Lilac Love: The 6 Best Hair Dyes for 2024’s Trendy Tones

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Let’s face it; Lilac hair is lush. The soft pink shade is all over our insta feeds right now with its perfect, pastel vibes. But which is the best lilac hair dye to get the look at home?

Finding the best hair dye can be tricky. With so many different brands and formulas out there, it’s hard to know where to start.

Our guide will take you through everything you need to know about getting your hands on this gorgeous shade at home. Read on dear friends!

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What color is lilac hair?

Lilac is one of the hottest hair colors this year along with its more purple sister Lavender, and it’s coming in all shades of pink to suit any skin tone.

It’s blush-like hue makes for an elegant look that will make you feel amazing without being too flashy or attention-seeking.

The name lilac comes from French meaning simply ‘garden’. This moniker hints at the tranquil nature of this soft, flowery color.

This versatile and multidimensional color can be soft pink, it could be bright in tone or pastel.

Electric colors look fantastic with the ombre styles that are popular these days. And it looks completely fantastic with pink and blonde highlights styles.

Right now it’s one of the most beautiful colors for blending with silver and blonde hair shades. It won’t last long on your head though, so enjoy it while you can!

Check out the latest looks for ideas and inspiration.

lilac hair color ideas pinterest

Can I dye my hair lilac at home?

Making a change to your hair color is not always easy, but with the right base, sure you can!

It all depends on what shade you’re looking for: if going lighter or darker will work better in terms of achieving that desired look.

If you have blonde and light hair: You’re in luck! You have a good hair color base to start experimenting with this soft shade. Although you may need to lighten your hair a level or two if you want to achieve true pastel shades.

If you have light brown hair and darker: You’ll need to lighten your hair with a lightening kit to try light pink hair dye and pastel shades. Using off-the shelf box dyes will not do for dark hair – sorry!

If in doubt – do a strand test!

What are the best lilac hair dyes?

You’ll be surprised at how many different pastel box dyes are available. Never fear! We’ve recommended the best tried and tested here.

Don’t forget to do a strand test before you start to make sure you’ve picked the right color for you!

TOP PICK!

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener, Pastel Cool Lilac

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener+Twist 104 Cool Lilac by Schwarzkopf

Best hair dye for: Lilac-silver shimmer.

This cool colour is one that need to be used on pre-lightened, bleached hair.

You work it through dry hair which is easy with the non-drip thick formula. It contains lightening bleach so we left the conditioner in for a good half an hour to avoid drying our already processed locks even further.

The resulting colour is a beautiful, ashy pink with a silvery shimmer.

The lightener lifted our roots too. What we love about this colour is the way it changes with each wash- fading to a gorgeous silvery pink.

If you have shoulder-length hair or longer, you’ll need a few boxes for best coverage.

Pros

  • Bright Pink to Ashy Color Change
  • Easy to Apply
  • Pleasant Scent
  • Achieves Box Color
  • Fades to Silvery Pink
  • Non-Drip Formula
  • Lightens Roots Slightly
  • Good for Bleached Hair

Cons

  • Requires Multiple Boxes for Longer Hair
  • Limited to Pre-Lightened Hair
  • Potential for Over-Drying

#1 Schwarzkopf Live Lightener, Pastel Cool Lilac

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener+Twist 104 Cool Lilac by Schwarzkopf

Features & ingredients:

  • A professional-quality, 2-in-1 lightener
  • Provides up to 4 levels of lift whilst adding dreamy, pastel hues.
  • Suitable for use on naturally light to dark blonde hair
  • Contains pre-mixed pastel pigments to lighten and color in just one step, elevating your blonde to the next level.

Reviewers say:

“My hair was light bleach blonde. I put the dye onto my dry hair and the color immediately turned bright pink! I left it on for 40 minutes the color started to go darker as it started to set. When I washed the color out it was an ashy bright pink. The 2nd time I washed it the color was beautiful.”

“I am a natural mid blonde but had lightened it recently. It didn’t go dark pink while developing as some have said, just a nice pale pinky color. And yep, it’s now the exact color on the box. I left it on for half an hour.” 

“Wow this product is gorgeous. So easy to apply and smells great. I am so pleased with the color and will definitely use this again.”

