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Naturally Lightening Your Hair Using Cinnamon

Updated on August 1, 2010

Women spend ridiculous amounts of money on salon/at-home hair coloring. With a recession in full swing, it's only right that beauty come at a cheaper price. Want a different hair hue to spice up your look, use the cinnamon mixture described below. Cinnamon can be used to lighten hair at least two shades. It is also a safer alternative to changing the color of your strands. The mixture will leave your hair moisturized, soft, and smelling yummy!!

Materials Needed:

  • Your Favorite Conditioner
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Plastic Processing Cap
  • Honey (optional; has additional bleaching and moisturizing properties)
  • Time (Depending on preference;anywhere from 4 hours-overnight)
  • Soft bonnet hair dryer/heating cap (optional)

Step One: Prepare Cinnamon Mixture

Add the conditioner, cinnamon, and honey (if desired) together in a plastic container. The amounts needed are determined by the amount of hair you have. Make sure that you have added at least 3 tablespoons of cinnamon to make sure you get even color rather than streaks of color. However, it is okay to add more. Mix the contents together with a plastic spoon as metal can react with your mixture. Cover the mixture while you wash your hair.

Step Two: Shampoo/Co-wash and Condition Hair as Usual

Nothing new here. Wash and condition your hair as you normally would. It's best to detangle your hair here rather than saving it for later. Braid hair in sections to prevent tangling during application of cinnamon mixture.

Step Three: Apply Cinnamon Mixture to Sectioned Hair

Applying the mixture to sectioned hair ensures that you are coating all the strands. Your hands are the only tools you need for the application. Since you detangled prior to it should be easy for you to finger-comb the mixture through your hair. Re-braid the section and move on to the next section. Complete this step over entire head. Cinnamon is a known skin irritant so it may tingle for a few minutes but it will go away. If the tingling persists or becomes unbearable, rinse it out immediately.

Step Four: Processing Time

There are a few options for this step. You want to treat this mixture like you would a deep conditioning treatment. Place the plastic processing cap over your hair. You can either sit under a bonnet dryer/heating cap for 30 minutes or you can wrap a warm towel around your head for 30 minutes. Another option is to just let your body heat do the work for you for the entire processing times. Whatever option you choose, the mixture should stay in your hair for at least 4 hours. The longer the processing time, the more results you will see. Therefore overnight is the best option.

Step Five: Rinsing the Mixture Out

Make sure you rinse the mixture out completely. The pressure from running water straight from the bathtub faucet can help in rinsing the majority of the mixture from your hair.

Step Six: Enjoy Your New Color

While you shouldn't expect your hair to go from brunette to blonde, you can expect hair that is 2 shades lighter than your original color. The more applications you do, the more change you will see.


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    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I did it with water and cinnamon and it still worked great. I have also don't it with oil and once again the results are stellar

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I condition my hair with olive oil, not store-bought conditioner. Anyone have any theories on whether this might work with replacing oil for conditioner? I tend to think not, as bottled conditioner is thicker, and mixing it with cinnamon lets the mixture coat all of one's hair... but I suppose there's only one way to find out!

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      ist ok if i don't use honey for the mixture?

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      My hair already has a little red tone to it. Its very vague. Im trying this right now. Really hope i don't get orange hair in the process.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Does it work on Colorado treated hair?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I'm blonde and i don't want to make my hair look red will it?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Does this work on color treated hair?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Just saw this and had to try it! I mistakenly put in 4 tablespoons and it irritated my skin to the point where I have splotches of red on my face hands and arms, but it's been about 20 minutes and the it going went away. I am going to leave it in my hair all night and hopefully it will work! Crossing my fingers for tomorrow!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      This worked pretty well!:) im a brunette and i left it in for 4 hours and it made my hair a little bit lighter,so i did another batch and its still in my hair i can't wait to find out the final results,if its the right color i want then ill leave it but if its not then ill do another batch tonight, can't wait!!!!!!

    • profile image

      fashion queen 

      6 years ago

      First off wow, amazing, if i didn't stumble across this i would of never knew about it. Now this "baby o and heather" boy ur pieces of work first theres many people in the world not every1 is going to c a tv show that contains the same concept. I certainly didn't c it so this help and she should b getting praised for this, and "heather" obviously your head is not going 2 b like every1 elses. Geez take it easy h8rs your just get mad cause u didn't think of it first. So thanks for this new tip, im deffinatly going 2 try this. ;)

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I'm trying it right now, hope it works!! ill update in 3 1/2 hours !

