treatment! Scary stuff.)

There is a member here with knee length hair that I think uses sun in(LadyLongLocks) and many members who dye their hair with conventional or chemical dyes.

Are you wearing your hair up most of the time? Are you limiting washing from every day to every other day or less with gentle shampoos? Are you braiding it when you sleep and only using a widetoothed comb when it's wet?

So if your hair doesn't seem terribly damaged, then yes, you could continue to get highlights and have it be fine. Just use loads of conditioner. But, if your hair does seem very damaged, don't do it! (Also, ask the salon to only do your roots when you get it done)

ericthegreat
January 25th, 2010, 05:51 PM
Without actually touching your hair in real life, no one can here can actually tell you the actual condition of your hair. Well, let me ask you then how does your hair feel to you personally? Does it tend to snap off or break quite easily when you comb it or simply run your fingers thro it? Does it feel very dry and does it tangle a lot? Do you often get a lot of split ends due to all the bleaching?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, then the simple answer is that you won't grow the healthiest way it can potentially grow if you didn't use bleach. I'm also curious as to why you feel that you must highlight your hair so much.........would it be so bad if you let your roots grow out for say 3 or 4 months to give your hair a much needed break? Or a better question, why don't you like your natural dark blonde colour? Perhaps if you let your natural colour grow out, you might find out that you might actually like it!

Oh and as to if there is anything less damaging than bleach, If you are trying to achieve a lighter shade of blonde, then no. Level 10 blondes all require some volume of bleach to effectively lighten to that really bright level of blonde. You said your hair is now a dirty blonde, that would put you at around Level 8. To lift all the way to Level 10, you really do need to use bleach, I'm sorry to say.

If you must insist on continuing to highlight your hair, then you could at least take steps to protect your hair. The night before you have your hair coloured, apply coconut oil to your entire hair including your scalp. Coconut oil really helps to repair damaged hair. Also, for your regular hair care routine, use coconut oil in your hair at least once a week for the same reason. And of course, always use conditioner when you wash your hair.

I wish you good luck in both having light blonde hair and still growing it long. :)

indigonight
January 25th, 2010, 05:53 PM
I would say the only way to grow beautiful healthy undamaged long hair esp if you have fine-ish hair is to stop bleaching and accept the natural beauty of your own virgin hair.

I guess that also depends on your thickness, if your ponytail measures more than 4 inches in circumference when squeezed together tightly at the base of head -iii hair - you might get away with it but only if your hair is really thick and strong enough to take the constant damage.
Could you perhaps transition to bleaching less and less highlights until they are very few to minimize damage??

I hate to be a party pooper or insult anyone and I know it is so fun to be blond -I was a blond many years, see my pics- but I really have never seen anyone with really beautiful, shiny, healthy long hair (past BSL, waist etc) that bleached their hair. Bleach really strips too many good oils and strength from the hair.
It is just my opinion but I always find the most beautiful long hair is either virgin or henna-ed hair. It always seem so much more healthy, thick and shiny, silky than the bleached hair.

I bleached for years until I found LHC. I stopped, chopped, I recuperated damage and all of a sudden my hair was growing thick and long like weeds. Despite taking care of my blond hair it was always dryish and never thick and when I think about it, it was basically ill hair. Those days are all gone...Now if I have the urge to change colour I reach for the henna....

Some days I miss the attention I got from being blonde but then I just touch my hair and feel how happy it is and realize those thoughts are superficial.

Good luck in whatever road you choose.

LawyerGirl
January 25th, 2010, 05:54 PM
Everything that ErictheGreat said. :) I know that some people on the boards use honey to lighten, but I don't know how much that will lighten hair. I think Ktani is the expert on that.

Isilme
January 25th, 2010, 06:58 PM
some people have had success with honey lightening. Might be worth a try. It's in the henna sub forum. And if you'd like to be a redhead for a very long time, come over to the dark side of henna;)

Dementia1013
January 25th, 2010, 07:20 PM
How often do you bleach? what volume? just roots or whole head?

I bleach and dye my hair. Roots get bleached and dyed every 3 months. I managed to grow tailbone length hair. I also have very resilient hair. Very coarse and thick.

Like Ericthegreat said. none of us really can tell the condition of your hair just by looking, but if just bleach it every so often not like every 3 weeks but stretched to like 3 or 4 months combined with treating your hair like silk (no heat, ratting, etc.) I would think you could grow waist length hair.

