Category Archives: Hair Dyes

[Hair/Beauty] inmidnight’s Mega MasterPost for all Things Hair

Updated on November 14, 2016


Disclaimer: I am not a licensed hair care/dye expert.  

I’ve researched a lot about dyeing and maintaining hair after bleaching and coloring, so I thought to gather them all in one post, as I’ve started to become an unofficial hair consultant for dyeing and bleaching with friends and acquaintances. HAHA

This post will definitely be helpful on your hair journey too, especially if you have dark, thick hair and/or are planning to:

  • Bleach hair (inc. Bleach Bath/Bleach Shampoo)
  • Tone Hair (inc. DIY Toning)
  • Take care of hair after bleaching
  • Dye hair red
  • Dye hair purple
  • Take care of hair after coloring
  • Improve hair care
  • Remove hair color
  • DIY Double Color + Color Layering, etc.

This will contain a number of links I’ve used as references over the years, personal experiences, and photos.

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Patience, padawan. You’ll need lots of that. Doing your hair on your own isn’t a simple afternoon task-it takes weeks, even months.

Of course, you can (likely) skip this DIY method and go straight to a salon for everything. If I had the money for that kind of upkeep, I…probably still wouldn’t.

But if you DO go to a salon, remember these things:

  • You’re not supposed to get hurt. You may have heard that bleaching may burn your scalp and sting, but if your stylist is doing it properly, it shouldn’t.
  • You can get reactions (like allergies) from hair products (dye, bleach, etc). You won’t be able to test your skin’s reaction to these at salons (unless you bring your own products for them to use).
  • You won’t be able to do a strand test to see if the color you want will come out at a salon-unless you’ve bought the hair dye for application yourself. In which case, you’ve already spent double–buying the dye on your own and going to a salon for application/upkeep.
  • Don’t be shy to ask for what you want, or get something redone. It’s your hair, you’ll be the one walking around with it, you’re paying for the service. Be nice, chat, and help them get it right.
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I had long, dark Asian hair. It’s very thick–you can separate it into two sections and each section could be enough for one person’s head.


I had already colored my hair (red) at a salon once, a year or two before this photo, and did not end up liking it. It faded to an orangey-blonde in the span of a week. I ended up coloring over it with brown and letting my hair grow out. I stayed brown for quite some time until I decided to try going red again, this time on my own.


To learn about going red, check out my Finally Red Post and gratuitous red hair post.

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To go from dark hair to colored hair, I had to study.


Basically: Colors opposite each other on the wheel cancel each other out.


To go from dark hair to a lighter and unnatural color, I had to bleach. BUT! Like most of you, I was afraid. I did not use bleach straight up. Instead, I performed a bleach bath over the course of several weeks.

A bleach bath is not as harsh on the hair as bleaching since the shampoo mixed in tones it down. You can use any amount (1 tsp, 30 grams, etc) for your hair as long as you keep the ratio steady.

My personal preference: 1 part Bleach, 1 part Developer, 2 parts Anti-Dandruff Shampoo. Mix these all in a non-metallic container and apply to hair. Process under a shower cap. Leave on for 30 minutes.

Here’s two different formulations for a Bleach Bath:



  • HBC Bleach (P90 per pack)
  • HBC Developer (P35 per 6ml bottle), 9% volume
  • Head and Shoulders Shampoo OR
  • Clear (Men’s) Shampoo

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Neutralize any unwanted color by referring to the chart above. When starting from dark hair, you’ll need to bleach several shades lighter to get to blonde. Once you’re in a blonde phase, you can start toning to remove the yellow/orange brassy undertones. Or you can apply color once you’re blonde.

  • If you’re choosing darker shades like red, purple, and so on, you’ll be fine just moving straight on to color.
  • If you’re going for a pastel shade or blue, you have to tone. Blue is grouped here since hair usually has the brassy yellow undertone once bleached. Yellow + blue = green.

You can purchase a toner online from Rainbowhead.PH.

Wella Toners

I use Wella T14 to get rid of red/orange tones  and Wella T18 to get closer to platinum / white.

To use:

  1. Mix 1 part toner to two parts developer.
  2. Apply and leave on for around 20 minutes.
  3. Rinse.

If you’re not up to spending, here’s how to do a DIY toner.

