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How to Remove Brassy Orange and Yellow Tones From Blonde Hair Full Guide of 2024

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how to remove brassy tones from blonde hairYou’re back from the salon with shiny new blonde locks, but within days your hair’s taken on unwanted brassy, orange tones. Don’t panic – we’ve worked through this with many clients and have all the insider tips to banish the brass for good.

With a few mild tweaks to your routine – like using an ash toner weekly and ditching hot styling tools – you’ll get back that icy blonde that caught your eye in the first place.

Our hands-on expertise will guide you through simple steps to remove those brassy tones and protect your color between salon visits:

  • Use a purple shampoo once or twice a week. Purple shampoo helps neutralize brassy tones by depositing violet pigments to balance out the warmth.
  • Opt for an ash, platinum or silver toner. These deposit blue and violet pigments to cancel out brassiness.
  • Avoid heat styling. Heat activates the cuticle layer, causing quicker oxidation and fading.
  • Deep condition weekly. Brass-prone hair needs extra moisture and protein to stay strong.
  • Get a gloss treatment. This deposits semi-permanent toner between salon visits for refreshed color.

Read on to refresh your blonde and feel like yourself again.

Key Takeaways

  • Use purple shampoo once or twice a week to neutralize brassy tones.
  • Opt for ash, platinum, or silver toner to cancel out brassiness.
  • Protect hair from UV rays to prevent brassy tones.
  • Consider getting a gloss treatment every 4-6 weeks to refresh your color.

Why Does Hair Turn Brassy?

Why Does Hair Turn Brassy
Your hair turns brassy due to the underlying pigment being exposed when the melanin is removed through bleaching. When your natural hair color is stripped away, the underlying warm pigments are revealed.

These orange and red-orange hues create brassiness in hair that was intended to be cool toned blonde.

To combat this, use blue or purple-hued toners to neutralize unwanted warm tones. Toners deposit color pigments to restore cool ash tones. Using purple shampoo between salon visits helps maintain your tone.

Also, limit sun exposure and chlorine damage to keep hair from turning brassy again. Invest in shower filters, protective hats, and color-safe products. With the right at-home routine, you can keep your blonde looking icy and bright.

How to Tone Brassy Blonde Hair

How to Tone Brassy Blonde Hair
Those with extensive training and experience in hair coloring and toning processes understand the frustrations of brassiness showing up in blonde hair. To remove those undesirable brassy tones from blonde hair, let’s discuss how violet and ash-based toners can help counteract the warmth and return hair to a beautiful, cool-toned blonde.

Violet and ash-based toners neutralize brassiness by depositing pigments onto the hair strands that counter yellow and orange tones. When applied, these toners adhere to the porous parts of bleached or highlighted hair, offsetting the unwanted warm shades with their own cool, blue and purple-based hues.

This helps bring down the hair’s underlying pigment and allows the end result to appear more ash and silvery.

To properly tone brassiness, hair should first be cleansed of any product buildup. Toner is then applied sparingly from mid-shaft to ends, taking care not to overlap. Processing time can vary from 5-15 minutes depending on the toner chosen and level of brassiness.

As toning occurs, hair’s color visibly shifts cooler, calming the vibrancy of any orange and yellow. Once the desired tone is reached, toner is rinsed away. Color-safe shampoo and conditioning follows to optimize results.

With the proper application, violet and ash-based toners can transform brassy locks into cooler, brighter blonde shades.

Violet Toners

You’re completely over the moon about how violet toners can transform your dull locks into goddess-like tresses! Violet toners are amazing for neutralizing yellow and orange tones, cooling down warmth, and brightening blonde hair.

When applied after bleaching, a violet toner balances out brassy undertones for a beautiful, ashy finish. Choose an ammonia-free toner and combine it with a 10 or 20 volume developer to gently deposit the violet pigment.

Ash Toners

Have an ashy blonde bob by reaching for ash-based toners that’ll cancel out those warm yellow-orange hues. Ash toners with blue and violet pigments neutralize the brassy tones in blonde hair.

  1. Choose an ash toner matching your hair’s level of lightness.
  2. Mix one part toner with one part 10 or 20 volume developer.
  3. Apply all over damp, towel-dried hair.
  4. Time for 10 minutes, rinse, and style as usual.

Ash toners bring out gorgeous, icy dimension in blonde hair. When coupled with purple shampoo, you’ll have cool, bright locks.

Using Purple Shampoo and Mask

Using Purple Shampoo and Mask
Ain’t it funny how these purple shampoos promise the world but just make a mess of your hair? After years of working with clients, I’ve found the key is knowing when and how to properly use purple shampoo and mask.

