How to Dye Your Hair Underneath? (Peek-a-boo Hairstyle)

The peek-a-boo hairstyle trend has taken the world by storm. After all, what other hairstyle will give you two colors of locks on the top and bottom? 

And don’t even get me started on the color options. You can go bold with two different off-the-wall colors like bright pink and purple, or turn your natural brunette into a playful piece with red peeking underneath.

Have I piqued your interest yet, or were you already a fan?

Regardless, today we’re here to talk about how to successfully dye your hair underneath (and make your friends jealous in the meantime, of course).

What is peekaboo hair?

You’ve probably played “peek-a-boo” at one time or another with a child. It’s a fun, whimsical game where your eyes hide behind your hands, and you can move your hands and “boo!” with your eyes.

Well, peek-a-boo hair isn’t much different. 

The style involves having different hair colors on the top and underneath. The colors can be as straightforward or vibrant as you’d like, and don’t think you’re stuck with two colors – the colors underneath can be rainbow, highlighted – anything you want!

The fun part is that your underneath hair color will “peek” out when you move the top layer, essentially allowing your hair to play “peek-a-boo” with everyone who sees it.

So, if you’re looking for a fun way to decorate your locks, the peek-a-boo hairstyle might be right for you!

Can you do it yourself?

If you’re someone who loves to do their beauty treatments at home, you will be glad to know that you can do peek-a-boo hair at home. As long as you have a good mirror on your side, it shouldn’t be too challenging.

Honestly, though, it would be better if you had a helping hand. That way, the lines can be more precise, and you won’t have to worry about coloring the back of your head, which could leave you with blotchiness or a poor job. (Time for your bestie to return a favor, huh?)

What are the steps to do it?

Are you designing your peek-a-boo hair from home? The first thing you will need to do is purchase a box dye from your local store. If you’re doing it from home, I recommend choosing a single color. If you’re confident in your skills, add as many colors as you’d prefer. 

Follow these six simple steps to success.

  1. Wash and Dry Your Hair

There are two kinds of people out there: those who say you should absolutely wash your hair before dying it and those that say to avoid it like the plague.

While there may be two schools of thought, my recommendation is to wash it and thoroughly dry it a few hours before you plan to dye it. That way, there is a clean slate for the dye to adhere to.

(It’s also likely suggested on the back of your hair care product – double-check the box to ensure you’re doing it correctly!)

  1. Set Up Your Workstation

The last thing you want is for the dye to end up all over the place; and it will. Even if you’re extra careful, you will end up with dye in undesirable areas.

That said, make sure you have a “workstation” set up. All of your products should be readily available (including gloves). Consider wearing an old t-shirt, towel, or another article of clothing that you won’t mind getting ruined. 

  1. Section the Hair

This is the most critical step! This is what will create the “peek-a-boo” look, so you really don’t want to mess it up. 

Most people will find that creating a straight line from one ear to the other is perfect. However, feel free to go higher or lower. If you want more color underneath, take the sectioning higher up. If you want less pigment, go lower down the nape of the neck.

Although placement is essential, so is ensuring you have a straight line. This is why having a helper is ideal, as they can ensure the line is perfectly aligned from one side of the head to the other.

If you do not have anyone to help you, you can always use a mirror to see the back of your head. 

When you’re happy with the sectioning, securely clip the top half of your hair. A hair clip or elastic hair tie will work. You can use bobby pins for any flyaways or loose strands that you do not want to be colored.

  1. Lighten Your Hair (Optional)

If you have naturally dark hair and desire a lighter shade, such as pink, teal, violet, etc., you will need to bleach your hair first. Otherwise, the color will not show up as it is supposed to.

To bleach your hair, follow the instructions on the back of your box.

  1. Color Your Hair

Now it’s time for the fun part! 

Throw on your gloves and mix the dye. Most dyes will come with two parts – a developer and dye – that must be incorporated to work. (If you don’t have two bottles, don’t worry about it. Not all products contain or require a developer).

You can apply the dye using a bottle or a bowl with a brush. With either option, you will need to make sure that there is an even application and that all hairs are slathered in a generous amount. Always start at the root and make your way down to the end of the strands. 

If you’re concerned about getting the dye on your neck, you can slather a bit of petroleum jelly on the area. The dye will slide right off!

  1. Wash Your Hair and Style

After you’re satisfied with the application, you will need to wait until the recommended time for the color to take effect. This could vary from 10 to 30 minutes, most of the time. Double-check the instructions to know the actual amount of time required.

After the recommended timeframe has passed, hop in the shower and rinse with cold water – no shampoo. Shampoo and hot water can cause the cuticle to open and release the color, rendering all of that hard work worthless.

Continue to rinse your strands until the water runs 100% clear and you can’t feel any more of the dye. Then, dry and style as preferred.

How much does it cost to have a professional do it?

The price of peek-a-boo hair can vary depending on many factors. For instance, a high-end salon will have higher fees than a smaller, less “fancy” salon. The stylist’s experience level can also cause prices to be higher or lower.

The most significant variable for the price is your hair, though. Thick and long hair may be pricier. Hair that must be bleached before applying the color underneath may cost more. You can expect to pay more if you want many colors to achieve a mermaid or unicorn look.

If you want your peek-a-boo hair done professionally, the best thing to do is go to a couple of salons and see what the price range is. Most jobs will cost anywhere from $75 to $150.

Is Peekaboo hair high maintenance?

One of the most significant advantages of peek-a-boo hair is its very low maintenance. After all, the hair color is underneath the top layer of hair. Even when there is growth and roots showing, you won’t have to worry about anyone seeing it. 

The only thing you really need to worry about is using color-safe shampoo when you wash your hair. That way, you extend the vibrancy of your hair color without worrying about fading or dimness.

If you need to bleach your locks before applying the color, you may also want to put on a hydrating hair mask once a week. Bleach is very harsh on the hair strands and can leave them feeling and looking crisp, dehydrated, or otherwise undesirable. 

How do you wash it?

Washing your peek-a-boo locks isn’t much different than washing your “normal” hair. Here are a few tips to consider, though:

  • Wash using cold water. Hot water will open up the hair cuticles, allowing color to escape more readily. The best way to avoid this is to always wash your hair with cold water.
  • Use a color-safe shampoo and conditioner. These hair care products are specifically designed to keep your hair color looking vibrant and bright. 
  • Don’t wash too often. You shouldn’t wash your hair too often anyway, but you should wash it even less when you have peek-a-boo hair color. In between washes, you can use a spritz of dry shampoo!

Final Words

The peek-a-boo trend is super exciting, whether you choose natural colors or step entirely out of the box with thrilling neon shades. Regardless of the chosen colors, you can enjoy a style with added depth and texture that is hard to find with other styles. While you can do peek-a-boo hair on your own at home, I recommend having a helper to give you a hand, especially during the sectioning and application. 

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