How Long Can You Leave Manic Panic in Hair?

How Long Can You Leave Manic Panic in Hair

The brand Manic Panic has been a revolution in the rainbow hair brand, stemming back nearly four decades. The semi-permanent hair dye features a rainbow of color choices that stay in your hair for about one to three months.

When applying Manic Panic dye to your hair, you can leave the dye on for 30 minutes to an hour before you need to rinse it out. Thirty minutes is the appropriate amount of time to allow the dye to properly saturate your hair.

Leaving it in for longer may further saturate the color of your hair. Leaving in the dye for longer than the recommended time could result in your hair leaking excess dye or even hair damage.

What is Manic Panic?

MANIC PANIC Vampires Kiss Hair Dye Classic
Source: Amazon

Manic Panic is a hair dye brand that focuses on rainbow-colored temporary hair dye. It is owned by sisters Snooky and Tish Bellomo, who founded the company back in 1977 before the modern-day rainbow hair craze. 

The company prides itself on its mission to make wearers feel confident in their own skin with brightly colored hair. As a sign of pop-punk or rebellious nature to now being a major fashion trend, Manic Panic has always been at the forefront of the temporary dye market.

The company also has a pact to donate at least 15% of its net profits every year to various charities including The World Wildlife Fund. 

Manic Panic has also won countless awards in the beauty industry over the years. They have even helped style bold celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, and Lady Gaga.

Advantages of Manic Panic

Manic Panic features many advantages compared to other hair dye brands and methods. Due to its long-time popularity, it has gained a reputation for being convenient for users. 

One advantage of Manic Panic is that it is a semi-permanent hair dye. This means the color will only stay in your hair for a certain amount of time. Manic Panic is advertised to stay in your hair anywhere between 2-8 weeks.

Ultimately, the longevity of it depends on the previous work and the color of your hair. If your hair was pre-bleached, the color will likely stay for closer to 8 weeks.

On the other hand, if your hair is completely natural you may only get 2-3 weeks out of the color. This makes it a great option for those who do not want to fully commit to colored hair.

Another advantage of using Manic Panic is the price point. Since it is a dye you can use at home, it is cheaper than a salon dye job. A dye job at a salon for a bright or rainbow color can cost you hundreds of dollars. Manic Panic starts at about $14 and increases based on the type of dye or color you want.

Additionally, you can use Manic Panic proudly knowing you are donating to a moral company. Manic Panic owners Tish and Snooki proudly donate at least 15% of their net profits to charity every year. The company is a large supporter of many deserving charities, so you can be assured your money is going to a good cause.

One last advantage is that Manic Panic sells various types of products so you are sure to find something that works for you and your hair. Some of their products produce more natural and subtle results and others will give you very bright locks. 

How Long Can You Leave Manic Panic In Your Hair?

Once applied, Manic Panic can stay in your hair for 30 minutes or longer. Manic Panic claims to be non-damaging so you can leave it in for up to an hour if you so choose. This may make the hair more saturated in color!

How Long Does Manic Panic Last on Unbleached Hair?

Unbleached hair is more difficult to dye than bleached hair, especially when you are using bright rainbow colors. This is because bleached hair provides a lighter surface, so the color will show up better. Essentially it’s like coloring with markers on a white sheet of paper vs. a black or brown piece of paper– the crayons will show up better on the white!

This is not to say you can’t use Manic Panic on unbleached hair, you definitely still can! It just may not last as long or be as bright in color. Manic Panic estimates that its color will last for 2-3 weeks on unbleached hair.

This is a great amount of time to determine how much you like the color and the product! If it is something you want to stick with, you can always consider getting your hair bleached to hold the color better. Remember to consult with a professional before using bleach or chemicals on your hair

Can You Leave Manic Panic in Overnight?

How Long Can You Leave Manic Panic in Hair

Manic Panic advertises that it will not cause hair damage while coloring your hair. Despite this, it is probably best to not leave it in your hair overnight. The recommended time to leave Manic Panic in is for 30 minutes to an hour.

Leaving Manic Panic in your hair overnight could cause issues like oversaturation, discoloration, leaking dye on your sheets, and even possible damage from misuse. If you want your color darker, you can test some of their other vibrant products such as their Amplified line. 

What is the Best Way to Apply Manic Panic?

According to their official website, the best way to apply Manic Panic is by working it evenly through your wet hair after washing it with a clarifying shampoo. When working it through your hair, use small sections of hair to ensure you are applying it evenly throughout. You will want to leave the dye on for up to an hour and then rinse with cold water!

How to Apply Manic Panic Step-by-Step

When applying Manic Panic, the first thing you want to do is wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo. Then, you’ll want to gather your dying supplies including gloves, your dye kit, and an old shirt you don’t mind getting ruined. To ensure the dye works for your hair, do a strip test on a small section of hair. This will probably take about 40 minutes so plan accordingly!

Assuming the strip test went well, you can move on to dying your hair. Apply the product evenly throughout your hair by working through small sections at a time and then cover with a plastic cap.

The plastic cap is not mandatory but recommended as it helps your hair hold the color in a mess-free way. You can then blow dry your hair through the cap to quicken your hair follicles’ absorption of the product. Finally, leave in for at least 30 minutes to an hour and then rinse with cold water. After rinsing your hair, you can dry and style as normal.


Manic Panic is a great brand of semi-permanent hair dye that has earned its superb reputation through over 4 decades of helping people achieve their desired hair colors. Their bold colors that last 2-8 weeks are a great way to test a new color or try many colors over time. The brand donates a lot of its profits to charity and the products are easy to use, which makes Manic Panic’s dye a worthy investment!

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