Does 10 volume developer damage hair? Not if you use it the right way

three percent peroxide

The 10-volume developer does not damage hair if it’s used for the right purpose and in the right way.

Let’s talk about the goal first. What do you want to achieve by using a 10-volume developer?

  • I’m telling you right now that the 10-volume developer is not suitable for bleaching hair. If you use it for that, you’ll damage your hair because you’ll be senselessly exposing it to wear and tear.


  • The 10-volume developer can lighten hair by half a tone only. That is, it lightens the hair very slightly. If that’s what you’re looking for, go ahead. Now let’s talk about how to use it correctly.
  • If you don’t want to damage your hair, I recommend that you use a cream developer and let it work on your hair for 40 minutes at most, checking the process every 10 minutes. This way, you won’t damage your hair.


 If you use the 10-volume developer with the right purpose and times, you won’t damage your hair. 


If we compare the 10-volume developer with the 20-volume developer, the 10-volume developer is less aggressive to the hair.

However, it’s not really all about the amount of volume. What will you use the 10-volume developer for?

Do you want to bleach your hair slightly and think that if you use that amount of volume, your hair won’t be damaged?


Well, unfortunately, I have to shatter your illusions.

Bleaching is done with a 30-volume developer.

If you use the 10-volume developer, you won’t get even one shade of lighter hair. In turn, it’ll feel slightly drier if you leave it on for the right amount of time.

Do you want to hear the truth?


 If you leave the 10-volume developer on your hair for too long, you’ll end up damaging your hair just like with a higher volume developer.  Although the 10-volume developer is less aggressive, it’s still a chemical.


And the word associated with “chemical” is “CAUTION”. Remember that before applying any chemical treatment, you must know how to do it. Otherwise, you could deeply damage your hair.

That’s why when we talk about the developer, you should understand what we’re talking about, whether it’s 10, 20, or 30 volumes.


Stay with me, I’ll tell you:

  • The developer’s action in your hair according to its volume.
  • How to use the 10-volume developer correctly to prevent hair damage

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What role does the developer play in the hair according to its volume?

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The developer or hydrogen peroxide is used for different coloring processes either to apply a dye, remove color, or simply to lighten some shades.

What is the mystery of how it works?


It opens the cuticle of the hair fiber to allow the agents in charge of removing or fixing the color to penetrate. Depending on the strength of the developer, the reaction will be lighter or more intense. That’s where volumes come into play.

The more volumes the developer has, the more chemical reaction it’ll generate in the hair fiber.


 That’s why if you use a 10-volume developer, the chemical reaction will be very mild. Unlike 20 or 30 volume developers, it can’t be mixed with bleach powder. As a result, you’ll only get half a shade lighter hair.


We, professional colorists, call this process lightening. Therefore:

  • If you want to add a little light to your color, you can use the 10-volume developer. In a few moments, I’ll tell you how to do it correctly.
  • If you want to change color or bleach your hair, you should use a 30-volume developer and mix it with bleach powder to make the hair fiber expel the color deposited in the core.
  • If you want to lighten your gray hair or a very light natural blonde hair, you should use a 20-volume developer. Gray hair is fine and easily damaged. In the case of very light natural blonde hair, it works by reaching white tones quickly.


So, if you want to achieve more shine in your hair, keep reading, because I’ll tell you how to use the 10 volume peroxide to achieve it.


How to use the 10-volume developer correctly to prevent hair damage

light the face

Although the 10-volume developer is softer than the 20 or 30 volume developer is, you must use it with caution. No matter how minor the chemical process, the hair suffers.

It can cause your hair to dry out, frizz, or even break. Any chemical you apply to your hair, however mild, will alter its structure.


That’s why  it’s very important to know how to use the 10-volume developer. The idea is to avoid hair damage.  You should know your expectations.

Lightening hair is all about lightening your hair just ½ tone. I REPEAT, ONLY HALF A TONE. You should use a 10-volume developer. That’s what bringing light to your color is all about.

Additional advice?


 Use a cream developer because it has moisturizing agents that’ll take care of your hair during the process.  Now, let’s see how to use it.


Step by step:

  • Untangle your hair to ease the application of the developer.
  • Choose the areas where you want to apply the 10-volume developer. Remember that we are talking about highlighting the hair. Nowadays, highlights are used to frame the face. They look super natural, as they are only half a shade different from the rest of the hair.
  • Apply the developer directly to the selected strands on your dry hair.
  • Leave it on for up to 40 minutes, but check the process every 10 minutes.  Keeping to the timing is vital if you don’t want to damage your hair.  
  • When you reach the color you want, or the maximum of 40 minutes is reached, rinse your hair with your usual shampoo and conditioner.


I recommend waiting at least 2 weeks to repeat this process and repair the hair fiber with coconut or argan oil to recover the hydration that your hair fiber loses during the process.



You can’t imagine how many women come to my salon in despair because of some mistake made during the application of the developer, even if they used the 10-volume developer.

If you want to give your hair more shine, the 10-volume developer will not damage your hair as long as you use a cream developer. Also, respect the maximum exposure time of forty minutes and moisturize your hair with coconut or argan oil.

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