Friday, 18 March 2011

Is it safe to strip?...

Lately, possibly due to having to be more thrifty or just realising how much we spend on our hair at times, a lot of us have been resorting to carrying out salon services in our own homes. Why spend mega bucks if this off the shelf product can do it?...

Colour B4, a relatively new product, promises to remove colour from the hair leaving you with a near natural result. I've spoken to a lot of people about this product, and have used it myself a couple of times (not on my own hair, on clients) Whilst I've had success others have had disaster. Telling tales of bright Orange hair, and  leaving patches of colour behind and your hair looking a mess. However there is more than likely a reason for this. Scott Cornwall, the creator, is always happy to try and answer questions you have, even dedicating a Facebook page to helping out customers which I think is great.

So what is the science behind the stripper?
"Colour B4 shrinks the artificial dye molecules in the hair, enabling you to simply wash them away"

I have heard people say they had problems whilst trying to remove Schwarzkopf Live XXL colours. These contain silicone which means when used and then heat styled (200 degrees and over) then silicone reaches boiling point, melts onto the hair causing a shell and that means that no amount of colour removal is going to lift it. The damaged hair has to be grown out, it's a slow process but cutting down on using high degrees of heat on your hair can avoid being left with a colour you may not want.

When I had my hair stripped in December, my friend Samm used Goldwell System Hair Colour Remover which is well known to be a mild, less abrasive colour removal product. This, for the majority of time will be used in salons in the UK. I found that whilst my hair was slightly dry, it was nothing a few conditioning treatments couldn't solve. It doesn't lighten the natural pigments so you are left with a shade more true to your natural colour.
HOWEVER whenever you are using colour removal products it is so important to remember to read the instructions fully before you start. Read them a couple of times and make sure you are organised, and feel confident that you can carry out the colour removal. Ask a friend to help if needed. And if you don't feel confident doing it, don't. Get quotes from a local salon, ask for advice, see if there are other alternatives, it's great to save money but it isn't worth risking your hair and health for it.

It's good to remember that you are essentially using a chemical to remove another chemical from your hair, and every person has different hair. The amount of previous colourants you've put on will affect the result you get.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this, as I know some of you have experience chopping and changing colours.
Are you sussed on stripping? Or is it straight to the salon?


  1. oh I love this post :) Thanks for sharing!
    Yes, reading is important, thats what I didn't do with colour b4- and I still don't think a lot people know- if you are going to colour with a permanent colour after you use it, you should wait 1month for your hair to rest. Hence why mine, and others go really dark/black!
    But, is it better to strip you hair & start again, if you like. Or keep applying colour after colour?

  2. over the years ive dyed my hair so many different colours, and ive also worked in a salon, ive seen some sights of peoples disasters too. Ive never stripped my hair before, just because i leave the dye long enough to grow out and fade before re-applying. Im 21 now, so i feel like ive gone through the stages of wanting to try and be every colour from blonde to black, so tend to stick with browns, so roots are never too bad, but i think if i were to get my hair stripped, id go to a salon. They know more of what theyre doing than i do and if something goes wrong id like to believe they can put it right. Lol. :) x

  3. I've tried the Colour B4 and I didn't have any problems at all apart from having slightly dry hair afterwards. I read the instructions a good few time before I started using it and made sure I had plenty of time to carry out the treatment properly.

    My local hairdresser quoted me over £100 to strip my hair at the salon and even then she couldn't guarantee a better result than the at home kit. She said that the success rate and results depend on what has been put onto your hair in the past and it's condition. I think the lesson is to think twice about puting a colour on your could be stuck with it for a very long time! :)

  4. Thanks for the comments so far girls!

    @Steph0188 Thing is colouring over colour for a long time is you get build up, and the colour you put on top of the colour on your hair will never be a true shade of what you wanted. And once the hair is too dark it gets harder to lighten again. I used Red too often and redyed my hair everytime, meaning I got left with a horrible heavy feeling and my hair was for want of a better word, knackered. If you want to change the colour then stripping will work but obviously shouldn't be done on a regular basis.


  5. And this is why I've never coloured my hair - the thought of dealing with all this stuff terrifies me!

  6. Great post,and great to see that there is such a product! I henna my hair,and that's a different kettle of fish,apparently.I did find something about how to strip henna,not sure where I put it though.It's something I'll look at when I hit 50 or so,I think.I'm getting pretty grey now,but I think I can get away with the colour for a few more years yet!

  7. Interesting post Kel. I've been contemplating going back to blonde for summer but wouldn't dare strip the colour myself. I'm still terrified of just dying it! x

  8. I henna my hair and after 3 applications of the strong CB4 it is all but out. My hair is near enough back to its dark blonde state. I did leave it on for 3 hours though and rinsed for 20 minutes each stage. My hair is not damaged in the slightest.

    Scott Cornwall says it wont work on henna but he is talking about boxed henna which has metallic salts in. If you have used a body art quality henna it does work, hair is a little dry after but nothing a good conditioner wont solve.


I love reading your comments & hearing your thoughts, thanks for reading!
If you ever have a question about anything hair related (or maybe not about hair!) just comment, email or tweet me @KLGHair...