10 Natural Hair Lightener Recipes: How to Naturally Lighten Your Hair

By Aniela / February 6, 2017

Looking for how to naturally lighten your hair? Look no further because these 10 easy, simple, and cheap natural hair lightener recipes are just what you need! Why spend money at the salon and/or damage your hair with harsh dyes and chemicals when you can actually lighten your hair naturally, at home, for just pennies? Today we'll show you the best natural hair lightener recipes that have been tried and tested and actually WORK!

Natural Hair Lightener Recipes

Source: Youqueen

#1. Lemon Juice Hair Lightener For Light/Blonde Hair

lemon juice natural hair lightener

The most popular natural hair lightener HAS to be lemon juice! Lemon juice hair lightener has been around for as long as I can remember! It's an oldie but a goldie! Because lemon juice has natural bleaching properties, it's no wonder it's truly the best and most effective hair lightening option. This method will only work for those with light or blonde hair.

Simply juice some fresh lemons in a spray bottle and dilute with some water. We suggest 70% water and 30% lemon juice ratio. If possible, try to use freshly squeezed organic lemons for best results.  Spray directly onto hair and sit out in the sun for at least 30 minutes. The natural bleaching properties of the lemon will lighten your hair in mere minutes!

#2. Chamomile Tea Hair Lightener For Dark Hair

chamomile tea natural hair lightener

Chamomile tea is usually a better lightening option for brunettes and those with dark hair as it is much milder than lemon juice. Just brew a batch of chamomile tea, let is cool, and rinse your hair with it after you've shampooed and conditioned. You'll notice a faint change, so you may have to repeat this step 2-3 times, but the results are well worth it!

To get those dark hairs lightened, we suggest adding several bags of chamomile tea to your boiling water (about 5-6) for best results. Because darker hair is much harder to lighten, it will take several tries, but at least it's an all natural hair lightener that won't damage the hair!

#3. Raw Honey Hair Lightener For Blonde Hair

honey to lighten hair

Honey contains the enzyme peroxide which is naturally bleaching. Peroxide is the main ingredient in hair bleach, so it's no wonder this hair lightening method works so well!

Just mix honey with some water (to dilute it) and massage into hair. We suggest 50% honey and 50% water. For best results, organic, raw honey. Leave on for 20 minutes and rinse out. It may not work immediately, so you'll have to do it a few times, BUT your hair will immediately feel super soft and will also smell amazing!

#4. Beer Hair Lightener For Dark Hair

beer natural hair lightener

Beer also has lightening properties, just as long as you choose a light beer! Rinse your hair with beer and leave it on for 15-20 minutes and pour some in a spray bottle and spray away. The longer you leave it on, the lighter your hair will get, so it's completely up to you!

#5. Apple Cider Vinegar For Reddish Hair & Natural Highlights

apple cider vinegar to lighten hair

Last but certainly not least on our list, is apple cider vinegar. A natural bleaching agent, ACV can give your hair some beautiful natural highlights (especially to those with red hair) without the damage! To a spray bottle, add half ACV and half distilled water. Apply to your hair using a spray bottle or cotton rounds and leave on for at least 30 minutes. Rinse out, and style as usual. Use no more than 2-3 times a week for best results!

#6. Henna Hair Lightener For Dark Hair

henna powder

Usually henna will make your hair darker, but for those who already have dark hair, henna can actually lighten and leave you with beautiful, red highlights! Add 3 tablespoons of henna powder to about 1/2 cup of boiling water. Let this concoction sit overnight, ideally for 12 hours or so. Apply to your hair using a spray bottle or cotton rounds and leave on for 2-3 hours. Wash the henna out and style as you normally would.

#7. ACV & Honey Hair Lightener For All Hair Types

honey and castor oil

This hair lightening method work for both light and dark hair and will leave hair super soft, silky, and shiny! Simply mix 2 cups of ACV with 1 cup raw honey and a tablespoon of melted coconut oil.  Stir the ingredients really well and apply to your hair, wrapping a warm towel around and leaving on overnight. In the morning, shampoo and condition, and style as usual. Use 2-3 times a week for best results.

