Colour remover vs bleach. Which one is right for you?

What is the best way to remove dye from your hair? Should you use bleach or a colour remover? This post will help you decide which one is right for you! Let’s talk about colour remover vs bleach!

Many people struggle with knowing which one to use.

It can be hard to know what product will work best for your hair type, but don’t worry because we’re here to help!

In this blog post, we are going to cover everything you need to know about these two products so that you can make an informed decision as well as avoid any potential hair disasters.

So let’s get started!

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What’s the difference between hair colour remover and bleach?

If you’ve ever bleached your hair at home, you probably know that it’s a lot of work to get it right.

You need to use gloves; apply it evenly; make sure not to leave it on too long or else you’ll end up with brassy hair; wash it out and then condition like crazy!

If this sounds like a nightmare (or if you don’t even want to touch the stuff), there’s another option. Colour removers.

While the chemicals in removers are less harsh than bleaches, they’re also more expensive products and can be hard to track down.

But what’s the difference between them?

Colour remover vs bleach.

Colour remover

  • Is designed to break down the peroxide bonds of permanent dyes, allowing the colour molecules to be rinsed out.
  • They remove colour build up and can be used more than once to get the right effect.
  • They’ll get you back to your natural hair colour, but won’t remove it.


  • Is used to strip colour pigment from your hair and give a lightened base to dye over again.
  • It will remove all colour, even your natural pigment.
  • It can leave hair dry, damaged and looking brassy!

Which one should I use?

A good rule of thumb when deciding which product to use is:

If your hair has been dyed with permanent hair dye, it’s safe to go with removers.

But these won’t remove semi-permanent hair dye, henna hair dyes or your natural colour.

If you have dyed your hair with semi-permanent colour, henna hair dye or you want to strip your natural colour, then bleach may work better for you.

Is colour stripping the same as bleaching?

Have you ever wondered how to get shiny, healthy hair without the use of harsh chemicals?

Well, we’re here to tell you how it is possible.  It’s a technique called colour stripping and it’s all about removing colour build-up from your hair.  

There are so many different terms and techniques that can be used to describe the same thing, which can make things confusing.

Let us help clear up any confusion by explaining exactly what colour stripping means and how it differs from bleaching your hair.

Colour stripping vs bleach.

Colour stripping is when you remove all of the natural pigment in your hair before applying new colour or lightener to achieve a lighter shade than would have been possible with just one application of dye or lightener.

Bleaching involves using hydrogen peroxide mixed with ammonia to remove all pigmentation in your hair. It leaves a good base to add colour or lightening agents afterwards to achieve an even lighter shade than was possible after removing all pigment through colour stripping.

Do you use colour remover or bleach first?

This is a classic beauty dilemma that leaves people torn between two camps.

If you go with the former, it could take up to 10 rounds of hair removal before your natural colour comes through and if you choose the latter, well…you might end up with damaged tresses. So what should you do?

  1. You should always go with the remover first, to get rid of any unwanted pigmentation in your hair.
  2. If there’s still some colour left over after that step, then by all means use a bleach product next.

This process will leave your hair feeling dryer than usual because there isn’t any natural oil left in it anymore due to the removal of its original pigment during either process – so don’t forget conditioner!

And finally, remember that both processes involve chemicals that could potentially damage your hair over time if done incorrectly or too frequently without proper care between sessions.

Does colour remover remove bleach?

You can’t use a hair colour remover on bleached hair since bleach isn’t a colour!

Hyrodgen peroxide lightens your natural pigment by breaking up its molecules.

So it removes colour, not the other way around!

Hair colour remover before and after.

color strip red to blonde
color remover vs bleach chocolate brown to golden blonde instagram
color remover black to ash brown

How bad is colour remover for your hair?

These magic potions are fabulous at stripping your locks of any colour, leaving them a blank canvas for you to start over with.

But is this really something we should be doing every time we want a new look?

If you’ve ever dyed your hair and then tried to remove the hair dye, you’ll know that it’s pretty much impossible to get the colour out completely.

So you end up repeating the process over and over again until more of the pigments are removed – which means more damage for your hair in the long run!

It strips out everything from your locks including any natural oils or moisture which can lead to dryness, breakage, and even split ends if left untreated after stripping away colour.

The trick is to give your hair extra TLC before, during and after the colour removal process.


  • Make sure you rinse out the product really well.
  • Seal the hair shaft with a blast of cold water.
  • Use a deep conditioning treatment two days before and straight after processing.
  • Always use a heat protector spray before drying and styling.
  • If you can, wait a couple of days before dyeing your hair again.
  • Use a good toner to cool down any warm tones left in your hair.
  • Get regular trims to get rid of split ends and keep hair looking healthier.

Can you bleach your hair right after stripping it?

It’s not good idea to bleach your hair right after stripping it.

You can bleach your hair twice in one day. But just because something is possible doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for everyone!

The colour will probably come out better and you’ll be able to get all of that hair dye in one go.

The downside is that you’re going to have some major breakage and damage from the chemical process so soon after stripping your hair.

You don’t want to bleach your hair too often. You might want to wait at least a week or two before attempting this because it could lead to damaged ends.

If you’re unsure, ask your hairdresser.

They can make an assessment based on how much colour you’re trying to remove and the condition of your hair.

Colour remover or bleach bath?

If your hair has been dyed many times, or you’re trying to remove a particularly stubborn colour like black hair dye or blue, you could try a bleach bath.

A bleach bath or bleach wash is a kinder way to use bleach.

It mixes hydrogen peroxide with shampoo to dilute the strength. Making it gentler on your hair.

If you don’t think removers will be strong enough but you don’t like the idea of strong chemicals, a bleach bath process could be for you.

Should I use colour remover or bleach?

There’s no reason you can’t use both, if you’re careful and take care of your hair.

You can always start off by trying a remover and see how that turns out.

Don’t expect a perfect white hair base.

You’ll likely end up with warmth in your hair and tones of red or orange from left behind pigment.

Remember you’ll be dyeing your hair again so don’t worry.

Just take it into consideration when you pick your new hair dye colour.

And you can always use toners to cool it down and correct the colour.

Which is the best hair colour remover?

There are a load of easy to use products you can try to get rid of unwanted dye and pigment.

Just pick from one of the ones below and off you go!

You can read more about each one in How to remove hair dye at home | 11 easy ways. Good luck!

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Best hair colour removers

SolutionLooks likeHow it worksBuy it now
Head & Shoulders Shampooq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00S18NV40&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBhow to remove hair dye at homeA shampoo that's high in sulphates will help to fade colour.
L'Oreal Paris Colorista Hair Colour & Dye Removerq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B077N77HS6&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBhow to remove hair dye at homeRemoves colour from blonde hair without bleach.
Scott Cornwall Decolour Remover q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00KCKR33U&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBhow to remove hair dye at homeRemoves permanent colours but cannot remove bleach.
JoBaz Hair Colour Remover Extra Strengthq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B009ODQEBI&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBhow to remove hair dye at homeShrinks the colour molecules of permanent and semi-permanent dyes.
Schwarzkopf Live Intense Lightenerq? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00D870FMK&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBhow to remove hair dye at homeBleaches all colours including natural.

Parting words.

If you’re looking to remove dye from your hair in the near future and are wondering what’s best for you, bleach or a remover is up to personal preference.

Bleach will lighten your hair more quickly but also has its downsides like it can damage your hair if not done correctly.

A colour remover won’t change the texture of your strands as much as but can take longer than expected depending on how dark they were dyed beforehand.

Ultimately, it depends on where you want to go with this! We hope that our blog post helps clarify which option may be right for you! Good luck!