How to Lighten Your Hair Naturally With Lemon and Hydrogen Peroxide

Vanessa Dixon
by Vanessa Dixon
6 Materials
10 Minutes

If you’re wondering how to lighten your hair with lemon, I’ve done some research and experimenting and I am excited to share the results with you.

I’ve been going gray since I was 18. I wanted to try to lighten my light brown hair with no bleach or chemical dyes.

My hope was that lightening my hair would make the gray hair less noticeable in my brown hair.

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Tools and materials:

  • Spray bottle
  • Lemon juice
  • Water
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Coconut oil mask
  • Comb
Lemon juice and water

1. Lemon juice and water

Can you use bottled lemon juice to lighten hair?

I read about how lemons can have lightening effects on hair, and since I had a bunch of lemons, I figured I’d give it a try.

Applying lemon juice to hair

I started off by mixing lemon juice and water at a 1:1 ratio and putting it into a spray bottle.

I sprayed my hair until it was saturated in the solution.

I combed it through to make sure each strand was covered. 

Sitting in sun

Then I sat out in the sun once a day for 15 minutes, in the afternoon when the sun was at its strongest.

After sitting in the sun, I left the spray in my hair for another hour or two and then I washed it off.

Back of head

I did this 3 times a week for about 1 month but then the weather stopped cooperating. We had weeks of rain with barely any sun.

The lemon juice didn’t have as strong an effect on my hair without the sun exposure.

I decided to crank it up a bit and use something a little stronger.

After a month of using lemon juice and water with little result, I turned to hydrogen peroxide.

Hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, and water

2. Hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, and water

Hydrogen peroxide is a manufactured chemical but it also occurs naturally in very small amounts.

It is formed when oxygen in the atmosphere reacts with water and forms hydrogen peroxide. While hydrogen peroxide is weaker than bleach, it does have a similar effect on hair.

Hydrogen peroxide can also damage the hair causing breakage, split ends, and frizz, if not used carefully.

To counteract this effect, I applied a coconut oil hair mask 2-3 times a week to help hydrate and prevent breakage and split ends while using the spray.

Applying hydrogen peroxide spray to hair

For the hydrogen peroxide spray, I mixed 3% hydrogen peroxide with lemon juice and water.

I put it in a spray bottle and sprayed my hair until it was fully saturated.

Then I combed it through. I sat in the sun for about 15-20 minutes, every day.

Hydrogen peroxide is stronger than lemon juice so it isn’t as essential to sit in the sunlight, as the lightening effect will still occur regardless.

This allowed me to be less dependent on the weather. I did this every day for about 3 months. 

Lightened hair

I was very pleased and had great results.

How to lighten your hair

If you are going to use this solution, spray on a small amount first and make sure you don’t have any adverse reactions.

This lightening process works best when done over several days. It won’t be effective if done only once. Consistency is key.  

I hope you found this helpful. I did the experimenting so you don’t have to. If you are in a consistently sunny environment and your hair is already light, you may see some slight results.

If you are looking for something a little stronger that will continue to have an effect even without sunlight, the hydrogen peroxide mixture will provide results.

Leave me a comment to let me know what kind of results you see in your hair using natural lightening solutions. 

Next, learn How to Get Long Healthy Hair Naturally.

Suggested materials:
  • Spray bottle
  • Lemon juice
  • Water
See all materials

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Join the conversation
2 of 6 comments
  • Debra McCafferty Debra McCafferty on Feb 16, 2024

    As a professional hairstylist, I'm concerned about hair breakage. That's why we go to school to be able to give our clients the best results possible.

  • Patty Kake Patty Kake on Mar 15, 2024

    Lemon juice on your skin in the sun can cause severe blistering. Beware.

    15 minutes of a commercial bleaching is much more effective and much less damaging to the hair.