DIY Toner: Violet Dye + Deep Conditioner or Hot Oil Treatment

Mix 1 tiny bit of violet dye (quarter or less of a teaspoon) with at least 3 tablespoons of Deep Conditioner or Hot Oil Treatment.

Keep repeating the process to get a lighter shade. This will take awhile.

NOTE: The DIY method will require patience. Just use a Wella Toner if you need to go platinum blonde or gray fast.


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  • Condition, condition, condition!


    • Use a deep conditioner. 
      • A deep conditioner is a product you put after you condition your hair normally (sometimes called a hair mask), and you should leave it on for about 15-30 minutes (though a lot of variants have a 3-minute version, but I don’t trust them). So get those foot spas ready, shave your legs, perform a mini concert–you’ll be in the shower awhile.
    • Use a hot oil treatment.
      • After you’ve bleached hair of its natural keratin, you want it back. Slather on hot oil after bleaching and maintain the treatment until your hair feels healthy again. Your hair’s already damaged, but it can still look and feel nice and soft if you maintain it.
      • Don’t risk it.
      • Condition / deep condition / use hot oil / oil instead until your hair feels healthy again (1 week to 1 month, depending on how enthusiastic you went with repeat bleaching).
  • Do not use heat products on your hair. If you’ve gone through a lot of bleaching, your hair will fry.


      • Kerastase Chroma Captive Color Conditioner


      • Kerastase Chroma Captive Color Shine Intensifying Mask


      • L’Oreal Mythic Oil This is pretty much a miracle product for me. My hair dried out because of bleaching (some parts felt straw like, even if they didn’t look it, especially after showering). I used this for a week and like ~magic~, my hair was back to normal.
      • HBC Keratin Hot Oil Treatment This is effective and very affordable.
      • Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner This smells so gooood. It works wonders, too! Note that this doesn’t work as well after a while. I’ve noticed my hair didn’t get the same super soft effects after what I’ve done to it this year. ( Around 6-8 bleach baths since I cut my hair early this year).
      • Deep Conditioner Watson’s. It doesn’t really work.

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Quick Things You Need To Know:

There is more than one type of hair color but I’ll only be discussing two here:

  • Permanent dyes don’t wash out; they penetrate inside your hair folicles and stay there. They also need a mixer/oxidizer (ammonia). They’re usually the ones found widely available in the Philippines  (L’Oreal, Garnier, Kolours, ETC).
  • Semi-permanent dyes wash out/fade every time you shampoo–they’re just a color layer on top of the hair  (this is why you can’t put a lighter color on top of a darker color). Rainbow colored dyes like Manic Panic, Special Effects, etc. are semi-permanent.
  • Manic Panic, Special Effects, etc. are also vegan dyes. They are ammonia-free, paraben-free, PPD-free, and not tested on animals. It’s also safe to leave on top of your head for hours since it has conditioner-like effects (unlike permanent dyes).
  • More about Permanent Vs. Semi-Permanent (and other stages in between) here.


      1. Always do a skin patch test first.
      2. If you have a specific shade you want to achieve, do a strand test. This will help you gauge if you can apply the color directly to your hair, if you need to lighten your hair more, or if you need to lighten the hair dye or mix it with another color.
      3. Color! You can do it two ways:
        1. Apply the dye as instructed (instructions are on the bottle).
        2. Mix the dye with conditioner to lighten the dye + get more out of it. I do this option since all my dyes are pretty dark and this helps me save 😀 ALSO WHEN I TRIED NOT DILUTING IT THAT ONE TIME, MY HAIR STAINED EVERYTHING IT CAME IN CONTACT WITH (ESP. MY HANDS) FOR DAYS. DAYS! NOTE: Do this ONLY for vegan dyes (the kind you don’t need to mix with peroxide!)
      4. Leave the dye on your head for 1 hour to overnight to let the color soak completely. This will make the dye last longer.

DYES I’ve Used:

♥ – Recommended




Classic red lip thing that I like~ NYX Butter Lipstick in Mary Janes.

