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Sharpie Wig Dyeing Tutorial by FireLilyCosplay Sharpie Wig Dyeing Tutorial by FireLilyCosplay
I know there are a few others out there, but here is my tutorial for Sharpie dyeing a wig! This works best with Kanekalon and other premium synthetic wigs. Eleora and cheaper synthetic wigs may not dye evenly. Make sure to check your wig fiber content before attempting to dye!

I've had a lot of practice with this method, and this is the formula that works best for me, so I hope it can help you dye your wig the custom color you are looking for!

Many thanks to my friend Envel who helped me with my first Sharpie dyeing experience. Tutorial and all images therein are Copyright Fire Lily and FireLilyCosplay.com.

EDIT: Since so many people ask this question, I'm addressing it here. "How do I dye a wig black?" Since Black Sharpies are concentrated purple, you will have to use FW Ink, India Ink, or another Artists Ink and follow the FW Ink Dyeing Method: [link]

Another method is to color/sharpie the wig by hand using a black Sharpie. This will give it a slightly purple sheen, but it will come out black.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconlittle-dead-riding:
Little-Dead-Riding Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Super helpful tutorial, can you use this to dye just in streaks? 
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:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Sure. Just separate the wig fibers out that you want to dye and apart them with Sharpie solution.
Reply
:iconlittle-dead-riding:
Little-Dead-Riding Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Thanks!
Reply
:iconmybloodytears3:
MyBloodyTears3 Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015
I've been trying to get the right color for natural looking roots on a blonde wig but my mixtures don't seem to be right. I've looked at other people but can't seem to find one that doesn't have the sharpie mixture made when they go through their tutorial. Any suggestions?!
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:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Not really sure, but maybe try a different medium, like FW ink, copic markers, or just hand marker the roots.
Reply
:iconstrainseirshadow:
StrainseirShadow Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Can hydrogen peroxide work instead of rubbing alcohol? 
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:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
No. Peroxide is used to bleach/remove stains and won't work.
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:iconstrainseirshadow:
StrainseirShadow Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Alright! Thank you! :3
Reply
:iconsabama:
Sabama Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
After the wig has been dyed like this, how can you wash it without the color coming out? Or is it just not possible? (as in every time you have to wash it, you have to also re dye it?)

Also, will the wig color sweat onto clothes? Do I have to worry about the color rubbing off onto my clothes?

Thanks for the tutorial~
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Once the wig fibers are dyed, they will always retain the new color in some part. And, yes, it will run off into your clothing/skin - more so if it's red or brown or black. That's why you need to remove as much excess color as possible after dyeing.
Reply
:iconbean93:
bean93 Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2015
Thanks for the tutorial! I would like to ask your advice. I am trying to get a blonde wig to a more orange wig. Is this color change possible?

This is the color I am trying to get : www.bing.com/images/search?q=s…

 I am trying to get this Epiccosplay wig www.epiccosplay.com/autumn-gol… to this color www.epiccosplay.com/autumn-ora… (but a little bit more toned down and brown than super bright orange)
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Yes. Just mix up some orange ink solution.
Reply
:iconsecretariatess:
Secretariatess Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I have a blue wig that I'm trying to get a light purple.  Do you know how this will affect the color, and if there's anything I can do to use it to my advantage?
Reply
:iconsugargal:
SugarGaL Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Hi, thanks for the tutorial! Your wigs look amazing after the dye! Gonna try this to dye my blonde-green wig to a slightly lighter tone.

Have you tried using hairspray on your wigs? Would it make the colour run?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
The alcohol content in styling products won't make the color run unless you are using a ton of it or you are styling when wet.
Reply
:iconjoelmadiaslopes:
JoelmaDiasLopes Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2014  Student General Artist
Nice
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Thanks!
Reply
:iconauricespeon:
AuricEspeon Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2014
This is a great tutorial!!! I haven't tried it yet because I wanted to check something- I have a light purple wig and I want to dye it dark blue (Wendy Marvell colored). Will it still have a purple tint or will it be completely blue?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
It should go completely blue.
Reply
:iconr1thisak:
R1THISAK Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist

I have a question! How can you dye a black wig? Would fabric paint or even dipping the wig over and over into the sharpie ink work or would it make it shrivel up..?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
You can't dye a black wig.  Just like you can't dye anything black to a different color.  You can try to paint it, but the wig fiber will suffer.

