Make: All-Natural Hair Lightening Spray DIY

UPDATE: This post originally ran on May 24th, 2014, but with summer finally — gloriously! — here and more time spent outdoors, we wanted to share it again!

For as long as I can remember, a beach trip without a bottle of lemon juice in tow was unheard of, a trick passed down from Mom as we made after-school ocean pilgrimages. Ever since, sun-kissed hair is my go-to. Spritzes of lemon juice post-saltwater plunge, but before laying — protected — under the warm sun. It’s the simplest way to lighten up your locks.

As summer kicks into full gear, nearly all of us see beaches and pools in our immediate futures. So what better time to make an ultimate — and natural — hair lightening spray? After a little research, here’s what we found to be a perfect combo to lighten hair safely and naturally.


When lemon juice is added to the hair, it acts as an accelerant to the sun’s lightening abilities. The acidic properties of lemons mix seemingly mix just right, giving off a gradual highlight.


The natural coloring and chemicals of chamomile flowers work together to bring out lighter tones in the hair. Chamomile also helps in fixing split ends.


When honey is mixed with distilled water, the chemical process that takes place will lighten hair quickly.


Cinnamon naturally contains peroxide, which is a chemical used in hair lightening, BUT! Cinnamon won’t dry out your hair… and it smells amazing!

Coconut Oil: 

Though coconut oil won’t lighten your hair, it WILL moisturize your locks so other ingredients won’t dry it out.




Chamomile tea, brewed

Juice of 3 lemons

2 crushed cinnamon stocks (or 1 tsp cinnamon)

Squirt of natural honey

1 tsp coconut oil

8 oz spray bottle (preferably glass and UV-protected)


First, brew chamomile tea. I let mine steep for about 5 minutes. Take spray bottle and fill halfway with the tea. Next, add remaining ingredients. Fill rest of bottle with warm water. Give a good shake before spraying it on your hair to ensure mixed well.

You can spray it all over, or apply to ends for an ombre’d look. Using your potion on the beach is ideal: after dampening hair with salt water, spray all over. The sun should maximize all of the ingredients’ lightening powers. You can also spray on damp hair before bed. (Just be sure to wear a shower cap since the honey  may make your hair a bit sticky.) Rinse out in the morning and feel sunny!

You should notice your hair becoming gradually lighter in just a few easy applications. Enjoy!

More homemade beauty products from the BLDG 25 Blog.

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9 years ago

Interesting, I wanna try this! I use a lightening spray already but its not natural. Thanks! Xx, Tiffany |

9 years ago

Hi! I’m wondering where to buy these mini spray bottles online… I can’t seem to find the type you post with on your blog. Thanks **

9 years ago

I clearly did not read the blog post in its entirety! Nevermind!!!

9 years ago

I wonder if I can only use it fresh or keep the mixture in the bottle for a few days or so? <3

9 years ago

Will this work for dark hair too?

9 years ago

Ah, love this!!

9 years ago

This is great! Always thinking about highlights but I’m really not into having it done with unnatural hair coloring. Thanks for sharing!!

9 years ago

Does this work in dark brown Hair?

9 years ago

Awesome I just made the concoction, hope it works! Since I didn’t feel like waiting 3-5 business days for bottles I found you can make it out of small Perrier bottles, or something of the sort, and the nozzles I had screw right on. Thanks Jana!

9 years ago

hi! i think this is really wonderfull, in summer i have natural hair lightening, but in winter can u use this product if im not under the sun often than im on summer. its work?

9 years ago

I use red tea instead of chamomille to get some red-ish highlights :)

9 years ago

This sounds great! I have medium brown hair, but how long does it take to work on your dark hair, Jana?

9 years ago

I am half asian and have dark brown hair and it worked on me too :) But it took almost all summer to see the effects but lemon really damaged my hair :( Maybe really moisturize it overnight with coconut oil :) But even today it is still light and I did this last summer, now it looks like a natural ombre :)

9 years ago

Can you use orange juice instead of lemon juice??

9 years ago

Yes! I’ve been waiting for this one. Hope it’ll work on ginger hair!

9 years ago

Awesome! Thank you!:)

9 years ago

I actually made this concoction today but the teaspoon of cinnamon made it very gritty and thick. Is that how its supposed to be? And how did you get everything into a 2 oz. bottle? Mine was probably 4 oz. of mixture using the 3 lemons and everything else. Thanks fp jann!

9 years ago

Is there a spritzer that won’t get clogged with the cinnamon? I tried grinding sticks myself and even pre-ground cinnamon. Both mixes clogged up my bottles.

9 years ago

Does this work with dark hair? Just wondering…

9 years ago

Can I use peppermint tea?

9 years ago

I tried this but it wouldn’t go threw the spray, I think it was from the cinnamon clogging it. help? :)

9 years ago

Has anyone found a solution for the cinnamon clogging the spritzer? I can’t get my bottle to spray at all.

9 years ago

Hi, I was just wondering if this spray lightens hair on the spot when you spray it on or if it lightens when you spend time in the sun? thanks :)

9 years ago

How big is the bottle? 30-50 ml?

9 years ago

Mine got clogged with the cinnamon, so I just put it directly on. My hair smelled like cinnamon even after I washed it, totally delicious :*