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Best Professional Bleach for Dark Hair: Tried & Tested Top Choices (2024)

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best professional bleach for dark hairYou want the best professional bleach for dark hair?

Consider Arctic Fox Bleach Please or Wella Color Charm Powder Lightener. These powerhouses lift up to 8 levels, neutralizing brassy tones with violet and blue pigments.

Properly prepping is key – do a strand test, use coconut oil, and section hair carefully. During application, mix the right bleach-to-developer ratio and protect your scalp.

Tone with blue-violet shades for an icy finish.

Maintain vibrancy with deep conditioning, protein treatments, and purple shampoo.

Master these techniques, and you’ll be rocking gorgeous, healthy blonde locks. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg…

Key Takeaways

  • The MVP (Most Valuable Players) of professional bleaches for dark hair are Arctic Fox Bleach Please and Wella Color Charm Powder Lightener. These powerhouse products can lift stubborn dark strands up to 8 levels, while using nourishing ingredients to keep your hair in tip-top shape.
  • Proper prep work is the secret sauce to bleaching success! Do a strand test, slather on some coconut oil, and section your hair like a pro stylist. Getting these ducks in a row ensures your bleaching game is on point.
  • When it comes to application, don’t go in blind! Follow the golden ratio of bleach-to-developer, protecting your scalp like a mama bear. And remember, patience is a virtue – check that timer religiously to avoid frying your tresses.
  • After that bleaching magic, show those yellow and brassy tones who’s boss! Tone with blue-violet shades for an icy blonde finish, then coddle your hair with deep conditioning, protein treatments, and purple shampoo. Your strands will be saying thank you, next to dryness!

Top 8 Best Professional Bleach for Dark Hair

In the realm of bleaching dark hair, selecting the appropriate professional bleach is paramount. Eight exceptional choices stand out: Arctic Fox Bleach Please, Loreal Paris Colorista Bleach All Over, Wella Color Charm Powder Lightener, Manic Panic Flashlightning Developer Kit, Perfect Blond Hair Dye Toner, Clairol Professional Hair Highlights Lightener, Blond Plex Lightener Powder, and Jolen Creme Bleach USA 30ml.

1. Arctic Fox Bleach Please

ARCTIC FOX Bleach Please HairView On Amazon
For a vegan, cruelty-free option that packs a punch, you can’t go wrong with Arctic Fox Bleach Please. Its powerful plant-based formula lifts stubborn dark hair up to 8 levels with ease. Packed with nourishing oils like cocoa butter and sunflower seed, it keeps your strands hydrated while depositing a violet base to cancel out those pesky yellow tones.

Best For: Those seeking a vegan, cruelty-free, and effective hair lightener.

  • Lifts up to 8 levels
  • Nourishing oils prevent dryness
  • Violet base counteracts yellow tones
  • May leave hair sticky
  • Requires multiple applications for darker hair
  • Can cause burning on skin

2. Loreal Paris Colorista Bleach All Over

LView On Amazon
You’re looking for a vibrant, lasting blonde? Colorista Bleach All Over delivers customizable, permanent results. Use it with Colorista’s semi-permanent shades for a pro-inspired finish. Easy application and effective lightening make it a standout, but it can cause brassiness on dark hair. Multiple applications may be necessary for maximum brightness. Follow up with a toner to neutralize unwanted tones.

Best For: Those seeking permanent bleach results.

  • Customizable, permanent results
  • Easy application
  • Effective at lightening hair
  • Can cause brassiness in dark hair
  • May require multiple applications for optimal results
  • Can damage hair if overused

3. Wella Color Charm Powder Lightener

WELLA Color Charm Powder HairView On Amazon
You’ll find Wella Color Charm Powder Lightener a transformative product for dark hair. Its dust-free, blue powder formula guarantees optimal lift while maintaining hair integrity. The ammonia-free blend gently yet effectively lifts stubborn pigments, taking you from raven to radiant blonde. Professionals highly recommend its versatility for highlights, balayage, and full head lightening. Unleash your inner blonde bombshell!

Best For: Dark hair seeking dramatic lightening results.