Now, are you asking how can you dye a wig to a black color?  Just get some black ink and go for it :)
Reply
:iconr1thisak:
R1THISAK Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist

Aw..alrighty then. But thanks! I was going to dye a black wig..but thanks so much though!!
Here , have a free cat.
( = ^ • w • ^ = )
Reply
:iconselparda:
Selparda Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hello, do you know a way to dye a wig, but that you still can easily remove the color when you are finish cosplaying? I want to buy a rapunzel wig and dye it green for a palutena cosplay, and later use it for a rapunzel cosplay. So do you know a possible way? :)
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
You can do that using this method, but not all of the color will come out - you may still have a tint or wash of the color you dyed to.  I do not know of a way to temporarily dye plastic and return it to its original color.
Reply
:iconchaoticallyawkward:
ChaoticallyAwkward Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Um, I have a question. Is there any way I can dye parts of the wig? Like dyeing strips of the wig darker? I have a part cat character who has stripes, and I couldn't find a wig in the color I needed with them.
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Yes, just separate the hair and spray dye it.
Reply
:iconchaoticallyawkward:
ChaoticallyAwkward Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Alright. Thank you. ^^
Reply
:iconkellywoeshxd:
KellywoeshxD Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
I have a black wig, but i need the ends of the hairs to be dark green. Is this possible?

and what if i put the ends in bleach first?
Reply
:iconsageoftwilight56:
Sageoftwilight56 Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
In that instance, may I recommend perhaps buying a dark green wig and dying the top part black?
Reply
:iconkellywoeshxd:
KellywoeshxD Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Well.. Thanks for the tip, but i want to cosplay a certain character with black hair and the top part green.. So i can not turn this around
Reply
:iconsageoftwilight56:
Sageoftwilight56 Featured By Owner Aug 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
No, I know, I'm just saying you could buy another wig, that might be the easier option.
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Not likely to happen - you can't really bleach plastic. You could get some green wefts or a green wig and dye the tops black, but not the other way around.
Reply
:iconkuromiko68:
kuromiko68 Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2014
Can this work also for just "tinting" a wig? I have a reddish wig I need to get to a red-brown
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Yes, it can tint a wig to a slightly different color.
Reply
:iconjelly-yuu:
Jelly-yuu Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Hey! Great tutorial. But let's say I want to go from a orange wig to a dark blueish? Would that work or be a little bit harder?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
It needs to be in the same color family. Mixing orange and blue would likely turn brown or green. You can always try on a swatch of wig hair, but to make it blue I recommend starting with a light blue or pale wig.
Reply
:iconjelly-yuu:
Jelly-yuu Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Oooh okay. Thanks! That;s too bad, haha 
Reply
:iconhetalialover4ever:
HetaliaLover4Ever Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2014  Student Filmographer
can i dye it in black, if its originally...blonde-ish white-ish colored?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Yes, but it may take multiple dyeings to get it truly black.
Reply
:iconhetalialover4ever:
HetaliaLover4Ever Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2014  Student Filmographer
oke, thank you.
Reply
:iconsilentcherubim:
SilentCherubim Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Is it possible to get the wig lighter instead of darker? Like just soaking it up in plain rubbing alcohol for a good moment?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 6, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
No. Not unless you are stripping the ink/dye out of a previously dyed wig, then soaking it in rubbing alcohol will remove some of the dyed color.
Reply
:iconsilentcherubim:
SilentCherubim Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Aww, bummer! Thank you very much for the answer!
Reply
:icondynamicat:
DynamiCat Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Will the dye bleed into human hair? :(
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jul 6, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
It's not actual dye. It's ink. Even if it rubs off on your hair or skin you can just wash it off. It can stain clothing, though.
Reply
:iconxletmelive267x:
xletmelive267x Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Student Digital Artist
This is so awesome!! Will this remove curls from a wig? The wig I want to purchase is super curly and I like it that way, but they don't make it in the color I need. What do you think?
Reply
:iconfirelilycosplay:
FireLilyCosplay Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2014  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
It shouldn't do anything to the condition of the wig fiber except to color it.  The state of the fiber (curly, straight, etc) should remain unaffected.  I have dyed a curly wig before and it remained just as curly when I was finished. 
Reply
:iconxxyamikonekoxx:
xXYamikoNekoXx Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2014  Student Digital Artist
honeeey D: i have a question, if iwant to UNDYE it later, with this method i'll can?
i mean, i tried with permanent markers and it worked out the "undye" thingie >-< with this one will work too?
Reply
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