Hair Chalk: How to Use It & Remove It

Updated 09/23/16

Perhaps it’s all the gorgeous festival beauty looks on our Pinterest feeds but lately we’ve had the urge to go My Little Pony with our locks. There’s something about pastel-hued, hair-chalked strands that speaks to our inner bohemian—and we’ll be honest, the lack of commitment makes them especially appealing. But with new formulas springing up left and right, how are you supposed to know how to use (and more importantly, remove) each one? We did the research for you, and found out exactly how to apply and wash out each type of hair chalk, leaving you more time to fishtail and dip-dye to your heart’s content.

Click through our slideshow above for our tips on using and removing all types of hair chalks, plus our favorite products and plenty of hair chalk styling inspo!

Use It:

Use On: Dry Hair

Apply: With applicator

Lasts: 2-10 shampoos

Instructions: Liquid hair chalk will usually come with sponge-tipped or foam applicator. Place a towel over your shoulders and wear gloves to prevent staining your clothes and hands, then use the applicator to apply the formula to your strands. Wait for 30 seconds to one minute for product to dry fully, then blow-dry with a styling brush. 

 

Remove It:

Wash your hair as you would normally. However, you can massage a hair oil like Orofluido’s Elixir ($30) into your strands before shampooing and conditioning to speed up the removal process.

L'Oréal Professionnel HAIRCHALK ($24)

Streekers Hair Color ($$12)

Use It:

Use On: Wet or Dry Hair

Apply: Directly from the compact

Lasts: 1-3 shampoos, depending on how light your hair is

Instructions: Apply hair chalk compacts directly to wet or dry strands (applying to wet hair simply creates a more intense color). Take a one-inch section of hair and slide the hair chalk compact over the length you’d like to color. Seal the pigment in with a spritz of hairspray.

 

Remove It:

Shampoo as usual. Hair chalk that comes in a compact will usually wash out easily with shampoo, though blondes may have to shampoo a few times more to rinse out all of the pigment.

Sephora Collection Pastel Hair Chalk ($12)

Kevin Murphy Color.Bug ($20)

The Body Shop Hair Chalk ($12)

Splat Color Chalk ($6)

ColorSmash Hair Shadow ($$15)

Use It:

Use On: Wet or Dry Hair

Apply: With Water

Lasts: 2-4 shampoos, depending on how light your hair is

Instructions: Place a towel on your shoulders and use gloves to prevent staining. If you are brunette, wet the section of hair you’d like to color before applying the chalk (blondes can do this too, but this will make the pigment stay on much longer). Apply the chalk to the strand of hair you would like to color, twisting the hair as you go. Allow color to air dry, or give it a cool blast of air with your hairdryer. Style as usual and finish with hair spray to lock in the color.

 

Remove It:

Shampoo and condition as usual. Use a clarifying shampoo to speed up the removal process.

Ikea

Use It:

Use On: Dry Hair

Apply: Directly to Hair

Lasts: 1-2 shampoos

Instructions: Mist this color directly on your hair, wherever you would like a pop of color. Style as normal.

 

Remove It:

Shampoo and condition as usual.

Bumble & Bumble Spraychalk ($19)

Free People
A Beautiful Mess
Tracy Rasinski for Eliza Magazine
via StyleHunter
via The Fashion Section
Free People
via The Makeup Blogger
Rene Vaile for Urban Outfitters
UO Ombre Hair Chalk Set $10
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Bumble & Bumble Spraychalk $19
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Ikea M $2
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L’Oréal Professionnel HAIRCHALK $24
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Streekers Liquid Hair Chalk $12
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Sephora Collection Pastel Hair Chalk $12
Shop
The Body Shop Hair Chalk $12
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Splat Color Chalk $6
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Kevin Murphy Color.Bug $20
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Anastasia Hypercolor Brow and Hair Powder $13
Shop
Streekers Hair Color $12
Shop
ColorSmash Hair Shadow $15
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