My hair won’t bleach past orange, what can I do?

orange hair after bleaching

If your hair won’t bleach past orange, it may be due to one these three reasons:

  • Reason 1: you used a developer lower than 30 volumes.
  • Reason 2: you left the bleach on for less than 20 minutes.
  • Reason 3: you bleached a very dark hair color and still didn’t get all the orange out.

Don’t worry because I’ll tell you how to fix those situations.


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It all seemed so easy in that tutorial about how to bleach your hair that you watched on YouTube.

The Youtuber’s instructions were more than simple.

  • Divide the hair into several sections
  • Prepare the bleach
  • Apply it to the hair
  • Wait long enough for the magic to work.


However, sometimes things get complicated.

Especially, if you have little coloring or bleaching training about how the ingredients in the bleach work on your hair.


  So, despite all your efforts to bleach your hair, it won’t bleach past orange.  

You are definitely scared. I hear you. No one wants to go through life with carrot-colored hair.


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Unlike our colorful and funny Looney Tunes friends, I won’t tell you, “that’s all folks.”

Instead, I’ll help you understand why your hair won’t bleach past orange and how to fix it.

You need to know what you’re dealing with.


Orange is the most resistant color to bleach because most of the colors on the color scale contain orange.

The color scale goes from black 1 to extra light platinum blonde 10. However, only a very few colors don’t contain orange.


Each color group contains different base pigments. Let’s look at the scale in detail:

  • Dark colors include red pigmentation: black 1, dark brown 3.
  • Medium colors have orange pigmentation: brown 4, light brown 5, dark blond 6, blonde 7.
  • Light colors include yellow pigmentation: light blond 8, very light blond 9.

Did you imagine there was so much information behind bleaching?


That’s why you need to know your base color and the color you want to reach before you start. [/su_highlight]

For example, if you start from a very dark color, you’ll have to bleach your hair several times to get rid of the orange shade.


  If your hair is brown 4, it’ll get to a blonde 7 when you bleach it. This means you’ll still be in the orange range.  

Are you doomed to go through life with orange hair?


No. Let’s start looking at the possible reasons why your hair won’t bleach past orange and how to fix it.

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Reason 1: Your hair is still orange after bleaching because you didn’t use the proper developer

plastic bowl

For bleach to work properly and avoid orange, you must choose the right ingredients.


  You should use a 30-volume developer to bleach your hair.  

Lower volume developers don’t have enough power to bleach the hair. Instead, they only fade the color.


For example, your hair is brown 4. If you use a 20-volume developer, you’ll remove the primary color, which is brown. However, you’ll leave your hair orange because that’s the pigment background.

As orange is a very persistent color, you’ll have to bleach your hair again to remove it, and you’ll damage it irreversibly.


Therefore,   if you wanted to protect your hair by bleaching it with a lower volume developer, unfortunately, you have made a big mistake.   You only faded your color and dried out your hair.

I’m just trying to help you understand the process so that it doesn’t happen again. Can you fix it?


  Yes. What you need to do is apply the bleach correctly with a 30-volume developer to bleach past that orange shade.  


Now, if you bleached your hair yesterday, I recommend you wait at least twenty days to bleach it again.

In the meantime, nourish your hair intensively.

This way, you’ll bleach your hair past orange with minimal damage.


So, forget about what you saw on YouTube, and take my advice.

  • Mix a 30-volume developer with the bleach powder.
  • Add a few drops of coconut oil to the mix. More hydration, more protection. You can also apply the oil four hours before bleaching without rinsing it out.


Apply the bleach from roots to ends and leave it on for 20 to 30 minutes.

You’ll notice that the orange has disappeared. If there’s still orange residue, wait three weeks, and bleach again to achieve the blonde shade you’re looking for.


Reason 2: Your hair is still orange after bleaching because you didn’t leave the bleach on long enough

go from dark hair to blonde

The exposure time of the bleach is critical.


It’s like when you bake a cake. You can’t open the oven door for the first ten minutes, and you must wait at least thirty or forty minutes for the cake to bake.

If you use more heat than necessary, the result will be an inedible product.


In the same sense, the bleach should never be on the hair for more than 30 minutes.

You should also rinse it at least twenty minutes after applying it.


Bleaching is a chemical reaction. So, it has a specific time to develop.

  If you remove the bleach before 20 minutes, the chemicals won’t reach their peak and will leave your hair orange.  


On the other hand, the reaction stops after 30 minutes. If you don’t rinse it out, your hair will start to absorb the chemicals as if they were nutrients.

Now, how do you fix these situations?


  You need to bleach your hair again. This time, leave the bleach on for 20 to 30 minutes. Then, rinse.  

Remember that you need to let your hair rest for at least three weeks after the first bleaching session to avoid burning your hair.


Reason 3: Your hair is orange after bleaching because your base color is too dark

If you start from a dark color to get to a blonde, you’ll have to go through the chromatic scale in which all colors contain orange in their pigmentation.

In this case, you have two different solutions:


  • Apply more bleaching sessions.

You can undergo a gradual bleaching scheme to avoid serious damage to your hair. The recommended time between each bleaching session is three weeks.

You can also   apply one bleaching session per month so that your hair can recover from the chemicals.  


In the meantime, I recommend you moisturize your hair with shampoo and conditioner with keratin, coconut, argan, or linseed oil.


  • Go to the beauty salon.

I hate to say it, but “no pain, no gain.”

There are very few YouTube tutorials made by hair beauty professionals.


If you’ve bleached your hair and still haven’t left the orange behind, the best thing to do is to visit a hairdresser.

Remember that your hair probably suffered considerable damage during the first bleaching session.


  If you apply another bleaching session to remove the orange in your damaged hair, you risk burning it.   The solution to that is to remove the damaged parts of your hair which can sometimes be up to twenty centimeters.

Think about it. If you applied several bleaching sessions and your hair is still orange, you should go to a salon to help you find a coherent solution.


The professional hairdressers will give you immediate advice and alternative solutions to get rid of the orange in your hair.



If your hair is still orange after bleaching, you probably didn’t use a 30-volume developer. Alternatively, you may not have left the bleach work for at least 20 minutes, or you started from a very dark base.

The solution to these problems is to bleach your hair again as long as it’s been at least three weeks since the first bleaching session.

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