Why is my hair turning green when i dye it

By: | Last Updated: June 20, 2022

Picture this: you’re trying out a new color and trying your best to get every step of the way right. 

You do your research, block out enough time for all the processes, and even try your best to choose the right products for your hair. 

You might have even booked an appointment with the best hair colorist you can trust. 

But what if, after all that, you’re suddenly faced with a huge hair disaster — it’s somehow turning green! 

So, unless you really did pick a nice shade of emerald or mint, the question on your mind right then would likely be, “Why is my dyed hair turning green?”

Why does your hair go green when you dye it?

Why does your hair go green when you dye it

Fear not; hair going green after a dye job gone awry isn’t as uncommon as you think. 

In fact, there are so many possible reasons why your hair may have turned green. There are lots of nuances to consider. 

It could be that the color you chose doesn’t work well on your base color. It could also very much be that you’re dyeing it to a much darker, cool-toned shade. Maybe your color doesn’t fade too gracefully. Or perhaps you’re using a product that doesn’t react well with your hair. 

A good starting point for figuring out this problem is by identifying what color you were trying to achieve in the first place. 

Why is my hair turning green when I dye it brown?

Green is often a big issue when you dye a lighter color to brown. This is usually caused by a mismatch or incompatibility in color choice

Why exactly does this happen? 

Well, it’s most likely to happen when you go from a blonde base to a cool-toned brown. 

Knowing the undertone of the color is key here. You might think that shifting from blonde to brown should be easy because a dark color should be able to overpower a light one easily, right? 

But when you look closer, the undertone of a cool-toned brown is likely going to be blue. Meanwhile, the undertone of blonde is usually yellow. 

So, putting those two together, it becomes a lot simpler to see why dyeing blonde hair brown might result in green discoloration. 

Why is my hair turning green when I dye it blonde?

Something must be in the water when your blonde hair suddenly turns green. Literally! Usually, when blonde hair goes green, it’s more of a water issue than a dye problem. 

You might be wondering, “my water is turning my hair green?” But how? Water doesn’t even have color or pigment.

That’s because the change happens to the chemicals in water and other minerals it can carry. Places with hard water have a lot of copper in their water. They also usually treat their water with chlorine. 

This is a bad combo for blonde hair.  The mineral deposits from the copper react to the chlorine water treatment and cause your hair to get that dull green tinge. 

This is also why it’s best to avoid hopping into chlorinated swimming pools when you have blonde hair.  

If your hair that was ash blonde turned green, then it could be possible that the cool-toned dye interacted with warm tones in your hair and turned it green. 

Why is my hair turning green when I dye it black?

Black dye is notorious for turning blonde hair green when you try to make the shift too fast. It wouldn’t be such a huge surprise at this point to know that the culprit behind it all is the undertones in black hair dye

Most black dyes need a lot of blue, green, and purple tones in them in order to be a deep, rich color. So, when applied to un-prepped blonde hair, it’ll most likely end up a murky green mess.  

Why is my hair turning green when I dye it purple?

Purple can turn your hair green because of the undertone, just like black and brown. But more interestingly, purple can also turn your hair green because of how it reacts with bleach

Some purples are made of chemicals that oxidize when they come in contact with bleach. 

This simply means that a chemical reaction causes a breakdown in what was supposed to be your vibrant purple color which turns it an unflattering grayish-green. 

So, be extra careful when putting purple dye on bleached hair.

What to do if hair turns green after dyeing?

What to do if hair turns green after dyeing

Now that you know why your hair turned green, the next question on your mind might be, “How do I get rid of green in my hair?” 

Well, just like its causes, fixing it is a case-to-case thing. 

Most of it relies on color theory because that’s what usually caused the problem in the first place. 

But there are some products you can use to at least help in minimizing the green. 

How to fix green hair from brown dye

As mentioned before, when dyeing your hair brown, usually the culprit for the mossy green discoloration is a blue undertone in the brown dye. So, the answer to neutralizing this color is by bringing some warmth back in. 

So, when coloring hair, what color cancels out green? 

This is best done with red or orange, which should cancel out the green and blue tones, causing the shift in color. You can opt to try it in dyes or color-depositing shampoo. 

How to fix green hair from ash dye

Similar to fixing brown dye that turned green, the best way to bring your hair back to its true color is by getting rid of the cool tones. A red shampoo or conditioner should be able to do the trick.

Just be ready to have a warmer or more neutral tone instead of your intended cool tone.  

How to get green out of bleached hair

According to experts, the best advice is really to go to your favorite salon ASAP. When your bleached hair turns green from minerals, the best fix is to use professional products to clear them out.

But there are a few home DIYs you can try, such as using clarifying shampoos or toners. 

Just be careful when using either of those products. Clarifying shampoos can dry out your hair. And both products might need more than one try before the green is fully canceled out. 

How to get green out of hair after coloring

How to get green out of hair after coloring

There are lots of other tips and tricks to removing green from your hair, and a lot of them you can just do yourself. 

  • Dye it again! But you must be more careful with your color choice this time. The best thing to do to get a neutral tone is just to get a warm version of what you’d tried before. 

So if you went for ash brown, try pairing it up with a warm chestnut. If blue-black was too much for your hair, try mixing in some warm black to neutralize it. 

  • Use a light acid. Try soaking your hair in vinegar or tomato juice. Some people even use ketchup! This is best done on blonde hair because it should help take away some of the impurities that make it green. 
  • Reach for the bleach. When all else fails, try bleaching it again to start fresh. But make sure you give your hair a break in between bleaching. 

CHECK OUT: How To Fix Bleached Hair That Turned Yellow


So, why did my hair dye turn green? Now you know there can be a lot of different answers to it. It could just be a color that wasn’t meant for you. It could just need a bit more warmth in the mix. Or maybe it’s the water causing the problem. 

Getting to the bottom of why your hair turned green is the best way to find the solution for it. With a few quick fixes, you’ll be back to being green-free in no time! 

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