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How to Mix Hair Color at Home

Have you ever had a specific idea for a hair color in mind, only to realize that you can’t seem to find that color anywhere in a boxed kit? How frustrating! Little do most people know, however, that they can create their very own, unique hair color shade by simply learning how to mix hair color. Before you decide to attempt this for yourself, though, there are some specific guidelines you’ll want to follow and precautions you’ll need to take.

How to Mix Hair Color at Home

Tools Needed

Start by making sure you have the right tools for the job. These include:

  • a few old towels that you don’t mind getting stained
  • a pair of rubber or latex gloves
  • a clean hair applicator bottle or bowl and brush
  • 10, 20, 30 volume developer/Hydrogen peroxide


How to Mix Hair Color at Home

Color-Mixing Basics


Before you start mixing colors, you’ll also want to have a basic understanding of how different hair colors work (or don’t work) with each other. Generally, when mixing colors, you’ll want to stick with shades that are complementary and not contrasting to each other. For example, mixing a red shade with a brown shade would probably work well because the two colors complement each other. On the other hand, mixing two complete opposite colors, such as a very light blonde and a black, is obviously not a good idea because those shades are too dominant to work together.

When selecting colors to mix, also be sure to keep an eye on the numbers associated with each color formula so that you can choose wisely. Keep in mind that the higher the number, the greater its lightening abilities.

When mixing hair color, you should generally do so in a 1:1 ratio for the best results. As you mix your hair colors together, you should also mix one ounce of peroxide per every ounce of hair color added. This will help to achieve a uniform color throughout your hair, even if you’ve had roots grow in since the last time you colored.

How to Mix Hair Color at Home

Additional Tips


Any time you’re looking to color your hair, it’s a good idea to conduct a strand test first. This is especially important when you’re mixing color. Strand tests should be done 24 hours in advance of coloring to ensure there will be no negative impacts on the scalp or hair. If you’re happy with the strand test, go ahead and move on to coloring all of your hair as you normally would.

Furthermore, make sure that when you find a mixed hair color that you really love that you write it down! Specifically, write down the formula (letters and numbers) from each box, along with the brand you used. This way, when your roots begin to grow out, you can easily recreate your color and touch up your hair to keep the look going.

As you can see, there’s quite a bit to keep in mind when you’re planning to mix hair color, but if you follow these simple guidelines and choose your colors wisely, the results really can be spectacular. While you’re at it, you may even want to consider adding some highlights and lowlights to your hair for a truly stunning look that will lead others to believe it was done by a professional stylist!

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