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The 5 Best Hair Dyes to Lighten Dark Hair Without Bleach

Do you wish to try out the different trendy hair colors but don’t want to undergo the harsh bleaching process? Do you want to lighten your dark hair but don’t want to expose your hair to strong bleaching chemicals?

That’s understandable since bleaching is known to leave the hair dry and damaged. But is there a way that you can lighten dark hair without bleaching? Lucky for you, there is! For this purpose, you may need to use high lift hair colors, and we’ll share some of the best ones below.

So which is the best hair dye to lighten hair without bleach? Keep on reading to find out!

Lighten your hair without bleach by checking out the best high lift hair colors below.

1. Splat Naturals Semi-Permanent Lavender Hair Dye

Splat Purple Semi Permanent Hair Color, 6 OZ
  • ★ 95% NATURAL FORMULA ★ - Treat your wild side! This unique formula includes Quinoa proteins to help color last...
  • ★ ECO-FRIENDLY FORMULA AND PACKAGING ★ - No parabens, PPD, resorcinol, sulfates, ammonia or fragrance with a 90%...
  • ★ ADDS BRILLIANT COLOR AND SHINE ★ - Includes Vitamin B5 to restore shine while strengthening the hair follicle,...

 The Splat Naturals Hair Dye is one of the safest and healthiest alternatives to bleach when it comes to lightening your hair.

The dye has a 95% natural formula that contains Quinoa proteins as its main ingredient. These proteins can fortify hair, retain moisture and preserve hair color for longer. Additionally, the dye has Baobab extract, which delivers superior UV protection and nourishment.

That’s not all. In addition to having nourishing ingredients, the dye is free of ammonia, sulfates, fragrances, PPD, and resorcinol. It also comes in eco-friendly packaging.


  • It also has vitamin B5, which strengthens hair and boosts shine.
  • One tube can last for up to 30 washes.
  • This is highly recommended for brunettes.
  • The dye comes in an easy squeeze pack for your convenience.
  • The color lasts for 4 to 6 weeks.


  • It stains a lot.
  • The color has a reddish tint.

2. L’Oreal Paris Colorista Hair Color

L’Oréal Paris Colorista Semi-Permanent Hair Color For Brunettes, Teal
  • For brunettes
  • Semi Permanent haircolor created with pure direct dyes in a conditioning hair mask
  • No bleach required

 The L’Oreal Paris Colorista Hair Color is another excellent option for brunettes. This vegan formula will give your hair a beautiful teal color without any need for bleaching.

It will leave your hair feeling soft, hydrated, and properly conditioned since the hair dyes are incorporated in a conditioning hair mask. In addition, it contains no ammonia or peroxide, so you don’t’ have to worry about hair damage.

The color fades in just 4 to 10 shampoos, giving you more opportunity to experiment with different hair colors.


  • It is affordable.
  • The dye is free of animal-derived ingredients and byproducts.
  • It comes in a wide range of shades.
  • The dye gives the hair a vibrant color.


  • The hair color doesn’t last long.
  • Also, the stain is difficult to remove.

3. Loreal Excellence Hicolor Hilights 

Loreal Excellence Hicolor Hilights Magenta 1.2 Ounce (35ml) (2 Pack)
  • 2 Pieces - 1.2 Ounce (35ml)
  • Brand New!
  • Packaging May Vary!

 This is the first line from L’Oreal formulated for dyeing dark hair without the need for bleach. It’s formulated with breakthrough technology which lifts hair by 3 to 4 levels—no pre-lightening required!

It’s the perfect option for dark-haired people who wish to try out different red shades—minus the brassiness associated with bleached hair.

The dye features a rich crème texture which makes application a whole lot easier. In addition, the dye comes in an easy squeeze tube to prevent messy applications.

You can choose from four different shades of red—Copper, Copper Red, Magenta, and Red.


  • Tube packaging for mess-free applications.
  • Processing time is only 30 minutes.
  • True-to-shade color that’s resistant to fading.
  • The color lasts long.


