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Hey there, dolls! When we think of summer, we tend to think of bright colors, chlorine, and maybe damaged hair…just kidding – we think sunscreen too! Our summer hair can take quite a beating due to dunking into the pool water, the beach, and maybe just lightning it with your colorist.

Now, don’t get us wrong: lighter hair is awesome, but it’s no secret that bleach can really fry your hair. The process of lightening your hair is a chemical process that removes the pigment in the hair so that you are left with other tones. In order to achieve those platinum looks, bleach and toner are a must, but sometimes you can place things in your hair to help the process in a more natural way. According to Rachel Bodt, a senior colorist at Cutler/Redken salon, natural lightening really only works if you have fair hair with a fine texture to begin with.

Natural Bleaching

There are natural bleaching agents, such as apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, chamomile tea, or cinnamon and honey that can lighten hair gently and naturally with minimal damage. However, it’s important to keep in mind that lightening your hair on your own means you need to know about placement and where you want these lighter pieces to be. Also, hair care is equally important! You don’t want dull, lifeless hair that just sits there clinging onto life.

Of course not, so focus on hydration for your hair. Products that contain keratin are popular, and that’s because they can repair damaged hair bonds while still making the hair stiff. Everything you use on your luscious locks is meant to be in moderation! Also, should you decide to lighten at home, let your stylist know, since these natural bleaching agents can affect professional and even box color. Let’s look at a few products that can help you with that lightening process at home.

How to Naturally Lighten Your Hair

Sun Bum’s Highlighter Spray

First up: here is Sun Bum’s Highlighter Spray! This spray uses Hawaiian Lehua Honey and Lemon to help brighten your hair by amplifying the natural effects of the sun to create subtle tones and highlights. This product focuses on keeping your mane tame with products made specifically for blonde babes! It also protects against frizz, humidity, UV oxidation, and dullness with a color-enriching regimen. This spray is also perfect for natural or color-treated hair, since the hair lightener is heat-activated. Directions state to spray throughout hair just before some exposed sun time for some fresh blonde tones. Pro tip: bust out a hairdryer to boost the process and really get those highlighting effects!

Klorane Sun Lightening Spray

Next up we have Klorane Sun Lightening Spray with Chamomile & Honey! This spray is formulated with Chamomile, a plant with the petals that contain a high content of Apigenin, which is a yellow pigment shown to help lighten hair naturally and enhance shine. This is also meant for blonde to light brown hair, as very dark hair needs chemical help to lighten. This plant-based and dermatologist-tested spray can have results accelerated by the sun itself as well as any heat styling tools. Not to mention, this is a great product to touch up highlights or bayalage between visits to the salon.

John Frieda Sheer Blonde Spray

The next easy-to-use spray is this John Frieda Sheer Blonde Spray. This spray can naturally lighten hair up to two shades lighter, which is quite a bit if you’re already blonde. This gentle product is fine for overly bleached hair as well and also works on detangled hair. This spray is easily picked up at Target and wherever hair care products are sold.

John Frieda Go Blonder Shampoo

Sometimes you just want to wash your hair and be done with it. This is where John Frieda and their go blonder shampoo will soon become your fave product. This John Frieda Sheer Blonde Go Blonder Lightening Shampoo is a new and improved formula, which gradually lightens the appearance to blonde for a natural-looking sunlit blonde. You can use it daily to restore hair fibers for hair that is blonder and stronger when you use the Go Blonder shampoo & conditioner. There is no ammonia or peroxide in this, so it is ok for daily use.

Extra Tricks

If you’re looking to mix some things up at home, then try a few of these recipes too!

Lemon juice and conditioner

Lemon juice is very acidic and can burn hair on its own, so you want to mix it with a conditioner or coconut oil and see how it works. Remember, if you have dark hair, all this will do is pull up red and orange tones if anything at all.

Vitamin C

This is the application of Vitamin C to a spray bottle. Simply put, you can take Vitamin C and crush it up or get Vitamin C powder and mix it with water. Apply it and then wait until you see a lightening process; after that, wash it out.

Saltwater solution

Saltwater solution is another way to open up the hair cuticle when you have colored hair. Once the hair cuticle is open, the sun will fade out your colors, which can give you a lighter effect.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar with water is another concoction you can make. You just need to mix one part apple cider vinegar and five parts water in a spray bottle. This is great to use to get rid of the buildup in your hair from products, including even harsh water.

Baking Soda

Combine baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Combine one cup of baking soda with three tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide, mix it up, and apply to your hair. Leave the mask on for 30 to 60 minutes (but no more than 60 minutes), and your hair will turn 1-2 shades lighter!

Honey and Cinnamon Hair Mask

Last of all, we had to mention this honey and cinnamon hair mask. The trace amounts of hydrogen peroxide in honey are activated by the cinnamon, and when the mixture sits on your hair long enough, it will lighten up to two shades. Create a mask by combining two tablespoons of honey, one tablespoon of cinnamon, and one tablespoon of olive oil (this is for extra hydration, not a must).

To Sum Up

Overall, natural hair lightening really only works for fine, blonde hair. It won’t significantly lighten your hair naturally if you don’t already have a light foundation. If you are serious about wanting to lighten darker hair, then a hair care professional is your best bet. You want to be mindful when using chemicals on your hair, however, if longevity and hair health are important to you.

Don’t trust every TikTok and beauty influencer when it comes to hair lightening. If you do have very dark hair and it seems darker and harder to work with than normal, we highly recommend a clarifying shampoo. Clarifying shampoos will remove product build-up and chlorine, which can be a killer to blonde hair as well.

If you have blonde hair and you want to go brighter, also use a clarifying shampoo to take all that gunk out of your hair. Anything that interacts with your hair in a chemical way could leave room for damage or a reaction you didn’t expect. There’s nothing worse when you’re trying to do stuff at home and then clumps of hair fall out or break off. We don’t have time for all that. Here’s to a safe and happy natural lightening hair adventure. Of course, if you’d like to share your thoughts, comment below or find us on Instagram @successible_life. And if you want to show off your natural hair lightening routine (and success!), just use #SuccessibleBeauty for a chance to be reposted.

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