Our experience:

This cool color should only be used on bleached, pre-lightened hair. The non-drip thick composition makes it easier to work through dry hair.

Because it contains lightening bleach, we left the conditioner on for no more than a half-hour to avoid further drying our already-processed locks.

In the end the color was a lovely ashy pink with a silvery sheen. Our roots were also lifted a touch by the lightener.

The way this color changes with each wash, fading to a lovely silvery pink, is one of our favourites. For the optimum coverage, you’ll need a few boxes if your hair is shoulder-length or longer.

Best for: Lilac-silver shimmer.

#2 ARCTIC FOX Semi-Permanent Hair Color Dye, Girls Night

ARCTIC FOX Vegan and Cruelty-Free Semi-Permanent Hair Color Dye (8 Fl Oz, GIRLS NIGHT)

Features & ingredients

  • Perfect for adding soft pastel tone to very light or bleached blonde hair.
    Contains Nio-Active technology which deeply penetrates the hair during the coloring process
  • Leaves the hair soft, smooth and shiny.
  • For full head application (Thick or hair longer than 20cm may need two packs)

Reviewers say:

“It was a lovely color when applied, but it didn’t take on my darker roots at all and faded rapidly after the first wash into a more silver color. I wouldn’t call it permanent, but if you’re looking for a quick change, it’s a gorgeous color.”

“Love it! Beautiful color, no strong nasty smell.”

“Loved the color, easy to use. Only complaint is it is now coming out my hair leaving it patchy. It was not patchy after use and the color was evenly spread on my hair.”

Our experience:

We didn’t expect great results because we used this hair dye on light brown hair rather than pre-lightened hair.

We left it in for a little longer to allow the color to really sink in, and we were pleasantly impressed! It’s more purple-lavender than pink, but it gave us a consistent color all around.

Although the reviews claim it doesn’t last long, we’ve found it to be more durable than some others. Perhaps it was because our hair was naturally darker.

Best for: Perfect purple hues.

#3 Adore Shining Semi Permanent Hair Color, Soft Lavender

Adore Semi Permanent Hair Color - Vegan and Cruelty-Free Hair Dye - 4 Fl Oz - 193 Soft Lavender (Pack of 2)

Features & ingredients:

  • Infuses each strand of hair with a vibrant burst of luxurious color.
  • No Ammonia, No Peroxide, and No Alcohol.
  • Deposits natural looking color while giving your hair a healthy resilient shine.
  • Leaving your hair in better condition than before coloring.

Reviewers say:

“I’ve been using Adore dyes for almost 20 years. I love it because its available in so many colors, they actually stay in my hair (but easy to get off skin and clean from the tub), and leave my hair really shiny and soft.”

“As a retired hairdresser I can recommend this range of colors. It is always best to use on pre lightened hair for best results in obtaining the true color match.”

“If you bleach your hair prior to use your color will come out super bright and vibrant. If you have a previous hair color in a lighter tone this will go over those lighter areas and tint them pink but you will not see it as much in darker areas. I actually think that makes the effect look pretty nice.”

Our experience:

This Adore hair dye recommends to apply it to wet hair, but we’ve found that dry hair takes the color better, so we skipped that step. It was used on pale blonde hair.

Even when diluted with conditioner, this dye has a lot of pigment, therefore the bottle will last a long time.

The delicate lavender color is a lilac hue of pinky-purple, and it’s one of the most powerful on this list. If you want a lot of color, this is the way to go.

Best for: Strong lilac color.

#4 Schwarzkopf Live Ultra Brights Pretty Pastel Lilac Crush.

Live Pretty Pastels (New), Lilac Crush, 1 Count (Pack of 1)

Features & ingredients:

  • Express your color creativity.
  • Full-head, ombre or highlights.
  • Creates a soft pastel hue.
  • Dark hair? Pre-lighten for a soft pastel result.

Reviewers say:

“I tried this on my medium length, pre-lightened blonde hair and I love the result, it’s a beautiful soft color. My hair feels lovely too.”

“I purchased two kits as I’ve used this range before and know that they are smaller tubes than normal. I put loads on to make sure it’s all over but the color is amazing just what I wanted pastel lilac vibes.”

