Bleaching Wet Hair – Pros, Precautions, Tips

Medically Reviewed By Dr. Shruti Chavan , MBBS, Dermatologist, Dermatologist
Written by Anjali Sayee

Ready to flaunt a gorgeous new hair color this season? If “bold, but not too loud” is your style mantra, and you want to try a chic wet balayage look, then this post is for you. Bleaching wet hair can give you the desired effect. It has become a massive trend in recent years. But, there are certain points to keep in mind before you try it. Here’s everything you must know if you want to bleach wet hair. Scroll down!

What Happens When You Bleach Wet Hair?

As you know, bleaching your hair makes the hair strands weak, dry, and brittle. This is where bleaching wet hair can be considered helpful. Let’s compare what happens to the hair when bleached dry and when bleached damp.

Applying bleach on dry hair causes the bleach to penetrate the hair cuticle and cortex. The bleach then decomposes melanin, the pigment that imparts color to your hair and skin. This results in a lighter hair color. However, bleach also oxidizes and destroys the cross-linked hair proteins, thereby weakening the hair. This results in hair loss, brittle hair, and frizzy hair.

That is not the case when bleach is applied to wet hair. The cuticle of the hair strands is already filled with hair, thus preventing the bleach from entering the cortex. However, that also means that the hair is not completely stripped of its natural pigment. Hence, if you want to go bold but not too loud and keep your hair protected, bleaching wet hair is a great option. Here’s a rundown of why bleaching wet hair is a better option.

Why Bleaching Wet Hair Is Better

  • For Quick Hair Lightening: If you do not have hours to sit in a salon to get your hair bleached, bleaching your hair wet is the best option.
  • For A Soft Hair Color: Want to add lift and volume to your mane without making it too obvious? Bleach your hair wet! Hairstylists use this technique all the time to give you a shade or two lighter hair color.
  • For Frizz-Free Hair: Bleaching the hair wet protects the hair cortex and cuticle. This prevents the hair from drying out and looking frizzy.
  • For Bright Hair Ends: A huge hair trend this year is lighter or brighter hair ends. This futuristic look is obtained by bleaching the wet hair ends. This adds a lighter touch to the hair. It looks especially great on short hair.

But, can you bleach your wet hair yourself at home? Let’s find out in the next section.

Should You Bleach Wet Hair At Home?

The idea of bleaching and coloring your hair at home can be really tempting. Go ahead if you are super confident about your bleaching skills. If not, book an appointment at a salon and get bleaching done on wet hair from a professional. This would also help you understand the process better and get pro hair tips from the stylist.

So, you can bleach your hair wet. Does that mean it is okay to bleach your hair right after washing? Find out in the next section.

Can You Bleach Hair After Washing?

No, bleaching your hair after washing is not recommended. Professionals use a spray to dampen the hair strands before bleaching. That’s because when the hair is wet from the roots to the ends, it is weaker. Moreover, washing your hair strips away the natural oils that serve as a protective barrier. So, bleaching your hair right after washing may make your scalp and hair more prone to damage and irritation.

What other precautions should you take if you decide to bleach your hair wet? Scroll down to find out.


  • Since we are in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, make sure you and your stylist wear a mask all the time.
  • Avoid bleaching your hair very close to the roots.

Not just bleaching, you must also take care of your bleached hair to prevent drying and to maintain the lighter hair color for longer. How to do that? Take a look at these pro tips.

Pro Tips For Taking Care Of Bleached Hair

  • Use a hair toner to prevent your bleached hair from looking brassy.
  • Deep condition your hair once a week. You may use an avocado hair mask or opt for a hot oil massage.
  • Avoid heat styling as much as possible. Use the cool setting when blow-drying your hair.
  • Use a light hair oil – like argan oil – to bring back the shine.
  • Avoid swimming in chlorinated swimming pools as it can make your hair ends frizzy.
  • Trim the split ends.
  • Avoid bleaching your hair too often.
  • Braid your hair or tie it in a bun before going to sleep.

Instead of suffering the consequences of bleaching dry hair (hair loss and damaged hair), bleaching wet hair is a much better option. Book your appointment with a stylist and get the desired hair color and flaunt it confidently. Maintain your bleached hair, and it will remain healthy, shiny, and voluminous. You go, girl!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you dye wet hair after bleaching?

Yes, you can dye wet hair after bleaching. However, we recommend you color it the next day, as wet hair is weaker and may make your scalp itchy.

Can I bleach knots while my hair is wet?

You can, but it will give you patchy results. It is always a good idea to brush your hair first and then dampen it with a spray of water before applying bleach.

Can you highlight wet hair?

Yes, you can highlight wet hair. The stylist will take the desired section and dampen it with a spray before coloring it.

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Dr. Shruti Chavan

( MBBS, Dermatologist)
Dr. Shruti Chavan is a consulting dermatologist at Dr.Sheth's Skin and Hair Clinic since 6 years. She is a co-committee... more