As a chemist, I often encounter queries surrounding the chemical side of hair dye or bleach that revolve around the developer, like how to make a 30-volume developer.
It is because the developer plays a vital role in the process. It contains hydrogen peroxide, which oxidizes the natural melanin and activates the dye molecules.
There are four different volumes of the developer available on the market: 10, 20, 30, and 40. But can you combine two of them to make a different volume?
Turns out you can actually combine different volume developers to create a new volume tailored to your needs. For example, equal parts 10 and 30 volume makes 20 volume.
In today’s post, I want to focus on making a 30-volume developer specifically. I’ll explain how to mix 10, 20, and 40 volumes from the store to make a 30-volume hair developer. And how to dilute a higher concentration, like 40 down to 30.
What are The Different Ways To Make a 30 Volume Developer?
There are various methods to create a 30-volume developer for hair dye or bleach. One way is to mix specific ratios of 10 and 40-volume developers that you may have at home.
However, you have to consider a few things we discussed here to ensure you get the developer’s exact concentration and volume.
Additionally, I will explain various other techniques that can be used to create a 30 or any other volume developer based on individual requirements.
Let’s take a closer look at each of them.
1. How to Make 30 Volume Developer with 40 and 10?
Understandably, not everyone may have 10 and 40-volume developer bottles at home. But for those who have them, this is one of the simplest and quickest ways to make a 30-volume developer.
Let’s say you need 20 ml of 30-volume developer.
Here’s the math:
- 40 volume developer is 12% hydrogen peroxide
- A 10-volume developer is 3% hydrogen peroxide
- We want a final concentration of 9% (since this is 30 volume developer)
- To get from 12% down to 9%, we can’t mix 10 and 40 in equal proportion; otherwise, we will get a 25-volume developer.
Since we need 20 ml of the 30-volume developer, we will mix two parts of 40 and one part of the 10-volume developer. It will be:
If you need to make 20 ml of a 30-volume developer, mix 13.32 ml of 40 with 6.67 ml of the 10-volume developer.
Divide the desired volume by 3, multiply by 2 for 40 developer, and then multiply by 1 for 10 developer.
- Step 1: Divide 20 by 3, which equals 6.666.
- Step 2: Multiply 6.66 by 2, which gives you 13.32 of 40 volume developer.
- Step 3: Multiply 6.66 by 1, which gives you 6.66 of 10 volume developer.
2. How to Dilute 40 Volume Developer Down to 30 with Water?
I have explained the previous heading in detail because I wanted you to comprehend the simple math that goes into mixing the different hair developers.
Now, it will be easy for you to make any volume developer.
What can you do if you have a 40-volume developer but need 30-volume for optimal dye results?
We dilute the 40-volume developer with water. In what ratio? You will need to take three parts of 40 and mix it with one part of water to get the desired amount of 30 volume developer.
Again, if you need 20 ml of the 30-volume developer, take 15 ml of the 40-volume developer and mix it with 5 ml of water.
It will be: (40+40+40+0=120/4=30).
I used zero for water as it has no hydrogen peroxide.
3. How To Make 30 Volume Developer with 20 and 40
Say you have a 20-volume and 40-volume developer on hand, but you need 50 mL of a 30-volume developer for your hair color. No problem, we can make that happen!
Here is what you’ll need to do:
- Take 25 mL of the 20-volume developer.
- Add to it 25 mL of the 40-volume developer.
- Mix those two parts
- This will give you a total of 50 mL of 30-volume developer
The key is using equal parts of each. Because 20 volume contains 6% peroxide and 40 volume contains 12%, mixing them equally averages out to 9% peroxide—which is exactly what you find in 30 volume.
4. How Do You Make 30 Volume Developer if You Don’t Have 40?
You cannot mix lower-volume developers to make a 30-volume developer without a higher-volume developer to dilute.
So, in that case, what else can you do other than buy a new one?
If you have hydrogen peroxide at home, you can make a 30-volume developer for one-time use.
You can dilute hydrogen peroxide to 9% by mixing it with water, like how you dilute higher volume developer.
You can put some essential oil in it. Please read this article for more details about it.
If you are using hydrogen peroxide instead of a professionally formulated hair developer, you might experience inconsistent results.
You can prevent unwanted results by doing a strand test. Mix a small quantity of dye or bleach with the developer and apply it to a tiny section of your hair.
See what it does!
Also, do not leave your developer mixture or the diluted hydrogen peroxide open. They will lose their strength within 30-45 minutes.
Can You Make 30 Volume Developer with 10 and 20?
When mixing hair developers, it is possible to dilute a higher volume to a lower volume, but not the other way around. For instance, blending 40 volume with 10 volume using specific ratios can result in 30 volume developer.
However, if you start with weaker 10 and 20-volume developers, there is no way to combine them into stronger 30-volume.
It is because the volumes represent percentages of hydrogen peroxide, an ingredient that lightens hair. 10 volume contains 3% peroxide, while 20 volume has 6%. Mixing any ratio of the two cannot generate the 9% peroxide needed for 30 volume.
To go upwards, you’d have to add more peroxide physically. So, while you can dilute down by mixing, you cannot increase volume without adding more hair-lightening agent.
Diluting a higher volume developer like 40 to low strength developer like 30,20 and 10 is easy as long as you know the right ratios. You can use water or a lower-volume developer to dilute a high-strength developer. To avoid inconsistent results, try doing a strand test first.