How Do I Mix Hair Toner With Developer?

Updated November 21, 2016

Hair toner can change the base shade of your hair or brighten the overall look of it. It is used most often when bleaching hair or dyeing hair blond. When using hair toner, it is important to mix it properly with the hair colour developer. Otherwise, you risk results that are too liquid, do not deposit colour on the hair properly, or do not achieve the desired look.

Purchase a hair colouring kit at a drugstore, grocery store or beauty supply store. Most kits are complete and will come with both toner and developer. If you have any questions or concerns, you may wish to purchase the kit at a beauty store, as you can ask an employee questions. Also note that creme toners may be easier to work with, as they are thicker than regular toners and therefore less runny.

Put on latex gloves to protect your hands from the dyeing products. Latex gloves are typically available at beauty supply stores.

Pour the contents of the hair toner from the colouring kit into a colour application bottle. You can also pour the toner into a mixing bowl, but do not use a metal bowl, because it will affect the chemical composition of the toner and developer. Always use non-metal tools as well.

Pour the contents of the hair developer from the colouring kit into the colour application bottle. Note that the amount of both toner and developer will usually be predetermined by the colouring kit, making it easy to use. However, if you purchase hair toner and developer separately, use equal parts to mix. If mixing in a bowl, use non-metal tools to stir.

Close the colour application bottle and hold the lid securely while you shake it to mix the toner and developer. Shake for at least one minute or until the mixture is thoroughly combined. If using a bowl, stir until mixture is thoroughly combined and looks smooth.


If you have never coloured your hair before, it is best to let a professional do the work for you, or at least have a friend help you. Protect your skin, scalp, clothes and floor from hair dye, as it will stain.

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About the Author

Meredith Jameson writes early childhood parenting and family health articles for various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from San Francisco State University.