Skip to Content

How much developer do I use with Wella Color Tango?

When coloring hair with Wella Color Tango permanent hair color, it’s important to use the proper ratio of color to developer. This ensures you get the desired results – vibrant, long-lasting color with optimal gray coverage. The amount of developer you need depends on the specific Color Tango shade you choose.

In general, Color Tango is formulated with an ideal 1:1 mixing ratio with Wella Welloxon Perfect developer. However, for some shades, Color Tango may require slightly more or less developer. Be sure to check the instructions on the individual hair color box.

Color Tango Mixing Ratios

Here is an overview of the standard mixing ratios for Wella Color Tango:

Color Tango Shade Intensity Developer Mixing Ratio
Extra Soft Black, Soft Black, Dark Brown 1 part color : 1 1/2 parts developer
Natural Brown, Light Brown, Medium Blonde 1 part color : 1 part developer
Light Blonde 1 part color : 1/2 part developer

As you can see, the darker Color Tango shades use a higher proportion of developer, while lighter shades use less. This helps adjust the coloring strength during processing.

Now let’s take a closer look at how much developer you need for each specific Color Tango shade:

Developer Amounts for Dark Shades

For Color Tango’s dark shades, including 1N Extra Soft Black, 1 Soft Black, and shades 2 through 5 Dark Brown, use a 1:1 1/2 mixing ratio. This means:

  • 1 ounce of color + 1 1/2 ounces developer
  • 2 ounces of color + 3 ounces developer
  • 3 ounces of color + 4 1/2 ounces developer

The higher amount of developer helps these darker dyes penetrate and darken gray hair more effectively. It also ensures proper coloring where more coverage is needed.

Developer Amounts for Medium Shades

For Color Tango’s medium brown and blonde shades, including 6 Light Brown through 9 Medium Blonde, the standard 1:1 mixing ratio is used. This means:

  • 1 ounce color + 1 ounce developer
  • 2 ounces color + 2 ounces developer
  • 3 ounces color + 3 ounces developer

The equal parts color and developer provides vibrant results and even saturation for these medium intensity shades.

Developer Amounts for Light Shades

Finally, for extra light shades like 10 Light Blonde, a dilute 1:1/2 mixing ratio is recommended. This means:

  • 1 ounce color + 1/2 ounce developer
  • 2 ounces color + 1 ounce developer
  • 3 ounces color + 1 1/2 ounces developer

The lower amount of developer prevents over-processing of the hair and keeps the pale blonde and bleached tones soft and natural looking.

Additional Tips

Here are some additional tips for successfully mixing and applying Wella Color Tango with developer:

  • Always use the recommended Wella Welloxon Perfect or Welloxon Clear developer.
  • Shake the color tube well before mixing.
  • Add the color to the developer instead of the other way around.
  • Mix until completely smooth and no streaks remain.
  • Perform a strand test to confirm color result.
  • Time your development based on the instructions.
  • Rinse thoroughly after processing.
  • Use Wella care products to maintain vivid color.

Following the proper mixing instructions and applying the color correctly allows Wella Color Tango to work its magic. With the right developer ratio, you’ll get perfect, lasting color every time.

What Volume Developer Should I Use?

In addition to the mixing ratio, choosing the right volume developer is also key for beautiful Color Tango results. Here are the recommended developer volumes:

  • 10 Volume – For subtle color enhancements and gloss.
  • 20 Volume – For most standard applications.
  • 30 Volume – For lifting or highlighting darker hair.
  • 40 Volume – For maximum lightening on light bases.

Keep in mind, higher developer volume means more lifting action. It’s best to stay within the standard 20 Volume range for most Color Tango applications. Always do a strand test when going lighter to prevent damage.

Wella Welloxon Perfect Developer comes in 10, 20, 30 and 40 strengths to work with all Color Tango shades. Choose the right one based on your specific coloring needs.

How Much Developer Per Application?

The total amount of developer you’ll need depends on the amount of hair you are coloring and the mixing ratios for your chosen shade. Here are some general guidelines for whole head application:

  • Short hair – 2-3 ounces total mixture
  • Medium hair – 3-4 ounces total
  • Long hair – 4-6+ ounces total

To determine your specific amount, first decide how much color you need overall based on hair length and thickness. Then calculate the developer amount based on the proper ratio. Always mix enough to thoroughly saturate all hair, applying to dry unwashed hair.

It’s better to mix a bit extra rather than not have enough. Leftover mixed color cannot be saved. Unused developer can be stored and reused.

Does Color Tango Require More Developer on Gray Hair?

The higher proportion of developer in the darker Color Tango shades is formulated to provide enough lifting and penetration power to cover and color gray hair effectively.

However, for resistant gray hair, you may find you need to bump up the developer amount slightly. It’s safe to go up to a maximum of 1:2 mixing ratio for darker Tango shades.

Always perform a strand test first to confirm the higher developer concentration does not causeexcessive lightening or damage before applying to the full head. Monitor development time closely as well.

In some cases, a longer leave-in time may be better than increasing developer to combat stubborn grays. Also keep in mind that warmer brown and red shades typically provide the best gray coverage.

Can I Use 20 Volume With All Color Tango Shades?

Wella Welloxon Perfect 20 Volume Cream Developer can be used safely with nearly all Color Tango shades. The 20 Volume strength provides ideal coloring and lifting for everything from lightening, permanent color, and root touch-ups.

The only exception would be using 20 Volume with the palest ultra light blonde 10 shades. Here it’s best to use a 10 or 15 Volume to avoid over-lightening of fragile lightened hair.

Some stylists may also prefer to use 10 Volume with darker extra soft black and soft black applications where subtly and less lift is desired.

Otherwise, 20 Volume typically works universally across the Color Tango spectrum while still being gentle enough for sensitive scalps. Just maintain the proper mixing ratio.

Using Color Touch With Color Tango

Wella Color Tango can also be combined with the Color Touch demi-permanent color line. This allows you to customize the formula for more precision coloring.

Here are some examples of mixing Color Tango and Color Touch:

  • Equal parts Color Touch + Color Tango for muted results
  • More Color Tango for bolder, intense color
  • More Color Touch for subtler, sheer coloring
  • Apply permanent Color Tango roots, demi-permanent Color Touch mid-lengths/ends

Always follow the mixing instructions for the permanent Color Tango being used. Apply the demi-permanent Color Touch shades last.

Combining the best of both color lines allows for shading, highlighting, tone-on-tone work, low-commitment glossing, root fading, fashion effects, and more customized color.

Can I Use Color Tango Without Developer?

Wella Color Tango is designed to be used with developer 1:1 or 1:2 mixing ratios depending on shade. Developer is required to activate the ammonia and coloring agents.

Without developer added, Color Tango will not have proper viscosity or be able to penetrate and deposit color effectively. Results will be unsuccessful.

Always mix Color Tango with Welloxon developer according to the instructions for permanent, lasting color. There is no way around the developer, it’s a must!


Getting your developer proportions and volumes right is key to Color Tango success. Follow the recommendations for your particular Tango shade and desired results.

When in doubt, stay within the standard usage guidelines of 1:1 or 1:2 mixing ratio with 20 Volume Welloxon developer for most applications. Perform a strand test if tweaking the formula.

With the proper developer used, Color Tango delivers vibrant, true-tone, gray-covering color that lasts. Consistently amazing results come from understanding and applying the ideal color-to-developer ratios.