  • Up to 7 levels of lift
  • Dust-free formula
  • Excellent for various hair lightening techniques
  • May cause dryness and frizz
  • Follow instructions carefully
  • Process for no more than 50 minutes

4. Manic Panic Flashlightning Developer Kit

MANIC PANIC Amplified Flashlightning 40View On Amazon
Unleash your creative side with Manic Panic’s Flashlightning Developer Kit. This cruelty-free, vegan bleach powder lifts dark hair up to 7 levels, giving you the perfect blank canvas.

With its dust-free formula and 40-volume cream developer, you’ll achieve even, consistent results every time.

Master the art of bleaching like a pro – the kit includes all the tools you need. Embrace your hair’s newfound freedom and radiance!

Best For: Those seeking to lighten their dark hair up to 7 levels for creative hair coloring.

  • Cruelty-free and vegan
  • Lifts hair up to 7 levels
  • Even and consistent results
  • May cause irritation if not used with gloves
  • Requires practice to achieve desired results
  • Can lead to orange roots if not applied correctly

5. Perfect Blond Hair Dye Toner

1.1 Pound Tub (17.6 Ounce)View On Amazon
Say goodbye to brassy tones! Perfect Blond Hair Dye Toner is your secret weapon for achieving an icy, multi-dimensional blonde. This professional-grade toner neutralizes unwanted yellow and orange undertones, leaving you with a showstopping, bright blonde mane. With its nourishing formula, you can confidently lift and tone dark hair without compromising its integrity.

Best For: Those seeking a professional-grade hair toner to neutralize brassiness and achieve icy, multi-dimensional blonde hair.

  • Neutralizes unwanted yellow and orange undertones
  • Nourishing formula protects hair integrity
  • Lifts and tones dark hair without compromising its health
  • May require multiple applications for desired results
  • Can be drying to hair if not used properly
  • May not be suitable for all hair types

6. Clairol Professional Hair Highlights Lightener

Clairol Professional Bw2 Lightener forView On Amazon
You’ll want to have the Clairol Professional Hair Highlights Lightener in your arsenal for ultimate creative control over lightening. This moisture-sealing powder minimizes fly-away while providing balanced, predictable results quickly. Perfect for foiling, balayage, and off-scalp applications, it allows you to master any lightening technique with ease. Embrace your inner colorist with this professional-grade lightener.

Best For: Colorists seeking ultimate control over lightening processes.

  • Balanced and predictable results
  • Minimizes powder fly-away
  • Contains a moisture-sealing humectant
  • Not suitable for on-scalp applications
  • May require professional application
  • Not suitable for all hair types

7. Blond Plex Lightener Powder

Blond Plex Extreme Lifting 10XView On Amazon
You’re in for a treat with Blond Plex Lightener Powder. This Italian-made, charcoal-based powder lifts dark hair up to 10 levels, prepping it for ashy or gray tones without damage.

Its innovative formula with amino acids and keratin delivers a pure, even, cool-toned blonde – no brassiness in sight.

Kiss yellow goodbyes with this one-shot bleaching powerhouse that spares you the toner.

Best For: Those seeking a one-step bleach that lifts dark hair to platinum blonde with no damage.

  • One-shot bleaching from medium dark brown to platinum blonde
  • Gentle on hair and scalp
  • No toner needed
  • Do not use on hair that has been processed more than 100 times
  • Do not leave on hair for more than 45 minutes
  • May cause allergic reactions

8. Jolen Creme Bleach USA 30ml

Jolen creme bleach pot -View On Amazon
You’ll love Jolen Creme Bleach for lightening dark hair!

This powerful cream separates the activator and bleach, letting you customize the strength.

It’s a breeze to use – just mix and apply.

No harsh reactions or rashes here.

Although best for lighter brows, it deftly lifts facial hair in about a month.

Plus, the compact size makes it a travel-friendly companion for touch-ups on-the-go.

Unleash your inner blonde bombshell with this reliable bleaching cream!

Best For: People with lighter eyebrows who want to lighten facial hair.

