Putting permanent hair colour over bleach

I'm not getting any love on the hair colour board when I asked this question so thought I'd put it here. Sure someone will know.

I want to grow out the highlights I've got because hair is really damaged and it's expensive to upkeep. Can I put a permanent colour over it? I've used semi permanent and they wash out within 6 washes not 6 weeks.

Which brand do you prefer for colouring? I only have access to ones from actual shops so no Robert Craig.
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.

Last edited by curlylaura; 07-06-2011 at 01:44 AM.
STEP AWAY FROM YOUR HAIR!!!! Please take yourself and your hair to a salon. Do not attempt this on your own. You say your hair is really damaged. I promise you it can get even more damaged. g/l.
From Michael Berg:

Every person has a unique connection to the Creator that can never be extinguished, and every person has a great soul that can manifest important things in our world. To make a person feel less than they are because of something inside themselves, be it faith, race, or sexual orientation, is the greatest sin of all."
I agree. I've had to grow out fried hair before, not fun at all.
Salon it is then, thanks.

Does salon semi-permanent last longer than that in a box? Is there anything that's longer lasting than semi but permanent?
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.

Last edited by curlylaura; 07-06-2011 at 01:44 AM.
Totally doable. Just make sure you pick a colour that's not an ash base as you need to fill in the red pigment the bleach will have taken out.
I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.
Audrey Hepburn
I've done it several times....but I hate Robert Craig hate color. Yes you can do it, go the the beauty supply store and ask them some questions. Good Luck!
Using permanent haircolor over highlights will wash out nearly as quickly, AND will make the hair more damaged, thereby making it even less able to hold color.

What you need is a mousse in color filler. I love this product and used to sell it when I was an account manager with Goldwell. It's called Soft Color and is available for sale to the public at salons. Phone around and you'll find one that sells it or can order it for you. IT IS WORTH LOOKING FOR!! It will leave your hair feeling amazing too and is not damaging AT ALL.

The staining properties of this color mousse actually lasts more than semipermanent colour.



This product will grab very easily into your highlights, and depending on how light your highlights are, and if you pick a red tone, you may not want the extra bright results. Be careful with red colors on very light hair. Be aware too that if you are going much darker than your highlights, and they are not very golden in tone, you may end up with too drab a tone if you use something that is too neutral.. Make sure you use a warm tone. 6B or 7B are nice natural warmish brown tones.

Do makes sure you use gloves!! And the great thing about this stuff is it takes only 15 minutes and you can re-do it easily at home as often as you need. You will find every time you do it, the hair holds on to more of the color and eventually it doesn't wash out any more. The can is about 15 bucks and does 4 or more applications depending on the length of your hair.

Good luck!

Last edited by SusieSuze; 07-06-2011 at 10:37 AM.
Here's their color chart. This product sounds interesting. I'm going to get some.


From Michael Berg:

Every person has a unique connection to the Creator that can never be extinguished, and every person has a great soul that can manifest important things in our world. To make a person feel less than they are because of something inside themselves, be it faith, race, or sexual orientation, is the greatest sin of all."
Thanks for finding the swatches!
I will add that the picture depicts the colors a lot darker than they really are.

With Goldwell, level 1 is the blackest of black, level 10 an ultimate white blonde. Levels 4 and lower are dark brunettes, level 5 and 6 are medium brown and level 7 is a nice light brown or what the Germans would call 'dark blonde' (Goldwell was started in Germany)
N stands for Neutral,
B is Beige,
K is Copper (warm red),
G is Gold,
R is Red (a cool red or burgundy if you like),
V is violet (for those with really light blonde hair that has a tendency to go yellow, this is a great shade to neutralize the yellow!)
A is Ash.. a blue based super cool neutral colour that is used in counteracting orange.

Do note that this color does NOT cover grey hair at all, unless you have super porous grey hair (which I have never seen) Most grey hair is extremely tough with a tight cuticle.

Fashion shades that are really popular are:

6RB- beautiful chestnut brown
7KG- gorgeous Christina Hendricks red.
8K- lighter redhead (think Nicole Kidman when she's had it red)
7BN is a very nice natural looking light brown.. really lovely.

then there are the funky ones that don't at all look natural but are super fun-
6R, 6KR, 5VR

These shades look great over hair that is the same level. So if you are starting with medium brown, the result will be obvious but not freaky. If you are dark, you will see the shade but it will be subtle. If you have light hair, be prepared to stop traffic! Purple and fire engine red are fun, but often not what you want... and because this stuff stains so well, it will not likely wash out all the way from light or bleached or highlighted hair. Grey hair will show the color a lot if it is able to absorb it. I'd guess that for some people you would get a bit of staining, but it likely would not last too long.. though it may linger. I would be careful with red on gray hair.

Be very careful when using ANY color over top of already processed hair.
The porosity will control how much color is absorbed and the level of lightness/darkness will determine how bright the results. Think of the color as a transparent, but colorful film that you are using on your hair. Put the film over blonde hair and you will see it a lot, over dark hair, hardly at all.

