Brunette to Lavender | My Hair Journey | Part 2 Blonde to Lavender (How to Dye Hair Lilac)

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This is the second part of My Hair Journey. The first part covered hair history, bleaching, and toning and now this one will go over how I got my hair lavender and how I am maintaining it.

If you're following this journey at this point you've made it past the worst of it and we're on to the fun stuff.

In general there are a few things you'll need to dye your hair any pastel color once it's been lightened. Assuming you have things like a mixing bowl, brush(es), hair clips, etc... We will go into each item with more detail.


Semi-permanent Dye ( I used a couple different ones)
Cheap White Conditioner (more on this in minute)
Shimmer Lights Purple Conditioner

Semi-Permanent Dye -

 I do all my hair supply shopping at Sally Beauty Supply and they carry two brands that make semi-permanent dyes in unnatural colors. From what I understand no one makes permanent dye in unnatural colors. The two brands they carry, and thus the two brands I've tried, are Manic Panic and Ion Brilliance Brights. From Manic Panic I use the Ultra Violet. From Ion I've used the lavender and I recently bought the purple to try. I have also seen people use Pravana colors, which I'd have to order from Amazon to get it where I live - but I'm willing to try.

Manic Panic is a vegan vegetable based dye. Only drawback I've found is that it seems to breakdown quickly in intense sunlight. I live in Oregon, so for the most part this isn't a problem for me because there simply isn't enough sun here to make it a problem. However, I went down to Disneyland in California and I put color in my hair on the first day and by the third day my hair was BLONDE with bits of lavender hidden underneath. At this point though I was using a conditioner to dilute it that I don't think was helping the color stay at all (more on that soon).

This is exactly the dye I use from Manic Panic is  Ultra Violet

Ion Color Brilliance Semi-Permanent Brights are a chemical based dye. The first time I used this I got a tube of lavender, which I knew wouldn't cover my whole head if I didn't dilute it. But after looking at photos of people who had used it I figured I probably wanted to dilute it since the color was fairly intense straight out of the tube. I had also heard people say that the dye is SO thick that you basically have to dilute it with something to work with it (which isn't hard to believe, it's got a consistency of cake frosting when it comes out of the tube). So I diluted it with white conditioner. It turned out and incredibly pale lavender that pretty much looked gray over most of my hair with like a subtle sheen of purple in certain light.

I use the following Ion Color Brilliance dyes currently:

Cheap White Conditioner - 

If you search around YouTube for hair dying tutorials using unnatural colors, and especially if you look using the term 'pastel', you'll find a lot of people do the SAME thing. Dilute a vibrant color with white conditioner. This works because these semi-permanent dyes do not require a developer (peroxide) to work, they work as is. So you can tone down their effect by diluting it which makes it so the majority of what you're applying to your head conditioner. I use about 2/3 to 1 cup of conditioner every time I dye my hair, so I definitely am looking for something cheap. 

So essentially you'll be taking a pre-made color and altering it to you're liking. This can be a blessing or a curse. You get to make your color as intense or a light as you want! But no one can tell you exactly what color to make the mixture so it turns out the color you want on your head... more on mixing in a bit.

After watching 6.5 million videos and trying to figure out what conditioner might be best for this all I could find was basically "anything cheap and white toned". So that's what I bought. I went to WalMart and got a giant $2 thing of white conditioner. 

Later, after doing more research on what to dilute semi-permanent hair dye with I found a couple of resources saying it was best to look for a silicone or 'cone' free conditioner. Silicone (or other 'cone' compounds) coat the hair shaft and make it smooth and silky (i.e. slippery) and when used to dilute semi-permanent color it can prevent the dye from getting into the hair as well. At this point I was out of my diluting conditioner and started the hunt for more, except this time silicone-free. Which was a LOT harder than I had anticipated and I spent a full 30 minutes sitting on the floor of the shampoo isle in Target reading labels. I ended up finding one cheap conditioner that doesn't contain any 'cone' compounds.

I'm currently using this Garnier one. Click here.

Purple Conditioner - 

Ask nearly any unnatural blonde how they maintain their hair and they'll probably at some point tell you that they use a purple/toning shampoo. It helps to keep brassy hues at bay so you don't have to tone nearly as often. In fact, I've heard of people using toning shampoos and conditioners alone to keep hair cool-toned.

So why conditioner and not shampoo? Well there are some steps you can take in order to extend the life of semi-permanent hair dye; One of which is to use a VERY gentle shampoo, preferably one that is sulfate free. For a long time now my hair has been sulfate-free (long before I went blonde) and when I started to make this transition I took a look at the bottle of purple shampoo in my shower I found out that yup. You probably guessed it. It has sulfates in it. I then spent some time in Sally's to see if I could find one that was sulfate free and was unsuccessful but then I found the purple CONDITIONER. Which doesn't contain sulfates and I can leave it on my head as long as I want and it won't hurt anything. Whereas people do baths or soaks using purple shampoo and that could potentially dry your hair out.

Get Clairol's purple conditioner here.

Dying Process

I start with washed, semi-dry hair (not conditioned).

Like I said earlier, I use about 2/3 cup of conditioner and mix dye into it. Right now I'm using a combination of Ion Color Brilliance in Purple and Manic Panic in Ultra Violet. I use 2-3 tsp of manic panic and about a nickel sized amount of the Ion Color Brilliance. I simply apply that all over my head. I usually do the roots first, the very ends next, and work my way up the hair. When it's done I sometimes wrap my head with something (like a plastic bag) to keep the dye from getting on stuff but I don't know if the added heat helps or not. Then I leave it on for as long as I can. An hour is great, but the longer the better from what I've found.

When ready I rinse my hair out thoroughly with cool water. I recently read that doing an apple cider vinegar rinse can help your hair hold dye for longer, so after I rinse out the dye I've been doing a vinegar rinse. After rinsing out the vinegar I dry my hair as usual ( in a towel or in the air because I can't be bothered to blow it out).

It's that easy. The bleaching process is so much more difficult and time consuming.

If you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment or ask me on twitter (@missameliajoy).

Thank you so much for being here and I hope that was helpful.

* Product links in this post are affiliate links*


  1. Thanks for such great tips. Bleaching always left my hair dry and dull. I was just looking for a more reliable method of going into a lighter shade. Will do it this weekend following your steps, cheers.

  2. De beste luxe tijd ter wereld Goedkope luxe tijd! Wil je deze kopie horloges verkoop als je deze luxe kopie audemars-piguet horloges verkoop,kopie bell&ross horloges wilt? Dit is gebeurd maar gestopt bij? Omdat hun dure prijs uw stappen stopt, is dit de meest correcte plaats voor u. Allereerst moeten we dit bevestigen



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