  • Customizable strength
  • Easy to use
  • No reactions or rashes
  • Not suitable for all hair types
  • May not be effective on dark hair
  • Only lasts for about a month

Preparing Dark Hair for Bleaching

Preparing Dark Hair for Bleaching
Before bleaching your dark hair, it’s essential to perform a strand test to assess how your hair reacts to the bleach and determine the desired lift. Additionally, pre-treat your hair with coconut oil the night before bleaching to create a protective barrier and minimize damage, then section your hair into four quadrants for even and controlled application.

Hair Strand Test

Before bleaching dark hair, a strand test is essential. Select a thin section from the back, mix a dollop of bleach with developer, and apply from mids to ends – keeping it 1⁄2 inch away from your scalp. Cover with foil and check every 10 minutes for desired lift. Key factors:

  • Hair’s porosity
  • Developer strength
  • Bleach brand
  • Processing time
  • Lift level achieved

This test guarantees you get vibrant, healthy results without damaging your mane.

Coconut Oil Pre-Treatment

You’ll want to pre-treat your hair with coconut oil the night before bleaching. Coconut oil acts as a moisture protector, sealing the cuticle and reducing heat damage from harsh lightening agents. Massage the oil into your scalp and strands for ultimate protection. This natural pre-treatment safeguards your hair’s health during the lightening process.

Sectioning Hair

Proper sectioning is essential when bleaching dark hair. Part your hair into four equal quadrants using a rat tail comb for precision. Work in small sections of 1-2 inches for even saturation. Detangle each section before applying bleach for seamless lift and color blending. Consider:

  • Fine-tooth combs for smooth partings
  • Sectioning clips to keep hair secure
  • Sectioning patterns matching your technique
  • Avoiding thick, unruly sections

Bleaching Dark Hair Safely

Bleaching Dark Hair Safely
To bleach dark hair safely, you’ll want to pay close attention to the mixing ratio of bleach powder to developer. Too little developer and the lift will be uneven. Too much and you risk damaging the hair.

The application technique is also essential. Work in sections. Avoid oversaturating the scalp area. Process in small increments to monitor the lifting and prevent overlapping.

Mixing Ratios

For dark hair, you’ll need a 1:2 or 1:3 bleach-to-developer ratio for effective lightening. Mix powder bleach with 20-30 vol developer for resistant grays, or 30-40 vol for untouched dark hair. The higher developer volume creates stronger chemical reactions to open the cuticle for dramatic lightening. But be mindful – stronger developers can compromise hair integrity if used improperly.

Application Technique

Once you’ve mixed your developer and bleach, apply the mixture starting at the mid-lengths and ends, avoiding the scalp area. Use a tinting brush and work in clean, even sections. If your hair is coarse or resistant, double-process by applying bleach twice. Protect your scalp with a thick, oily barrier cream.

Processing Time

With the bleach evenly applied, monitor the exposure time closely. Set a timer for the maximum processing time:

  1. 15-20 minutes for highlights or balayage
  2. 20-30 minutes for full head application
  3. Check hair every 5 minutes after 20 minutes
  4. Rinse once hair reaches level 9 yellow or your desired blonde result

Proper time management is essential to avoid over-processing and hair damage from the hydrogen peroxide in the bleach.

Toning Bleached Dark Hair

Toning Bleached Dark Hair
After bleaching dark hair, you’ll need to use toners to neutralize unwanted yellow and brassy tones. Blue-based toners counteract orangey hues, while violet-based toners cancel out yellow brassiness – use them in combination for an icy, ashy blonde result.

Blue-Based Toners

After lifting dark hair to a pale yellow, you’ll need blue-based toners to counteract any lingering warm undertones. Opt for intense blue-violet pigments – these icy shades neutralize brassiness beautifully. Achieve a cool, icy blonde by balancing blue and violet toners precisely. Be cautious though; overtoning can create an unnatural, dull finish.

Violet-Based Toners

You’ll also want to use violet-based toners to counteract any unwanted yellow tones that remain. These toners contain purple pigments that neutralize brassiness. Apply evenly after bleaching, and leave on for the recommended time before rinsing. You may need to use a color-depositing purple shampoo weekly to maintain your cool-toned blonde.

