The Best Bleach for Hair (Top 10 Brands Review) 2021

11 min


If you dye your hair regularly, chances are you will need to use bleach. Hair bleach is almost indispensable when it comes to lightening dark hair or even lightening hair that has been dyed.

best bleach for hairIt can be a stimulating experience, or it can be a terrible mess if you don’t use the right products and techniques.

When misused, it can lead to hair damage, scalp irritation, and more. “ Bleaching hair at home is very risky, ” warns Kristen Fleming, color director at the 3rd Coast Salon in Chicago. “ It’s a very unpredictable process if you already have color in your hair, in which case it really is best to leave it to the pros.

That said if you are confident you know what you are doing, choosing a quality professional-level product will further help you achieve success.

So what is it best bleach for hair?

A hair bleach (or hair lightener) works to lift the hair’s shade greatly. If you want to get the perfect blonde shade you want, you have the best bleach for dark hair that does the job without damaging it unnecessarily – exactly what this post is all about.

We have the best hair bleaches for every hair type and budget to help you with the best results.

Top 5 Best Hair Bleaches (Quick Summary)

Manic Panic Flash Lightning HairManic Panic Flash Lightning Hair Bleach Kit 30 Vol
  • Cruelty-Free
  • Vegan Formula
  • Pack Contains Everything You Need for Bleaching Process
Schwarzkopf Professional Blond Me PremiumSchwarzkopf Professional Blond Me Premium Lift 9 - 15.8 oz
  • Up to 9 light levels
  • Easily controllable color levels: from ash blonde to platinum shades
  • It can be used with or without a developer.
Wella Blondor Multi Blonde PowderWella Blondor Multi Blonde Powder Lightener, 28.2 Ounce
  • Gentle yet highly effective formula
  • Contains Anti-Yellow Compounds
  • Contains Conditioners
Schwarzkopf Professional Igora Vario BlondSchwarzkopf Professional Igora Vario Blond Plus, 15.9 Ounce
  • Uses fiber bonding technology
  • Contains nourishing ingredients
  • Includes ultramarine blue to avoid copper tones
L'OREAL PARIS Quick Blue PowderL'OREAL PARIS Quick Blue Powder Bleach, 16 Ounce
  • Safe to use on the scalp
  • Lightens hair up to 7 levels
  • Simple and easy to apply
Prices/Images/Reviews pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on: 15/06/2021 08:30 AM

How To Choose The Perfect Hair Bleach

How To Choose The Perfect Hair BleachHair bleaching is one of those treatments we highly recommend you go to a salon if you want a professional result.

This guide will help you learn how to bleach your hair safely and successfully every time. Getting good takes practice and experience, and when you’re ready to experiment on your own, it’s time to get started.

Hair Type

First and foremost, you need to judge your hair and be honest with yourself. The most important things to determine are:

  • How dark is your hair?
  • Has your hair been processed (dyed, permed, etc.)?
  • How is the health of your scalp and hair in general?

The main points are:

  • The darker the hair, the more sessions you will need to get the very light blonde
  • Processed hair is already damaged and more porous, which means that the bleaching should be softer than the bleaching of new hair.
  • If you previously dyed your hair black with a box dye, go to the salon or be careful not to melt your hair.
  • If you have a dry or dry scalp, don’t apply the bleach to the scalp.
  • Make sure to take a strand test.

Generic vs. Salon Bleach

There are several generic brands of bleach. The term ‘generic’ is used here to refer to inexpensive brands found in supermarkets, beauty salons, and pharmacies. These brands are not used in salons as it is just a no-frills product destined for the home market at a low price.

This is all well and good, and these products will certainly lighten your hair, but there are significant differences between these types of products and higher quality bleach, which is why hairdressers don’t use these bleaching powders. If you have the best results when you use hair bleach, you also want to understand the difference. Some of the main differences to note are:

  • Inferior ingredients
  • Less effective lighting
  • Greater damage to hair
  • Uneven lightning

If you look at hair bleach, you will notice that the ingredients vary by brand. In particular, the presence of more nourishing additives that care for your hair and scalp is of great importance, and this is reflected in the performance differences between different products.

Levels of Lift

What does it mean if a package says the bleach has a “ lift of up to 7 levels ”? Considering the hair levels, it is the potential maximum change your hair will undergo if the stars align and you get the perfect result.

For example, a lift level up to 7 means that your hair can go from level 2 to level 9 in one session.

The Best Bleach for Hair of 2021

Those generic drugstore bleaching kits might be cheap, but don’t cut it if you want to turn your dark hair into bleach blonde. It would help if you had strong enough professional bleach to turn your hair into the desired blonde shade.