Just my 2 cents.

krazycurlsmatt
January 25th, 2010, 07:49 PM
I would suggest using a lower volume, such as a 10 or 20 volume bleach, for less damage, and instead of lightening to your desired color, lighten only two shades at a time, then wait until your next coloring and lighten the roots a little more, until they reach the desired shade. If I were you I would also consider not shampooing so often, or if you must shampoo, do the roots only, and condition each time you wash. Another thing thats been mentioned is oiling. I would strongly advise that you oil with coconut or olive oil, a big reason bleached hair has a hard time growing long is that it loses moisture and breaks, oil will combat this greatly. Though, if I were you I would just grow out my dark blonde hair, then use sun in if you don't like the color, like longladylocks, because it will lighten your hair just a few shades at a time.

ktani
January 25th, 2010, 07:57 PM
Here is the Honey thread, http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=148, if you want to try honey lightening. Start with the first post.

If you want to continue bleaching you can help minimoze future damage by using a pre-treatment of coconut oil or coconut and argan oil, being careful with the amount of chemicals you use.

Here is the thread, http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=10495. Start with the first post there too.

metal_sugar
January 25th, 2010, 08:02 PM
I have dyed and bleached my hair since forever. But for the past year I've been growing out my natural hair. I'm a dirty blonde too, BTW. It started out as an experiment, I wanted to see what it looked like. But now I've decided to grow it all out and have virgin hair simply because now I can really feel the difference. My virgin hair feels soft, silky and is loads thicker!

But if you have a hard time letting go of the highlights, try honey. :)

contradiction
January 25th, 2010, 08:36 PM
I would say the only way to grow beautiful healthy undamaged long hair esp if you have fine-ish hair is to stop bleaching and accept the natural beauty of your own virgin hair.

I hate to be a party pooper or insult anyone and I know it is so fun to be blond -I was a blond many years, see my pics- but I really have never seen anyone with really beautiful, shiny, healthy long hair (past BSL, waist etc) that bleached their hair. Bleach really strips too many good oils and strength from the hair.
It is just my opinion but I always find the most beautiful long hair is either virgin or henna-ed hair. It always seem so much more healthy, thick and shiny, silky than the bleached hair.

I bleached for years until I found LHC. I stopped, chopped, I recuperated damage and all of a sudden my hair was growing thick and long like weeds. Despite taking care of my blond hair it was always dryish and never thick and when I think about it, it was basically ill hair. Those days are all gone...Now if I have the urge to change colour I reach for the henna....

Some days I miss the attention I got from being blonde but then I just touch my hair and feel how happy it is and realize those thoughts are superficial.

Good luck in whatever road you choose.

I couldn't have said it better myself. I bleached my hair for about a year or so. I have been growing out the bleach for the past two months. While i still have a long way to go, my hair already feels a lot better and healthier. I've decided not to bleach it for a year at least and see where my natural hair colour takes me.
That said, I too know how much fun being blonde is. I don't know if someone who has never had blonde hair could understand. I think you must make a choice - either keep the blonde hairlights or have healthy hair.

natorade
January 25th, 2010, 09:13 PM
I am a dirty blonde too. I get highlights to make me a lighter blonde but I will only be getting my highlights every 3 -4 months to help minimize damage and I only get the roots done, I actually can't wait till the light blonde is grown out and I have more of my natural color showing with subtle highlights.

Shermie Girl
January 25th, 2010, 09:54 PM
Rather than highlight all over, can you just do the roots? Not pulling bleach/toner down through your hair every time will really help. Coconut oil and argon oil used before colour can also make a big difference.

It is possible to grow bleached/coloured blonde hair long. You need to pamper the heck out of it, lighten your roots only, protect with coconut oil and do a lot of deep conditioning treatments and avoid heat.

Beesweet
January 25th, 2010, 09:56 PM
When I was assuming I wasn't going to grow my hair again, I put in some blond highlights in my dark blond/light brown hair. It looks good with my skin tone, prob. because I was a very blond kid. You can look on my blog and see what it looks like now if you want. It is not the red color in my avatar pic.

I went to an Aveda salon and they used high quality gently stuff. Then I had a change of heart and started believing I could go long once and for all and I started doing all the old gentle natural, herbal stuff and my hair is responding beautifully -- all except the blond highlights -- they don't curl like the rest, they are more damaged, more flyaway, and when I have breakage -- it's from the highlighted hair. I can't wait to get rid of it but now it just needs to grow out.

I am done with chemicals and will only doing henna gloss from now on.

I don't know if you can grow truly healthy hair if it is bleached.......your real color is probably very pretty. I don't actually know any "bad" natural hair colors......

juliaxena
January 26th, 2010, 12:19 AM
I have this ashy dark blonde natural color too. Some people just don't like their natural color and I can understand that. I dye my roots only with semi permanent hair dye. It is strong enough to give it a lighter shade and a golden tone but it doesn't damage my hair so much as pure bleach would. Why don't you try one of those dyes yourself? Highlights aren't so hard to do on your own plus I do think stylists sometimes use harsh dyes just so custumers would have to come in for hair cuts as well.