      • MANIC PANIC Violet Night


        •  SPECIAL EFFECTS Deep Purple (Undiluted) mixed with MANIC PANIC Violet Night 
After two shampoos.
      • SPARKS Pink Kiss
I bleached out Violet Night and Deep Purple which left me with hot pink + blonde roots (from brown/black). Since I wanted pink all over, I tried Sparks. See the top, blonde part? And the purple parts at the tips? Those are  the parts I used Pink Kiss on. It didn’t take so I ended up dip dyeing with Violet Night at the end instead and leaving the top as is.
      • Arctic Fox Virgin Pink (heavily diluted with conditioner)

Colourpop Limbo on Asian Skin and Colored Hair

        • Manic Panic Cotton Candy Pink mixed with Arctic Fox Virgin Pink 
This is the first time I used a whole jar without mixing it with conditioner. I LOVE IT but it’s the fastest fading color I’ve tried.

Some notes:

      • Vampire Red is the shizz. I WORE IT SWIMMING IN THE OCEAN AND IT STAYED HAHA


      • SFX Deep Purple fades to pink. Bleach it and it becomes EVEN MORE PINK.


      • SPARKS is useless. It didn’t color at all and I used a tube and a half without diluting the dye in conditioner. D:<

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I can practically hear you think, BUT ‘SEMI-PERMANENT’ I WENT THROUGH ALL THAT TROUBLE JUST FOR IT TO FADE IN 6-10 WASHES?? Chill, my friend. You can make it last longer by taking care of your hair:


wpid-20151008_080621.jpgDo not shampoo as often. I only shampoo once or twice a week. When my hair starts getting oily three days after the last shampoo, I spritz dry shampoo on and am good for another day. Or I keep it up in a bun or ponytail.

      • On shampoo days, USE COLD WATER ONLY.
        • Warm/hot water strips the color out faster. Stick to cold water for your hair.
      • Use sulfate-free products. Having “for colored hair” on the bottle isn’t enough; make sure your shampoo and conditioners are sulfate-free. Check the ingredients label.
      • Condition, condition, condition!


      • Kerastase Chroma Captive Color line (Shampoo, Conditioner, Deep Conditioner).2015-12-28-09.43.28-1.jpg.jpegThis is by far, the best one I’ve tried. It leaves my hair feeling soft and smooth. It’s also the most expensive at P3,380 for the shampoo and conditioner at David’s Salon. The Deep Conditioner came in a smaller size bottle for free. Since this is expensive, I only use the line once every week when I’ve just changed my hair color and still want to maintain it. When I’ve had my hair color for more than a month (aka I’m getting lazy to maintain it), I stop using this and stick to L’Oreal. 
      • Batiste Dry Shampoo

wpid-20151008_080727.jpgSpritz and go! Trying to look for the seller I bought mine from, at a Karl Edwards bazaar–I got this size for only P600.

      • Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Conditioner
      • L’Oreal Sulfate-Free Shampoo  I used to use the conditioner too, but Pantene’s 3 Minute Miracle seems to work for my hair better. It barely lifts any color too, which is a plus since Pantene has sulfate.

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There are numerous ways to remove hair color, from least to most damaging. It gets tricky though, as your color removal process can depend on your current hair color.

Sample: Purple (SFX Deep Purple) + Bleach Method = PINK

I am not amused.

(It’s not that I don’t like pink, it’s that I was set on being purple for awhile but my hair took matters into its own hands! Haha)


Just use clarifying or anti-dandruff shampoo to strip the color.

Coming from Violet Night

Vitamin C Treatment

Crush 10 vitamin C tablets and mix into your shampoo. Lather and rinse. Do this over a few days.

Vit C, round 3, coming from Vampire Red. I actually like how this turned out.

For more in-depth instructions, check out KimmiKillZombie’s hair color removal post.

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Remember the color wheel theory? When I had my accidental pink hair, I stripped it off color as far as it would go. Unfortunately, I think the pink already stained the blonde so I had no choice but to go for a much darker color over the pink.

As light as I dared to go. My hair was already super drying out by this point, so I just tried to get it healthy before coloring again. My next color was…


Yes, you can do it yourself.


But it’ll be so much better if you have someone else to do it for you.

Two colors on your own:

I separated my hair into four quadrants. The front half, I pinned back. I started to work on the back parts first, coloring the top quarter with SFX Deep Purple. I made sure my strokes were uneven, so it won’t look like a straight horizontal line. Next, I mixed SFX Deep Purple and SFX Burgundy Wine and overlapped the ends of that to about half an inch down. Then I colored the rest with SFX Burgundy Wine. Once done, I wrapped them in foil and pinned to the top of my head. 20151020_015106.jpg

I removed the pins from the front part. I lathered in SFX Deep Purple Dye. Apparently, the colors look great in a bun, as I get more strangers complimenting my hair / talking to me about my hair when it’s up in a bun (even my stylist complimented it).

