Here's how to lighten your hair gradually this summer

trending 03/12/2018

You know what they say - when life gives you lemons, squeeze them on your hair to make it blonder. That's how it goes right?

We don't know about you, but warmer weather always has us craving that sunkissed locks look. But you don't have to rush off to the salon to achieve lighter hair - you can do it (mostly) naturally in the sun without causing too much damage.

A word of warning though - it will only work if you have fair hair with a fine texture to begin with. So if you have darker hair, you will be working with red and orange undertones and these are the colours that will be exposed. 

Just make sure you know what results are possible before you get your hopes up too much - if you're blonde, your hair will get blonder. Light brown hair will get some dark blonde coming through. Red heads will maybe get a more 'strawberry blonde' look. Dark brown or black hair won't be lightened by DIY methods unfortunately. Sorry gals. 

So if you've already got light-ish hair, these are some tricks you can try this summer to get that sunkissed look:

1. Lemon juice in your conditioner
While lemon juice does lighten your hair, applying it directly can be extremely damaging because of the acidity. So to get the benefits without the damage, mix lemon juice in with your conditioner, or even coconut oil, so you are hydrating at the same time. Head out in the sun while your hair is still damp, and the combo of the UV rays on the lemon juice will help to lighten your locks. 

2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C tablets not only keep you healthy when injested, you can also use them to lighten your hair! Crush up some of those tabs and dissolve them in water, then add to a spray bottle and spritz onto your hair. Not only will this brighten your hair, it will also remove mineral build-up when washed off. Amazing!

3. Use a saltwater solution
If your hair's already coloured but you still want it lighter, it IS possible to do this with just the sun. You just have to mix mostly water with some salt and spray this on your hair - OR just go swimming in the ocean and leave it to dry in the sun. The salt helps to open the hair cuticles slightly, allowing the sun to penetrate the hair. 

4. Apple cider vinegar
Mix one part apple cider vinegar with six parts water, and apply the mixture to your hair. This will help to not only lighten your hair, but also dissolve oil and residue buildup on your hair and scalp. Apple cider vinegar also helps to detangle and defrizz your hair - what can't it do?!

5. Cinnamon and honey mask
We kinda want to eat this one... but despite smelling delicious, the combination of honey and cinnamon applied to your hair can lighten it by up to two shades! The trace amounts of hydrogen peroxide in the honey are activated by the cinnamon, and so when you leave this mixture on your hair the hydrogen peroxide reacts to bleach your strands. To make an ideal mask, mix 2 tablespoons of honey, 1 tablespoon of cinnamon and 1 tablespoon of olive oil (for hydration), and add a bit of conditioner if the mixture is too thick. Then just apply this to your hair, secure it in a bun and cover up with a shower cap. Leave this on for at least four hours - you can sleep in it as long as you cover your pillowcase with a towel!