How to get Pastel Pink Hair with no bleach

I’m pretty boring with my hair usually, but have fancied a bit of pink for a while. I love coloured hair, but in the real world (or at least mine), it’s not always practical. I’ve never been anything but blonde, so this was a big step for me. I checked with hairdressers and went through loads of websites, but the lowest price I could find was starting at around £80. For something that would fade (as its always semi-permanent). As someone who is far too cheap for that, I decided to look at home dyes to get pastel pink hair.

I came across Manic Panic, and it is one of the most popular dyes. However, people did say it faded fast. I can’t comment on that just yet, but as it was my first time, I thought even if it did, that might be a good thing should it all go terribly wrong!

I also never want to bleach my hair as its always been in good condition and I don’t want to ruin it. I’m not saying bleaching always wrecks it, I’m sure some of you are fine with using it, it’s just not for me. I’m scared to even go a shade lighter, so anything is brave to me!

I tried looking for tutorials on how to make a pastel pink work on non-dyed hair and struggled to find anything, so feel it’s my duty to share this info!

How to get Pastel Pink Hair

What you will need:
Coloured Dye – I used Cotton Candy Pink by Manic Panic
White conditioner
Tinting brush and bowl

My natural hair colour is a blonde/dark blonde – often referred to as mousey (hate that phrase!). I have been dyeing it a bit lighter for the last few years. The most recent colour I’ve been using is Pearl Blonde (Colour 910) by Schwarzkopf.

As my hair needed to be lighter for a colour like pink, I decided to re-dye it a few days before application.

Wash hair. Dry Hair.

You should start with clean hair. Excuse my stupid face throughout! – starting colour:

Starting Colour

If you’ve seen Manic Panic colours, you’ll know they are crazy bright! Far too bright for a wuss like me. But they look amazing! I decided to go for the Cotton Candy Pink.


Step 2:
Mix your colour.

If you’re after a lighter pink, you can mix your chosen colour with WHITE conditioner. So any brand, as long as it’s white. I actually used a 99p Henna conditioner from Bodycare, as it’s really nourishing so thought it might be good.

Mixing Manic Panic with conditioner

I didn’t measure as such, but put a few scoops (about 2 teaspoons worth) of pink dye in with lots of conditioner.
I wanted to try a little bit as wasn’t sure how much I should use or how well it would take.

Step 3:
Apply dye.

Starting at the roots, use the tinting brush to evenly spread the dye. I started doing that at the roots, then ended up just smushing it around my head!

Step 4:

Find a magazine or watch an episode of your favourite show to make the time pass quickly.
I waited for about 40 minutes before rinsing – try to use cold water.

Step 5:
Dry hair – towel or hairdryer.

I used a hairdryer as couldn’t wait to see the results!

Once I’d dried my hair, I could see a hint of pink, but nothing substantial. I may have gone overboard with the conditioner. I still loved the light pink tint though.

Not to be defeated, I tried again, this time with a little more pink! I re-applied, re-waited and re-dried! This time I waited for about 1.5 hours.

This time the result was more like I had imagined. A lovely pastel pink. It does look a bit different to hair that has been bleached and pinked, but I love it! My hair also felt super soft, probably due to copious amounts of conditioner, but also because the Manic Panic was good to my hair!

I did find some blonde streaks where the dye just wouldn’t stick, but that added to the overall look really.

Final result:

Let me know what you think or if this helps you!