What color covers orange hair? The super quick fix to banish brass.

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We all know that orange is the new black, but when it comes to hair, that’s not a good thing! Ginger and copper are the kind of on-trend orangey shades we love. But if you’re looking at unwanted brassy tresses in the mirror, you’ll need to know what color covers orange hair.

You’re in luck! We know that finding the right color can be a difficult task.

Luckily, we’ve got you and your orange mane covered. This article will tell you what colors you can use to get rid of unwanted brassiness and quick wins you can try to fix it for good.

Read on!

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What color covers orange hair?

  • #1 Natural Blue Black
  • #2 Indigo
  • #3 Downtown Denim
  • #4 Electric Blue
  • #5 Dark Burgundy Brown
  • #6 Deep violet
  • #7 Plum
  • #8 Vibrant red
  • #9 Burgundy
  • #10 Black

What are the best colors to cover up orange hair?

The best colors to cover up icky orange hair color are those with a purple, rich red, black or blue base.

Blue and purple pigments counteract red and brassy orange tones as they are opposite colors so cancel each other out.

Black is a solid color that’s able to cancel out all colors – be careful if you choose black as it’s hard to get out of your hair!

If you take a look at the hair color wheel that the rules of all hair colors abide by, you’ll see that blue is directly opposite orange.

That’s why we use things like blue shampoos to neutralise unwanted brassy, orange tones in brown hair to correct it and restore the cooler color.

what colour covers orange hair color correction wheel

Why does hair turn orange?

Hair that is too light can become brassy, aka turns orange.

Unwanted orange tones can also happen when your hair is dyed. The pigment molecules in the dye interact with the molecules in the cuticle, creating unwanted strong yellow or orange tones.

Brown and brunette hair tends to draw more orange tones.

Blonde hair draws more yellow tones but it can depend on your natural hair color and undertones too.

If you have used blonde hair dye or have bleached hair then this will be more noticeable, but even natural blonde hair that has been colored over time will turn warmer than intended when using products that include peroxide, ammonia, silicone and alcohol.

Also when the dye is not completely covered by the hair – like when your hair dye job is a bit patchy and uneven – it results in orange tones that need to be neutralized.

Orange hair before and after.

before and after brassy hair toned color instagram
unwanted hair color toned instagram post

How do I cover up orange hair?

Covering this color can be tricky. It’s not like there’s a hair magic potion and voila, fresh new locks.

Plus the fact that orange is such an unappealing color to some people (no shade, we don’t mean on-trend copper and ginger).

So when it comes to covering up your orange hue, what do you use? Well here are three options!

  1. Bleach your hair with a high-lift bleach so that it’s as light as possible before applying a new color.
  2. Apply a semi-permemnt hair dye or permanent color or professional toner over the top.
  3. Use temporary colors until it grows out (this is so high maintenance though!).

How do I tone orange hair?

It’s easy to tone your hair at home using the right products. There are three types of toner you can use.

Method #1 Use a profesional toner.

Professional toners are mixed and applied by your hairdresser much stronger than the ones you buy in stores. It’s important to use it safely though or else you could damage your hair.

You should only get a professional toner if you already know how to tone, otherwise using one can make things worse instead of better.

Method #2 Use a glossing toner

Glossing toners are the easiest to use at home. This product is applied over your hair color, left on for 5-15 minutes, and then rinsed off. It can be used on darker or lighter hair, but not on bleached hair.

These toners come in many colors, so you can choose whether you want to lighten or darken your hair.

They’re safe to use and won’t cause any damage to your hair – although some people find them drying and tricky to remove.

Method #3 Use a toning shampoo

Purple or blue shampoos are also a type of toner. They add color to your hair without completely changing it.

They neutralize unwanted orange or yellow tones in your hair and can be used once a week to keep your color cool or tone down hair color that’s too bright.

If you choose a technique other than applying glossing toners or shampoos don’t leave it in for too long because you could cause serious damage to your hair.

