How to Temporarily Dye Your Hair With Food Coloring

Boldly colored locks turn heads.

Photo: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Shake up your look with a brand-new hair color. Rather than going the safe route of blond, brown or auburn, try something wilder like green, blue or purple. A punk rock hair color can give your everyday look loads of edge. Skip the major commitment and use a temporary dye instead. Using food coloring as a hair dye is a simple, money-saving way to get a fierce new look that lasts only a few weeks.


Put on a pair of plastic gloves to protect your hands from getting stained. You don't want to look like you've been dyeing Easter eggs.


Mix together one quarter cup of shampoo with six drops of food coloring in an empty shampoo bottle. (see Reference 1)


Close the shampoo bottle tightly and shake it thoroughly.


Place an old towel around your neck and a little petroleum jelly around your hair line to protect your face and clothes from stains.


Wet your hair. Lean over into your kitchen sink or tub and saturate your hair with water. Don't do this in the shower unless you want your entire body tinted with your chosen color.


Massage the shampoo/food coloring mixture into your hair. Apply it to all of your hair evenly.


Cover your hair with a shower cap and leave the mixture in for 30 minutes.


Rinse your hair thoroughly -- until the water runs clear -- and dry it.

Things You'll Need


1.Old towel

3.Petroleum jelly

5.Food coloring


9.Shower cap

2.Plastic gloves

4.Empty shampoo bottle


8.Plastic gloves


Tips & Tricks


Do a strand test to see how much food coloring you need to achieve the color you want.

Lighter hair will soak up color faster than darker hair, so leave the mixture on your head for longer than 30 minutes to get a darker color.

Food coloring stains anything it touches. Immediately wash off any drips that fall on your tub, sink or floor.


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