DIY: Temporary dip dye hair

(Edit June 15, 2012: I wrote a second post about how to temporarily dip dye your hair! Check it out.)

Something I’ve been wanting for a few months now is dip dye hair. For people who’ve never heard of it: Dip dye is a way of dyeing the bottom tips of your hair, often in a bright, non-natural colour. Here are some examples that I like:


The only problem is that my parents don’t allow me to dye my hair. I’ve secretly tried dyeing it black, electric blue and purple when I was a young teen, but they were absolutely furious.
I may have found a few solutions to my problem though!

1. Feltpens and markers: No way? Yes way!  I got the idea from this blog (‘By Kashmira’ a Dutch blog, so I’ll explain in English) and it actually looks very realistic. It only stays in your hair for one day, which comes in very handy when you want to try a dip dye for just one day or, like me, you’re not allowed to dye your hair.  The idea is that you take a lock of hair, put it over an old piece of paper, and just paint the bottom with a feltpen or marker. Let it dry, et voila, your own temporary dip dye hair! If you want to remove it, just rinse your hair with water. You don’t even need shampoo, it comes off very easily. However, this is also a disadvantage, because it can also come off when it rains. It works best for blonde hair, obviously, though girls with dark hair (like me) can try it too, the colour just won’t be as bright.


2. Chalk: ‘Oh ok, if we’re using markers in our hair, why not chalk as well?’ I found this one on and It might seem a bit crazy, but apparently it works wonders! You just dampen your hair and rub your locks with the piece of chalk in a downward motion. I think it’s probably better for your hair than markers, but it will also take more time and energy to apply.  To remove it you just need to wash it, just like with the marker dye.


  • I am aware that apparently it’s also possible to use Kool-aid, but I read that it stays for several washes and I don’t believe it’s available in Belgium, so I didn’t include it in this post.


Filed under Beauty, DIY

66 responses to “DIY: Temporary dip dye hair

  1. Nathalie

    Who cares if they get furious? Done is done, right? Not much they can do. They get mad, you might get a punishment, I don’t know, but you still have your dip dye so it’s worth it :)

    • You’re absolutely right! The problem is that they’re currently paying for my dorm, living and university, and they’ve already threatened to completely cut me off. Well, they have done that before actually, but I managed to persuade them after all.
      I’m currently just going to try some ass-kissing and casually showing them pictures of gorgeous dip dyes/ombre hair, haha!
      Thx for your comment xx

      • Anita

        You could dip dye your hair, but only like the lower few CMs, not like half of it, and then, just before you go home for holiday’s, chop the tips off. Voila, your parents will never know the difference.
        But seriously, it sucks to have your parents being that controlling. :/


      not so great advice to say to disrespect your parents. Really? I agree it’s now a fad and I really like the look, but the advice above is really shallow and from a person whom does not appear to respect parents. You are better off asking in a nice manner and maybe showing pictures of styes that look nice with the new dyes. Ask for them to trust you as a maturing adult. If you are close to graduation from college, it probably is not a good idea anyway if you will be in the job market looking for employment soon as a new grad. Especially if you are in a profession that might look down upon this sort of thing.

      • I couldn’t agree with you more, and it’s absolutely not my intention to disrespect my parents’ authority. As I mentioned before, I dyed my hair when I was about 16 years old, I was a bit of a rebel teen. I’m currently trying to persuade them with pictures of ballage/ombré. It’s a compromise: my hair won’t look too extreme (aka no problems for future employment) and I can always temporarily dye them in bright colours if I want to go out.
        Anyway, I’m pretty sure Nathalie didn’t have any bad intentions when she wrote that comment :)
        Thx for your comment ! xx

        • Emily1254

          Well, obviously nobody wants to really anger their parents, but if you want to just dye the very ends of your hair, you know that you can always just get a trim and poof, the dye is gone. Please consider that.

          • Francois

            For the love of Pete, your in UNIVERSITY. How can they have the gall to tell you what fashion choices you are allowed to make, and try and control you by threatening you with being cut off if you try and be even a little bit independent. That is just ridiculous! You really should take them for a group session with a psychologist, because that is EXTREMELY controlling behavior.

  2. Pingback: DIY: Temporary dip dye hair (this time with eyeshadow!) | Studded Dreams

  3. Nina

    I have natural black hair :( Any other ideas?

    • Hi Nina!
      Well actually I read a lot of comments online about people with black hair who said the chalking method worked for them.
      A few extra tips for dark hair: the more damp your hair is, the brighter the colours will turn out. Second tip: use Rembrandt pastels! They’re more expensive, but apparently they work like a charm.
      Good luck, and if you try it, let me know how it went ! :)

  4. Alannah

    i have orangey/red hair and i really want to dip dye my hair!! what colour should i do it??

    • Hi Alannah!
      It depends on how shocking you want your dip dye look to be. You could go for a rather ombré effect, by going for colours like dark red, bright orange or blonde:

      or if you’re daring enough: go for clashing colours! The most clashing colour for red hair is blue, so go for an electric blue dip dye:
      Blue dip dye

      You could also try Kevin Murphy’s Colour Bug, which is available in pink, purple and orange:
      Colour bug - pink and orange dip dye
      Good luck, and rock that dip dye!

