Lemon juice is good for your skin and hair and is in fact a naturally effective method to lighten your hair colour. Elizabeth Wallang, a natural health writer, specifies that lemon juice is by far the most popular method for lightening hair at home.
[Read: How to Colour Hair at Home]
It is important to note that lemon juice in its natural condition is strongly acidic, so diluting it will keep it from causing damage to the hair. Most experts also specify that rather than colouring your hair, lemon juice actually highlights hair.
The results will depend on what your natural hair colour is the lighter the original colour, the more effective the highlighting will be. For people with very dark hair, this may not be the best way to lighten your hair colour. However, if you do have lighter brown hair, then this maybe a natural way for you to follow.
It would be best to naturally extract lemon juice from a lemon fruit tree. It is not recommended to use processed lemon products on your hair. These processed lemon juices are chemically treated and will prove to be harmful to your hair.
Caution is also advised in using ‘commercial lighteners’ that claim to use lemon juice- as they often contain strong chemical products that can cause major damage to your hair.Often, they do not contain adequate amounts of natural lemon juice and are just crammed with chemicals. Using lemon juice on hair that is treated with chemicals or hair that is overexposed to chlorine could prove to be more detrimental for your hair’s overall health.
Decide beforehand which parts of the hair you want to highlight. Squeeze the lemons into a bowl and mix with at least an equal part of water, more, if you are concerned with already damaged hair or with greying hair. Transfer the mixture into a spray bottle for easier application. Divide your hair into sections and cover the ones you do not want to lighten, spray the sections you want highlighted. If you want an all over lightening, then work the mixture on your hair evenly, from the crown of your hair up to the part area and the hairline.
When you use lemon juice on your hair, the citric acid in the lemon juice works to open up the hair cuticles. Once the cuticles start to open, the hair becomes more receptive to changes. Elements such as the acid in lemon juice, the oxygen in the air and the UV rays from the sun all combine together and start a bleaching process. Going out in the sun is important if you want the UV rays to work with the lemon juice. Your hair will quickly become lighter because of the interaction between the lemon juice, which acts as a catalyst and the sunrays. This process is referred to as ‘acid-catalyzed oxidation’. Do not wait for more than 30-60 minutes in the sun or you will damage the hair.
After being in the sun, rinse your hair thoroughly with water and use a good conditioner. This is because the direct sun exposure can dry out your hair and a deep conditioner works in restoring the balance needed for healthy hair.
The results are not always instantaneous and you may need to be patient and repeat the process. If you don’t receive the required result the first time, do this again but not more than 2-3 times a week. After a while, you will notice natural and attractive highlights and an overall lightening in your hair.
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