You’ve thought about it. You’ve gotten all the way from a dark brown or black hair color to a very light ash brown. Should you take the plunge into the blonde life? Do blondes have more fun? As someone who has gone from black-brown hair to the lightest ash blonde.. and then BACK to dark brown – i’ve got the insight to help you decide if you should go blonde!
Going Blonde: Should I do it? Things to Consider First.
1. Dry shampoo will become your best friend.
Before I went blonde, I was washing my hair at least three times a week. I know, it’s not healthy to wash your hair a lot anyway. When I had dark and amazingly healthy locks, I hated having dirty hair. It dulled the shine. I loved being able to run my fingers through my hair because it was just so smooth and silky. All of that changed after going blonde. Washing my hair became a chore. If I didn’t use heat to style my hair, I had a dry, knotty mess on my head – not cute. Dry shampoo became my absolute best friend.
I started washing my hair just once a week. At first, it was cringeworthy for me. I couldn’t run my fingers through my hair without catching knots or frizz (some of this due to hard water). I know this is very discouraging, especially if your hair is naturally beautiful and air dries beautifully straight.
The good news is that you DO get used to it, especially if you love your new look. A drastic color change from dark to blonde can have a transformational impact on you. The more it grows on you, the more you grow to live with the inconvenience of dry hair.
2. Olaplex becomes your second best friend.
If you haven’t heard of olaplex, I’m here to tell you that you need it in your life. I only learned about it after the extensive bleach damage, but I wish I knew it existed before going blonde. It’s a great way to prep your hair for the coming distress and can reduce the negative impact of bleach. I have olplaex in my hair as I write this, preparing to go back to blonde this week for summer!
3. Regular hair masks and leave-in conditioners can save your hair.
Before going blonde, I was terrified of bleach. I didn’t want to damage the health of my hair. After going blonde, I’ve realized it’s JUST hair! It will bounce back, it will grow back, and it will recover if you take care of it. Regular hair masks and leave-in conditioners go a long way in restoring the moisture levels of your hair.
4. You will spend a lot of time in hair salons.
My pre-blonde days consisted of a visit to the salon once in a blue moon. Box colors and touch-ups at home were my thing. The first time I attempted that with my blonde hair, my hair turned orange. Bright orange. I was mortified. I threw on a baseball cap, drove to the nearest Sally’s and bought more bleach and toner to fix the mess I’d created. Why spend hundreds of dollars when you can do it at home, right? WRONG!
Blonde hair is very fickle. Getting the right tone is an art and you have to know a lot about color theory. Reading a few blogs about color theory doesn’t cut it. To maintain your new blonde hair, you will spend a LOT of money so make sure that’s an investment you are prepared to take on.
5. You will learn that blonde isn’t blonde.
Before going blonde, I just thought you’re either blonde or brunette. I didn’t know that blonde itself was a whole universe of shades. Do you want to go warm or cool? Do you want ashy blonde or golden blonde? No two blondes are the same. If you take a photo to your hairdresser, chances are they won’t be able to get you to the exact blonde you want. Blonde is tricky and requires a lot of patience.
6. You will not go blonde right away.
My blonde color was a complete accident. I went in for a balayage and asked for a very light brown tone. Earlier that year, I had two other balayage appointments where the hairdressers turned my hair red. That is normal and very common. When your hair is very dark and you’re trying to achieve brown, your hair can turn red because it hasn’t been lifted enough to get rid of those red pigments.
My hair at that point was a red-brown, but I was ready for more. While talking to my hairdresser, I mentioned to him that one day I want to go blonde. Maybe he saw potential there, but he ended up lifting my hair so much that we ended up with a beautiful ashy blonde hair. I joked with him about how by “one day” I didn’t mean today! I couldn’t even be mad – I LOVED it! He was my go to hairdresser while I lived in Atlanta because I knew he just understood my hair. He was able to get it THAT light with minimal damage – quite an accomplishment.
7. You’ll have to ditch your favorite shampoo/conditioner combo.
Why, you ask? Because it’s probably not purple! That’s right, when you go blonde, you need a shampoo with a purple or blue tone depending on the shade of blonde you are going for. In between refreshing your color, you’ll want to use a purple shampoo to maintain the tone of your hair. Without that, your blonde will likely turn brassy and orange within just a few weeks. In the blonde world, brassy hair is completely taboo. It says something about your ability to be blonde as dramatic as that sounds.
If these considerations have not dissuaded you from pursing your dream hair color, congratulations for being so determined on your decision to go blonde! The next blog post in this blonde series will give you tips on how you can make sure to do everything right before going blonde!