Neutralizing Yellow Tones

After lifting dark hair to a level 9 yellow, you’ll need to neutralize those intense yellow undertones.

Combine a blue-based ash blonde toner with a violet-based toner. These cool pigments will cancel out the remaining warmth, leaving you with an ultra-chic, cool blonde hue.

Adjust the ratio for your desired tone – more blue for a platinum look, or more violet for a stunning, icy shade.

Post-Bleach Hair Care Routine

Post-Bleach Hair Care Routine
After bleaching your dark hair, it’s necessary to deeply condition and provide protein treatments to replenish moisture and strengthen the strands. Additionally, incorporating a purple shampoo into your routine will help neutralize any unwanted brassy or yellow tones, leaving your hair with a cooler, more ashy blonde tone.

Deep Conditioning

After toning, you’ll need to replenish moisture with deep conditioning. Bleaching is drying, so restore hydration with:

  1. A thick, creamy hair mask
  2. An intense bond-repairing treatment
  3. A soothing scalp masque
  4. A fresh coconut oil mix

Slather it on, let it soak in, and feel your strands drink up that lush nourishment. Ahh, silky softness awaits!

Protein Treatments

After bleaching, your hair needs protein treatments to reconstruct its internal structure and repair damage. Invest in deep repair formulas with bond builders that replenish keratin for ultimate strength and resilience. Incorporate these intensive treatments weekly until your hair’s health is restored, ensuring long-lasting vibrancy for your fresh color.

Purple Shampoo

To maintain that crisp, cool blonde, you’ll want to incorporate a purple shampoo into your routine.

These toning formulas neutralize brassy, yellow tones caused by bleaching – the purple pigments cancel out unwanted warmth.

Opt for a salon-quality brand like Redken’s Color Extend or Fudge Professional’s Clean Blonde for maximum toning benefits.

Used weekly, your blonde will stay fresh and vibrant.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What bleach do most salons use?

Most salons use professional-grade powder bleach lighteners like Wella Blondor or Schwarzkopf BlondMe. These give you maximum lifting power and control to lighten dark hair while protecting its integrity.

What developer do I need to bleach dark hair?

You’ll need a high-lift 30 or 40 volume developer to effectively bleach dark hair. Always do a strand test before fully applying to assess the lifting action and adjust as needed.

How do you bleach dark hair successfully?

You’ll start by using a bond protector, then mix a bleach powder with 30 vol developer. Gradually lift in sections, periodically reapplying the bleach until your hair reaches a pale yellow shade. Finally, tone with a blue-based toner to achieve an icy blonde result.

How do you bleach dark hair without turning it orange?

As an old adage goes, Good things come to those who wait and plan. To bleach dark hair without orange tones, use a blue-based lightener with 20 volume developer. Apply coconut oil first, then bleach ends before roots. Monitor and tone if needed.

How long does bleached hair last?

The lifespan of bleached hair varies greatly based on your maintenance routine, but generally lasts 4-8 weeks before needing a touch-up. With proper care, bleached strands can remain vibrant and healthy until your roots grow out.

What are the signs of over-bleached hair?

Your locks may scream for help when over-bleached – brittleness, dryness and breakage await those who push past hair’s limits. But worry not, a keen eye can spot these signs early, guiding you back to luscious tresses before irreparable damage strikes.

No, bleaching hair at home isn’t recommended. Improper application can lead to severe damage like breakage or uneven results. It’s best left to professional colorists with the right skills, products, and techniques.

How often can black hair be bleached?

You can bleach black hair every 6-8 weeks, but be cautious – frequent bleaching causes dryness and breakage. Use bond-protecting bleach and deep condition regularly to maintain hair health.

Can bleached hair be dyed darker again?

You’re walking down the hair aisle, pondering your options. Yes, you can dye your bleached hair darker again! Start with a filler color to rebuild lost pigments, then apply the desired shade for luscious, vibrant results.


Can you achieve head-turning blonde tresses after mastering the best professional bleach for dark hair? Absolutely!

With proper prepping, application, toning, and aftercare, you’ll rock runway-ready locks.

Follow this guide, and you’ll reveal your dream icy blonde while keeping strands strong and vibrant.

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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.