3 ways to remove demi-permanent dye from hair (without damaging it)

  • If your hair is completely healthy and you want to remove the demi-permanent dye, you can do it with a light bleaching, using 20-volume peroxide instead of 30.
  • If your hair is moderately damaged, you can remove the demi-permanent dye with a clarifying shampoo, because it doesn’t have corrosive chemicals.
  • If you prefer more natural methods and your hair is healthy, you can use a mixture of lemon juice and baking soda.


cover grays

Do you know about demi-permanent dye?

I’m sure you do, but under a different name. You’ll find it under the name “tone-on-tone” coloring in most specialty stores and supermarkets.


This hair coloring is an intermediate option between permanent and semi-permanent dye because it doesn’t have ammonia and has to be applied with a 9 or 10-volume developer. That’s why it’s recommended for damaged hair.

However, what if you want to remove it from your hair?


 Removing any dye is never easy, especially when you used developer to apply it. 

However, you can choose among several options, always considering your hair health. This is basic.


If you’ve applied a demi-permanent color, your hair will most likely be dry and weak.

If you add an aggressive process to remove the color on top of that, you’ll only damage it further.


 So, before you decide how you’re going to remove the demi-permanent color from your hair, read on, because I’ll tell you: 
  • How to remove demi-permanent hair dye with mild bleaching: Good for fully healthy hair
  • How to remove demi-permanent dye with clarifying shampoo: good for damaged hair
  • How to remove demi-permanent dye with lemon juice and baking soda: good for healthy or slightly damaged hair

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Removing demi-permanent hair dye with mild bleaching: recommended for fully healthy hair

with gloves

Bleaching is a very aggressive process for your hair. The 30-volume developer mixed with bleach generates a chemical reaction that makes the hair expel all color, both natural and artificial.

As you want to remove a hair dye that does not contain ammonia, you don’t need to use very aggressive bleaching.

You need to use a milder developer. Use 20-volume developer because 30-volume developer is used for traditional bleaching.


 We, stylists, call this type of bleaching a mild lightening. However, even if it’s called mild, it should only be done on completely healthy hair. 

If you don’t lose hair when you brush it, your hair is soft and shiny, and there isn’t a hint of frizz, you can go for mild bleaching.

If, on the other hand, your hair is damaged, this option is not for you, but I’ll give you other options later on.


What will you need to remove the demi-permanent color with a mild bleach?

  • 20-volume cream developer
  • Bleach powder
  • Coconut oil
  • Gloves
  • Dye brush
  • Shower thermal cap or


Step by step:

  • Comb your hair and section it into 4 sections from front to back and from ear to ear, holding them with hair clips
  • Put on the gloves and prepare the mixture. Place the 20-volume developer with the bleach powder and mix it in a plastic container until you get a homogeneous cream.
  • Release one section of the hair and apply the bleaching mixture from the roots to the ends with a dye brush, starting from the first few centimeters of hair growth.
  • When you finish the 4 sections, cover all the hair with the thermal or shower cap and leave it on for 20 minutes,  controlling the process every 5 minutes. 
  • Finally, rinse your hair with plenty of warm water. You can also wash it using shampoo and moisturizing conditioner.


There won’t be any traces of the demi-permanent dye, but remember that it’s important to moisturize the hair with keratin or coconut oil afterward.


Is your hair damaged, and you can’t stand the demi-permanent dye anymore?

Let’s get to work with the clarifying shampoo!


How to remove demi-permanent dye with clarifying shampoo: recommended for damaged hair

remove toner from hair

Since clarifying shampoo doesn’t contain developer or ammonia, you can use it without risking removing the demi-permanent dye in your damaged hair. Do you want to know how it works?


 The clarifying shampoo produces a reaction that makes the hair fiber expel the artificial color. 

Therefore, after using it, the color you’ll see in your hair will be the one you had before applying the demi-permanent dye. How to use it?


Just like any shampoo!

  • Wet your hair and apply the clarifying shampoo, massaging it into a lather.
  • Leave in for 10 minutes and rinse.
  • If you notice that the demi-permanent dye’s color has disappeared, you can start drying your hair.
  • If you still have dye traces, you’ll need to wash again with shampoo 2 or 3 times and you can do it immediately.


How to remove the demi-permanent dye with lemon juice and baking soda: for healthy or moderately damaged hair

leave it for 30 minutes

Co-wash, coffee dyes, and aloe vera hair treatments are some of the best-known hair cosmetics trends.

If you prefer to avoid chemical products and lean towards a more natural method, you can use a mixture of baking soda and lemon.


 However, I must warn you. Even if it has lemon, it doesn’t mean it’s completely natural since baking soda is corrosive.  

Therefore, this option is for healthy or slightly damaged hair. If your hair is extremely dry, the mixture can cause the hair fiber to break.

then introduce the mixture in the shampoo

What do you need for this mixture?

  • Baking soda 25 grams
  • The juice of 1 lemon
  • A sunny day because, after applying it, you must expose yourself to the sun for 30 minutes for the lightening reaction to take place


Step by step:

  • In a plastic container, mix 25 grams of baking soda and the juice of 1 lemon. If the mixture is too liquid, you can add more baking soda, because the consistency should be creamy.
  • With your hands, apply the mixture from root to tip, leaving 2 centimeters of growth, to avoid touching the scalp and irritating it.
  • Then, sit in the sun for 30 minutes.
  • Afterward, rinse your hair with shampoo and apply conditioner, leaving it in for 3 minutes.
  • When you dry your hair, apply coconut oil to recover some of the moisture that your hair fiber lost during the process.


  If there are any traces of permanent dye, you can reapply the mixture only after two weeks.  Remember that this method is corrosive and can permanently damage the hair fiber.



  • If your hair is completely healthy and you want to remove the demi-permanent dye, you can go for a mild lightening or apply a mixture of baking soda and lemon juice.
  • If your hair is damaged, the best to remove the demi-permanent dye is to use a clarifying shampoo to remove the color without damaging the hair fiber.

Remember that you must check your hair’s health before removing any dye not to damage the hair fiber permanently.[/su_list]

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