Whether you’re looking for a bleach to use as a pre-color or want to achieve the highly sought-after bleached blonde, you’ll find your match with our following list of best hair bleach products that effectively lighten dark hair in the least harmful way.

1. Manic Panic Flash Lightning Hair Bleach Kit – Best Hair Bleach Kit

Manic Panic Flash Lightning HairView On AmazonThe Manic Panic whitening kit is the most popular option among bleachers at home, and for a good reason. The company has been making cruelty-free, vegan products since the late 1970s. When they first opened their punky NYC boutique, and changed cosmetic history forever.

This is a medium-strength bleach that lightens even dark brown hair mixed with the included 30 volume developer. However, don’t expect to go platinum blonde in one session unless your hair color is already quite light.

If you have naturally black hair, the manufacturer recommends going for the 40-volume kit for a better lift for the stubborn dark pigment.

Not only is it vegan, but the formula is also free of PPD, ammonia, and parabens, creating a healthier and more enjoyable experience. The included instructions are easy to follow even if you will bleach your hair for the first time.

The Manic Panic pack contains everything you need to bleach your hair: dust-free powder bleach, developer, brush, mixing bowl, cap, and gloves.

The amount you get is great for bleaching strands or shorter hair, but you probably need more than one set if you have thick long hair.

Pros
  • Cruelty-Free
  • Vegan Formula
  • Pack Contains Everything You Need for Bleaching Process
  • Perfect for Whitening Strands
Cons
  • Not suitable for black hair
  • Long hair needs more than one set

Customer Reviews
13,217 Reviews

Avatar Amazon Customer

Amazon Customer

Great for any hair type trust me I know because it worked great on mine!

Awesome !!!! I am black so my hair was black and thick. I wanted red / burgundy hair. Without this product, my hair was only visible in bright light. I have used this product and it just popped up! Exceeded my expectations!

2. Schwarzkopf Professional Blond Me Premium Lift 9

Schwarzkopf Professional Blond Me PremiumView On AmazonYou don’t need another blonde layer once you’ve bleached your hair with Schwarzkopf powder bleacher. It offers an easy-to-operate lift level that can reach up to 9 levels.

This makes it easier to achieve icy to platinum shades. And while the formula is powerful, it doesn’t leave your hair with an overpowering bleach-like scent. For results of best use the Schwarzkopf developer powder.

Pros
  • Up to 9 light levels
  • Easily controllable color levels: from ash blonde to platinum shades
  • It can be used with or without a developer.
  • Delivers results in just one session
  • Inexpensive
Cons
  • Possible Scalp Irritation
  • Coppery tones appear in lower levels as bleach settles.

Customer Reviews
2,992 Reviews

Avatar Jac

Jac

Excellent

Great bleach. Bleached my really dark auburn hair in two sessions.I even went in for a 3rd bleaching on some areas of my head and my hair didnt fall out or look like slimey speghetti the way it seems to look on some ppl when they over bleach it. Of course it does some damage but its managable and theres a bond protecting agent in this which is awesome. Also theres more than enough left now to do my roots a few times. It sure beats the expense of throwing down $180 at a hair salon.

3. Wella Blondor Multi Blonde Powder Lightener

Wella Blondor Multi Blonde PowderView On AmazonAs one of the top-rated lighters on the market, Wella Blondor gets the job done beautifully. Many stylists consider it the best hair bleach!

This lightning powder delivers incredible results, with less damage (and in half the time). It works great for those with sensitive scalps and does not cause pain, itching, or burning.

The dust-free bleaching powder comes in a tub, and you need to purchase the developer separately along with the necessary tools. Although you can use any developer with the bleach, the manufacturer recommends using the Koleston developer for the best results.

Pros
  • Gentle yet highly effective formula
  • Contains Anti-Yellow Compounds
  • Contains Conditioners
Cons
  • May require more bleach due to weaker strength

Customer Reviews
3,618 Reviews

Avatar Katie

Katie

Way better than buying little packets of bleach to mix.

I've been bleaching my hair for several years now. I started going to a salon, but it is getting expensive. (Disclaimer: If you try to get platinum from dark hair, doing it in one setting will break your hair. Go to a salon.) I'm certainly not a professional, but I learned it through trial and error. I ordered this during the pandemic and my usual stuff was not available. I did use a different brand developer, but it worked well for me. The down side, I had more breakage than usual, but the bleach worked quickly and effectively. I will ...

