5 Best Chestnut Brown Dye 2024 | Stunning Hair Color Ideas

5 Best Chestnut Brown Dye 2024 | Stunning Hair Color Ideas

Check out the top chestnut brown dyes including the difference between medium and light chestnut brown hair colors. Also learn how to dye hair chestnut brown the right way!

Chestnut brown is a particular shade of brown which has slight reddish undertones and a lot of golden undertones. So it appears darker than your regular brown color but lighter than shades of brown like chocolate. It makes for a very good hair color as it seems natural and very accepted in professional spaces.

The hair color is very easy to maintain as well. And unless you have very dark, black hair you will require minimal to no bleaching for dyeing your hair chestnut brown.

I really liked the Naturtint Hair Color in Dark Chestnut. I think it is the best chestnut brown dye shade as it’s super easy to color blonde hair with this dye and it also stays on black/dark hair without any bleaching or lightening required.

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Color Best For Type of Hair Dye
Naturtint HairColor 3N Dark Chestnut Brown  Vegans Semi-Permanent
Herbatint Permanent Herbal Haircolour Gel 5C Light Ash Chestnut Damaged Hair Permanent
Revlon Colorsilk Moisture Rich Medium Chestnut Brown Hair Color Grey Hair Semi-Permanent
Bigen Permanent Powder Hair Color 46 Light Chestnut Blonde Hair Permanent
Schwarzkopf Color Expert Omegaplex Hair Dye, Chestnut Brown Black Natural Hair Permanent

Here's a quick overview on the top chestnut brown hair dyes!

Top Chestnut Brown Hair Dye Naturtint HairColor 3N Dark Chestnut Brown  Herbatint Permanent Herbal Haircolour Gel 5C Light Ash Chestnut Revlon Colorsilk Moisture Rich Medium Chestnut Brown Hair Color Bigen Permanent Powder Hair Color 46 Light Chestnut
Price Affordable Affordable Affordable Expensive
Color Pigment  5/5 4.5/5 4/5 5/5
Long Lasting 4.5/5 4.5/5 4/5 5/5
Ingredients Quality 4.5/5 4/5 3.5/5 4.5/5
Peroxide-Free Yes Yes No Yes
Vegan and Cruelty-Free Yes No No Yes

Top Chestnut Brown Dye 2023

Naturtint HairColor 3N Dark Chestnut Brown 

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Dye For - Damaged Hair/Sensitive Scalps

Best chestnut brown dye

I have dark black hair so I wanted to try out a dark chestnut brown color first that is closest to my natural hair color.

I chose this Naturtint Hair Dye because it’s free from not only ammonia but also artificial fragrance, resorcinol, SLS and SLES. So it’s a great choice for people like me who have dry hair.

As this research published in the Journal of cosmetic science shows, ammonia-based dyes can lead to protein loss and cuticle damage on hair. (Bailey, Aaron D et al. “Comparison of damage to human hair fibers caused by monoethanolamine- and ammonia-based hair colorants.” ol. 65,1 (2014): 1-9.)

If you frequently color or bleach your hair then this hair dye is good for you as it’s very mild compared to other semi-permanent dyes in the market. 

The dark color shows up brilliantly on light brown or blonde hair. And on my dark hair it created a lovely chestnut undertone. 

What intrigued me further about this hair color is that it’s vegan and cruelty free which is fantastic. 

is chestnut brown hair warm or cool

Now let's get to the downside. I only did a strand test of this hair color so I couldn’t feel the effects as much but this hair dye can definitely cause an allergic reaction to people with sensitive skin.

So always do a test first before you use as I have read several complaints about Naturtint causing swelling or rashes in people with allergies.

Also, I would recommend keeping the hair dye on only for 25-30 minutes flat. A longer application time can also increase the toxic effects of the dye.


  • Gel-based formula that doesn’t need mixing and is easy to apply
  • Ammonia-free and fragrance-free formula that is safe for dry scalp
  • Good amount of product for the price, and one box is enough for gray coverage


  • Can cause severe allergic reactions in people with sensitive skin so a strand test is necessary
  • Pre-bleached and chemically-processed hair can get dry and frizzy after you use this dye

My Ratings:

  • Strength of the Pigment - 4/5
  • Quality of Ingredients - 4/5
  • Longevity - 4/5

Herbatint Permanent Herbal Haircolour Gel 5C Light Ash Chestnut

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Dye For - Blonde hair, grey coverage

light chestnut brown hair with blonde highlights

I really wanted a more “trendy” version of a chestnut brown hair color, so I decided to check out this Light Ash Chestnut from Herbatint.

