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Tutorial: Change Hair Color in Photoshop

By December 24, 2013Photo Effects, Tutorials

Learn how to change hair color in Photoshop

In this Photoshop tutorial i will show you how to change hair color in Photoshop. You can change any color you like from blonde to red or even dark hair. In this tutorial i used a model with dark hair to show you that you can do anything with Photoshop. This tutorial is for beginners and i don’t used complicated techniques for even better results.

Tutorial Details and Resources

Difficulty: Beginner

Apps Used: Adobe Photoshop

Estimated Completion Time: 5-15′ Minutes

Resources: Girl from Kris Krug

Step 1 > Open the Image

First open the image you want to edit. For this tutorial i used a girl with dark hair but you can change any color with the same technique. The settings however have to be different unless your model have the same hair color as my example.


change hair color step 1

Step 2 > Duplicate the Layer

Simply duplicate the layer so if anything goes wrong you don’t have to import the image again in Photoshop.


hair color step 2

Step 3 > Edit in Quick Mask Mode

To select the hair you can use the Quick Mask Mode (Q) and draw over the hair. In your tools palette press the Quick Mask Mode (Q). Next pick the Brush Tool (B) with size 40px and 30% hardness.


change hair color step 4

Step 4 > Draw Over the Hair

As you draw over the hair you will notice the transparent red color. Use smaller brush size for hair details. If you paint wrong spot simply turn the foreground color to white and draw again over it. When you done press the Quick Mask Mode (Q) again to return in normal mode. You will notice the hair is now selected.


change hair color step 4

Step 5 > Inverse the Selection

Go to Select > Inverse or press (Shift + Ctrl + I) to inverse the selection. Now we are ready to change the color.


change hair color step 5

Step 6 > Change the Color

To change the color we need to use an adjustment layer. In your layers palette press the adjustment layer small button in bottom and press Selective Color.


hair color step 6

Step 7 > Color Settings

You can play with settings to achieve your desired result. I used the follow settings to change the dark hair:


Reds: cyan: -66, magenta: 26, yellow: 3, black: 21.

change hair color step 7a


Neutrals: cyan: -24, magenta: -14, yellow: 0, black: -3.

change hair color step 7b


Blacks: cyan: -10, magenta: 3, yellow: -5, black: 3.

change hair color step 7c


With this technique you can change colors on hair, eyes, nails and anything else you like. This is also non-destructive technique because you are not painting over the actual pixels. You can revert the settings simply by disabling the adjustment layer.


change hair color step 8

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