Update: This one is my third attempt, mostly by accident. I was going for full pink but Sparks didn’t stick at all! So I left my roots blonde and just dipped my ends in leftover purple.


That’s it, for now! Still looking for ways to go back to blonde (for my my next color)–purple stains like it never wants to leave, ugh.

Leaving with a photo-collage that both horrifies me (the most I’ve ever done with solely my face on it, it’s giving me heebie jeebies) and amuses me because–HAIR! COLOR!

2013 to early 2016.

{Hair} The Road to Purple Hair and the Post-Purple Agenda (Spoiler alert: IT TURNS PINK)

Warning: Lots of selfies ahead. Office selfies.

I’m back with another hair post a year after my Finally Red post and months after my gratuitous red hair post (which documented my hair journey from 2014 to the first half of 2015).

Since those two entries, I have:
♥ been blonde (that I did not like while I had it, but now miss)
♥ tried (and achieved) purple hair (in one try! BOO YEAH)
♥ accidentally sported pink hair(!)

As last seen on my gratuitous red hair post, I went back to brown to even out my hair:

Which eventually started fading on its own, despite me using a permanent dye. So I took it as a sign to color again. Haha! Here we go with one bleach bath (bleach powder mixed with 40% volume oxidizing lotion + equal parts shampoo):

Doing my best Kermit the Frog impression. Photo taken May 2, 2015

And then another bleach bath, which moved me from brown territory to brassy blonde pretty fast:

Photo taken May 28, 2015

So I used 1/4 tsp Manic Panic Violet Night mixed with 2 tsps HBC Keratin Hot Oil Treatment as a toner.

Manic Panic
Manic Panic Violet Night bought from funkystreaks

Toners remove the brassy tones from your hair by cancelling out the color. Color Wheel theory is applied here–since my hair was brassy/yellow-ish, I had to use a purple toner.

I decided to make the toner myself (instead of buying one) so I could use the MP dye for touch-ups.

And the result:

Photo taken on June 1, 2015

Blonde(ish)! Here’s a closer look:


I didn’t think blonde looked good on me and I couldn’t wait to get rid of it, especially since I’d been blonde for two months (from removing the brown until this) so I could dye my hair.

Once I was blonde, I had our help help me put on Special Effects Deep Purple. In my first post about Red Hair, I said I wouldn’t be able to sleep in with hair dye and a lot of other things in regards to dyeing and maintaining hair–most of which I’ve done the past year HAHA.

I used:

1/3 of the Special Effects Deep Purple bottle mixed with 2 parts HBC Virgin Coconut Oil Conditioner (a cheap white colored conditioner). I found out later that Coconut Oil actually covers your hair and protects the dye, soooo I’ll probably try another conditioner next time.

Special Effects Deep Purple. Ordered from RainbowHead.
Special Effects Deep Purple. Ordered from RainbowHead.

I let this sit for 6+ hours (and I might have slept in it overnight, I can’t remember now). Here’s the next day results:

FINALLY PURPLE ♥ | Taken June 07
It took me a year to get this
Classic red lip thing that I like~ NYX Butter Lipstick in Mary Janes.

Still okay 2 days later:


Something I didn’t know / never came up on my purple hair research: purple hair fades hella fast. They say red fades fast but nope, this faded waaaay faster! Maybe it’s because I used a different method to maintain this than I did with red?

To maintain my purple hair,  I only shampooed twice a week. I used Batiste Dry Shampoo for the days in between (like I did with my red hair).


(Here’s where I think I went wrong:) I used L’Oreal EVERPURE Color Care conditioner and Clairol Shimmer Lights Purple Shampoo on the days I washed my hair.

Clairol Shimmer Lights Shampoo. Ordered from RainbowHead.

I used the Purple Shampoo to maintain (instead of the usual dye + conditioner mix to maintain once a week) based on one YouTube video that said it works more effectively. Her hair was this gorgeous shade of purple that I loved, so I chose to follow her advice.


