The ability to lighten hair on Photoshop with easy steps makes it ideal for performing touch-ups or completely altering a person's appearance. The process is straightforward and simple enough for anyone to do regardless of prior experience. The process consists of making a new layer that blends with the original colour to create the lightening effect. This is useful for covering up dark roots or other similar situations where the original colour and the target colour are only a few shades different.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Launch Photoshop from the "Start" menu or desktop icon.
Open the folder that contains the image you wish to edit.
Drag the photo onto the Photoshop window to open it for editing.
Click on the "Lasso" tool in the toolbar or press "L" on the keyboard.
Click and drag around the perimeter of the area of the hair you wish to lighten. This may be the roots or the entire head. Exclude body parts such as ears or foreign objects such as hair bands when creating the selection area with the "Lasso" tool.
Click on the "Create new fill" button under the layers pane and select "Solid Color."
Choose the base colour for the final colour you want the hair to be. In the case of roots for example, you would select the colour of the rest of the hair. Move the cursor over any part of the image to select a colour from the photo itself or choose a colour from the colour palette. Click "OK" to confirm the colour selection.
Click on the "Blending Mode" drop-down menu in the layers pane and select "Soft Light."
Apply a "Gaussian Blur" to the new layer to remove the hard edges. Click "Filter," "Blur" followed by "Gaussian Blur." Adjust the radius control slider until the hard edges of the blended layer disappear and the image looks natural.
Double-click on the solid fill thumbnail in the layers pane to open the colour picker. Adjust the color's tint or tone further if necessary.
Tips and warnings
- You may also use a "Airbrush Soft" setting for the "Paintbrush" tool to add colour highlights to specific areas of the mask. Press "CTRL+J" to duplicate the colour mask layer and lighten the area even more. Adjust the opacity or colour of the second layer as necessary to achieve the desired result.
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