  • The dye bleeds a lot.
  • It stains clothes when you sweat.

4. Clairol Color Crave Hair Dye

Clairol Color Crave Semi-permanent Hair Dye, Flamingo Hair Color, 1 Count
  • Clairol color crave flamingo pink semi-permanent hair color provides bold color for 2 weeks of play
  • True tone formula for even, color-accurate fading that lasts up to 15+ washes
  • Stylist brush for paint-on application

Bright and bold colors, anyone? If you’re up for something eye-catching, the Clairol Color Crave Hair Dye might be the right product for you.

In addition to the flamingo pink shade, other colors you can choose from include Indigo, Rose Gold, plus 9 more bright and bold shades.

For 2 weeks, you can enjoy attention-grabbing vibrant hair color that won’t fade. The best news is you can transform your hair from drab to fab in the easiest way possible, all thanks to the easy-to-use stylish dye brush that comes with the kit.


  • The dye can last for up to 15 washes.
  • It already includes a dye brush.
  • No mixing needed.
  • 11 color options available.


  • The dye does not give a true-to-shade color.
  • It’s not long-lasting.

5. oVertone Haircare Semi-Permanent Color Depositing Conditioner

OVERTONE Haircare Semi-Permanent Color Depositing Conditioner with Shea Butter &...
  • Blue for Brown Hair Coloring Conditioner is perfect for achieving a subtle, deep, cool-toned blue on hair that ranges from...
  • An easy, damage-free way to achieve subtle color with our gentle, award winning, vegan and cruelty-free pigmented...
  • Our gentle color-depositing conditioners are safe for all hair textures and types; they do not contain ammonia, bleach or...

Especially formulated for lightening dark hair, the oVertone Haircare Depositing Conditioner is recommended for people with black to brown hair who wish to change their hair color without using bleach.

The color depositing conditioner contains nourishing and moisturizing ingredients. In addition, it has coconut oil which stimulates hair growth and keeps hair long, thick, and healthy. Another fantastic ingredient is shea butter which offers anti-inflammatory properties. Lastly, it has avocado oil which strengthens and repairs damaged hair.

You can choose from 6 different colors— Blue, Ginger, Purple, Rose Gold, Vibrant Purple, and Vibrant Teal.


  • The dye has a vegan and cruelty-free formulation.
  • Color lasts for 2 to 20 washes.
  • It’s free of parabens, sulfates, and ammonia.
  • Application takes only 15 to 20 minutes.
  • The dye is recommended for all hair types and textures.


  • It won’t cover naturally gray or white hair.
  • The dye stains the scalp.

The Verdict

So which is the best hair dye to lighten dark hair? Our top pick is the oVertone Haircare Color Depositing Conditioner for this roundup since it doesn’t just color the hair—it also conditions and nourishes it.

Since this conditioner contains shea butter, coconut oil, and avocado oil, you can enjoy healthy, beautifully colored hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a high lift hair color?

This type of hair dye lightens the hair and deposits hair color to hair in just a single step. The dye lets you enjoy lighter-colored hair and skip the step of bleaching or pre-lightening your hair.

What’s the difference between bleach and high lift color?

These products have lots of significant differences. For one, bleach can lift hair color by up to 8 levels, while a high lift color can only lift your hair color by 5 levels at most.

The most crucial difference is high lift color won’t damage your hair and produce a stinging sensation that’s commonly associated with the application of bleach.

Can I turn my dark hair to blonde without bleaching?

As mentioned earlier, high lift hair color can only lift your hair by around 5 levels. Because of this, it’s impossible to turn dark hair to blonde when using only high lift hair color. You’ll need to undergo bleaching to do this.

Who should use high lift hair color?

You should understand that High Lift Hair Color won’t work well on all types of hair. Also, you can only take advantage of this hair dye if you have virgin hair (hair that hasn’t been dyed).

If you recently underwent a permanent hair service like perming or straightening, you need to wait at least 2 weeks before applying the dye.

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