      • how can i dye the tips of my hair blonde with kool aid if they only have colors?

        • I don’t think that’s possible ..
          If you want a blonde dip dye, you’ll have to go with bleaching your hair, which obviously is no longer temporary, but if you really want it, go for it ! I bleached my tips and I loooove it :)

        • Abby

          Just don’t use kood aid, yellow color pastels show up very well and sometimes show up the best. Just make sure you buy non-toxic color pastels or ones made for your hair.

  5. brooke

    i have dark brown hair and i wanna dye mi hair tips red what should i do

    • Well, if I were you I’d go to a hair salon to get your hair tips red. Of course, you could always try it yourself at home, but as a fellow dark brown hair owner I can tell you that a lot of hair dyes won’t work on your hair (unless you bleach the absolute **** out of it first). I tried black, dark blue and purple, and only the black one worked for me. Especially red, which isn’t a very dark colour, won’t work properly, so I recommend you to let it get done professionally :) Good luck, and keep me updated with the results, I’m very curious !

    • jillian

      hi, if your in school use a red marker,if its vacation use koolaid,when you get back to school it will have a small tint I did types and it is cool. I also have dark brown hair!

  6. May

    Hiii!! I’m from Spain and I ‘ve totally loved this post as I’m in the shame situation as you. My only disadvantage is that I haven’t understood de second option but I’m gonna try the markers none ;)
    Thank you!!

    • Well, my parents allowed me to bleach the tips of my hair, so I’ve been rocking an ombré/balayage look for the past 4 days now ! :) I’ll post a picture with the results soon, and I’ll also see if I can find some chalk to finally be able to get some colour on my -now bleached- hair ends.

      Anyway, I’ve been studying Spanish for two years now, so perhaps I could try to explain it to you ?
      Tiene que utilizar criza para pintar tu pelo temporalmente. Primero, si tienes el pelo castaño, tiene que humedecer tu pelo. Si tienes el pelo rubio, lo queda seco, porque el pelo rubio puede absorber el color de la criza. Después, toma una parte de las puntas del pelo, enróllala y entízala con la criza. Aquí es un weblink con el tipo de criza que es lo más interesanta para utilizar en el cabello.
      Si no comprendes mi explicación, podría ver a este sitio web (en inglés).

      I’m sorry for any spelling or grammatical errors, my Spanish is still on a very amateur level.
      Hope this helped you ! :)

  7. Pingback: DIY: Dip Dye Hair using Kool-Aid

  8. j2si

    your parents are totally gonna hate me for this but if i were you
    i’d use those tricks you mentioned and let them think that i actually dyed my hair if they’re ok with it i’ll go ahead and do it
    if not i’ll just tell them it’s fake

    • Haha that would really be a bold move ! But I think I’m going to stick with the soft ombré/balayage I have right now, and if I want to turn it op a notch for a night out, I just use one of my temporary solutions :)
      Thx for your comment !

  9. christina

    Hey! I have light brown hair and I read about dying hair with food colour the problem is that noone really knows how long the colour lasts and my parents will go crazy if it wont come off and I will end up grounded.. I havent any excuse to use..even ”the kissing ass thing” doesnt work :p

    • Well, the ‘kissing ass thing’ didn’t completely work for me either: I got permission to rock an ombré/balayage, but I’m still not allowed to get a bright dip dye, so I’m also sticking to temporary dip dyes.

      I did a little search on hair dying with food colour, and most experiences are indeed a bit contradictory. Opinions vary between one day and permanent. Because your hair is light brown, I’m guessing it’ll stay in for about 1 to 3 weeks, depending on the exact method you’re going to use.

      If I were you, I’d dye a tiny little strand of hair on the bottom of your neck first, and check how long that stays, before dying the rest of your hair.

      Good luck with it, and keep me updated with the outcome :)

  10. India

    Hi, i have dark hair too! Do you think it would work with watercolours?

    Thanks for the tips btw, Currently sporting pink and turquoise chalk streaks, my hair’s a bit crunchy though! Anything I can do to soften it? :)

    • Hi !
      I doubt watercolours will work, especially on dark hair. I’ve never tried it before though. Perhaps I could research it and if it works, I might make a DIY Dip dye post part III with it :)
      And great ! Always awesome to hear someone got inspired by my blog. Unfortunately, the crunchy bit is typical for chalk, so there’s not much you can do about that that won’t affect the colour. You can brush your hair carefully, it’ll soften the crunch, but also remove some colour.
      Thx for your comment !

  11. karsyn

    what types of makers

    • Fluorescent ones, the ones you use to highlight your paper when studying (don’t really know another way to explain it, haha)

      • S

        I think those are commonly referred to as highlighters. I used to do this as a kid, and I would stress that you use a water-based marker that washes off your hands easily enough. (The hand-washing thing is a good test to see how easily it will wash out of your hair or if it will stain it) I always had good results with crayola brand.