As you know, ash brown hair color is all the trend these days. So I simply had to try this out. It’s a great summer color as well if you don’t want a more dark, autumnal chestnut. 

I had great hopes from Herbatint as it’s supposed to be made of natural ingredients and be completely ammonia and PPD-free. PPD or para-phenylenediamine can cause severe health issues as shown by this study in Xenobiotica. (Seydi, Enayatollah et al. “The effects of para-phenylenediamine (PPD) on the skin fibroblast cells.” Xenobiotica; the fate of foreign compounds in biological systems vol. 49,10 (2019): 1143-1148. doi:10.1080/00498254.2018.1541264)

And honestly I wasn’t disappointed with the formula. It felt good on my hair and the strand test didn’t give me rashes or irritation either.

I also liked how my hair felt softer after use, so that was definitely a plus for me. 

Now coming to the color itself, I was mildly disappointed. If you have dark brown hair or black hair like me the ash tones might not be prominent. 

You will be left with a darker (almost chocolate) shade of brown if you apply this dye on very dark hair.

On lighter browns or blonde hair, the ash brown tones and cool undertones are very visible so this is something I would consider a slight issue. 

It’s a permanent hair dye so it lasts longer than Revlon and Naturtint but I really recommend using a color-safe, sulfate-free shampoo regardless to increase longevity of hair dye. 


  • Is completely PPD and ammonia free so great for sensitive skin
  • Contains aloe vera and meadowfoam that moisturize hair while dyeing it
  • Long lasting color that won’t fade away for a few months if taken care of properly


  • Color doesn’t show up very well on dark hair colors

My Ratings:

  • Strength of the Pigment - 4.5/5
  • Quality of Ingredients - 5/5
  • Longevity - 4.5/5

Revlon Colorsilk Moisture Rich Medium Chestnut Brown Hair Color

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Dye For - Very dark or black hair

medium chestnut brown hair color

Revlon is my go-to, tried-and-tested brand for hair coloring. And I really wanted a light to medium chestnut color so I selected this one as it comes with a developer.

As now a developer is nothing but hydrogen peroxide. So it will bleach your hair slightly, be sure of that.

The good thing about this is that you get a very accurate chestnut color on dark hair. The bad thing? It can damage hair if it’s already bleached or fragile.

So I’d suggest you use this on unbleached, dark brown/black hair only.

I like how it comes with a conditioner that contains Moroccan argan oil and shea butter to offset the effects of the peroxide.

And honestly? It didn’t turn out too bad on my dark hair. My colored strands actually felt smoother too.

medium chestnut brown hair color

This is a brand you should go for if you don’t have allergies or sensitivities and want an accurate color.

However if protecting your skin/hair is more important than accuracy of color I’d suggest you stick to Herbatint or Bigen.


  • Comes with a developer so it lightens dark hair to give an accurate color
  • Contains conditioner with argan oil and shea butter to nourish post-dye hair


  • Contains hydrogen peroxide that can be damaging to thin, chemically-processed hair
  • Contains alcohol and added perfume that can irritate very dry and sensitive scalp

My Ratings:

  • Strength of the Pigment - 4/5
  • Quality of Ingredients - 3.5/5
  • Longevity - 4/5

Bigen Permanent Powder 46 Light Chestnut Brown Hair Color

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Dye For - Light hair, very sensitive or inflamed scalp

chestnut brown balayage

I had heard a lot about this product as this Japan-made hair dye has become a cult favorite. So naturally I had to test it out. 

Frankly, it was a disappointing test. I mean the dye and formula itself is great. But nothing too extraordinary here.

Yes, the powder hair dye is ammonia and peroxide free but so is Naturtint and even Revlon. So there’s no novelty factor that can justify the price.

chestnut brown hair dye sally's

Except maybe the powder based formula. But honestly, even that isn’t any more convenient than a thick creme-based dye.

The only out of the ordinary thing I could find out about this hair dye is the pigment which is very, very strong.

However, that actually turned out to be a bad thing as this hair dye is supposed to be LIGHT  chestnut brown and it runs darker than it’s advertised.

I’d say this is a very decent hair dye on its own. But you should simply but the Herbatint Light Ash Chestnut as it gives the same results at a lower price.