July 30, 2015

To maintain red hair, I followed the dye + conditioner tip, once every two to three weeks (because I’m lazy).  I should’ve used MP Violet Night mixed with conditioner to refresh my violet hair every week as I originally planned instead of following the YT video. But I was also worried it would change the color into a different (brighter) violet, so I didn’t.

So my SFX Deep Purple hair began fading over a few weeks time, even with care.  On the days I washed, there was still a lot of purple dye going down the drain–a stark difference from red, which stopped after a couple of weeks. Even until now, the color still gets stripped when I shampoo.

And then one day… I woke up with magenta and pink streaks. Seriously, what is happening here HAHA:

A couple of weeks later.

Apparently, SFX Deep Purple fades to pink. I did not know that. Since I’ve only dyed my hair red, which just fades to orange / a shade pretty close to pre-dye state, I never thought that other unnatural colors would fade to different colors! I assumed they’d go lighter over time. HAHA

Taken August 2015

And so to get rid of the pink, I decided to bleach shampoo.

Bleach materials.

WRONG MOVE. HAHA It just made the pink stand out more.

Bleach reacts with colored dyes. It can turn dyes into different colors, instead of acting as a color remover/stripper.

Here’s my no make-up bitch IDG what’s happening face with neon pink hair. So kids, SFX Deep Purple + Bleach = NEON, NEON PINK.

Taken September 23

After I googled my error (and tried to find ways to fix it), I found that the best remedy is to just keep shampooing with clarifying / anti-dandruff shampoo. So it’s what I’ve been doing the past month.

Now it’s just a hot mess of roots, bleached roots, peach, and pink/magenta. It isn’t as loud/bright as it was a couple of weeks ago (thank goodness).


I’m looking at going into pastel hair, so I’m trying to decide between buying a yellow-green dye to cancel out the pink-magenta hair or bleaching to see what color I end up with (HAHAHA), then using a Wella Toner after. Help, anyone?

So I got impatient and did a bleach bath over the weekend. Guess what? NOTHING HAPPENED HAHAHA /rolls

October 12, 2015
October 12, 2015


At least my roots evened out, giving an interesting fade to the pink? I’m going to try Vitamin C-ing it as a last ditch effort (anyone know where  I can buy Color Oops locally?), then I’ll just dye over it if nothing happens. Dun dun dun.


Unnatural colors turn into other colors on fading/when treated.  Remember to Google what colors your chosen hair color and brand fades to before purchase.
Use bleach only as a last ditch effort color remover. Here are other options to remove color.
Purple stains. While I barely had any problem with Special Effects Burgundy Wine and Manic Panic’s Vampire Red, my purple journey and it’s fading effects ended up staining random objects I use/d daily.
People will touch your hair more.  Uhm guys, why.
Be prepared for: getting called Hit Girl, Viber Girl, HOOQ; more people randomly talking to you because of your hair (introvert me freaks out when this happens), purple stains everywheeeeeeeeeeeere, and eventually ending up pink.

Finally Red aka My HairVentures

Redhair Special Effects Burgundy Wine dye
Special Effects Burgundy Wine in natural light


(( I meant for this entry to be a quick tutorial on how I got my hair (originally a very dark brown) to this shade but I guess I have all this hair feels and I ended up typing my hair journey. Uhm. ))

This is after an expensive salon attempt (the first time I tried dyeing, and the only attempt that burned / made my scalp itch) that gave me a dark brown-red-when-flash-is-on-or-only-when-direct-light-hits that faded to orange two days later (the salon shampooed my hair after dyeing AND told me that I didn’t have to wait or do anything special for the dye to stick, so I shampooed the day after, too). They overcharged me too- we agreed on their standard mid-length hair price (my hair was barely shoulder length) then they charged me for the price for long hair since they used two tubes of dye (without informing me that they were going to do so). I’ve never gone back (and am never going back) to that place again.

Once I was crying (figuratively) and throwing a tweet and text fit over my orange hair (TWO DAYS!), I googled. There I learned that shampoo after dyeing was a big no-no and so much more. I’ve never gone back to a hair salon to get my hair dyed – after that, it was all home dye kits. There’s a lack of red – and other non-brown, non-brown/moussy blonde, non-black colors in the Philippine market. Like, seriously, why are all the brands importing and/or making the same fucking brown/black colors? Rhetorical question. Anyway, I chose and had been maintaining brown hair from 2011-2013 with Garnier Nutrisse Cream, since I couldn’t get my hands on any red dye.