This product WAS indeed designed for already color processed hair. Goldwell has a color system that is amazing and this is just an extension of that, so if you love the 7KG but you need to cover grey, you can get 7KG done in permanent color on the roots and 7KG non damaging semi permanent on the ends in the salon (thus preventing overprocessing your hair), then use the soft color to keep your red looking awesome between salon visits. This color system is used by many of the top salons and on the heads of stars like Madonna.

Last edited by SusieSuze; 07-06-2011 at 04:36 PM.
It's strange to me that it can color highlights, but not gray hair. Just something else against us graying grannies. I guess I'll stick to my own color product. Shucks!
From Michael Berg:

Every person has a unique connection to the Creator that can never be extinguished, and every person has a great soul that can manifest important things in our world. To make a person feel less than they are because of something inside themselves, be it faith, race, or sexual orientation, is the greatest sin of all."
When hair is highlighted or bleached or lightened in any way, it is done by opening the cuticle of the hair shaft. This is permanent damage and allows the hair to accept and release pigment easier.

Grey hair, on the other hand has a very tight cuticle which is difficult to open. Often, with permanent color, the colorist needs to pre-treat, use a stronger mix of color or let it process longer or even all three. Otherwise the grey doesn't cover 100%.

This means grey hair and bleached highlights are opposites when it comes to porosity.

Non-porous hair can't accept a non-damaging color. If you have super healthy virgin hair, you may not be able to get this product to work for you either.
I've had a quick google and some of the places that sell it say the Goldwell mousse washes out after each shampoo. Is that right?

My natural colour is a mousy non-descript brown. I think it's in the 7 range of colour, the highlights are really light in comparison, some are pure bleach, no colour at all. If I put permanent over it would there still be a big difference in colour between the new hair and the highlighted hair?
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.
There will still be a difference. It won't be noticeable after many applications though. I have dyed over highlighted hair many times in the last 10 years. The bleached highlights won't hold the color as well as non bleached. I find that if I use a dye closest to my natural hair color I will get the best results. Right now I have big chunks of highlights I'm trying to blend (I was doing purple on them for a while). They definitely do not hold a darker color like the rest but it still looks cool.
High Priestess JessMess, follower of the Goddess of the Coiling Way and Confiscator of Concoctions in the Order of the Curly Crusaders

I'm going to have a look in Boots today and see what they've got. Should I get a colour that is lighter than what? With semis I always ended up darker than the box indicted or even said it would be.
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.
Laura, I think Goldwell used to have (or still might have) a colored styling mousse. This product (SoftColor) is not the same at all.

The reason I recommend it so highly is that your porous highlights will grab the color really well. The molecules that make up the pigment in this product are much smaller and although they don't process in the hair, they get stuck in the jagged edges of the cuticle in your damaged hair. Permanent pigments develop by attaching their molecules together within the hair shaft. (which is opened chemically by damaging the hair) The thing is, with all that damage, it is very difficult for the molecule to stay stuck within the cuticle because it is too big.

I had a stupid hairdresser freak out at me because she did not know the basic rules of hair coloring and was shocked when she couldn't wash out this product from highlighted hair. She ended up having to bleach it out.

Please don't use permanent hair color when you don't have to. It will just damage your hair so much more and you will not be happy with it's holding power, and the rest of your hair will be damaged too. Curly hair is already so easy to damage and already is naturally quite porous (except when it turns gray).

Besides, the cost of this product per use is so low, and it's so easy to use. I will guess you might need to do it 2 or 3 times the first month, then after that once every 4 weeks or even less often as the hair gets more and more stained.
Well I don't seem to be able to get hold of the Goldwell stuff easily or without spending at least 20 on it. But I will keep an eye out for it.

I'm thinking of using this colour, on the box it looks slightly lighter than my natural hair colour but also a little darker than the highlights I've got. It's a semi but at least if I messed up the colour it wouldn't last too long before washing out.



Crap, it's upside down. Pretend it's the right way up!
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.
Holy smokes 20 pounds. Didn't realize it was so expensive there.


You might find another brand that works. I remember one by Matrix on the market at one time. No idea what you have there where you live.
Well I'm sitting in the bathroom waiting for my hair to finish colouring. I eventually decided on Nice and Easy medium ash blonde. It should wash out in 24 shampoos if I'm not keen on it.

Also my dandruff hates hair colour!
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.
Well I'm sitting in the bathroom waiting for my hair to finish colouring. I eventually decided on Nice and Easy medium ash blonde. It should wash out in 24 shampoos if I'm not keen on it.

Also my dandruff hates hair colour!
Originally Posted by curlylaura
Be really careful with an ash base. You need to put the red back in bleached hair or you may wind up grey.
I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.
Audrey Hepburn
Well I'm sitting in the bathroom waiting for my hair to finish colouring. I eventually decided on Nice and Easy medium ash blonde. It should wash out in 24 shampoos if I'm not keen on it.

Also my dandruff hates hair colour!
Originally Posted by curlylaura
Be really careful with an ash base. You need to put the red back in bleached hair or you may wind up grey.
Originally Posted by CurlyCanadian
Is that why? I always wondered.

It's come out alright, luckily. It's very near my natural colour. The lightest bleached parts have a gold tint to them. It's really dark compared to what it was but it doesn't look flat.
Fat does not make you fat. It's actually pretty important.

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