Asian hair is notoriously difficult to color. This is partially due to the fact that it tends to be quite dark, as well as the fact that it's very thick, and doesn't pick up color as well as fine hair does. Many Asian women complain that when they try to dye their hair light brown or dark blonde, it barely lightens.
The problem here is that they are using regular drugstore dye, which can only lift your hair up to 2 levels, unless it is a high lift shade. And on resilient Asian hair, the "2 levels" is more like "half a level".
The good news is that the thickness of Asian hair means that it can put up with a lot without getting damaged--so bleach is not out of the question! If you have Asian hair, don't hesitate to use bleach, as long as you follow the instructions correctly. If you're still unsure about it, try high lift colors.
If you want to go brown:
- Garnier Nutrisse Golden Brown B3 (Cafe Con Leche)
- Garnier Nutrisse Nourishing Nutri-Browns Lightening Color Creme For Dark Hair, Reddish Brown B2 (Roasted Coffee)
- Garnier Nutrisse Nourishing Color Creme Intense Red for Naturally Dark Hair, Medium Intense Auburn
- L'Oreal Preference Les True Brunettes UL 51 Ultra Light Natural Brown
- L'Oreal Preference Les True Brunettes UL 61 Ultra Light Ash Brown
Stay away from the high lift blonde shades-- they are bound to turn your hair red. You will need to bleach your hair first in order to get it that light. Also consider L'Oreal Hicolor, which can be found online and at beauty supply stores, or Palty, which is an Asian brand of color specifically for your hair type.