As many of you have probably realised, here at Manic Panic UK we are colour-mad! However, that isn’t to say that we aren’t aware of the consequences and adaptations that come with embracing a new vivid hair colour. The same as in many situations, not all hair types are going to react and produce the same result as others so it is essential to consider all possibilities and prepare yourself for the potential of a new hair routine. 

Achieving a vibrant and dramatic transformation tends to require at least one round of bleaching. This process can be quite strenuous on hair and the result can differ for all depending on the health and condition and also the colour of the hair before applying the bleach. It is always best to know how your hair will react to the bleach before applying it all over; this can be done via a strand test. 

Changing up your hair routine is a necessary process for many when bleaching the hair as it can become dry and prone to breakage. Something that can change dramatically is the pattern and texture of the hair once bleached and this is especially common with curly hair. For those with curly hair, we already know there is a whole routine for keeping the curls managed and from becoming unruly; however, bleached curly hair will probably need a little extra love and attention. 

So, is it possible to dye bleached curly hair with a semi-permanent hair colour? The simple answer is yes! In fact, semi-permanent hair dye or a direct dye is the least damaging option when choosing to add some rainbow to your look as it contains no ammonia or harmful chemicals that could cause excess damage.
The Manic Panic hair dyes are formulated using 98% conditioner making them an extremely nourishing and healthy way of altering your hair’s appearance without compromising the integrity of your hair further. 

What happens when hair is bleached?

When bleach is applied to the hair and left to process, the formula removes the pigment within the hair and strips the colour back to create a lighter base. Depending on the base colour before the bleach is applied, the final result will differ and from there you can decide whether you will require another round of bleach or not. 

The bleach opens the hair cuticle and creates a much more porous base; whilst this is beneficial when applying a colour it is also compromising the hair meaning that it becomes much more prone to breakage and excess damage than if it were left in its natural state.

Why is bleaching required for vivid colour?

Bleaching isn’t always required when it comes to applying vivid hair colours; depending on your natural base colour and the result you wish to produce many are able to add a vivid hue without the bleaching process. However, this is not always the case. 

Bleaching produces an ideal base for many vivid hair colours as the lighter the hair the more vibrant your result. If you choose to apply a bold and bright colour, the minimum recommendation tends to be a level 8-9 blonde which is around the bleached/light blonde mark. If the colour you choose doesn’t hold as much pigment such as pastel tones and extremely light shades, you will need to reach a level 10 blonde at least in order to see a colour change. 

Semi-permanent hair colours are designed to eventually fade or wash from the hair; pre-lightening the hair actually helps with the longevity of your colour and should allow the colour to last longer. As mentioned before, bleach will create a porous base and this will help the hair strands to absorb that pigment for longer. 


Deep condition and hair masks

All those with a curly hair routine will know that curls love moisture, however, when it comes to semi-permanent hair colour, water isn’t really the best way to keep your colour lasting for longer. Deep conditioners and hair masks are a great way to repair hair after bleaching and add moisture to your curls whilst helping them regain their bounce and strength; deep conditioning is also great for semi-permanent hair dye as it helps to lock and seal the colour in for longer by keeping the cuticle closed. 

(Keep your deep conditioning sessions to wash day, this way you won’t be adding excess water to your hair when it isn’t needed!)

Sulphate and paraben-free products

Sulphate and paraben-free products are a must in a curly hair and semi-permanent colour routine. Using products that include these ingredients is really not great for curly hair as they tend to strip the natural oils from your base and leave the hair feeling much drier after being washed which will lead to excess frizz. 

As these ingredients are so good at stripping the natural oils from your hair, we’re sure you can only imagine what they will do to a semi-permanent depositing colour. That’s right; your colour is going to fade much quicker when using these types of ingredients in your hair so we would definitely recommend avoiding them.

Bonding treatments 

This method isn’t used so much to help out your semi-permanent hair colours so again we recommend applying these on wash day. However, bonding and hair breakage products and treatments can be a lifesaver for bleached hair. Applying these products is going to help rebuild the integrity of your hair and regain its strength from its otherwise compromised state. 

Avoid heat

Another great way to get your curls feeling back to their usual self is to avoid heat as much as possible, even in the shower. Now, as someone with curls, it can be difficult to avoid heat especially when styling. A diffuser is a great way to bring that plumpness and bounce into a curly style, however, excess heat can dry the hair out and cause more frizz to appear. We love the plopping method. Plopping your hair after applying your curl products is great for both defining your curls and removing excess moisture. When it comes to taking your hair out of its plopping position you should find that you have cut your heat drying process in half which means less warmth added directly to your hair. 

We are always recommending that semi-permanent dye users avoid heat; heat in any form such as styling, water temperature and hot weather actually opens the hair cuticle and allows the colour to fade a lot faster and in some cases come out on clothes, sheets and towels. Cool/cold water is great when used to wash curly hair too as it is much less damaging so won’t leave the curls feeling dry and also doesn’t remove the natural moisture from the hair as excessively as hot water will. 

We know that it can be scary sometimes to take the step of bleaching your hair to bring your vivid colour dream to life, but at Manic Panic UK we are here to help you in any way possible. Bleaching your hair doesn’t mean ruining what you know, it just means adapting to something new so if you have any more questions regarding bleaching your curly, straight, wavy or any other hair type, get in touch via social media or at