Why Is My Hair Green After Dying It Brown?

Coloring hair is a fun way to express oneself and switch up their appearance. However, sometimes things can go wrong in the process. One common issue people may experience is their hair turning green after dyeing it brown. If you’ve ever found yourself in this predicament, you may be wondering what caused it and how to prevent it in the future.

There are a few reasons why hair may turn green after dyeing it brown, and it’s essential to understand the science behind it. In this article, we’ll explore why hair may turn green after dyeing, common causes, and practical tips to avoid this color mishap. So, whether you’re a seasoned hair color enthusiast or new to the world of hair dye, keep reading to learn more.

Quick Summary
If your hair has turned green after dying it brown, it is likely due to the previous color of your hair and the products used during the coloring process. This green tint can be caused by the combination of brown hair dye and the remaining tones of red or copper from a previous color. Additionally, if the hair dye used had a blue or green undertone, it could react with the remaining tones in your hair, resulting in a green hue. A professional colorist can help correct the color and give you the desired shade of brown.

Understanding the Hair Greening Phenomenon

Understanding the hair greening phenomenon is important for people who dye their hair regularly. Often, people notice that their hair turns green after dying it brown, and it can be frustrating and confusing. This phenomenon occurs when hair dye fades or washes out, exposing the underlying pigments in the hair shaft.

When the underlying pigments are exposed, they mix with the oxidized metal ions in swimming pool water or hair products, resulting in green hair. The most common culprit for hair greening is copper, which can be found in hair care products and water. Understanding this phenomenon can help people take preventive measures against hair greening by avoiding products with high levels of copper and using a clarifying shampoo that removes metals from the hair.

The Science Behind the Color Change

Hair color changes are often a result of chemical reactions, and altering the color of your hair can produce unexpected results. When you apply brown hair dye to hair that has been previously bleached or chemically treated, the chemicals in the dye interact with any remaining pigment in the hair shaft and the underlying pigment. This can cause the color to react and produce a green hue, especially if the treated hair has porous, damaged cuticles.

The science behind this reaction lies in color theory. Brown hair dye contains red pigments, which are known to cancel out green tones. However, these pigments are not always effective in neutralizing green tones that might appear on lighter hair. This is due to the fact that green is a mixture of blue and yellow pigments, which can be difficult to counteract. Therefore, a green color change is often the result of a reaction between the underlying pigment and the brown dye applied to it.

Hidden Causes of Hair Color Alterations

Hair color alterations can be caused by various factors beyond just the dyeing process. One common hidden cause of hair color changes is exposure to minerals in water, particularly copper. Copper can be found in pipes and other water sources, and when it interacts with the chemicals in hair dye, it can result in a greenish tint. This is especially true for individuals with blonde or light-colored hair.

Another hidden cause of hair color alterations is the use of certain hair care products, such as shampoos and conditioners, that contain pigments. These pigments can interact with the hair dye and alter the color. Additionally, using heat styling tools on overly processed hair can lead to color changes, as the heat can cause the dye to fade or even change color. It’s important to be mindful of these hidden causes when trying to maintain or alter hair color.

Factors that Contribute to Green Tones in Dyed Hair

Factors that Contribute to Green Tones in Dyed Hair

Green tones can appear in dyed hair due to a variety of factors. One of the main causes is exposure to chlorine and other chemicals commonly found in swimming pools. These chemicals can react with the pigments in hair dye and cause a greenish tint to develop. Another common culprit is contact with copper, which can be found in water pipes, hair accessories, and even some hair care products. The copper can react with the chemicals in the hair dye, causing green tones to appear.

In addition to these external factors, hair dye itself can contribute to green tones if not used properly. Overuse of ash or cool-based dyes, or using these dyes on hair that already has warm tones, can lead to a green hue. It is important to carefully follow the instructions for any hair dye products and to seek professional advice if you are unsure how to achieve the desired color without unwanted green tones.

Common Hair Dye Mistakes to Avoid

Common Hair Dye Mistakes to Avoid

When it comes to dyeing your hair, it’s essential to avoid some of the most common mistakes that can lead to unwanted results. One of the most crucial factors to consider is the shade of the dye you choose. If you opt for a darker color than your natural shade, it can result in an extreme color difference, which can cause hair damage and discoloration.

Another common mistake is not following the instructions on the dye packaging. It’s crucial to follow the instructions precisely to ensure that the desired result is achieved. Overexposure to the dye or failure to rinse it out thoroughly can alter the color and lead to discoloration or damage. Additionally, it’s crucial to perform a strand test before dyeing your entire head of hair to ensure that the dye will achieve the desired results.

Best Practices for Correcting Green Hair

Despite being frustrating and confusing, green hair after dying it brown is a common problem that many people experience. Fortunately, it is not irreversible, and you can easily correct it with some best practices.

The first and most important practice is to tone your hair. This involves using a proper hair toner that neutralizes the excess green pigment in your hair. You can either purchase a pre-made toner or mix your own using purple shampoo and conditioner. Another practice is to use a clarifying shampoo to remove any build-up of minerals in your hair that may cause discoloration. Additionally, use a deep conditioning treatment to restore the moisture balance of your hair. Lastly, you may want to consider getting your hair professionally corrected, especially if the green color is too intense. Following these best practices will help you correct your green hair and leave it looking healthy and vibrant.

Helpful Tips for Maintaining Hair Color and Preventing Future Mishaps

Maintaining hair color can be a challenging task, especially if you have had a previous mishap. However, there are some helpful tips that you can follow to ensure that your hair color lasts longer and prevent future mishaps.

One effective tip is to use color-safe hair products. Color-safe shampoos and conditioners are specifically designed to protect your hair color by preventing color fading and washing out. Another essential tip is to avoid over-washing your hair. Over-washing can strip your hair of its natural oils, leading to dryness and fading of color. Additionally, it is crucial to limit your exposure to direct sunlight or chlorine-treated pools as these can cause color fading, discoloration, and dryness. By following these tips, you can maintain vibrant and healthy hair color for an extended period.


It can be a frustrating experience to dye your hair brown and end up with green hair instead. However, understanding the underlying cause of this phenomenon can help you prevent it from happening again in the future. Some possible reasons for green hair after dying it brown include using the wrong type of hair dye, not following the instructions properly, or exposing your hair to chlorine or other chemicals. By taking proper precautions and being diligent with your hair care routine, you can enjoy a vibrant and healthy-looking brown hair color without the risk of turning green.

In summary, maintaining healthy and beautiful hair involves various steps, and dyeing your hair requires special attention. By being aware of the causes of green hair after dying it brown and taking the necessary precautions, you can achieve the desired result and avoid disappointing outcomes. Remember, your hair is a reflection of your overall health and wellbeing, and it deserves proper care and attention to stay strong and beautiful.

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