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      @heather i am trying this right now, it burns for about a half hour and rthen its gone so u shud try it again :) hope it works :)

    • profile image

      Bailey Reed 

      6 years ago

      I don't have a plastic processing cap. Does wrapping plasic wrap around ur head also work?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I tried this recipe and the cinnamon burned my scalp! I think 3 tablespoons is way too much cinnamon. Do you mean teaspoons? I had the mixture on my head for 5 minutes and I had to rinse it out because it was burning so badly! I think you need to be more specific with all of your measurements.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Hello!Congratulations for your article,it has helped me a lot!Does anyone knows what amount of honey should i use??

    • profile image

      Yolanda Penton 

      7 years ago

      Hello. I do not have a face book account so I was not able to email you directly on your website. I want to thank you so much for sharing your recipe. I have been looking for a way to cover my grey hair without using harsh chemicals. Your recipe worked wonders the first time around. I also added: paprika, nutmeg, cloves, tumeric and honey. I did this before I read your article. I sat under the dryer covered with a plastic cap for 1 hour and then slept in all of the conditioners overnight. It was wonderful. Thank you!!!! Yolanda

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I have dark brown hair. Will it bring red into my hair. I want some red tones when I lighten my hair

    • profile image

      baby O 

      7 years ago

      I am sure ive read this before on the LHC? do you have permission to write a piece which really isn't your work? I cannot remember her name but she has a huge thread on the LHC regarding honey treatments, cinnamon is also mentioned along with honey for its peroxide values; this is a plagurised piece of work, which you are getting the credit for!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

    • Cynthia_Jones profile image


      8 years ago from New Brunswick, Canada

      Great article. I was just wondering though. Would this work on blond hair? It would be terrific, if it did. Well done. :o) Keep up with the great work. Keep on penning. Thank you so very much for sharing your wonderful and creative talents with us.

      *S* Cynthia

    • CMCastro profile image

      Christina M. Castro 

      8 years ago from Baltimore,MD USA

      I wish I could see a picture of someone who has received the desired results. I have very dark hair and I would not want my hair to turn orange. Thanks for the tips.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      very nice tip i really like that

    • irenemaria profile image


      8 years ago from Sweden

      Amazing tips! Tempted to try NOW. Thank you!

    • marisuewrites profile image


      8 years ago from USA

      Great information about natural hair lighteners...thanks, I'll be trying this one soon!

    • lovelypaper profile image

      Renee S 

      8 years ago from Virginia

      Great tips. I never heard of using cinnamon for your hair!

    • justmesuzanne profile image


      8 years ago from Texas

      What a cool idea! I'll bet my redheaded niece would have been happy to have this idea a couple of weeks ago when she had a hair lightening disaster! LOL! :D

    • lelanew55 profile image


      8 years ago

      great hub. and congrats. do you know if it works on gray hair or partially gray hair?

    • TheListLady profile image


      8 years ago from New York City

      Sounds great and safe. Certainly worth a try. Thanks a lot! Rated up! What a great first hub and nice to meet you too. I will certainly follow!

    • adrienne2 profile image

      Adrienne F Manson 

      8 years ago from Atlanta

      Can I say WOW! Who would have ever thunk it! (Yes thunk old expression) Have bookmarked, do you know if it will work to color on grey hair? This is wwwaaaay cool due to I do not like chemicals, have learned a lot here. Thank you!!

    • Chaotic Chica profile image

      Chaotic Chica 

      8 years ago

      Very interesting! Great information and I love the relevance!

      Truth be told, I only stumbled upon you and this article via the HubNuggest and I almost skipped on by the entire topic but your title is what caught my attention and I'm glad it did. I voted up and am voting for your nomination!

    • Jerilee Wei profile image

      Jerilee Wei 

      8 years ago from United States

      While I pride myself on knowing a lot about plants, herbs, and spices -- I would have never thought about this use for cinnamon. Hope you be sharing more here on hubpages.

    • minnow profile image


      8 years ago from Seattle

      This is so cool! Great hub.

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 

      8 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Congratulations on your Hubnuggets nomination. Read your email and check out the juicy details from the Hubnuggets team. :)

    • bayoulady profile image


      8 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

      Congrats on your nomination!Thanks for sharing this great hub using cinnamon! should smell good instead of the awful aroma and fumes of the store bought products.


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