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Saturday, 15 June 2013

Superdrug Colour Rewind - Hair Dye Remover Review - Part One

I started dying my hair at the grand old age of 15 - fast forward to 12 years later and my hair has become a dried out mop of horror. 

I started with black - I loved Marilyn Manson and Slipknot and needed the world to view my hair as an extension of my sheer awesomeness!  This phase lasted until I was about 19; almost 4 years of the darkest of darks layered over my hair. I alternated between black, black-blue, black-purple and even tried dip dyed black and red.  At 19 I wanted a change and decide to bleach it so I could dye it red - after an initial day of ginger (luckily I was favouring the sporty baseball cap in this period) I switched to a dark red.  Next came a few years of alternating between different shades of red and then various browns.

When we started trying for a baby in 2010 I was worried that the constant dying of my hair whilst pregnant could cause development issues - I went to a professional hair dresser and had blonde highlights put through my then dark brown hair. Initially I hated it, but after receiving so many compliments I stuck it out. After our first loss and a few more months of trying I thought screw it and went back to red. Since then I have alternated between shades of red and brown.  After getting bored of the red fade (so much upkeep for a lazy person) I switched to dark brown and have stuck it put for the last 6 months.

Well it's Summer and I fancy a change - in fact I fancy going back to my original hair colour! Only problem is I'm currently dark brown and really don't fancy a bleach bath. The solution; a hair dye remover.

I've done my research and after factoring in the that I am probably going to have to pay out for a dye close to my natural colour after using the dye remover, I settled on Superdrugs Colour Rewind. At £7.99 a pack, it is the cheapest and I found out after purchase that it has also really good reviews. When I read the packing in-store, it was almost word perfect for Colour B4 which was encouraging.

So here is my before shot; please excuse lack of make-up and ratty hair!

I am trying to keep the lighting similar in all shots so you can see a more accurate colour - I would like to say my poses were also similar by intention, but sadly this must just be my 'poser' face ;)

I'm pretty far from my natural colour and am more than a little skeptical that this is going to get me closer. Heck I'm fairly confident it is going to be such a disaster that I am going to end up cancelling family plans tomorrow to dye over the new car crash that will be my hair.

So what's in the box?

We have the horrid Deli style gloves (seriously are nitrile gloves too much to hope for?!?) instructions and 3 bottles of various chemicals. 

The reviews have told me it stinks of egg and a family member that used Colour B4 admitted she dyed over it just to get rid of the smell! I'm worried that my work colleagues are going to think I've developed IBS :(

As recommended I also grabbed a wide tooth comb (I have a plastic one reserved for hair dying - it tracks my various colours and is in as sorry a state as my hair) and the obligatory towel around the shoulder combo.

Donning gloves I followed the instructions and mixed the two bottles - the initial smell wasn't as bad as I had expected, yep it's eggy but there is an undercurrent of rotten strawberries and malt too! I love the applicator tip, it is long and narrow and much easier to use than others. The liquid stays white - this makes it easier to applicate and I wasn't worried about skin staining :)

I have never sectioned and applied dye to my hair as thoroughly as I did with this - if the result comes out streaky there is no way my skills are to blame! It took ages, about double the length of time I usually spend slathering on the dye (you've missed a bit seems to be my hairdressers most used term with me). In fact it took so long that I am fairly certain I could see some lovely caramel tones coming through, but that could be wishful thinking ;)

Then I decided to go off plan and wrap my hair in cling film.  I'm not crazy (well not when it comes to this anyway) lots of other people were using cling film and a hair dryer to give it a boost and I do like to experiment ;) On the box it tells you to sit in a room that has no drafts while your waiting for the 60 minute development time. I figured that wrapping my hair in cling film and giving it a quick blast with the hair dryer should help to get things going (it's gotten a little chilly in here today). I probably blasted my hair for 40 seconds with the hair dryer, I wanted to give it a kick start, not melt clingfilm to my hair.

So here I sit waiting for the 60 minutes development time, with my head in cling film and my husband cracking jokes about my gassiness! This better be worth it.


The horror that is the rinsing!  I have never stood in the shower rinsing my hair for so long!  Seriously my arms are cramped beyond belief and I can barely pick up the hair-dryer to style my fringe.  Because my hair is slightly longer than shoulder length I doubled the amount of rinsing for each stage.

After the first rinse you have to apply the buffer lotion - the design is terrible!  Firstly the cap is plastic sealed - getting a grip on this whilst in the shower was near impossible!  I had to dry my hands (flooding the floor) and then use my towel to get a good enough group.  It tells you to apply half the bottle, but there is no way of telling how much you have actually gotten out of the bloody thing!  I ended up guessing and used way too little on first application :(

On first inspection it does look lighter.  This is the most horrific of photo's (of myself) that I will ever willingly post - eyes are bloodshot from shower marathon, it's now dark and I am sporting my fluffy dressing gown, you have been warned!

My hair feels so soft!  Seriously I am a veteran dyer and love the just coloured feeling, but this feels more 'natural' the best way to describe it would be child soft.  Further research revealed that this is due to the colour rewind removing not just the dye, but the build up of shampoo, conditioner and styling products that accumulate over time.

Now I was a little shocked upon waking to find that my hair had in-fact darkened slightly;

The manufacturers claim that the only way this will happen is too little rinsing - Seeing as I rinsed my hair for double the amount of time (45 minutes of rinsing!) I don't see how this can be the culprit.

The ends of my hair are maybe one shade lighter then the original, and the top is maybe two.  I do have some lovely caramel 'highlights' that have wormed their way in, but my natural roots are still visible.

In all honesty the dye stripper smell was pretty much gone from my hair by the next day BUT I decided to do a deep conditioning treatment to eradicate it (almost 100%) and because a lot of hair-dressers claimed that it was a really good idea.  Que me slathering my hair up in a cheap conditioner (less chemicals) and donning my clingfilm wrap again.  I left it in for 3 hours and my hair was still silky soft, but now looked a little less dry :)

So whilst I was waiting for the stripper to develop, I did a lot of research.  One of the blogs I stumbled across featured a woman that had been approached by colour b4 to review their product.  She had hair half a shade darker than my original and used 3 boxes to get it back to her original shade.  I decided that I would do a repeat in one weeks time and see if there was a significant difference.


  • The smell is reputed to be 'softer' than colour b4
  • My hair was left in amazing condition - I can't remember the last time it felt so good
  • Easy application of the stripper
  • Doesn't stain skin or floor
  • Significantly cheaper than having hair professionally stripped
  • Quicker than a professional hair strip
  • Price is very good
  • Neither product or ingredients are tested on animals
  • Superdrug points
  • Strips hair of other synthetic chemicals (from styling products etc)


  • The rinsing time is horrendous!
  • The buffer packaging makes it very difficult to use properly
  • Despite using the pack designed for dark dye, it hasn't made much of a difference
  • The smell is still worse than normal dyes
Will update with next weeks repeat!

Well almost 7 months later, I have finally managed to update with part two!  It can be found here


  1. Dis u do a part two of this?...

    1. Hi Bob, there was a part two in the making, but it is unpublished. I will crack on and get it completed :)

    2. Part Two can now be found here;

  2. Is it damaging, I used a semi perm dye the casting gloss and it hasn't faded I just want to know if I use this will it damage my hair and will it make my hair fall out?

    1. Hi there. This doesn't damage your hair, but it will affect the condition of it. I would recommend you carry out an allergy test before you apply it all over and use a good quality deep conditioning mask (preferably over night) after use.
      If it's just to make a semi permanent hair dye fade, you can use washing up liquid, or head and shoulders shampoo. Both of these should help :)