Until this year – when REVLON’S Colorsilk Luminista line had a sale. I bought a box of Red (150) for around P399 (from P499). It’s too expensive for me to keep using that brand, so I tried looking for a cheaper alternative – and I found HP’s Hair Crystal Color (in Copper 6.6, around P130 for 60ml, HBC). I bought one but this is uncharted territory since the dye was permanent and not semi-permanent, unlike everything I’ve tried.

Now, I didn’t want to use these dyes until I lightened my hair. But I really, really did not want to bleach. Too many horror stories! Too much scary hair I see around from people who do it! Nooo! But I knew that I needed to lighten my hair somewhat to get red to show up on my hair. LUCKILY my friend Rei had been trying and blogging about bleach shampoo for a few months. I asked her about it, then started looking for tutorials and videos for myself.

It seemed a lot safer and a lot less damaging than straight-up bleaching. And since I knew someone who had tried it (repeatedly), and I had felt and seen her hair up close, I took the plunge.

I bleach shampooed 2 times in a 3 week period, following Kimmi’s bleach bath tutorial (except for the bleach mixture; I followed the mixture from XoVain). I used 1 part bleach (HP Bleach Powder, P75, HBC), 1 part developer (HP Oxidizing Lotion 6%, around P30-40 for 2oz, HBC), 2 parts shampoo (Herbal Essences Color Me Happy). I used a Keratin Hot Oil treatment (HP Keratin Hot Oil Treatment, P150 for 250g, HBC) twice a week during this period. Then once I thought my hair was light enough, I did a strand test for both brands. The HBC one turned out to be this extremely bright Yeng Constantino Red – which I didn’t think I could pull off; I wanted a cooler red (think Paramore’s lead singer circa 2008 or Ariana Grande as Cat Valentine), so I used the Revlon one instead.

Then I dyed it with REVLON ColorSilk Luminista in RED. Here was the result:

Me (LEFT); Day 1 of Revlon Colorsilk Luminista RED in Natural Light. Photo taken first week of APRIL.

It was auburn, but nowhere near the box color. Still, much better than that first salon attempt three years ago. I tried to maintain the color with dry shampoo and the Kerastase Chroma Captive Color line (Shampoo, Conditioner, Deep Conditioner. I got the deep conditioner free for buying both the Shampoo and Conditioner (P3,380 for both) at David’s Salon).

It faded to a coppery color in two months:

Photo taken in June.

Since I knew using the HBC permanent dye directly would give me really bright hair, I decided to try some tricks I learned online. I used only 1/4 of the dye in the tube, then mixed it with an equal amount of developer and 2 parts conditioner – just to amp up the color.

Photo taken July 2014.

After a month, I already had a significant a mount of regrowth, so I decided to try going full throttle again. I did a 30-45 minute bleach shampoo (don’t do it this long, I was reckless), using 2 parts shampoo (this time I used L’Oreal EVERPURE Color Care, a sulfate-free shampoo, P399 for 250ml at Landmark), 1 part developer (Colormate Color Developer 12%, P65 for 100ml, Landmark), 1 part bleach (HP Bleach Powder, P75 for 30g, HBC).


Result: Three toned hair. Seriously gross looking, color wise. Texture wise, still awesome. Immediately after the bleach shampoo, I applied the Keratin Hot Oil treatment for 30 minutes and let it process under a shower cap. Did another hot oil treatment the same week for 15 minutes.

Photo taken August 22, a week after the bleach bath.

ROOTS! The color from my bangs lifted the most, turning them yellow. Ew.

I was all set to try my new purchase – and the most expensive dye I bought so far at P1,200 from Special Effects Hair Dye in Burgundy Wine. I decided to do a strand test first because I did not want to go to work with purple hair. I don’t know if purple is allowed at work HAHA. The strand turned purple. Oops. So I did a quick fix for my hair.

I mixed 2 teaspoons of the HBC dye, 2 teaspoons developer,  and 4 teaspoons of conditioner (my measurements aren’t exact, but the ratio is more or less like that).


Left it on my head for 30 minutes. I wanted to make my hair darker and in a red shade, so that when I apply the burgundy dye to my hair, it’ll fall more into a cool red (red with pink-purple undertones) territory than straight up purple.

