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How do you split hair dye without bleeding?

Splitting hair dye to achieve a custom shade can be messy and lead to staining if done improperly. With some simple preparation and techniques, you can easily divide hair color into different containers without creating a big mess.

Why Would You Split Hair Dye?

There are a few key reasons you may want to split up hair dye into separate containers:

– To customize or personalize the color result – Many people split dye to achieve a unique look like ombre or balayage highlights. Separating the dye allows you to carefully control where and how much of each shade is applied.

– To mix dye together – Splitting dye into separate bowls allows you to thoroughly mix and blend shades before applying. This helps you achieve a seamless, uniform result.

– To store leftovers – Dividing remaining unused dye into containers lets you save it for touch-ups or future use.

– To share with a friend – Splitting dye allows you to share part of the package with someone else. This can be useful for trying out a new color together.

Challenges of Splitting Dye

Attempting to divide hair color can result in some problems if not done carefully:

– Messy drips and spills – Hair dye contains liquids that can easily drip down the sides of bowls or bottles, creating a big mess.

– Stained skin and surfaces – Dye can permanently stain sinks, counters, hands, and any other surface it contacts. These stains may be extremely difficult or impossible to remove.

– Uneven mixing – Improperly mixing the separated dye can lead to inconsistent color results, with splotchy or uneven shades.

– Contamination – Dividing dye between containers increases the risk of contaminating the color and altering the final results.

Tips to Split Dye Cleanly

Follow these tips to divide hair color cleanly and neatly:

– Work in a spacious area – Provide plenty of open counter space for your tools and materials. This prevents accidental spills and drips. Cover surfaces with towels or paper to protect them.

– Use a scale – Carefully measure out dye into separate containers using a digital scale. Scales allow you to quickly and evenly divide up the product.

– Choose proper containers – Use containers designed for holding liquid, such as plastic bowls or bottles. Avoid containers that will react with hair dye ingredients.

– Pour slowly and carefully – Gently pour the hair color from its original container into the new containers. Go slowly to avoid splashing, spills, and uneven mixing.

– Wear gloves – Protect your hands from stains by wearing disposable gloves when handling hair dye. Nitrile gloves work best.

– Use spill containment – Place containers inside larger bowls or trays to contain any accidental spills and drips. Discard any spilled dye.

– Mix thoroughly – Once divided into separate containers, mix the dye thoroughly again before use. This prevents uneven results.

– Wipe and clean up immediately – Quickly wipe up any drips or spills with paper towels. Rinse containers and tools. Prompt cleanup prevents permanent stains.

Step-By-Step Guide

Follow this simple step-by-step guide for cleanly splitting hair dye between containers:

1. Clear a large, open workspace and cover surfaces with towels or paper. Have paper towels, gloves, containers, and a scale handy.

2. Measure out the desired amounts of dye into plastic containers using the scale. For example, if using two shades, dispense half the dye of each color into separate containers.

3. Wearing gloves, carefully pick up one container and slowly pour half the dye into a new empty container. Go slowly to avoid drips and splashes.

4. Repeat with the second dye color, pouring half into a separate empty container.

5. If mixing colors, combine the two shades into a third container and mix thoroughly.

6. Cover all containers tightly. Immediately wipe up any drips or spills using paper towels and discard.

7. Rinse tools and containers that held original dye. Remove gloves and wash hands.

Stain Removal Tips

If you do get dye on your skin or surfaces, follow these stain removal tips:

– Skin – Use an oil-based makeup remover, rubbing alcohol, or nail polish remover on skin. Avoid scrubbing aggressively.

– Counters – Spray hair dye stains with hairspray and wipe it off. Use baking soda and water as an abrasive cleaner.

– Sinks – Make a paste with baking soda and water and scrub the sink. Rinse thoroughly.

– Clothing – Pre-treat the stain with laundry stain remover or rubbing alcohol. Wash normally.

– Carpet – Apply non-oily spot remover. Blot the area – avoid rubbing it in. Rinse with cool water.

– Tile floors – Mix equal parts warm water and oxygen bleach powder into a paste. Let it sit on the stain for 15 minutes before wiping and rinsing.

How to Avoid Stains When Coloring Hair

It’s best to take precautions to avoid stains in the first place when coloring your hair:

– Wear an old shirt or cape – Dress in dark, old clothing you don’t mind getting stained. Use a plastic cape.

– Use petroleum jelly – Apply petroleum jelly around your hairline and on ears to create a barrier against drips.

– Work over a sink – Lean over a sink when applying dye to catch any drips. Rinse immediately if dye gets on skin.

– Use an applicator brush – Use a tint or color brush to precisely apply dye instead of touching it with gloved hands.

– Rinse thoroughly – After the processing time, rinse hair under running water until the water runs clear. This removes excess staining dye.

– Clean up quickly – Wipe surfaces, mop floors, and wash skin and tools immediately after coloring hair. Prompt cleanup is best for stain removal.


Splitting hair dye between containers is useful for custom coloring, but can create messy spills if done carelessly. Follow the preparation and technique tips outlined above for cleanly dividing and mixing dyes without creating permanent stains. Always have stain removal supplies on hand just in case. Take steps to avoid drips and spills when applying the separated dye mixtures to hair. With some caution and planning, you can split hair color for creative effects without bleeding dye all over everything!

Dye Splitting Tips Stain Removal Tips Stain Prevention Tips
– Work in a large, open area – Use oil-based makeup remover for skin – Wear old clothes and a cape
– Use a digital scale – Spray hairspray on counter stains – Apply petroleum jelly on skin
– Pour slowly into proper containers – Make a baking soda paste for sinks – Lean over a sink when applying
– Mix thoroughly – Use laundry pre-treaters on clothes – Use a tint brush to apply
– Wipe up spills immediately – Blot carpet stains with non-oily remover – Rinse thoroughly after processing