How to get silver hair with toner step-by-step

several bleaching sessions

  • One of the easiest ways to get silver hair is by using toner.
  • To achieve a silver-tone no matter what your base tone should be a very light shade of blonde.
  • If your hair isn’t a light blonde shade, you have no other option than bleaching it to afterward be able to apply the toner.
  • And lastly, you should know that maintaining silver-toned hair can be very complicated.


If there’s anything that has surprised me with trends, it’s that in very little time, the silver color has become very popular quickly, even among some of the most famous Instagrammers.

And you’ll be asking me, what is the advantage of using toner instead of dye to get a silver color?


The answer is simple.

If you’re tired of your silver hair, the only thing you have to do is stop applying the toner, while with the dye, you have to pick another color to apply over the silver, to make sure that your hair doesn’t look uneven because you stopped using the dye.


But although applying toner is really simple, you need to remember that the base tone has to be a light blonde color, or butter color, as stylists say privately to one another.

If you don’t have this hair tone, you won’t be able to apply the silver-gray or the silver that you want. The base tone always has to be at least a light blonde 9 because if not, the silver won’t appear in your hair.

But, what happens if your hair isn’t within these shades and you want your hair to be silver? You should bleach your hair.


 I have clients in my salon that has gone through three or four bleaching sessions to be able to get the ideal tone and apply the silver. 

And besides, gray tones are not easy to maintain.

For this reason, if you want to apply toner to get a silver color in your hair, stick around because I’ll tell you:

  • The ideal base tone for applying silver toner
  • The silver toner you should buy
  • How to apply toner in 4 easy steps
  • How to maintain silver hair so that it looks beautiful and shiny for longer


After reading everything I have to tell you, you won’t have any more doubts, and you can show off your silver hair.


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How to determine which shade is the ideal base for applying silver toner

20 volume developer

As I explained before, your base color should be very light, that’s to say, a light blonde 9 or lighter.

This is because silver-gray or silver, as they’re not a color like brown or blonde, use the base tone for pigmentation.

For this reason, the gray pigment doesn’t cover up colors and only softens them.


For example, if your base tone is a brown 4, and you add a silver toner, your hair will be a silver brown 4.11.

If you apply silver toner over almost white-blonde hair, it will look silver without any doubt.


If your base tone is a blonde 9, 10 or 11, you won’t need to bleach your hair.

 If your base tone isn’t within these parameters, you should bleach it so that the silver looks good. And depending on your tone, this could mean that you need more than one bleaching treatment. 
  • If your base tone is a 7 or 8, you’ll need one bleaching session.
  • If your tone is a 5 or 6, you’ll need two or three sessions.
  • If your tone is a 1, 3 or 4, it’ll require more than 3 bleaching sessions.


But don’t overlook the fact that bleaching is a chemical process that damages your hair, so I recommend that you go to a professional to do it.

Because many of my clients have come to the salon with their hair ruined by badly done bleaching jobs and fixing it takes time.


 If in some salon they’ve promised you that you’ll have silver color within three hours, starting from a dark base tone, leave running. This is impossible if you want to have hair that’s still healthy. 

If you don’t have to bleach your hair, you just need to buy the silver toner.

Do you want to know what I recommend to the majority of my clients?


I’ll let you know next.


Which silver toner you should buy


Since the rise of the silver color, many brands have introduced toners to the market that can be used safely at home.

  • This is the case with WELLA COLOR CHARM, which has several tones, including an extra silver blonde. Maybe this won’t be the silver you’re looking for, but I can promise you that this is a good base for starting with the gray color scale.


  • Also, in their line KOLESTON PERFECT, WELLA has silver toner, but in its description, it says permanent dye. But don’t worry, toners are permanent dyes by definition, but because they aren’t palette colors like brown, red or blonde, they are called toner.

They have the effect of neutralizing unpleasant tones like oranges and duck yellows. So now you know, if you ask for toner in the hair salon, and the box says permanent dye, don’t get scared.


  • Also if they are professional brands, like for example JOICO VERO K-PAC, this is an excellent toner, that offers you 10 different grays to choose from.

My favorite brand?


  • IGORA because it has a variety of gray tones, like silver, smoke, lead, ash and a toner that is ash mix.


In addition to buying toner, you’ll need 20 volume peroxide, with which you’ll mix the dye and a pair of gloves to protect your hands.

Once you have these three things, the moment of truth has arrived: It’s time to turn your hair silver.


How to apply toner in 4 easy steps

At this point, you should already have a very light blonde base color, whether you have it naturally or because you bleached your hair.

So let’s start step-by-step with applying the silver toner.


  • Step 1

Brush your hair, and make sure that it’s completely dry. Detangle your hair very carefully, because any knot can interfere with the process.


  • Step 2

Put on your gloves, and in a plastic container, mix the silver or silver-gray tube of dye with the entire bottle of 20 volume peroxide. Stir until it has a uniform consistency.



  • Step 3

With the help of a paintbrush, apply the mix to all of your hair, from roots to tips, covering your entire hair surface, without leaving even a tiny space without toner.

Let the mix sit for 20 to 30 minutes, even though you’ll see in the first minutes that your hair starts to take on a silver-gray or silver-tone.


  • Step 4

After the exposure time has passed, rinse your hair with lots of lukewarm water. You’ll notice that the water will run gray, but I advise you   to keep rinsing your hair until you don’t see anymore gray in the water. 

Look at yourself in the mirror—now you are part of the silver hair trend!


But the silver color needs a lot of care, so you must read what I have to say next so that your silver can compete with the shining moon.


How to maintain silver hair so that it looks beautiful and shiny for longer

You have come a long way to get your silver hair. So, you must keep in mind the following recommendations to care for it correctly.

  • Replace your usual shampoo with a silver or violet toning shampoo. This type of shampoo deposits some pigments that will make sure your hair looks more silvery every day.
  • Use silver keratin for hair repair, making sure you do no more than two keratin baths per week if you want. This keratin has gray toner so that you don’t lose your color. Also, it’s even more recommendable if you bleached your hair beforehand.
  • Don’t apply hot hair masks more than once a week because the creams normally contain sulfates that take pigmentation out of hair, washing out the color quickly.
  • Don’t wash your hair every day. I recommend that you do it every 48 hours.


These are all the secrets that hide behind the silver hair colors that provoke sighs whenever you see them on social media.

But now you know how to achieve it.

What shade of silver toner will you choose for your next change of look?

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