  • Safer on hair as it does not contain ammonia or hydrogen peroxide
  • Powder-based formula doesn’t run off or bleed and is easy to apply
  • Highly pigmented formula that stays on for a very long time compared to other creme-based eyes


  • Very overpriced considering it almost gives same effects as other box dyes reviewed
  • The brown tone runs too dark in my opinion so it won’t work well for covering grays

My Ratings:

  • Strength of the Pigment - 5/5
  • Quality of Ingredients - 4/5
  • Longevity - 4.5/5

Schwarzkopf Color Expert Omegaplex Hair Dye, Chestnut Brown

what is the best chestnut brown hair color

Best Chestnut Brown Hair Dye For - Black, dark hair that is not bleached

I recently tried the Schwarzkopf Color Expert Omegaplex Hair Dye in Chestnut Brown, and I have to say I'm impressed. I've been experimenting with at-home hair dyes for a while, and this one truly stands out.

First, the application process was surprisingly easy. The kit comes with clear instructions, and mixing the color was a breeze. What sets this apart is the Omegaplex technology, which is meant to protect and strengthen your hair during the coloring process. I could tell the difference right away; my hair felt softer and smoother during application compared to other dyes.

The color result was exactly what I was hoping for – a beautiful chestnut brown with natural-looking highlights. It covered my previous color evenly, and the shade was true to what was on the box.

I also appreciated that the dye didn't have a strong, overpowering scent. It was quite bearable compared to some other hair dyes I've used in the past.

Now, onto the pros and cons:


  • Easy and straightforward application process.
  • Omegaplex technology protects and strengthens hair.
  • Beautiful, natural-looking color result.
  • Even coverage and true-to-box shade.
  • Mild scent, not overpowering.


  • The kit might be slightly pricier than some other at-home hair dyes, but the quality justifies the cost.

In conclusion, the Schwarzkopf Color Expert Omegaplex Hair Dye in Chestnut Brown is a fantastic choice if you're looking for salon-quality results at home. It not only delivers on color but also takes care of your hair during the process. I'll definitely be using it again for my next touch-up.

My Ratings:

  • Strength of the Pigment - 5/5
  • Quality of Ingredients - 4/5
  • Longevity - 5/5

How to select the right chestnut brown hair color?

light chestnut hair color

While it might seem like a simple process of choosing a brown hair dye, you should know that there are a lot of factors to consider before you decide on a particular brand or formula.

For example: Skin tone plays a big part in determining hair color, as those with darker skin tones should use a more pigmented formula than those with lighter skin tones. 

Always keep in mind that any time you dye your hair, there may be a slight chance that you can trigger allergies. Make sure that the product you are using is allergy tested and ammonia free. The product should also be made in the USA, to ensure that it complies with the strictest safety standards. 

The more natural the ingredients, the better the quality of the dye. The color you choose also matters: lighter colors like auburn or red hair dyes can fade quickly and require more upkeep than chestnut brown or jet-black. 

It is highly recommended that you research the ingredients list before buying a hair dye, because some of the chemicals are quite similar. Some are safe to use, but others are toxic and can cause serious health problems. 

If you want to make the colors last longer, consider a semi-permanent or temporary dye.

FAQs about Chestnut Brown Hair Color

What skin tone looks good with chestnut hair?

While every person's hair color is unique, there are certain skin tones that look good with chestnut hair. These include light brown skin, olive skin, and fair skin who have a warm undertone. Chestnut brown tone is less common than darker shades but can be more flattering on some people because it brings out their natural highlights and makes them appear lighter overall. I really like how this hair color can give you a natural contrast that makes your hair appear fuller and healthier.

What is the difference between chocolate brown and chestnut brown?

Chestnut brown is a lighter shade of brown than chocolate brown. But the biggest difference between these two shades is in the undertones. While chestnut brown has a lot of golden undertones, chocolate brown has more darker red undertones to it. So it appears richer and deeper while chestnut looks brighter and more vibrant.

If you're looking for a cheap hair dye, Revlon's is your best option. However, it may not be the best option for people with darker hair. Bigen is a more expensive option, but it's free from harsh chemicals and is gentle on your hair. 

I hope that this blog post has helped you understand the differences between the top dyes and I  hope you have a better understanding of what your hair needs in terms of dye. 

Thank you for reading, I’m  always excited when one of our posts is able to provide useful information on a topic like this!


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