How To Remove Hair Dye With Bentonite Clay – Easy Guide

Bentonite clay is often used in hair care products thanks to its clarifying properties but it can also be used to remove hair dye. Here’s a detailed guide.

Does Bentonite Clay Remove Hair Dye

Bentonite clay can be used to remove hair dye thanks to its clarifying, detoxifying, mineral-rich properties. You’ll need to use a bentonite clay mask on your hair a few times in order to strip the color, but it will start to fade as the clay gets to work.

What Is Bentonite Clay?

If you’re tuned into skincare and haircare, you’ll likely have come across the ingredient bentonite clay. 

A mud-like substance that comes from volcanic ash, bentonite clay has been used for centuries thanks to its incredible mineral content and anti-microbial character. 

Bentonite clay has many names, including Aztec healing clay. It’s derived from the ash of volcanic rocks and is typically sold as a powder. 

Bentonite clay is highly absorbent, much like charcoal, and is therefore lauded for its clarifying, detoxifying properties.

Bentonite clay has been been used as an all-natural way to help with various skin and hair complaints, from dandruff to acne.

Benefits of bentonite clay


If you suffer from oily, congested skin, you may well use a face mask that contains bentonite clay. 

Bentonite clay is also dense in minerals including potassium, calcium, zinc, and sodium. 

It, therefore, nourishes your skin and hair but also removes any impurities, from product build-up to dirt and debris. 

Removes excess oil

Bentonite clay is a great addition for haircare if you suffer from oily, greasy locks. It will draw out any excess oil and help to keep your scalp clean. 

This can help to support hair growth, as your hair follicles are unclogged. 


Even though it is clarifying, bentonite clay is also moisturizing. 

This makes it ideal for those who suffer from oiliness and dryness, as it won’t strip either the skin or hair, helping you to maintain a healthy barrier.


Similarly, bentonite clay is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, which can help in the battle against dandruff. It’s also anti-inflammatory and is used to soothe irritations on the skin or scalp.

Good for curly hair

If you’ve got curly hair, a bentonite clay mask combined with apple cider vinegar can help to make your curls more defined, moisturized, and softened. 

It will keep frizz at bay and will help to make detangling easier.

Does Bentonite Clay Remove Hair Dye?

Does Bentonite Clay Remove Hair Dye

Because bentonite clay is deeply clarifying in character, it will help to remove hair dye. It will do so without stripping too much moisture from your strands (dehydrated hair is more prone to breakage and split ends).

That said, don’t expect bentonite clay to remove hair dye on your first use. 

You’ll need to repeatedly use it. 

Over time, the clay will strip the dye from your strands. If you want a quick fix to hair color, it’s best to use a chemically-formulated dye remover.

How To Use Bentonite Clay To Remove Hair Dye

Remember, even though bentonite clay is celebrated for its anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, it’s still a sensible idea to patch test before application. 

That way, you know that it’s not going to cause any irritation or infection, and you’re safe in using it on a wider area of your skin and scalp.

If you intend to use bentonite clay to remove hair dye, it’s a good idea to make up a large batch of the following mask.

That way, you can repeat the process without having to mix the recipe up each time. Just be sure to store it in an airtight container.

 Remember that you will need to follow the below steps a few times in order to allow the bentonite clay to remove the hair dye.

You will need:

  • Bentonite clay
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Water

If you’re keen to really boost the moisture content of your hair, you can also add an oil to this mask. 

Coconut or olive oils are both intensely moisturizing. Honey is also great, as it’s a humectant, meaning that it draws moisture from the surrounding air towards your hair. 

The apple cider vinegar works to balance out any acidity, and also helps with shine and detangling.

How to use bentonite clay to remove hair dye:

  1. Combine one cup of clay with one cup of water and half a cup of apple cider vinegar. 
  2. Don’t use a metal bowl or stirring tool! Try to use plastic or wood. The metal will deactivate the bentonite clay’s detoxifying products, as it will interact with the ionic charge of the clay.
  3. Mix the ingredients up into a paste. If you use warm water this will help the ingredients to combine well. The water activates the bentonite clay, but it can cause the mask to become a little thin. You want it to be thick in texture, somewhat like yoghurt, as you need to be able to spread the mask over your hair strands. If it’s too thin, add some clay until you get to the desired texture.
  4. Section your hair (this will make application easier).
  5. Apply the mask to your sectioned hair. Ensure that each section of your hair is saturated. 
  6. The mask will start to dry out as you apply it to different sections of your hair – this is absolutely fine, so don’t worry if it does so.
  7. Once all of your hair is saturated, cover your hair with a shower cap. You can use a silk or satin scarf, but they may not create the optimum environment, which is warm and enclosed. However, if you don’t have a shower cap to hand, use a scarf instead.
  8. Leave the mask on for a few hours. This is the key step if you’re looking to use bentonite clay to remove hair dye. If you only want to use the bentonite clay mask as a clarifying treatment every week or so, you can leave it on for only around half an hour. If you’re trying to remove hair dye, however, it needs to be left on for longer.
  9. Rinse the mask out of your hair. You need to take care during this step to ensure that all of the clay is removed. 
  10. If you’d like, you can also follow this process up with a deep conditioner or moisturizing treatment.

5 Alternatives To Remove Hair Dye

5 Alternatives To Remove Hair Dye

There are many different ways to remove hair dye, depending on your preference for all-natural or chemical recipes:

Sulfur-based hair strippers

These are chemical products that can be found in your drugstore. They open the hair’s cuticle and disintegrate the molecules of hair dye.

Baking soda

You can use an anti-dandruff shampoo and baking soda in equal parts to remove hair dye. Use it like you would a normal shampoo.

Clarifying shampoo

Clarifying shampoos are there to deep clean your hair. They can include chemicals and surfactants, but they are an effective way to remove hair color.

Vitamin C

You can use vitamin C in powder form – mixed into a paste with your shampoo – to naturally remove hair dye. 

Lemon juice

You’ll need the juice of a few squeezed lemons, which you can then rinse your hair with. Leave in before shampooing out, and the juice will help to remove hair dye.

Disclaimer: This site is not intended to provide professional or medical advice. All of the content on is for informational purposes only. All advice should be followed at your own discretion. Ingredients may change at any time so always check the product label before using. Check our full disclaimer policy here.

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Alice Carlill

Alice is an experienced writer and researcher with a background in the Creative Arts. She is a published poet and is currently completing her Ph.D., having worked in a variety of industries, including as a theatre dramaturg. Alice is passionate about the environment, so is always on the lookout for the best zero-waste products that are vegan and cruelty-free.