Britelites Temporary Hair Color Review

Update 2/28/17: A new review that shows all the colors on dark hair has been posted here.

Recently I learned about Britelites temporary hair color, which comes in a twist up tube and is supposedly better than hair chalk. With any hair color product, my first question is will show up on dark hair? As soon as I found out that it does, I had to give it a try.

The only place where it is physically sold in this part of the country is Free People. (Or what I call Free-Spending People because their items are pricey and I don’t even like the styles.) They are also sold on the BritelitesColor website, but I figured I could save the shipping expense by going to Free People. It cost the same there as it does online. Ten dollars for lip-balm sized hair color is a lot to me, but my boyfriend was nice and bought it for me.

Britelites hair color purple

The store I went to only had the colors Ice and one last Purple in stock. There was a tester for Ice, so I tried it. The color shows up, but it looks too light for my liking (it’s recommended for light hair), so I bought the last Purple without trying it.


Britelites color Ice on my dark hair.

Although Purple is one of the colors that is recommended for dark hair and light hair, when I tried it, it doesn’t look that noticeable, unless there’s light directly shining on it. The color that I really want is Red, which is described as “between hot pink and a true red,” and will look better than pink on dark hair.

I did not use hairspray or a flat iron after applying, as neither of those were mentioned in the directions. The following two pictures were taken right after application, with no combing (which includes using hands) or styling.

Britelites purple hair color on dark hair

Britelites color Purple on my dark hair.

Britelites Purple hair color on dark hair

I had fun experimenting with this striped feather look. It was rather easy to do.

Here are my impressions so far:

  1. It’s temporary. I can still maintain a professional appearance when I have to.
  2. It shows up on dark hair. Yes and no. [Edit: Some colors show up better than others.]
  3. It’s pretty easy to apply.
  4. It lasts. The color was still visible 12 hours after application. Then I went to bed. When I woke up the next morning, the color was still there. It didn’t make a mess on my pillow. It was still mostly there after 24 hours. I washed my hair as I normally do and there were still traces of color.


  1. I needed a lot to coat the strand all around so that the color will show. It’s possible that it’s because a dark color like purple doesn’t stand out on my dark hair, but a lighter color would.
  2. It’s messy to apply. It washed off my hands pretty easily with soap. P1120066cbq
  3. It transfers. I found some purple on my arm. If I toss my hair behind my shoulders, I find purple on my hands. This is inevitable and goes with other temporary hair color products as well.
  4. It makes your hair clump, so that it’ll look stringy as though it hasn’t been washed for days. I didn’t brush my hair after applying it because I read a review saying that it gets on the hairbrush. The clumping is taken care of when I follow the directions that say to “use fingers to work pigment through hair.” However, when I do that, the color becomes so diffused that it’s not obvious on my hair. [Edit: Don’t touch it after applying.] Perhaps a brighter color would still be visible, but the purple blends into the black.

    Right after application. I coated the strand all the way around.

    I used my fingers... where did the color go?

    I used my fingers. Where did the color go?

    It's not all gone; more like just a tint that's visible under a direct light source.

    The color is not all gone; it’s more like a tint that’s only visible under direct light. (I held my hair at a different angle to take this photo.) That, and a lot of it is on my hand.

Other comments

One of the ingredients is lavender essential oil. It smells more like spike lavender than English lavender. The scent is pretty strong, so I felt like I was perpetually walking around in a natural foods store. It’s not a problem if you like the smell. Personally, I’m not a fan of it. (I would have listed it as a con, but I know some people like it, which is why I’m mentioning it separately.) The lavender scent was still detectable after two washes, though it was significantly lighter by then.


I am a bit disappointed with this product, mostly because it’s not visibly bright unless I use a lot of it, which causes my hair to stick together. The smell is also bothersome. Had I been able to try a Purple tester at the store, I would not have bought this color.

Compared to hair chalk, Britelites is just as messy (transfers) and temporary, but has that lavender smell and costs much more. I am tempted to say that it doesn’t show up as brightly as hair chalk, but that could be due to the choice in color, so I haven’t established that as fact. After all, black hair chalk won’t be noticeable on my hair. With regards to not being as drying as hair chalk, I don’t use hair chalk so frequently to have noticed any drying of my hair, so that particular benefit doesn’t matter much to me.

That said, I still am willing to try Britelites in Red, in hopes that it will show up more than the Purple did on my dark hair. If I ever get my hands on a tube of Red, I will update this review.

Update 1/26/2016: I was recently able to try other colors of Britelites, and some do show up better on dark hair than others. You can see pictures of all the colors, and additional remarks about the product here.


10 thoughts on “Britelites Temporary Hair Color Review

  1. Hmm. I’ve never tried coloring my hair but I have thought about doing temporary color streaks in the past. I actually bought this thing that you could use to apply streaks of color in your hair but I never tried it and I think I gave it away to a friend. Part of the problem was that I have curly hair and I figured it would work better after straightening, but never had the time to do both.

    I didn’t realize you had such long hair!! I liked the way the purple looked, but I agree getting it all over like that sounds like a pain. I wonder if the lavender scent is a selling point for some people, and I also wonder if, had they not added the scent, it would had a more medicinal type scent that would be more unpleasant.

    • I wanted magenta streaks in my hair since high school but my mom wouldn’t let me. The only permanent color I’ve tried is the L’Oreal Colour Rays highlighting kit in fuchsia, but I kept it for too long before actually using it, so it appeared more of a fiery red than fuchsia. Then I graduated from college and started worrying about looking professional, hence the search for effective temporary color. In order to get bright colors to show up on my hair, I’ll need to bleach it first, but I don’t want to subject it to that. In fact, I keep my hair long because I don’t bother doing much with it. I just let it grow until the length gets inconvenient, and then get it cut.

      Now that you mentioned it, it makes sense that the lavender scent might be covering up a less desirable smell, such as that of castor oil. I checked the ingredients and there’s “fragrance” in addition to the lavender essential oil, but I’m not sure what it’s supposed to smell like.

    • That’s a reasonable guess, but I just checked the ingredients for several colors and they all contain it. If it were English lavender I wouldn’t mind, but it’s more of a spike lavender.

  2. Hello! I am Sara, founder/owner/creator of Britelites. Came across this post while browsing images that others had posted of Britelites. I appreciate the feedback, truly! I am sorry the application wasn’t quite as clean as you liked and that it caused your hair to stick together. I would love for you to try out our red color as well as others so please shoot me an email and I’ll be in touch. Certain colors definitely stand out more than others and I am sure that our blue and turquoise would look fantastic on your dark hair. I’ll be putting some tutorials together soon to help with the application process. Here is one I just did on our new glittersticks We have updated our formula and no longer use lavender fragrance but we still do use small amount of Bulgarian lavender essential oil. I hope to introduce a semi-permanent hair color product in the coming year or so; my husband and I are working on it! (Just an fyi, this is a handmade product – no factories involved whatsoever.)

    Touch base with me and I’ll get you set up with some colors that will work better for you 🙂

    Thanks so much and Happy Holidays!

    • Hi Sara! What a pleasant surprise to hear from you! I had not expected this at all when I posted this review. 😀 Thank you for taking the time to address the issues that I had with your product. I’m glad you take customer feedback seriously. I will get in touch with you. Happy holidays to you, too!

  3. Pingback: Updated Britelites Color Review | Musings of a Quirky Introvert

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