Bleach blonde hair is having a moment. Despite the color experts of this world predicting a return to natural hues for summer 2016 as a welcome respite from the pastel colors we’ve dabbled in over the past couple of years (our hair can only take so much!), some members of the A-list are having none of it.
It all started with Jennifer Lawrence who, last October, lopped off her longer lengths and then proceeded to bleach the heck out of her new lob. This year, hot on her heels, Taylor Swift and Kristen Stewart have taken their shorter hair to brightest of white blondes. Tempted? Keep scrolling to find out how you can master this celebrity micro trend.
Before you reach for the bleach, you need to make sure your hair is in the best possible condition to survive such a hefty color treatment. We called on Melanie Jane Smith, Creative Master Colorist at Josh Wood Atelier, for her top tips, and she agrees, “This service is the most damaging. I would recommend you use Olaplex beforehand or Oribe Masque for Beautiful Color Mask (£54).”
You also need to think about the color that your hair will realistically go. “Anyone can bleach their hair,” says Smith, “but depending on if you are dark brown or lighter brown you may need two applications.”
“If you are a natural redhead, it will be hard to get white, as so much gold pigment is extremely hard to remove. However, I would recommend working with that and going a rose-gold tone which would look beautiful.”
The journey to super blonde is a two-step process. “The first step is bleaching the hair all over to get it as white as possible which can take several hours depending on the color of your hair. Then the second and final step is the toning. This can also be done as a standalone treatment if you grow bored of your look,” she adds.
You see, the bleach simply removes unwanted pigment from the hair. Think of it like decorating a room: Bleach is the prep, so it's the sanding and stripping the walls in a house, and the toner is like the paint you apply after to make it look pretty.
“There is a shade of toner to suit all complexions with this look, you can range from biscuity, beige and steel greys for darker skin tones through to peach, rose gold and platinum for lighter skin tones,” explains Smith.
This look isn’t for the low-maintenance types among us. You are going to get to know your colorist very well if you go bleach blonde. “Be prepared to put the hours in as this is a high maintenance look. Every four weeks you will need a root touch up and toner, unless you want an edgier look, in which case every six to eight weeks will do.”
Aftercare is important too. You need to put the effort in at home to keep your color looking fresh, not brassy, and the hair moisturized. “Josh Wood Precious Blondes has been developed with this in mind. It has a gorgeous violet undertone to the shampoo and conditioner and a great mask, where you can adjust the amount of violet from subtle to full-on.”
Have you gone this blonde before? Share your advice in the comment box below.
Opening Image: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock