One of the most exciting things about beauty (and what we're incredibly passionate about here at Byrdie) is the free reign we're each allowed to exercise when it comes to our unique aesthetic. While we highly discourage choosing a new hair color solely based on the prescriptive likes of texture, skin tone, or zodiac sign (hey, we've seen it all), it's hard to argue that certain hair colors and skin undertones don't go together like bread and butter. Not a fan of the combination? Feel free to ignore us and carry on.
However, if you've been itching to go blonde, have a skin tone with cool undertones (i.e., blue or pink), and are looking for some expert guidance in the hair color department, you're in luck. After all, blonde can be particularly finicky—easily veering pallid, brassy, or a slightly confusing combination of the two. So, we thought we'd pick the brains of industry-leading colorists for their recommendations on the best blonde hair colors for cool undertones, plus plenty of their expert-approved tips.
Meet the Expert
- Anthony Holguin is a stylist and co-owner of Amavi Artistry Salon in West Hollywood.
- Malcolm Cuthbert is a colorist at Baja Studio in NYC.
- Cynthia Alvarez is a Dove celebrity hairstylist. She spends her time between New York and L.A.
Keep reading for 25 ultra-flattering blonde hair colors for those with cool undertones.
Choosing a Shade: "For those with cool skin tones, I always recommend shades of blonde like ash, sand, beige, or platinum, which lack the yellow undertones that can make a client look sallow," shares Cuthbert.
Maintenance Level: Medium to high. This will depend on how much lighter than the natural color you intend to go, although you can extend the time between salon visits with proper care. "I really enjoy the Evo Fabuloso Color Intensifying Conditioner ($38) for maintaining your blonde hair color," says Holguin. "Essentially, it's a take-home conditioner that helps extend the longevity of your color—it's kind of like a toner at home."
Goes Great With: Blue or pink undertones
Similar Shades: white-blonde, ash-blonde, silver-blonde
Price: Depends on how light you're planning to go and how dark your original hair color is. Check with your salon and colorist when booking an appointment.
Though this hair color for cool undertones isn't for the faint of heart, silvery platinum is a match made in heaven for those with red and pink undertones, like Michelle Williams. Again, feel free to try the trend regardless of your natural undertones, but the borderline blue cast does have the potential to look a bit jarring against warmer skin tones.
Medium Champagne With Dark Roots
"Cool skin tones should avoid overly warm hues like golds, coppers, and caramels, which can look unnatural and sometimes unflattering," Alvarez says. Take a page out of Ciara's book and opt for a medium champagne with darker roots.
Dove Cameron is your classic Old-Hollywood platinum blonde with a bit of a champagne hue that softens the overall look. Once you land on a cool blonde shade that's right for you, Holguin offers up some advice: "Trust in your stylist and show them pictures of what you're looking for—pictures are worth more than words."
Model Soo Joo Park is another gorgeous example of an even paler champagne color that doesn't wash out her complexion. As for her bleached brows? Utter perfection.
Platinum With Dark Roots
As seen on Janelle Monáe, dark roots with platinum ends can help make the transition to white-blonde less jarring for some complexions. Don't forget the lower lash emphasis to complete this beauty look.
Champagne With Shadowed Root
Margot Robbie is a champagne blonde icon at this point. Here, she makes use of a shadowed root, which can make the grow-out less painful if you're going lighter from your natural shade.
Consider striking a strategic and flattering balance between silver and ash. "Avoid going 100 percent white or ashy unless you're doing a cool, fashion-forward silver moment. Otherwise, the result can wash you out," says Holguin. Jennifer Lawrence demonstrates the look flawlessly.
Beige With Ashy Platinum
Still dying to try that cool-toned hair look? Holguin suggests asking your colorist for mostly beige-blonde with pops of ashy platinum. And if you have a deeper skin tone like Blige's, you can go a bit warmer to make it pop.
Cara Delevingne's more muted take on beige features darker streaks at the roots and a subtle ombré effect working down the length of her braid. This color requires minimal upkeep, making it ideal for low-maintenance types.
If you have darker skin with cool undertones, consider looking to actress Zoë Kravitz for A+ inspiration where hair color is concerned. Her blonde shade of choice is ashy but not overly so. And again, it all comes down to being explicit with your colorist about what you're looking for.
Ash Blonde With Dark Roots
Another stunning example of that quintessential ashy-but-not-too-ashy hair color is singer Leona Lewis. Play with contrast by styling hair in a slicked-back voluminous ponytail à la Lewis.
Hues such as platinum, wheat, beige, or sand pair well with cool skin tones. "Even though these last shades are darker than platinum and baby blonde, they also work because they lack warmth and will naturally complement your skin tone," explains Alvarez.
We also love actress Taraji P. Henson's take on sandy blonde, which, while a touch warmer than Amanda Seyfried's, is still cool enough to complement her skin tone. Notice how it's not too gold or brassy? Perfection.
We adore Cynthia Erivo's white-blonde color and her close-cropped curls. Natural-looking platinum can look amazing on deeper skin tones—especially when paired with purple eyeshadow.
This buttery blonde picks up the pink undertones in Lucy Boynton's complexion. Meanwhile, her smokey glitter eyeliner and nude lip are the perfect makeup accompaniment.
Model Jasmine Sanders demonstrates cool wheat blonde color here. "To remove unwanted warm tones in blondes, it's helpful to use a small dollop of purple shampoo mixed with your regular color-safe shampoo," says Alvarez. "I like Dove Color Care Shampoo ($6). The purple will cancel out any yellow and orange left in your hair while the color-safe shampoo locks in the color and hydrates your hair."
Beige With Dark Roots
Laverne Cox demonstrates a beautiful beige blonde on a classic Old Hollywood bob. The base is one tone, without any obvious highlights or color shifts, but she keeps the roots dark for slightly less maintenance over time.
True Beige Blonde
Sofia Richie's true beige blonde isn't as light as some other examples on this list. That's because there's no one cool blonde hair tone that fits all. Grown-out color at her roots adds dimension as well as an effortlessly cool vibe.
Rose gold is another lovely option for cool undertones, considering that pink already looks incredible with peachy undertones. Eve's take has a darker auburn base with strawberry hues throughout.
Before coloring your hair, consider whether you want a haircut first. It's usually best to trim or cut hair prior to getting it colored since doing so afterward may remove strategic color, especially when it comes to highlights and balayage.
While cooler blonde hair colors can accent and enhance cool-toned complexions, some warmth in blonde hair can soften cool-toned skin and prevent it from looking too ashy. According to Holguin, Emma Roberts has the right idea with her flattering champagne-hued tresses. "Nikki Lee, one of the owners of Nine Zero One salon, does a great job with keeping Emma light and champagne-y and not too ashy since she has such light, cool-toned skin."
Check out this cool, nearly icy blonde on Teyana Taylor. Pair it with a chin-grazing bob for that model-off-duty look. Just keep in mind that going to the light side has some drawbacks, namely damage. So do as Cuthbert does and try sticking with styling tools, such as T3 Cura Luxe Hair Dryer ($295), which will be as easy on your lightened tresses.
White Blonde Overlay
Paramore singer Hayley Williams's punky white-blonde bangs and brunette under-layer perfectly complement her peachy complexion. Style this into a half-up, half-down 'do to further highlight contrasting colors.
Slightly Strawberry Blonde
We already know red hair looks amazing on Sophie Turner, and though she's been blonde for a few years now, her hair often has a faint strawberry tinge that plays on the pink in her skin.
Solange's champagne curls are just a shade darker than platinum. This is a great look for a medium-to-deep complexion with cooler undertones. Just keep in mind that the light color will require frequent touch-ups (translation: every four to eight weeks).
This true champagne shade on Lala Anthony has an almost metallic quality, with a whole lot of shine and beautiful, cool-toned highlights. To keep your color vibrant, try a hair oil.
How can you cool warm blonde hair?
Washing with a purple toning shampoo can help to neutralize warm tones and fight brassiness, resulting in a cooler, brighter shade of blonde.
What's the difference between platinum, white blonde, and silver blonde?
White blonde refers to bright, icy tones whereas platinum blonde may display some warm tones, albeit subtle. Meanwhile, silver blonde is a very pale blonde with a cool silvery tone.
Is cool-toned blonde hair low-maintenance?
Not really. Typically, the lighter the color and the starker the contrast between it and your natural color, the greater the upkeep. However, going with a coloring technique like balayage can help to cut down on maintenance.