Will hair dye cover orange hair?

In most cases, yes! The right color hair dye get rid of orange hair.

There are many different types of hair dye, so it is important to find the right one for your hair.

How well it covers orange depends on the color you are dyeing your hair and what tone you want to use. Think about if your hair is warm or cool-toned and choose a dye accordingly.

Colors with purple, blue or black bases and red hair dye will cover orange hair.

Orange hair dye will also do!

Always use the color codes that are given on the box of your hair dye. Follow instructions carefully and make sure you do a strand test first.

Your hairdresser will be able to help you get rid of unwanted or brassy tones in your new dye job. Don’t be afraid to ask questions!

TOP TIP!

If you have bleached hair and want to cover unwanted orange or green tones then make sure that the color that you pick doesn’t get deeper once applied – otherwise, it will turn out too dark instead of lighter like you wanted!

How to fix orange hair with box dye.

There are a whole range of hair dyes you can buy off the shelf that will give you the right tone and shade to cover any unwanted color yourself at home.

Here are 10 hair dye colors that will do the job!

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#1 Natural Blue Black 

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The first thing we noticed about this particular box dye was that the formula is pretty thick.

This makes it easy to apply but also makes your hair feel really soft as the color sinks in and works its magic.

The color was dark at first – more black than blue – with glints of blue that catch the light and make your hair shimmer.

Go for this if you want to hide your horrid tones with a subtle, blue black.

Best for: Blue black color.

#2 Indigo.

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This is a dark color with purpley-blue undertones and as it says on the box – the lighter your hair, the longer your wear.

We left it in longer for than the instructions to be sure the color would take as a few reviews said it didn’t.

The result was a gorgeous, rich deep purple-blue hue but not as black as the box. Use this if you have dark hair already to add a purpley tint.

Best for: Dark purple tints.

#3 Downtown Denim.

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We love the Feria Shimmering range, particularly the edgy Glam Grunge colors like Dusty Mauve and Vintage Teal.

We left it on for 10 mins more than the recommended 25 minutes, but could see it zapping the orange in our hair from the start.

It is quite black that’s true. But the color is not too harsh against cool skin tones.

Best for: Shimmering dark blue color.

#4 Electric Blue.

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00PXYZP9E&Format= SL250 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBschwartzkopf electric blue

This is one of Schwartzkopf’s dazzling urban metallic, permanent hair colors so we were expecting intense results. We weren’t disappointed.

It’s almost a steel blue color with it’s shimmery silver tones.

There’s a great color-guide on the box and you’ll need to be blonde to get the box color. Go for it if you want orange-free blue with metallic tones.

Best for: Cool blue tones with a metallic shine.

#5 Dark Burgundy Brown.

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Nice n easy dyes are easy to put on and feel like their conditioning your hair while they get to work on your head.

The color result was a subtle, reddish-purple hue that was super warm and rich.

Most of all, our hair felt amazingly soft and in good condition. This makes our list just for that.

Best for: Burgundy softness and shine.

#6 Deep Violet.

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This came with a good amount of creme that was easy to apply and had an ingenious design that means the box can hold the bottle.

The color is fab – our light brown hair now has all over pinky-purple tones that gives a lustrous, even color. And zero orange!

Best for: All over even violet.

#7 Plum.

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We tried this color on warm brown hair with red undertones and the result was shimmering purple tresses of joy.

It was a little messy to apply but the formula was generous and the end color was the most rich and intense perfect plum.

It may wash out to red but it’s still going strong after 5 washes so all good.

Best for: Intense plum perfection.

#8 Vibrant red.

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B006L68WUW&Format= SL250 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBnutrisse vibrant red hair dye

This is full-on perfect pillarbox red if your hair is already lightened. We used it on blonde hair and the result was a bold, block color of fire engine red.

The only problem with this is – it’ll fade to orange! So stock up on boxes to keep it topped up.