#8. Baking Soda

baking soda as natural hair lightener

Baking soda is often used in many DIY beauty products to either lighten the skin or exfoliate. In this case, baking soda acts as a natural hair lightener! Measure 1/2 cup of baking soda and add enough warm water to make a thick paste like consistency.

Apply the baking soda paste to your hair and leave on for 10-20 minutes. Periodically check your hair to see if you're happy with the results. If you want a lighter color, leave on for a little longer. Cover with a shower cap to prevent mess, and when time is up, rinse out.

#9. Vitamin C

vitamin C tablets

Vitamin C is a natural bleaching agent, and when applied to hair can give you lighter locks. Crush 7-9 vitamin C tablets and mix them in with a handful of shampoo (the same amount of shampoo you would use to wash your hair). Massage the mixture into wet hair and leave on for about 5 minutes. Rinse out, and follow up with conditioner.

#10. Rhubarb To Lighten Hair

rhubarb juice natural hair lightener

Did you know that rhubarb is not only for strawberry rhuarb pies but also to naturally lighten hair? It's true! Drop about 1/4 cup chopped rhubarb into 2 cups of water and boil together for about 15-20 minutes. Strain out the rhubarb juice and let cool. Once cooled, Apply to your hair and leave on for 10 minutes. Rinse out and repeat as often as needed!

Of course those with lighter hair need not apply these hair lightener recipes as often as those with darker hair. The lighter your hair is, the easier it is to lighten.

Keep in mind that these natural hair lightening recipes will work best on already light hair that needs a boost, while brunettes may need to be a little more persistent. Of course, if you're looking to go from brunette to blonde you're better off going to the salon!

Other Hair Lightening Treatments

Courtesy of Ellabangs

How to Lighten Dark Hair

For those looking to go from dark or black hair, we recommend using hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is a much more powerful hair lightener and will work better on dark hair. There are a few different ways to lighten hair using hydrogen peroxide, but this one below is our favorite!

Hydrogen Peroxide & Baking Soda

  • 3% Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Baking Soda
  • Olive oil (optional) – just a little to help with hydration and conditioning
  1. Mix the ingredients in a plastic container.
  2. Try to use more baking soda than hydrogen peroxide to make it more like a paste. You need a paste-like consistency so it's not runny.
  3. Apply all over damp hair hair, or wherever you want to get it lightened. Leave it on for at least 10 minutes.
  4. After 10 minutes, check to see if it has lightened or not. Depending on the thickness and color of the hair, you may need to leave it up for 45 minutes.
  5. Wash out with shampoo and follow up with conditioner.
  6. Do not use more than once a week.

Like this post? Share, Pin, and Comment Below 🙂

4 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
4 years ago

how long does it take for hydrogen peroxide to lighten hair?

4 years ago

which type of beer do you recommend?

4 years ago

I use crushed up vitamin C tablets to lighten my hair, and it gives it such a beautiful and natural highlight to my hair!

4 years ago

the rhubarb one sounds really interesting, kinda wanna try it!

4 years ago

How do you fade hair color that is too dark?

4 years ago

hydrogen and baking soda works for me, but I already have very light hair!

4 years ago

I use ACV all the time to remove buildup and help with shine 🙂

4 years ago

I often used hydrogen peroxide and baking soda to lighten my hair, and it works so great! If you’re looking for more tips, this forum is helpful: https://diybeautyforum.com/t/lightening-hair-with-hydrogen-peroxide-and-baking-soda/198

4 years ago

lemon juice I think still works as the best hair lightener out there!!

4 years ago

I used Henna on my dark brown hair, and I really liked the results! It was almost a light reddish tint…with some highlights in it, just beautiful!

4 years ago

Waiting for it to get nice and warm outside so I can sit out in the sun with some lemon juice and lighten my hair 🙂 Thanks for sharing these by the way, some of them I’ve never heard of, so I’ll have to give them a try!

4 years ago
Reply to  sandra-panda

Yes lemon juice works best for me as well, especially cuz my hair is already pretty light! also waiting for some nice warm weather 🙂

2 years ago

To be clear, is the only one that works best by using it in the sun, the lemon juice? None of the others recommend going in the sun but please can you confirm? Thank you!
Secondly, can I save the lemon juice that’s left over to use again, and for how long can I save the left over lemon juice, and can it be used if it was not in the fridge for a week?