“I have used the Live colors for years so was excited to use this!
I bought 2 boxes and left it on for 20 minutes. My hair is a mid blonde and is also really porous and takes color well and this turned out a lovely purple pastel shade!”

Our experience:

We had blonde, pre-lightened hair ready to go for an all-over appearance for this one.

We ordered two boxes because the reviews stated we’d need them, but one will be enough if you’re only doing dipped ends or streaks.

We applied it to dry hair and let it on for 25 minutes to make sure it worked (they recommend 2 – 15 minutes). The end result was a soft-touch, even wash of silvery-dark lilac hair.

Best for: Dark pastel wash.

#5 Directions Hair Color – Lilac

Directions Hair Colour - Lilac 88ml Tub

Features & ingredients:

  • Long lasting, semi-permanent dyes that work well on most hair types. 
  • Vegan friendly & are not tested on animals.
  • These shades can be mixed too meaning the possibilities are endless.
  • One 88ml tub will usually cover shoulder length hair.

Reviewers say:

“Great color and easy to apply; the only drawback is that this color washes out/fades quickly on its own. Next time, I’m going to try mixing it with the violet to get a darker color that won’t wash out as quickly!”

“The texture and the color was great I am really happy with the change on my hair especially bc I had virgin hair and I have even have half the bottle left!”

“The color shows up best on bleached hair. It turned my faded red hair into a more flattering dark pink shade and left a pink/blue tint on my naturally dark brown hair that holds color very well.”

Our experience:

We used Directions hair color on unbleached hair that was long and thick, and it took an entire tub to massage it in. We left it in for 45 minutes to be sure it was well absorbed.

Our hair was very easy to detangle and comb after rinsing off the color, indicating that the dye is extremely nourishing.

Our hair now has all-over purple tones, which gives it a shiny, even appearance. The only drawback is that it doesn’t stay very long – the color fades over time, so expect pink pillows!

Best for: Super soft lilac hair.

#6 L’Oreal Paris Feria Permanent Hair Color, Rosy Blush (Smokey Pink)

L'Oreal Paris Feria Multi-Faceted Shimmering Permanent Hair Color, P2 Rosy Blush (Smokey Pink)

Features & ingredients:

  • Multi-faceted, shimmering, smokey hair color with 3x highlights for an ultra-modern, sophisticated look
  • Ultra-expressive, ultra-sophisticated, inspired by fashion, for the visionary
  • Gentle, deep conditioning
  • Never dull or flat, never wrecks or ravages hair

Reviewers say:

“I have gotten so many compliments with this color!”

“Because this is a PASTEL dye, your hair must be the lightest blonde hue possible. There are no yellow pigments or brassy tones. Even if your hair is already blonde, I recommend bleaching it first. I’m curious to see how this dye fades, but for now, I’ll enjoy the color.”

“The Smokey Pink goes so lovely with my fair skin and people are constantly commenting on how beautiful it is and even saying that it actually looks like my natural hair color.”

We say:

We expected a chilly, ashy color because the package said it was a smoky pink. When we tried it on cool platinum-white hair, though, it was noticeably warmer.

It’s more pink than purple, and the pastel wash is nearly candy floss pink. If you have bleach blonde hair that has to be brightened up with soft pastel pink, this is the color to go for.

Best for: The pinkest lilac.


TOP PICK!

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener, Pastel Cool Lilac

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener+Twist 104 Cool Lilac by Schwarzkopf

Best hair dye for: Lilac-silver shimmer.

This cool color should only be used on bleached, pre-lightened hair. The non-drip thick composition makes it easier to work through dry hair. Because it contains lightening bleach, we left the conditioner on for at least a half-hour to avoid further drying our already-processed locks.

The color that results is a lovely ashy pink with a silvery sheen. Our roots were also lifted by the lightener. The way this color changes with each wash, fading to a lovely silvery pink, is one of our favourites. For the optimum coverage, you’ll need a few boxes if your hair is shoulder-length or longer.