Best for: Warm pillarbox red.

#9 Burgundy.

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This is a darker color with rich purple and blue tones. 

The foam is a revelation, so easy to apply and sinks into our hair to really penetrate it with color. (You can find out more about why we love John Frieda Foam Precision Dyes here). 

The color had real depth with multi-dimensional glints and really soft from the sweet smelling conditioner.

It does become lighter after a couple of washes and starts to appear a lighter red than purple. But it’s cool tones cancelled our orange and that’s what it’s all about.

Best for: Cool red with a hint of purple.

#10 Black. 

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B0789FQB9Z&Format= SL250 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=GB&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=colouredhairc 21&language=en GBnice n easy black hair dye

This is easy to apply and the formula is thick so it stays on your head not your bathroom floor. It’s easier to be more precise with it so your forehead won’t be dyed too!

As for the color? We needed two boxes to get it really black. But the color came out rich and glossy and in really good condition. Orange hair is a distant memory.

Best for: Mess-free black hair dye.


What hair color suits me?

If you’re feeling unsure about which if these hair colors will suit you, you can find out by taking our quiz!

Just answer a few quick questions to find out what hair colors most suit you! Click on the image below.

Which Hair Color Suits Me?

You can also try on some virtual hair colors with the Best hair color changing apps you need to use this year!

Why does my hair turn orange?

Most of us have had that moment when we catch a glimpse of our reflection in just the right light and realize – yikes! – our hair is definitely not the shade of auburn or light ash blonde it used to be.

Turns out there’s a science behind why our hair color changes over time, and why it can turn a nasty shade of orange.

This phenomenon happens when bleached hair is exposed to UVA and UVB rays, causing the cuticles to be damaged.

The melanin deposits inside the cuticle oxidize due to sun exposure, thus resulting in an orangey-reddish hue.

Hair can also turn this vibrant shade due to many other different factors that are to do with your lifestyle and hair care routine:

If you’ve been spending a lot of time on the beach or in swimming pools with chlorine present, your mane might start to appear too orange like. Hard water and minerals can also cause brassy orange hair.

They say blondes have more fun, but if yours fades too quickly after bleaching then you may be opting for a toner to bring back some vibrancy – but toners with warm undertones often cause your hair to veer towards the orange end of the color spectrum.

With all these reasons for your hair to turn orange, it could seem like you might be stuck living life with orange hair strands forever – but not at all!

There are many ways to counteract orange brassy hair, from switching up your haircare products or investing in a few purple shampoos and conditioning masks that will restore your beautiful blonde shade and keep your cool tone intact.

How do I avoid orange hair?

It’s still easier to avoid orange tones than to remove them once they’ve appeared. Try to avoid too many washes, as shampooing too often can loosen the dye from your hair.

Avoid using products with sulfates, parabens and alcohol if you have orange tones since those ingredients will only make the problem worse.

It’s also a good idea to use a deep conditioner every week or two to keep your hair healthier.

Wearing a hat in the sunshine will protect your color from UV rays.

To get rid of an unwanted color altogether you’re going need a professional stylist at your local salon to tone your hair for you.

If you’re nervous about trying this at home then try glossing toners first since it is much safer than other options!

Does purple shampoo fix orange hair?

Purple shampoo is a modern miracle worker when it comes to taking brassiness out of blonde colors and grey hair.

This color-correcting shampoo neutralizes the orange/yellow tones in bleached or highlighted hair giving it that ash blonde look we all love.

Purple pigments counteract the orange and yellow hues from fading, leaving you with a more natural and pleasant looking color. Purple hair masks will nourish and condition your hair too.

But make sure you don’t overdo it; use it once or twice a week max so that your hair will look healthy and vibrant.


Parting words

So if you have unwanted tones in your hair, don’t fret. Now you know how to get rid of them.

There are plenty of ways and hair dye colors available to help you cover it up. Stock up for next time there’s a hair emergency!

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!