For best results, apply purple shampoo just to the mid-lengths and ends of hair for 2-5 minutes, 1-2 times per week. Using it too often or leaving it on too long can result in unwanted purple tinting.

Follow with a moisturizing mask to avoid dryness. Alternate with a hydrating shampoo.

Look for sulfate-free formulas with oils, keratin, antioxidants to nourish while toning.

With some trial and error to find what works for your hair, purple shampoo and mask can effectively tone down brassiness and brighten blonde with a cool, silver finish when used properly.

Apply Toner Correctly

Apply Toner Correctly
Mix the toner and developer in a 1:1 ratio before applying to towel-dried hair for 10 minutes. I recommend using a violet-based toner for brassy yellow tones or an ash toner for orange tones. Determine the ratio based on the desired intensity. For mild toning, use a 1:2 mix.

To neutralize more brassiness, use a 1:1 ratio. Process for the full 10 minutes to allow the toner to deposit optimal pigment. Rinse thoroughly. This will counteract the underlying warm pigments and provide an ash blonde or cool brunette result.

Toner is crucial for fixing unwanted brassiness or orange hues after lightening. It neutralizes unwanted tones for a more natural, dimensional look. I suggest toning every four to six weeks to keep color fresh and vibrant between salon visits.

Toning at home enables you to achieve the exact cool tone you desire.

Maintain Color Between Salon Visits

Maintain Color Between Salon Visits
You’d use a toning mask to moisturize and condition your hair between salon visits.

  • Apple cider vinegar toning rinse – Removes mineral and product buildup causing brassiness.
  • Purple-pigment toning mask – Repairs damaged hair and restores cool tones to blonde hair.
  • Coconut or avocado oil mask – Intensely nourishes and hydrates dry, fragile blonde hair for strength.
  • Swimmer’s shampoo and conditioner – Formulated to protect color-treated hair from chlorine damage and fading.

By using these do-it-yourself solutions periodically, you reinforce your salon color service while ensuring strong, vibrant, youthful blonde hair at all times. Though not substitutes for professional techniques, these measures prevent brassiness or fading between appointments.

Making time for proper at-home maintenance ensures your blonde hair continually appears fresh, glossy, and requires less correction.

Why Has My Hair Turned Orange?

Why Has My Hair Turned Orange
Years of dyeing and toning hair can lead to upsetting brassiness and orange tones. To banish brassiness, try using a blue or purple shampoo to counteract yellow and neutralize orange. Considering dyeing your hair slightly darker is another option to cover orange tones.

As a last resort, book a salon appointment for professional bleaching and toning to lift out the orange and correct your hair color. Mixing up sentence length and structure while fixing any errors in spelling, grammar, or syntax will make the writing flow smoothly.

Use Blue/Purple Shampoo

Wondering why your hair’s turned orange? Try using a blue or purple shampoo based on your original hair color to fix those brassy tones.

While overuse risks exist, blue and purple shampoos contain violet pigment that can help neutralize warm orange and yellow tones in hair when used properly. Look for a shampoo matching your starting color and apply weekly to gently remove brassiness.

Use a nourishing conditioner and avoid overwashing color-treated hair to maintain new cool tones between salon visits.

Go Darker

You could dye your hair darker if those orange tones keep showing up. Go for richer hues and darker shades to transition your color. This simple fix lets you go darker to tone down brassiness without bleaching again.

Consider toning solutions like a white vinegar rinse or hair glaze first. But heading to a darker color is an option if orange persists after trying other methods.

Salon Bleaching

Correcting orange hair from a bad bleach job requires professional help over time. Although bleaching, toning, and deep conditioning don’t provide an instant fix, repeated salon visits over weeks or months using demi-permanent glazes or toners can gradually lift out the brassiness.

With patience and care from your colorist, your beautiful cool blonde color will be restored.

Preventing Future Brassiness

Preventing Future Brassiness
With years of extensive training and experience in hair coloring and toning processes, along with practical knowledge gained from working hands-on with clients, there is expertise to educate you on at-home hair care.

To prevent future brassiness, take steps to protect bleached hair from the damaging UV rays of the sun.

Protect From Sun

To protect your hair from the sun and maintain a cool, fresh look, consider these sun protection strategies. Embrace UV defense with specialized hair care products designed to prevent fading.

Avoid Chlorine

When swimming in pools treated with chlorine, consider wearing a snug-fitting cap to shield your hair from the potential color-altering effects of the chemicals.

To ensure your hair remains vibrant, invest in a good-quality swim cap to protect it from chlorine exposure. This simple precaution can go a long way in maintaining your beautifully toned blonde locks.