Best lilac hair dyes at a glance

Hair dyeLooks likeBest for Buy it now
Schwarzkopf Live Lightener, Pastel Cool Lilac

Schwarzkopf Live Lightener+Twist 104 Cool Lilac by Schwarzkopf

Lilac-silver shimmer
ARCTIC FOX Semi-Permanent Hair Color Dye, Girls Night

ARCTIC FOX Vegan and Cruelty-Free Semi-Permanent Hair Color Dye (8 Fl Oz, GIRLS NIGHT)

Perfect purple hues
Adore Shining Semi Permanent Hair Colour, Soft Lavender

Adore Semi Permanent Hair Color - Vegan and Cruelty-Free Hair Dye - 4 Fl Oz - 193 Soft Lavender (Pack of 2)

Strong lilac colour
Schwarzkopf Live Ultra Brights Pretty Pastel Lilac Crush

Live Pretty Pastels (New), Lilac Crush, 1 Count (Pack of 1)

Dark pastel wash
Directions Hair Color – Lilac

Directions Hair Colour - Lilac 88ml Tub

Super soft lilac hair
L’Oreal Paris Feria Permanent Hair Color, Rosy Blush (Smokey Pink)

L'Oreal Paris Feria Multi-Faceted Shimmering Permanent Hair Color, P2 Rosy Blush (Smokey Pink)

The pinkest lilac

How to dye your hair at home.

What color does lilac hair fade to?

Pastel colors are super light and pale, so they won’t stay put in your hair for too long.

As it fades, it becomes more silvery and a lighter shade of pink. It may also turn brassy as the light bleach base color shows through.

The best way to prevent the color fading too quick is to use sulphate-free shampoo and conditioners that are kind to color.

How to care for lilac hair.

Keeping that beautiful hue from fading fast all depends on how well you look after your hair and hair color. And we’ve got just the tips to help you do that.

  1. Be Gentle with Washing: Lilac shades are like delicate petals; they need gentle care. Try to limit hair washing to 2-3 times a week. Use a color-safe shampoo that’s as kind to your hair as a soft, fragrant breeze.
  2. Cool Water is Your Friend: When rinsing your hair, think cool, refreshing streams. Hot water can be harsh on your lilac color, causing it to fade faster than a sunset.
  3. Condition, Condition, Condition: Just like a flower needs water to thrive, your lilac locks crave moisture. A good conditioner will keep your hair looking as luscious as a well-tended garden.
  4. Heat Styling? Use Protection: If you’re using heat to style, remember to shield your hair. Think of it as sunscreen for your strands – you wouldn’t step out in the sun without protection, right?
  5. Touch-Up Time: Even the most beautiful blooms need a little upkeep. Regular touch-ups will keep your lilac looking as fresh as a bouquet of newly picked flowers.
  6. Embrace the Fade: Lilac hair may change its tone over time, just like the shifting shades of the sky. Enjoy the journey of your hair color. It’s unique, just like you!

Parting words

We hope this post has helped you decide which hair dye to buy in order to get the perfect pastel look.

Remember that each of these products have their own pros and cons, so before picking out your favourite one, make sure you’re aware of what it will do for your color-treated locks!

Start loving lilac hair today! Good luck!

Found your perfect shade? We’d love to see it! Tag us on Instagram @colouredhaircare or Facebook and share your hair dye success stories. Looking for more hair care tips? Check out How to Look After Colored Hair: 11 Expert Secrets For Long-Lasting Color.

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Our Research & Review Process

To ensure our recommendations are as comprehensive and reliable as possible, we’ve undertaken an extensive research effort.

We cite scientific evidence and journals, collect real user reviews and gather impartial perspectives from hair stylists, users, and experts in the field.

Additionally, we conduct hands-on testing by using products and applying hair dyes not only on our own locks but also on real human hair extensions and hair pieces of different hair type, textures and lengths.

This rigorous approach allows us to provide you with insights into which products genuinely live up to their promises.

As always – please consult with a professional hair colorist or stylist for advice on how to color your own hair at home. It’s different for everyone!

This article was written by:

  • Nicola Freeman, Creative Director & Content Lead
    Creative Director & Content Lead

    With over two decades of passionate hair dyeing experience, I've experimented with nearly every shade imaginable. My journey began long before blogging; as an award-winning copywriter in London and New York, I shaped narratives for iconic brands. However, when friends sought advice during lockdown for at-home hair dyeing, I realized my true calling. Beyond being your hair color expert, I'm a mom of two girls, wife to artist Tony, and an avid soccer player!