Manic Panic Ultra Violet on Brassy Hair, Good or Terrible Idea?

needs bleaching

  • If you apply Manic Panic Ultra Violet on your brassy hair, the result will be reddish-brown. It’s far from the violet color you surely crave.
  • The only way to color your hair violet with this Manic Panic shade is to a very light blonde base. If you don’t believe me, you can always do the strand test. I’ll tell you how to do it later.
  • If you don’t want to bleach your hair to achieve such a light base, you can choose other Manic Panic shades for your brassy hair. For example, After Midnight, or more traditional colors like ash-blonde 7.1.


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What do you think would happen if you apply Manic Panic Ultra Violet on your brassy hair?


I’ll give you 3 options. Let’s see if you can guess.

  • Option 1: Your hair will turn a beautiful deep violet color.
  • Option 2: Your hair will take on a purple color that will be neither red nor violet nor any imaginable color.
  • Option 3: Your hair will be a reddish-brown color that will make you run away from the mirror.

What do you say? Do you have your answer yet?


The correct answer is option 3.

 If you apply Manic Panic Ultra Violet on your brassy hair, it’ll probably be close to a reddish-brown color. 

Of course, if it’s a light brassy, the result will be a light brown. The darker the orange, the worse the result!


I can assure you that  if you apply Ultra Violet on your brassy hair, your color will not look the way you imagine it.  How do I know?


It’s simple!

I’ve been a hairdresser for 20 years.

I’ve colored hundreds of hairs and fixed disasters in hundreds of others. Colorimetry doesn’t fail.

 If you apply a violet hair dye on brassy hair, the result will be reddish-brown. 

Fantasy colors like purple or violet should be applied on very light bases, such as extra light blonde.


brassy hair

So now you have three options:

  • If you don’t believe me that your hair will end up reddish-brown, do the strand test and see for yourself.
  • If you believe me, and you want to apply Manic Panic Ultra Violet hair color, you’ll need to bleach your hair to look radiant.
  • If you believe me, but you don’t want to bleach your hair, you can opt for other fantasy or traditional colors, which will neutralize the brassy shade.


So, let’s take it one step at a time, and start with those who hesitate.

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How to do the strand test before coloring your hair to avoid a color you hate

manic panic violet on brassy hair

Before I tell you about the strand test, let me explain a few things about colorimetry.


First, semi-permanent hair dyes are applied to almost white hair.

Secondly, violet and orange share a very specific pigment which is red.

  • Orange is a mixture of yellow and red.
  • Violet is a mixture of blue and red.


If you look at the color wheel, a must when it comes to hair coloring, you’ll notice that violet neutralizes yellow.

This means that when you apply violet, the yellow in your base color will be neutralized and turn to a brown color.


So far so clear, but the red in your orange base color will not be neutralized.

Therefore,  if you add the red of the violet hair dye and the red of your base, the result will be a reddish-brown. It’s quite different from the violet you were expecting. 


If you want it to be even more precise, the exact resulting color will be a reddish ochre.

It’s a very beautiful color for the autumn artwork, but a disaster for your hair color.


Let me guess.  Maybe, you think that since your orange is pretty light, even Manic Panic Ultra Violet can leave it purple. I know that way of thinking. 

You like to cling to the last hope.


That may be fine in some life situations, but take it from me. That’s not how things work in colorimetry.

Your hopes will sink like the Titanic when no one believed such a disaster could happen.


If you don’t believe me, try the strand test.

This test is irrefutable and you’ll see the results with your own eyes.

A very simple procedure can save you before you make a big mistake.


  • Gather all your hair into a ponytail, leaving just a back strand loose.
  • Apply Manic Panic Ultra Violet from roots to ends to the strand.
  • Leave it on for 20 minutes
  • Rinse and blow dry

Now take a good look at the result. Is your hair violet?


I warned you, but you didn’t want to believe my words.

So,  if you want your hair to be purple, you’ll need to bleach it to an extra light blonde 10 shade. 

However, remember that bleaching is a very aggressive process for your hair, which can cause almost irreversible damage.

So, if you don’t have bleaching experience, go to your salon to color your hair purple and keep it healthy.


There you are. Finally convinced that your orange hair will not be purple after applying Manic Panic Ultra Violet. But all is not lost.

If you don’t even want to bleach your hair, you can still have a unique, personal color. Do you want to know which ones? Read on.


Which Manic Panic shades do look good on orange hair?

apply over brassy hair

If you still want a fantasy color to your hair, Manic Panic offers you several options.

Since your base color is brassy, you can apply shades within that range:



semi permanent hair color cream

If you like reddish tones:



semi permanent hair color cream

If you like blue tones:



  These shades will cover the brassy with an even and uniform color. 

You can also choose conventional shades. In that case, you should opt for those with ashy undertones.

Do you know why?

Because the ashy undertones neutralize the brassy. So, your options are:

  • Dark ash blonde 6.1
  • Ash blonde 7.1
  • Light ash blonde 8.1



The best advice I can give you is to do the strand test before you apply any hair dye to your orange hair.

Although Manic Panic is one of the most popular brands of semi-permanent hair dyes and their color palette is very wide, you’ll never get the color you want if your base color is not very light.

Colorimetry is about certainties, not false hopes.


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