Why’d I use a purple-toned dye if I wanted red hair? I chose Burgundy Wine instead of a red dye since the red dyes are usually bright with orange or pink undertones. With my yellow/orange-undertoned hair, it’ll just have the same effect as dumping the HBC Crystal Color dye 6.6 on my hair (with the result of having a headful of Yeng Constantino super bright red hair). I want a cool red, so I needed to neutralize the yellowness with some purple – and since I haven’t found an online seller for Purple Shampoo and had no money for a toner, I decided to use a dye to help neutralize and color. (Yellow + purple are opposites on the color wheel, so the cancel each other out, leaving a cool / dark / pink-purple toned red).


Photo taken August 23, day after adding a bit of red dye.

Bye Yellow!

I really want to make my hair color last for as long as it can this time, so the day I was dyeing my hair, I did a quick, 15 minute bleach bath (not long enough to remove the new red dye, but long enough to make my hair porous – of all the hair tutorials and blogs I’ve read, I trust this blogger the most, so I did a bleach bath right before dyeing, as her entry for neon hair maintenance suggested) using 1 teaspoon bleach powder, 2 teaspoons developer, 2 tablespoons clarifying shampoo. Bleach bath ratio is usually 1:2, but I really didn’t want to do a full-on bleach bath, so I put more shampoo.


Materials used:

20140824_155816Conditioner (to mix dye with). I used a sulfate-free one to avoid washing the dye out before it could even get to my hair; this bottle is cheap too, only P135 for 500ml at HBC. Petroleum Jelly (to apply around hairline, ears, nape so dye won’t stick to your skin), clips (for parting hair), plastic mixing bowl (to put the dye and dye conditioner mixture in).

20140823_144054Free dye kit from – tint brush, gloves, shower cap, dye wipe.

20140823_143939112 ml Special Effects Burgundy Wine. I used roughly half the bottle, even though it says to use 3/4 for long hair.

The first half was applied pure, on my bleach shampooed-red-slightly bleach shampooed roots. I asked my cousin to dye them for me, since I can’t reach the back of my head and can’t see the hidden spots. It was pretty much a failure, she kept dyeing aka rubbing my scalp with the tint brush instead even though I told her not to and I ended up looking for the darker regrowth myself and pointing them out to her.

The next half, I mixed with conditioner (2:1 – dye:conditioner), on the rest of my bleach shampooed-bleach shampooed-bleach shampooed-red-bleach shampooed-red-slightly bleach shampooed hair. I thoroughly saturated the strands with my hands (gloves on!). Adding conditioner makes the dye spread easier plus your hair stays soft.

I couldn’t take photos of the colors of the dye when it was pure and when it was mixed since we kept our phones inside to avoid any dye related phone accidents.

Once it was all done, I tucked my hair in a shower cap to process. We ended our dye-ventures at 5:11 PM. I removed the shower cap and rinsed my hair at 10:30 PM.  Special Effects is a vegan dye, made from all natural ingredients so it isn’t harmful to leave it on your head for as long as you want – the longer it stays, the more your hair absorbs the dye. This isn’t something I could do with any of the box dyes I’ve tried since those have chemicals that can severely damage my hair+scalp if left on too long. I’ve read a lot of entries mentioning they leave their Special Effects or Manic Panic dyes on overnight but I don’t think I’d be able to sleep with a showercap and dye on my head.

Here’s the next day results in natural light:

Special Effects Burgundy Wine Redhead Asian
August 26, Day 1 of Burgundy Wine

It’s pink-purple when not in direct light AND it’s still red even indoors!!

I’m going to seriously maintain it now (I’ve only done the dry shampoo bit sometimes and I mostly use color-protective hair products, but once I notice my hair fading, I alternate between regular and color protective products #guilty #thekerastasesystemisexpensiveok).

EDIT, DAY 2: I’ve seen reviews where they mention this product stains (your pillows, towel, etc) for 2-3 days after rinsing but I didn’t experience that. I’m guessing it’s because of the conditioner mixture. I rinsed until the water was mostly clear and the water cleared up a lot faster than when I use red box dyes w/out a conditioner mix. My sheets, pillowcases, towels and clothes are stain-free post-dye application.

Special Effects Burgundy Wine Asian
August 26,2014


2015 UPDATE:  Here’s another post on how I maintained my red hair and how it faded from 2014-2015.