Btw, Ericthegreat nice new color pics in your album and Dementia your color is the most amazing one I have ever seen.

Ally<3
January 26th, 2010, 04:01 AM
A great idea if you're going to bleach is to apply oil to the hair you will be bleaching, leave it on and then put the bleach on top. I does not affect the way the bleach works, and while the cuticle is open (from the peroxide in the bleaching process) it allows the oil to enter the into the cortex.

I used to do this every time I bleached and noticed a big difference once I started. Might not work if you go to a salon though. I used to do it myself with the best products in the biz.

Still deciding to grow out my natural auburn hair is the best hair decision I have EVER made.

Good luck!

hydrangea
January 26th, 2010, 04:40 AM
We have similar hair (fine but lots!)....I hated my dark blonde hair for the longest time, then got a pixie cut and let the dye get cut out. All of a sudden, especially when I was outside I'd get compliments on my hair color. It looks so much lighter when outside versus inside...like two different colors actually. I think fine hair gets damaged more easily than normal hair. I'd encourage you to go for awhile without highlighting, as hard as it may be...or dye it back to your natural color using a semi-permanent hair dye just to see if it's not as bad as you think. I noticed much less shedding once I stopped using chemicals. Best wishes with your growing process! :-)

jojo
January 28th, 2010, 08:14 PM
Well I highlight but have never gone bleach over bleach and only ever get my roots done. I only have a shade or two lighter than my natural colour and the roots are bearly noticable unless you look close.

I get my roots done only 3 times a year, so by the time my roots need doing theres quite a bit of virgin hair so less chance of going over old bleach. I do use heat but very rarely and do lots and i mean lots of DC. I use oil on a daily basis (my hair is also fine but lots of it). I haven't tried coconut oil before highlighting but will do this in april when my roots will be getting re-done but one thing I have found is never wash hair for a day or 2 after highlighting but do a deep coconut oil to get some moisture back, follow this by a DC. Another thing which may help is going CO and ommitting the shampoo out altogether.

And yes it is possible to get to long with highlighted hair, but only if you only ever re-do the roots and not the whole lengths, SMT's are great too or even adding a little honey with your conditioner will help.

Just thought too bleached hair can sometimes be crying out for a protein treatment as it becomes more porous, mayo is good for this as a cheapie treatment!

LHktress
January 29th, 2010, 02:02 PM
I dye my roots only with semi permanent hair dye. It is strong enough to give it a lighter shade and a golden tone but it doesn't damage my hair so much as pure bleach would.

This!
I am a light brunette and plain dye is enough to turn me into this blonde. For you as a blonde it should work even better!
Dye allows me to grow my hair whereas the (salon) bleach totally destroyed my hair.

http://i49.tinypic.com/105upao.jpg

Unofficial_Rose
January 29th, 2010, 03:06 PM
There's a thread you might like: http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=21256&highlight=bottle+blonde+grows+long

LHktress your hair is gorgeous. So is the OP's the colour really suits you.

justgreen
January 29th, 2010, 03:12 PM
I've been getting highlighs in my hair for ever, but i had a lot of damage until I found LHC and learned how to care for my hair. I always go to a salon, i quit doing it at home because I was pulling it through a cap and that was just damaging it more. Now I get foils (with no heat), lots of conditioner and I use L'oreal Everpure shampoo, diluted with water.

Kuchen
January 29th, 2010, 03:17 PM
It is absolutely possible to grow long, beautiful hair and to bleach it. There are several members here at LHC who are proof of that. The thread UnofficialRose linked to is great. There are many ways of having beautiful hair and enjoying it :flower:

elina333
January 29th, 2010, 06:53 PM
Great help! Especially that thread on bottle blondes... So I guess if I keep treating my hair extremely good and maybe stretch the highlights to every 4 months (and roots only of course) then I should be fine...

Thank you so much for all the info! :D

Demetrue
January 29th, 2010, 07:37 PM
You don't need to use cream bleach to lift dirty blonde hair to light blonde - you can use 20 volume peroxide with a level 9 toner. All you need to do is put the top layer of your hair up in a ponytail and then paint 9N strands to simulate highlights starting at the roots. Wait 20 minutes, let down the pony tail, wash and condition. Or you can use Nice & Easy's Perfect 10 in level 10 blonde to paint on the highlights - I find using a blonde box dye is much less damaging to my hair than using cream bleach (where you mix the bleaching powder with 40 volume hydrogen peroxide).

LHktress
January 30th, 2010, 02:33 AM
Thank you Unofficial_Rose :)