How Long Should You Leave Toner In Hair?


You want to have that polished appearance after you dye your hair, or your stylist does. That is why you need to use a toner that will help you achieve that. The toner will not dramatically change your hair color, so you never have to worry about it ruining your hair – as long as the application of the toner is correct. If you improperly use a toner in your hair, then you do risk the chances of ruining your dyed job. That is the last thing you want to do. There are so many queries when it comes to how to apply the toner appropriately. One common query that many people ask who want to dye their hair is how long you should leave toner in your hair? Let’s go over that right now.

What Is The Best Length Of Time To Leave Toner In Your Hair?

The one thing to understand is that when you wonder how long to leave the toner in your hair, it is not a one-size-fits-all situation. That depends on many factors. For example, was your hair lightened, or are you toning colored hair? Do you want to use toner on brassy hair? The length of time to leave toner in your hair, depending on those situations, will vary.

Therefore, if you had your hair lightened, you will want to leave toner in your hair for about a half-hour to 45 minutes. You do not want to leave it any longer than that, or it will ruin the color. Alternatively, you do not want to remove the toner any sooner than a half-hour because you will not give it a chance to do its job.

If you colored your hair and did not lighten it, then you will only want to leave the toner in your hair anywhere from five to 20 minutes. That also depends on the color you chose for your hair. You want to use the correct toner and leave it in for the right time so you can enjoy having shiny and fresh hair. It should not be a case of trial and error since the stylist will have enough experience or education to know the sweet spot of how long to leave toner in your hair.

If you have brassy hair, you will want to leave the toner as long as recommended, which depends on the severity of the brassiness. If the brassiness is not significant, you can leave toner in for as long as 15 minutes. However, if there is substantial brassiness, you will want to leave it in for as long as 35 minutes. If you are DIY toning your hair, you will want to consult with a stylist anyway who can advise you correctly on how long to leave the toner in your hair based on the degree of your brassiness. Unless you have toning experience, you do not want to make any guesses, or else you can ruin your hair. That is the last thing you will want to do.

Why Does The Time You Leave Toner In Matter And How Does It Work?

Let’s talk about how toner works. The objective is to have natural-looking hair that is not too cool or warm. Regardless of the hair color, you are dying your hair unless it is jet black; you need a toner to tone the color of your hair the best way. The most common use is in blonde hair, but stylists use it in most hair colors. You do not have to worry about the toner lifting your desired hair color away unless you misuse it, which is why it is essential to know how long to leave toner in your hair based on the situation of your hair. Therefore, toner intends to correct the shade of your hair so you can be happy with it.

If you see shades of blonde that are overly brassy or warm and that don’t look healthy or natural, that is a sign right there that the toner used was not proper. Depending on the situation, they either used the wrong shade of toner or left it in too long or not long enough.

However, it is also possible that the individual with the unappealing hair color deliberately wanted it. For them, they may like it even if it may not be overly attractive for others. The toner’s pigments are also just as essential as the length of time you leave it in your hair. For example, if you want to neutralize the brassy yellow tones in blonde hair, you need the purple toner for that. That is because, as you know, purple balances yellow since those colors oppose one another on the color wheel. However, the individual with dyed blonde hair doesn’t want to neutralize the hair and prefers to warm up their hair color more. Therefore, they may opt for peachy toner.

When Is The Best Time To Use Toner?

The time to use toner is after bleaching your hair so that it can balance out the undertones. Unless you have very light blonde hair, your hair has warm pigments, either red or orange. Bleach cannot balance these pigments alone, and you do not want to use it anyway if you’re going to work with your hair gently. Therefore, there is a good chance that your hair has undertones that you do not want after your session. Thus, in cases like that, the stylist or you, if you are DIY dying, your hair will want to apply the toner before you color it, so you achieve the best result.


The reason you dye your hair is to show off a specific color‘ that makes you proud. That means you want to ensure that the dye job is the best one. Therefore, that entails the proper use of toner, which means not only do you want to use the correct shade for your hair color, but you want to leave it for the best timeframe. You do not want to remove it too soon or too late, which depends on the situation of your hair and the tone of your hair dye color. For example, if you have brassy hair and need the toner for that, you also want to ensure you leave it in for the correct amount of time. Therefore, the length of time you leave toner in your hair will either break or make your desired results.