Can Toothpaste Lighten Your Hair?

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So, you are looking to lighten your hair color and probably heard through the grapevine that you can use your toothpaste to do so. 

To be honest with you, it sounded utterly crazy to me when I first heard about it. So, I researched and read extensively to find out the truth. I even asked around to know actual real-world experiences with this DIY method.

And the result? This article.

I will try to clear all your doubts about using toothpaste to lighten the hair. I will also give you the science behind why it may or may not work. Read on.

So, does it work?

Yes and no. Don’t get mad. I have had multiple people tell me that toothpaste did lighten their hair a bit, but, at the same time, more and more people said that it did nothing at all. Nada.

I know this is starting to sound like one of those crazy DIY hair color methods you find on the internet. And I can’t lie; it does lie in the grey area of things. There is no scientific research to say that toothpaste lightens hair. It just isn’t made for it.

Also, toothpaste isn’t easy to apply to your hair, especially if you’re trying to get an even coat! Several people reported that using toothpaste made their hair sticky and dry. Of course, it left a minty smell too.

But then why did this ever become a thing?

Good question. We need to understand the science behind it to answer that.

What does Science say about it?

Let’s clear out the misconceptions and place some facts on the table.

Toothpaste is made to whiten your teeth. How does it accomplish that? Through the use of hydrogen peroxide, which is a common ingredient found in bleach too.

And if you’ve had a couple of appointments at your hair salon for some hair color, you’d know that bleach is used to lighten the hair color. And that’s where this idea arises from. 

Now, here is the question, “If toothpaste has hydrogen peroxide, should it not lighten the hair?”

Yes, it should, but it is nowhere near as powerful as bleach formulas. You wouldn’t use bleach to whiten your teeth, would you? (Please do not try that.)

Moreover, hydrogen peroxide is an irritant for the skin. It is not going to do any good to your hair or scalp when applied frequently. And this is why bleaching too often can damage your skin and hair both.

How can I lighten my hair naturally?

I understand your problem. You may be quarantined in your home, or your favorite salon is shut due to CoronaVirus. How do you reliably color your hair in such a situation? Well, it turns out there are safer methods than using toothpaste to lighten your hair. 

Mix Lemon Juice and Water

This is one of the most popular methods to lighten hair naturally. Why? Because it works and it is effortless to do. Hopefully, you have a couple of lemons lying in your refrigerator that you can use.

Remember, even though this is a natural solution, it doesn’t mean that lemon juice can’t damage your hair. It is highly acidic and does possess enough strength to burn the hair. So, do not apply it to your hair without diluting it adequately. Use equal amounts of water, i.e., 1 part lemon juice and 1 part water. Pour the solution into a spray bottle to make the application process even more comfortable.

Leave it in your hair for an hour, or apply it overnight. Just make you air dry your hair with the solution in it. And condition your hair after washing it off. You can repeat the process regularly to lighten your hair gradually.

Use Honey and Water

Just like the lemon juice and water method, you can use honey with water to make a hair-lightening solution. Raw honey has hydrogen peroxide in minute quantities, and it can lighten your hair over time.

You can use 1-2 tablespoons of raw honey into 1 cup of water. Mix it well and apply it to your hair evenly. Leave it in your hair for an hour. Later, wash it off with a good shampoo and conditioner.

Final Words

Out of all the viral DIY methods of hair coloring at home, using toothpaste is probably the one to skip. There is no scientific basis to prove it would do any good to your hair. Alternatively, you can use other natural methods that much safer.