Beauty, Lists

Fun with Bleach Burns

Well. I fucked up. My hair, that is.


If you’re anything like a normal(ish) lady like me, you will take some pride in your hair. Love it or hate it, your hair is a sense of security that you cherish and often take for granted. Until you fuck it up.

Backstory – I’ve been dying and bleaching my hair on and off for over 20 years, so I know my way around a squeeze bottle. I never thought I would fuck up quite so royally, BUT I DID. My hair gets dyed crazy colours, and my roots were near down to my ears, so it was time to re-do the hair.

I bought an Olaplex kit a few months ago and used that to bleach my hair (FYI – it keeps your bonds healthy so you won’t completely ruin your mane. A godsend!). Going from one “crazy” colour to another pretty much requires you to bleach the old colour out of your hair before applying the new one. The mix of Olaplex 1 to bleach powder and developer was ¼ of the dropper that came with the kit (or even less). My hair is on the longer side. So, I decide to take the instructions with a small grain of salt and mix the amount of Olaplex to what I *thought* would be a “better” ratio with the bleach and developer.

Follow instructions. For God’s sake, follow instructions!

About halfway through bleaching my head, I stop and make more bleach/developer/Olaplex mix for the bottom half of my hair. The top half of my hair started to tingle and burn, but, no matter, I’ve felt this sensation before; old hat to me. I finish the bottom half of my hair and go in the kitchen to let it process. I consequently let my boyfriend know that it’s starting to burn a bit more than usual. He says I should probably go wash it off. I say, naww, I’ve had it burn before, it’s fine.

Then the burn started burning more… and more… then, it was time to rinse, because the burning wouldn’t stop. Overall, the bleach mix was in for about 15-20 minutes. I rinsed it out (ahhh, the cool water!) and then put Olaplex 2 in there for 10 minutes to work it’s wonder. As soon as I rinsed it out, my scalp was still tingling a bit more. But the fun REALLY ramped up when I started to blow-dry my hair!

The fucking heat from the fucking blowdryer formed the blisters on my scalp quite nicely. Greaaaat. They started to pulsate and burn so I immediately stopped the blowdryer and my boyfriend inspected my head, confirming that, yes, I had indeed fucked up my head with bleach (my words, not his). I moaned, frantically Googled, and immediately went out to buy aloe vera gel for my idiotic war wounds. (Boyfriend so nicely helped apply the gel, as I couldn’t see the gigantic spots on the back of my head).

Please let this be a warning – bolster your bravado. You’re never as much of an expert in something as you think you are. You will end up living as a brassy blonde for a week. ALWAYS. FOLLOW. INSTRUCTIONS. If this awful fate happens to (literally) befall your head, don’t freak out. Here’s a few things I did that helped.



  1. Rinse all the product out of your hair with cool water and try not to put pressure on your scalp
  2. Stop touching your head! Don’t immediately heat treat your hair, don’t dye your hair another colour, don’t brush the roots, and DON’T put product in it. Give it a few days for the natural oils to build and loosen the scabs once they’ve formed
  3. Put aloe vera on the scabs to help them heal
  4. Brush the ends lightly
  5. Keep your hair in a loose ponytail while you sleep so it doesn’t get tangled
  6. Own your weird, brassy colour for a few days
  7. Laugh it off (after the initial shock is gone)


Treat your scalp with extreme care, like it’s a fucking porcelain doll on top of your head. You’ll eventually end up with the colour that you want. And try to relax – after all, it’s just hair.


lime green hair
The final product

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