4. Schwarzkopf Professional Igora Vario Blond Plus

Schwarzkopf Professional Igora Vario BlondView On AmazonIf you want to lighten your hair but don’t necessarily go from black to platinum blonde, this is a great alternative to the BlondMe bleach. This product is also from Schwarzkopf, and it contains nourishing ingredients and fiber binding technology to minimize damage and give you beautiful, healthy blonde hair.

At up to 7 levels of light, bleach isn’t as strong as the Blondme bleach that claims up to 9 levels of light, meaning it’s perfect if you want to lighten your hair without too much want to be pale blonde. Not only is it weaker and reduces oxidative damage, but it is still packed with nourishing ingredients that will leave your hair feeling soft, smooth, and wonderfully healthy.

As a standard for Schwarzkopf bleach products, the Igora bleach has integrated fiber bonding technology to minimize damage by forming a protective layer around the hair bridges.

The patented succinic acid is one of the ingredients that form new bonds that create the hair strands. The bleach also contains mineral oil, lysine, and arginine, which nourish the hair, while the ultramarine blue neutralizes yellow tones.

You will get nearly 16 oz. of dust-free bleach powder. While you can use any developer with this powder, Schwarzkopf recommends Igora Royal 30 volume developer.

Pros
  • Uses fiber bonding technology
  • Contains nourishing ingredients
  • Includes ultramarine blue to avoid copper tones
Cons
  • A little pricey
  • Not as effective as the BlondMe bleach

Customer Reviews
1,006 Reviews

Avatar Amanda

Amanda

Amazing

Amazing stuff. Minimal discomfort when developing and lifted my hair from about a level 6 to a level 10 beautifully with 20 vol developer. Would highly recommend.

5. L’oreal Quick Blue Powder Bleach

L'Oreal Quick Blue Powder Bleach,View On AmazonIt is sometimes difficult to get through your hair’s roots without getting burnt on the scalp here and there. A gentler formula is available, but it doesn’t really get results. If you want to lift your hair effectively without all the drama, trust L’Oréal Quick Blue Powder Bleach. This one lifts your hair 7 levels without the slightest irritation to the scalp.

In terms of results, this is the most acclaimed bleach if you want to lighten a few shades, but it can also be mixed with a stronger developer for the purest platinum blonde.

Pros
  • Safe to use on the scalp
  • Lightens hair up to 7 levels
  • Simple and easy to apply
  • It helps you achieve various shading eff. ects
  • Reasonably priced
Cons
  • It would help if you had a separate developer with 40 volumes for the whitest shade.
  • . It can be over-drying on some hair t.ypes

Customer Reviews
7,075 Reviews

Avatar Lorena

Lorena

Only product that works for me so far

Love this product, I regularly order from another supplier but since the pandemic they were always sold out. Decided to see if it was available from amazon and to my surprise they were! It arrived 2 weeks early and to my very pleasant surprise the contents was more full than when I was buying it from somewhere else. Dunno what that’s about but I’ll be ordering from here for now on.Quick blue is the only powder bleach that has been successful in lifting my hair to platinum. I dye at least once a month a variety of colours (as I ...

6. Clairol Bw2 Powder Lightener

Clairol Professional BW2 Hair PowderView On AmazonClairol is considered the strongest bleach on the market for dark or resistant hair and is everything you’ve been looking for. This dark hair lightener is made for extra lightening power, lifting even the darkest hair.

It is also believed to give you better control over your bleaching process, although it may take a few times to get the color you want if you start with dark hair. At

best

Of these, it is affordable!

Pros
  • Great for dark, resistant hair
  • It contains a humectant to keep the bleach from drying. out
  • Powerful, no-fuss formula
Cons
  • Too harsh for delicate hair
  • No blue pigments to soften the coppery tone

Customer Reviews
7,647 Reviews

Avatar Ezrah_le

Ezrah_le

My go to for transitting to BLONDE 💓

BW2 definetly the strongest bleach. This is my go to when im dying my units from natural dark brown to blonde. In the pics you see the before and after using 40 volume for 60min. Perfect for when I want a nive warm blonde. I only do two bleach baths when im trying to go to ash blonde but i never have to use 40 vol (2x)(after first processing i use a 30 volume and I can use T18 toner and i get a perfect ash blonde. But the bleaching powder gets the job done. Very strong lift cuts processing ...

7. Wella Blondor Soft Blonde Cream Lightener

Wella Blondor Soft Blonde CreamView On AmazonFrom the Blondor range of Wella, you can choose whether you want to use the powder or this cream. This lightener is specially designed for scalp applications as it is much gentler than the Blondor powder.