In addition to using a swim cap, it’s also wise to take extra care when around chlorinated water. After swimming, rinse your hair thoroughly with clean water to remove any residual chlorine. You can even use a clarifying shampoo designed to remove chlorine and mineral buildup.

Furthermore, don’t forget to apply a hair-friendly sunscreen before putting on your swim cap and heading to the pool. This additional layer of protection shields your hair from the sun’s UV rays, which can exacerbate the effects of chlorine.

With these precautions in place, you can enjoy your time by the pool without worrying about unwanted brassy tones in your beautiful blonde hair.

Shower Filter

Enhance the vitality of your hair and address the issue of brassiness by considering the installation of a shower filter in your bathroom.

These filters offer several benefits, including the removal of minerals and impurities from your water, reducing the risk of mineral-induced brassiness. Different filter types are available, from simple attachments to whole-house systems.

The installation process is straightforward, and many can be easily attached to your existing showerhead.

Investing in a shower filter ensures that the water quality you expose your hair to is free from the minerals and impurities that contribute to brassiness. By taking this step, you’ll be actively preventing future instances of unwanted warm tones in your blonde hair, maintaining that icy, cool look you desire.

Swimming and Brassy Hair

Swimming and Brassy Hair
If you’re a frequent swimmer, protecting your hair from chlorine and saltwater is essential to maintain your beautiful, cool-toned look.

Chlorine and saltwater can wreak havoc on your blonde hair, often causing unwanted brassy tones. To combat this, consider using sunscreen for your hair. Just as you shield your skin from harmful UV rays, your hair also needs protection.

There are specially formulated hair sunscreens available that can help create a barrier between your hair and the sun’s damaging effects. Apply it before swimming to minimize damage caused by exposure to the sun and water.

Chlorine can strip your hair of its natural oils and color, exacerbating brassy tones. Before taking a dip in the pool, wet your hair thoroughly with clean, non-chlorinated water.

After swimming, rinse your hair again with clean water to remove any residual chlorine. If you have blonde hair, invest in a good quality swimming cap to minimize chlorine contact. Also, make sure to condition your hair regularly to keep it hydrated and resilient against chlorine and saltwater.

By following these steps, you can enjoy your time in the pool while preserving your gorgeous blonde hair.

Vinegar Rinses for Brassiness

Vinegar Rinses for Brassiness
To combat unwanted brassiness, consider incorporating vinegar rinses into your hair care routine. Vinegar rinses are a secret weapon against the stubborn yellow and orange tones that can plague blonde hair.

These clarifying benefits result from vinegar’s natural acidic properties, which break down mineral buildup and stubborn residues contributing to brassiness.

When you use a vinegar rinse, it not only helps remove these unwanted tones but also adds a lustrous shine to your hair. It’s like hitting the reset button for your blonde locks. The vinegar clarifies your hair, leaving it looking fresh, vibrant, and oh-so-gorgeous.

Here’s how to do it: Mix one part white vinegar with two parts water, then pour the solution over your hair after shampooing. Let it sit for a few minutes and then rinse thoroughly. Follow up with a good conditioner to lock in moisture.

Make this a part of your routine every two weeks to maintain that beautiful, brass-free blonde hair you desire.

How Often to Wash Brassy Hair

How Often to Wash Brassy Hair
Maintaining your vibrant look and combating unwanted warmth in your hair requires understanding how frequently you should wash it.

  • Washing Frequency: The ideal frequency depends on your hair type and personal preference. If your hair tends to get oily quickly, you might need to wash more often. However, overwashing can strip your hair of essential oils and toner, potentially causing brassiness.

  • Maintenance Tips: Use sulfate-free, color-safe shampoos and conditioners to preserve your toner. Incorporate purple-pigmented products like shampoos and masks to counteract brassiness between salon visits.

  • Sun Protection: Shield your hair from UV exposure with hats, scarves, or specialized hair sun protection products. Sun can accelerate brassiness, especially in blondes.

  • Swimming Effects: Avoid chlorinated or saltwater pools. If you do swim, use a protective hair mask to minimize the effects of chlorine and saltwater exposure.

By finding the right balance in your washing routine, taking preventive measures against UV and pool exposure, and incorporating maintenance tips, you can keep your blonde hair looking fresh and free from brassy tones.


To achieve the blonde hair of your dreams, you’ve embarked on a journey that can sometimes encounter brassy roadblocks. But fear not, for you now possess the knowledge and tools to conquer those unwanted orange and yellow tones.

By understanding the science behind brassy hair, utilizing violet and ash toners, and incorporating purple shampoos and masks into your routine, you’re well-equipped to maintain that beautiful, cool blonde.

Remember to follow the expert advice and tips in this article, and you’ll be waving goodbye to brassiness and hello to stunning, toned blonde locks.

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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.