If you want to lighten your hair color or just add some highlights to it but you don’t want to expose your hair to harsh chemicals then the solution of your problem is present right there in your kitchen. Yes, you got it correctly. We are talking about the shiny yellow lemon which you use to give tangy flavor to your food.
Lemon contains a mild oxidizer i.e. citric acid which acts as a natural bleach. Its bleaching effect is similar to hydrogen peroxide but much weaker. When citric acid is applied on hair then it activates and enhances the ability of sun to naturally lighten your hair color.
This treatment requires time and consistent application to give positive results. It means if you apply lemon juice for only one session then it will give you half a shade. You need five sessions in a month to get an effective and long lasting result but you should not exceed the application as it can dry out your hair completely. Such condition can be treated by use of conditioner.
Effect of lemon juice on hair color
Black hair or other darker shades of hair gives more visible result rather than lighter shades such as blonde and red hair. Your hair will turn orangey or brassy with consistent application of lemon juice.
Side effects of lemon juice
Although it is 100% natural treatment it can cause irritation and burning sensation if it gets into the eyes. It can cause stinging effect if comes in contact with the scalp, therefore, try to avoid the scalp region while application of lemon juice. Excessive use of this treatment can dry out your hair completely.
Steps of lemon juice treatment
- Take a lemon and squeeze out its juice. One lemon is enough for medium hair but if you have long hair then you can take 2 lemons.
- You can apply the juice directly on your hair with the help of a brush or you can mix it with ¼ cup of warm water and spray on your hair with a spray bottle.
- Spray the juice on your hair until it is completely damp. This treatment works better if you don’t wash your hair before applying lemon juice on it.
- Sit out in the sun for 1 – 2 hours to activate the bleaching process. You can notice the changes just after 30 minutes of exposure to the sun. Wear sunscreen to protect your skin from the sunburn.
- Wash your hair to remove the citric acid from your hair after sitting in sun for the recommended period. Your hair will appear dry due to the effect of citric acid.
- Use a conditioner on hair to overcome the effect of citric acid.
You have to repeat the whole procedure once a week in order to achieve the desired result. A proper outcome can be achieved in five sessions and you should not exceed beyond that as it can extremely dry your hair.
Color lightening without exposure to sunlight
Sun can lighten hair color if it is exposed for a longer period but lemon juice can catalyze the lightening process and show results in less time. Therefore, sunlight is very important for the natural bleaching process. However, if you can’t face sunlight due to any reasons then the alternate method is to add another enhancer to the lemon juice. These enhancers are chamomile tea, cinnamon, honey and hydrogen peroxide which proves to be a strong natural lightening agent when added to lemon juice.
There is another homemade remedy which will give you the highlights you are craving while removing the drying effect of citric acid. It is possible with the nourishing property of almond oil/coconut oil which can be mixed to the lemon juice to remove its drying effect. Here are the steps of making this amazing mixture.
- Boil 1 cup of water and add to 2 bags of chamomile tea to it. Keep it aside for few minutes.
- Squeeze out the juice of three large lemons so that you get approx. 1/3 cup of lemon juice. Strain out the seeds and keep it in a spray bottle.
- Add one tablespoon of ground cinnamon and one tablespoon of almond oil or coconut oil to the spray bottle along with the brewed tea.
- Seal the bottle and shake it well to mix the contents.
- Spray on the areas you want to lighten and sit in the sun for an hour or two.
This treatment will speed up the bleaching process because of the presence of other lightening ingredients like cinnamon and chamomile tea without drying out your hair.