While this cream formula gives you up to 7 levels of lift, it is much gentler on your scalp. The ingredients’ quality is as high as in the powder, but the formula is adapted for skin contact, giving it the best option to bleach your roots.

Because the bleach is in a cream formula, it contains liquid conditioning ingredients, such as nourishing oils and hydrophobic (water-repellent) ingredients. Anti-irritant and antibacterial compounds, bisabolol and farnesol, have been added to condition the scalp during the bleaching process.

While it may sound like you could apply the bleach directly to your roots, this is not the case, and you will have to mix this lightener with a developer.

The package contains 7 oz. Tube of oil mixed cream lighter. It is recommended to buy a Koleston developer, but you can use any brand developer as long as it is a volume of 20 or less.

Because the tube contains a relatively small bleach, it is the perfect product for root adjustments.

Pros
  • Perfect for scalp applications
  • It contains nourishing ingredients for a healthier experience
  • Very gentle formula
Cons
  • You only get a small amount.
  • Not suitable for applications outside the scalp or to make the head completely white

Customer Reviews
229 Reviews

Avatar Azam Daryabar

Azam Daryabar

Works great and easy to use

Great cream bleached for home use and it is safe and easy to use. It lightens hair but needs a toner afterward. I am happy with my purchase.

8. Jolen Creme Bleach Formula

Jolen Creme Bleach Original FormulaView On AmazonIf you don’t want to reveal that your lightened locks aren’t genuine, your eyebrows need an update too. Jolen Creme Bleach Formula is the safest way to bleach your eyebrows so that it blends beautifully with your new hair color without causing skin irritation, thanks to the aloe vera infusion. It’s great for lightening brows, but the formula is also intended to lighten dark hair or lighten dark hair all over your body so that it is less noticeable.

Pros
  • Lightens dark hair and eyebrows without irritation
  • Enriched with moisturizing aloe
  • Top
  • For sensitive skin
  • It comes with a mixing cup
  • No-drip formula
Cons
  • More rounds of applications are required to achieve a lighter shade

Customer Reviews
503 Reviews

Avatar Andrew Scheimer

Andrew Scheimer

Best bleach for the dark hair on my arms

I've been using this product for about 10 or 15 years and it always lightens up my hair just right so that it's not noticeable. If you're like me and you don't want to shave your arms but you also don't want to look like a wooly mammoth, give this product a try. Using the correct ratio of the formula helps you to apply with no burning sensation, but it does itch from time to time.

9. Sally Hansen Creme Bleach Extra Strength Face & Body

Sally Hansen Creme Bleach XtraView On AmazonIf it’s not your hair that you want to bleach, there are body hair products like this Sally Hansen bleaching cream. Since normal hair bleach is far too strong to use on your body, this bleach has been specially formulated to lighten facial hair, eyebrows, arm hair, and legs.

Much gentler than the standard hair bleach, this uses only hydrogen peroxide for the bleaching process. No persulfate compounds have been found in normal hair bleach, making it suitable for the face. However, if your hair is very dark and naturally resistant, you will likely need more than one bleach if you want to lighten the hair drastically.

The supplied preconditioner contains witch hazel and alcohol to narrow pores to minimize skin irritation. The bleach contains mineral oil, aloe extract, and tocopherol (vitamin E), reducing irritation and preventing dehydrated skin after the treatment.

As with scalp hair, the bleaching process can reveal warm undertones. And you may end up with orange or yellow eyebrows. Since the formula does not contain firming ingredients, it may be necessary to give your eyebrows the correct color or dye.

Although suitable for use on the face and body, do not bleach your eyelashes or pubic area. Hair: it’s just not a good idea.

The kit includes bleaching cream, activator powder, pre-conditioner, mixing cup, and applicator; that’s all you need to get great results. The cream does contain parabens as a preservative, which can be a major drawback.

Pros
  • Contains preconditioner to minimize irritation
  • Infused with aloe
  • Gentle enough for use on body and face
Cons
  • It may take more than one session to bleach dark hair.
  • Contains parabens

Customer Reviews
1,317 Reviews

Avatar Grace

Grace

It works!

Super easy to use and very effective. I posted a photo in which I have either or my legs. The left leg has been treated with the bleach and the right leg has not. I used it to bleach my leg hair and am now completely blonde.

10. Manic Panic Flash Lightning Hair Bleach Kit

Manic Panic Flash Lightning HairView On AmazonIf you need more bleaching power than the Manic Panic 30 volume kit, this is for you. The formula is vegan and cruelty-free, while it gives your hair more lift and bleaches much faster.

