You know the saying, “When life give you lemons…”? Around here it’s a whole ‘nother story: When life gives you lemons, this is a great time to try this easy hair trick.
Although this tip is more Summer-centric, as long as you have some lemons and the sun, it will work anytime, anyday. This is a tip my mom taught me a long, long time ago when I was barely a teen, and my friend and I used to do this sometimes in the summer before hanging by the pool.
Basically, lemon is a great natural bleach, and it can bleach your hair ever so slightly so it looks totally natural. Whether you’re just looking for some highlights while you’re hanging out in the sun, or want to lighten your overall color, lemon is a great, easy, natural way. Even better, it’s super cheap.
How to: Lighten hair with lemon
Here’s how to lighten your hair with lemon in 5 easy steps; but before that, a disclaimer: be very careful when doing this! Do not get them in your eyes or too close to your scalp, as it will sting and may cause other reactions. Keep it as much as possible to just your hair.
- Grab a lemon or two. Depending how much you want to lighten or how long your hair is, grab as much lemons as you think you will need. Usually one lemon will be enough, unless you have super long hair.
- Cut it in half. If you’re just doing simple highlights, your work here is done – now, use that half cut lemon and rub it on the crown area of your hair, making such to get as much lemon juice out as possible. Now skip to #5.
- Squeeze the juice. If you’re looking for overall color, after cutting the lemons in half, squeeze the juice out and into a cup.
- Grab a tool of your choice. This can be a hairbrush, a wide-tooth comb, a toothbrush, a mascara wand (make sure it’s clean!). Dip it into the juice. Apply it on your hair until all your hair is soaked with lemon juice.
- Lastly, find some sun! It will only “activate” with sunshine, so get out there and make sure your hair gets some sun. The longer your hair is in the sun, the lighter it will get, although 20 minutes is more than enough to get a little bit of difference.
The method above will lighten your hair by perhaps half a shade – so yes, super small difference, but that’s why it looks so natural. If you want to keep going lighter and lighter, do this several times. I once did this over the Summer 5 different times, and my dark brown hair looked golden.
After doing the steps above though – remember to wash your hair and condition it throughly. Do not let the lemon juice stay on your hair for long (it will dry it out and can damage it) and again, make sure to only get the lemon juice on your hair and nothing else.
And that’s it, really. Lemon juice + sunshine = an awesome, natural way to lighten your hair.
Frequently asked questions
- Does the lemon juice damage your hair? Yes, but the damage is very minimal compared to other bleach and hair dyes. Remember, lemon is a “natural” bleach, so there will be a little damage. Personally, it’s just made my hair a bit dry but after a few conditioning hair masks and it was back to normal.
- Does the lemon juice make brown hair look brassy? Like all hair dyes on dark hair, there is a chance it comes out brassy and even orange. For lemon, I’ve found that if you do it too often, yes it will look too brassy. I’ve done it up to 5 times in one month and my color was alright, but don’t do it more often than that, I’d say. Unless of course, you like the orange look!
- Is this only for brown hair? Can the lemon juice lighten blonde, red and black hair? Blonde – probably not, since your hair is so light already. Red, I don’t see why not! It probably won’t make a huge difference (since red is already quite a light hair color) but for a subtle effect, sure. And black, yes, it will help a little. You gotta do it many times before you can see a difference, but my friend tried it and it worked for her.
- Will the lemon juice lightened my hair permanently? Yes, the places that are lightened will not go back to it’s original color.
- Can you do this on colored hair? I’ve only tried it on natural, non-colored hair, but I have heard that it works on colored hair as well. Try it and let me know!
Share your results!
If you tried my mom’s super easy hair trick, please share this post to a friend who you know wants to lighten their hair or already dyes their hair regularly. This is a much safer, easier, affordable way to lighten the hair and could help them out a lot.