Should I Use 20 or 30-vol Developer With Bleach? It depends on your goal


  • The developer you use with your bleach will depend on your goals.
  • If you want to lighten your hair one or two levels and your natural color is light or you want to bleach your roots, you should use a 20-vol developer.
  • Alternatively, if you want to lighten your hair more than three levels, or your hair is dark, you should use a 30-vol developer.
  • You should also consider your hair health before deciding on any of these developers with your bleach.


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10 tips for mixing bleach powder and developer that you won’t find elsewhere


  When you put the word developer and bleach together,   I get the shivers.

That mix gets dangerously close to bleaching, which is the most aggressive chemical process you can apply to your hair.


I don’t know what has happened in the last few years with bleaching hair.

People have lost their fear; they’ve become reckless and are taking many risks.


Sometimes, it can work out relatively well.

However, pay attention to the word “relatively.” I can assure you that bleaching processes never go 100% right.

In some cases, they can go wrong because your hair may burn after using bleach with a developer.

When that happens, people remember colorists in the world and look for them as if they could do magic.

strand that falls out after brushing your hair


Let’s be clear.

Not even the best colorist, hairdresser, or coiffeur in the world can work miracles on burnt hair.

So,   if you’re planning to mix a 20 or 30 volume developer with bleach,   you need to know what you’re up to.

Many people don’t even know the difference between blue and white bleach, and yet they buy it as if they were the same.


Sometimes, they don’t even know which developer to use with bleach. Precisely, that could be the difference between healthy and ruined hair.

Today, I’ll tell you when you should use a 20-vol developer with bleach and when you can use a 30-vol developer with bleach.

There’s no black and white in this topic.


The developer you use with bleach depends on how much you want to lighten your hair, but your hair health also counts.

Hairdressers consider all these issues when planning a color change. On the contrary, people who bleach their hair at home don’t. And that’s how disasters happen.


As you read this article, think about your hair health.

  If you have frizz, rough ends, low shine, or brittle hair,   you shouldn’t use a 20 or 30-vol with your bleach.

Instead, you should repair your hair before you bleach it. While you’re still evaluating your hair thoroughly, let’s move on.


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When can you use a 20-vol developer with bleach?

mixture of bleach and developer in a plastic bowl

Bleaching with a 20-volume developer is mild , because your hair lightens one or two levels in the color scale.

Let’s review the color scale.

  • Black 1
  • Dark brown 3
  • Brown 4
  • Light brown 5
  • Dark blond 6
  • Blonde 7
  • Light blonde 8
  • Very light blonde 9
  • Extra light blonde 10 [/your_list]


Now tell me, what number is your hair color?

When you know your hair color number,   you can lighten it one or two levels with a 20-vol developer.  

So, for example, if your hair is light brown 5, and you use a 20-vol developer with bleach, you’ll be able to lighten it to dark blonde 6 or blonde 7.


However, if you want to reach higher levels, you’ll need to use a 30-vol. In that case,   I recommend you go to a professional unless you have bleaching experience.  


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  Another case in which you can use the 20-vol with the bleach, is if your hair is light.   For example, you may want to bleach your hair light blonde 8 to achieve an extra light blonde 10.


Finally, if you only want to bleach your roots, you can also use the 20 developer with the bleach.

The roots are virgin hair. Being so close to the scalp, they have an extra temperature, which will make the lightening power of the 20-vol work faster.


If you apply a higher volume developer, your roots may turn white and damage your scalp.

Extra tips?


When can you use a 30-vol developer with bleach?

mixture of bleach with developer 30 on blonde hair

Bleaching with 30 vol is applied at the salon because  it can light up to 3 to 4 volumes. .It could seriously damage your hair if you have neither experience nor training in colorimetry.


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At a salon, a colorist can evaluate your hair and offer you several alternatives. For example, I recommend my clients include Olaplex during bleaching.


So, I’ll tell you when you can use the bleach with a 30 volume developer. However, it’s risky to bleach your hair with this product.

  •  If your hair is black 1, dark brown 3, or brown 4,  a mix of 30-vol with bleach will help you scale between 3 and 4 levels in one application.


Of course, this doesn't mean you'll be blonde in one day. Instead, you’ll have to undergo several bleaching sessions until the dark color is removed.

Also, you should wait at least three weeks between each bleaching session and repair your hair intensively during that time.


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  •   If your hair is dark blonde 6, blonde 7, or light blonde 8 and you want to go extra light blonde 10,   you should use a 30 volume developer.


Extra Tips?

  • Don’t leave the bleach with 30-volume developer on your hair for more than twenty minutes and check its progress often.
  • Rinse the bleach out with cool water and use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner to keep your hair from drying out.
  • If your hair feels stiff after rinsing, wash it again. There could be some bleach powder left.



Now you know when you can use the 20 vol with the bleach and when you should use the 30 vol instead.

So, appealing to your common sense, don’t take risks you cannot handle.

The same goes for bleaching your hair. If you have no knowledge of colorimetry or experience with chemical hair processes, run the risk of ruining your hair.

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