While this is great for dark, resistant hair and scalp bleaching, the 40 volume developer is far too strong for lighter hair (level 3 or higher). This extra strength is much more likely to damage your hair and make it brittle.

This may be a problem for some, unlike Clairol BW2, where the bleach itself is strong, allowing more removal of the color molecules. Effectively increasing developer strength increases the risk of damaging your scalp and hair.

However, you can dilute the developer with water as desired to obtain the desired volume.

While the formula is cruelty-free for the environment, it is not cruelty-free for your hair. Since there are no conditioning ingredients like in the Schwarzkopf BlondMe and Wella bleaching powders, your hair will most likely feel dry and damaged. Especially when combined with the high volume developer, it has the potential to bake your locks and leave them damaged.

The kit contains everything you need to bleach your hair: brush, mixing bowl, cap, gloves, bleach powder, and developer. The bleach powder is the same as in the kit of 30 vol, but the developer supplied is stronger, with a volume of 40.

Pros
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Everything is on the set.
  • Great set for resistant hair
Cons
  • Maybe too strong for some
  • Lack of nourishing ingredients

Customer Reviews
13,303 Reviews

Avatar OrvixTV

OrvixTV

I love it

Use on the tips of my hair and i only leave it for 20 minutes max. Deep condition the absolute sh*t out of my hair after took 2 tries to make my tips the color I desired. Spaced out the process———————————————————2021 update:My original review is from 2016 and I’ve been using it since 2014-2015 so I thought I would update.I am naturally a dirty blonde about a level 7 or 8 according to the hair level charts. I do not need a level 40 for my roots but I used it for my ends which where very red. I have ...

The Types of Hair Bleach

Bleaches are available in three different types, namely oil, cream, and powder. Whatever you choose from the three, it is worth noting that you will need a bleach with more oxidants, preferably 30-40 volume, to optimally lighten your hair without unnecessary damage since you are working with dark hair. Never go beyond 40 volume as this can destroy your hair. With all of this in mind, here are your bleaching options.

Oil Bleach

This type of bleach is based on a type of sulfonated oil, but its main ingredient is hydrogen peroxide for bleaching hair mixed with bulk builders and other lightening activators. An oil bleach can lighten hair up to 3 colors. They are great for removing color from stubborn roots and great for highlights too.

Cream Bleach

Because cream bleach has a thicker consistency than oil, it does not run or drip and is easier to apply. They contain thickeners and bluing agents in addition to conditioners that can minimize hair dryness. While cream-based bleaches may not be the fastest, they will gradually lift your hair color so you can stop at the shade you want.

Powder Bleach

Powder bleaches give the fastest results among their counterparts. The procedure involves making a paste from the powder. This can be done by mixing a developer containing the main ingredient peroxide to give the mixture a thicker consistency. However, you need to be careful when using this type of bleach as it contains little to no conditioning ingredients and can dry the hair too much.

FAQs

What does bleach do to your hair?

During the bleaching process, alkaline agents, which are lighter, cause your hair to swell and open the cuticles. Once the cuticles expand, the alkaline substances penetrate the hair’s cortex and dissolve the natural pigments known as melanin.

To handle the dark pigments, bleach has to break down the natural fatty acids on your hair shafts, making your hair brittle. The cuticle continues to expand until it is so open that nothing is holding it together. Finally, the cortex is exposed, split ends appear, and damage occurs, making your hair look unhealthy.

How Long Should You Leave the Bleach on Your Black Hair?

How long you leave the bleach on your hair depends on the lightness you hope to achieve and the level of development you use. The higher the developer, the faster it will process, but the more damage it will do (and vice versa).

How did your dark hair turn out without coloring it orange?

To avoid orange hair, you want to enhance your color. One way to do this is to use a blue or purple clarifying shampoo to neutralize and neutralize the orange tones. If you need even more help, try using a toner.

Wrapping Up

Now that you are equipped with the knowledge you need, you can move on and begin your journey to the beautiful blonde hair of your dreams. Using this guide, you can choose the best hair bleach products that are right for you best, avoid common mistakes and keep your hair healthy and beautiful.

Also, don’t press the results of your dream hair during the first bleaching session. The key to bleaching your hair is to apply it slowly and evenly (this way, you don’t overly damage your hair).

Depending on how light you go and what color you started with, you will likely need several bleaching and toning sessions. Make sure to do extensive research on bleaching your hair to avoid tragic mistakes!


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Mutasim Sweileh
Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and beard care expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and get fatter. His work has been mentioned in countless notable publications on men's care and style and has been cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.

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