      • They are called highlighters yes those do work to but it is pretty much just like markers

  12. Emilyyyyyyyy

    i just dip dyed my hair last night with red and pink koolaid and my hair has like light brown and dark brown in it. it worked out ok though i wounder how longs its gonna last. C:

  13. Katherine

    I have a really awkward hair colour. It is like brown, with natural blonde highlights, but also orange and all. I don’t know what colour to go, but also my school has a strict “natural hair colours” rule so I can’t go blue or pink or anything. wht colour should I go?

  14. Tori

    I have NO idea what to do. My hair is a a light brown and I would really like to bring out the natural blond in it. Ideas? Also, I would like to, by tommorrow, have my hair tips be red. But I don’t have the money (or time) to go to a professional salon. PS: my parents really don’t care about what I do to my hair as long as its NOT permanent. HELP?

  15. gj1d

    do you think red woulfd work on light brown hair?

  16. Kira

    I have light brown hair but I want to do a temporary sort of dip-dye. Any color suggestions? Thanks!
    Kira xx

  17. ayesha

    hey!i m like 16 and i really want to dye my hair red for some school party..ofcoarse im not allowed.ive got black hair witha dash of dark brown shade..will the techniques you recommended ‘show’ on my hair colour(ive got a short bob doo with layers)..plzz help me out.

  18. I did it with markers and it did really good

  19. You can also try something called hair chox it is a little harder to apply in hair just cuz you have to press on hair very hard. Xoxo britney. Ps.have fun

  20. Ashh

    I have red hair. What color should I Ombre to make it sutble but noticeable?

  21. Alyssa

    Hi! I have light reddish chestnut brown hair and I really want to dip dye it red over the summer – im not sure if red would go well with light brown hair though – do you guys have any suggestions?! Pleeeeease- need help! :)

  22. Lizzie

    I heard that the chalk goes on in a weird way. Is that true? Is there other ways for me to dip dye my hair so that it comes out in a few days? I tried the marker thing an it goes on really well. Is there a way I can get it to stay longer?

  23. since you didnt go into detail with the kool aid i just wanted to say something for the people who were looking for that. it does take a while to get it out and BE CAREFUL my friend had done this and it stayeed in her hair for almost 14 months and thats with washing her hair and getting special cream to get it out which didnt work. but it still looks really good! and im not tring to discourge anyone

  24. Josie

    i love this site helps me so much to pick my next hair dye style

  25. Dani(;

    Hii I have really dark brown stubborn hair. I want to temporarily dye for a change. Any ideas how to?

  26. Pingback: 24 Blogs with Tips on Coloring Your Own Hair for the First Time | Babysitting

  27. f4shionaddict

    Ahhhhh you brightened my day with this post! I’m in exactly the same situation as you with parents who won’t let me dip dye my hair, but now thanks to you i have a new way of doing it :D Thak you thank thank you!!

    • Aww I want to die my hair sooo bad, it’s a trend in my school, but my mom says its bad for you hair and won’t let me!😥so, I have dark brown hair and am not alowed to do anything perminit to it! I’m 13 years old so don’t have the money or the car to get to a salon. Do you have any tips for me? I wish I could just die it! Ps: I don’t have cool aid at my house and if I do anything perminit I’m dead! So help please! Thanks for the tips I will try the chalk thing tomorrow to see if that will work. Do you think crayon would work? Thanks again,


  28. Laura

    I want to dip dye my hair dark/electric blue and I have really dark brown hair, almost black but I’m not aloud to have pernament dip dye, but I want it to last for a week or longer than a week but not pernament? Any ideas what I could use x

  29. adeeba

    Chalks are really cheap and i can get them anyywheree … m definitely trying it !!
    though my hair r dark black ( m asian :) ) .. hope it to work !!
    thnx a lot XO !

  30. chloe warwick

    Awesome site I’ll definatley try them x

  31. Amelia

    I want to dip dye my hair for year 6 prom but r not aloud permanent dye plus I want to go blonde on my dip dye as my hair is brown or a mousy colour right now

  32. Arana

    Hey, I was wondering if i could dip dye my hair and make it last for only about a month or two. I have black-ish brown hair, the brown is visible in the sun. What colour should I go for? And, not allowed bright colours. Something really subtle. The thing is I want it temporarily, and, I don’t want to reduce my length, so I can’t go with the option of dip dying my tips and cutting it off, even though it makes sense. Also, no Kool-aid is available in Asia, so that’s out of question. Is there some hair colour I could use that fades out after washing in around 2-3 months? And what is the difference between semi-permanent and permanent? Sorry, it’s really long. But could someone help me, please. Thank. Also, I think your blog is really nice.

  33. Danni

    at school some off us did this with pink pink sharpies and it cane out great

  34. zuri

    I didn´t know you could use chalk! I´ve got the same problem with my parents, very controlling, absolutly against hair dye, tatoos, pearcings etc.
    they don´t even give me money anymore but i live with them and they will pay for my masters, so this is really very helpfull since halloween is coming i will totaly try it out.!
    thanks so much!

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