Many readers write to us about going from dark to blonde hair. I felt it time to share a little of my experience and try to answer what can be a very difficult question.
Choosing the right haircuts and hair colours benefits from professional advice. I am always happy to give free advice. You can drop into my hair salon for advice or send me recent photos – a hair, face and neck portrait; close-ups of hair that shows roots and hair end colour.
The hair on our heads is really just about show, but there’s no doubt, hair is important. Hair crowns our anatomical glories. Hair plays a key role in communicating health and vitality. Hair is also an expression of our characters.
A gradual move from dark to blonde hair is advisable
My best advice to anyone is to lighten your hair conservatively and gradually to start the process with colours choices that complement your natural hair colour. Going from the darkest browns to whitest blonde hair tones does cause some minor hair damage.
Rapid onset of blonde hair for dark people can be a shock and platinum blonde is most definitely the younger man or woman’s choice in most cases. How stunning your new blonde hair colour looks really depends on the competency of your hairdresser.
While I think it important to be clear about blonde hair treatments, it is NOT all doom and gloom. Natural looking dyed blonde hair is entirely possible. In fact, the correct blonde tones in professional hands can improve your look, particularly if you have thin hair or suffer poor volume and/or lifeless hair.
If you are looking for a colour that gives the appearance of volume and life, then lighter brown to blonde tones are definitely worth considering.
Choosing the right hair colour brands
Sadly, not all hair discolouration treatments and hair colours are created equal. In my junior hairdressing years, over ten years ago, I worked with a number of regionally produced cheaper bleaches and hair colour brands that never seem to improve. The colours are never pleasing to the critical professional eye.
I am a perfectionist. My style and the style I teach my new hairdressers strives to obtain the most ‘natural looking hair colours’ or uses more radical colours that simulate natural colour graduation and patterns. The colour treatments we use at Sicodelica Hair Art are the very best colour treatments available in the market. I never cut corners.
Hair Colour Chemistry
Hairdressers discolour and highlight hair by removing two kinds of melanin (eumelanin and pheomelanin) that combine in different ratios to produce different shades of hair colour.
Eumelanin makes hair dark. Pheomelanin makes hair red. Any combination of Pheomelanin and eumelanin make brown hair colours. Blonde hair has much less of the two.
You will often hear hairdressers talk about oxidants (generally peroxide and ammonia mixes) and describe the process of removing hair colour as oxidation. The oxidants penetrate the hair to break down melanin that then washes away.
To lighten or removal of hair colour without structurally damaging the hair shaft is a difficult process
An experienced hairdresser will always avoid oxidising hair until lipids (fatty acids) that help protect hair are totally broken down and proteins turn to acid (burnt hair). Keratin (the hairs main protein structure) naturally gives bleached hair a pale yellow colour. A good hairdresser will not leave unpleasing yellow tones showing through your new colour.
You cannot discolour hair without oxidation
Just remember whatever the clever marketing, whatever someone might tell you, the only way to remove colour is by using an oxidising agent. Fortunately, modern chemistry provides a number of new agents that are kinder to the hair than the traditional Hydrogen Peroxide and Ammonia. They are more expensive, but they are available at Sicodelica Hair Art.
My hairdresser burnt my hair
If ever you suffer bleach or colour damage, I am always happy to have a look at your hair and suggest a rescue plan. I have a wealth of experience in hair colour correction. No charge for advice, just pop into my hair salon. You may have to wait, so PLEASE do so with good manners. I hate rudeness. Paying customers come first!
In my opinion, the vast spectrum of blonde colour treatments, lights to dark, ash to caramels, means there is always a blonde tone that will suit everyone.
In my experience, less is more when you decide to take your hair from darkest browns to blonder tones. I much prefer a gradual process over three months that build natural blonde colour tones gradually with homecare and professional bi-weekly hair-conditioning treatments between each oxidation that will help to nourish, protect and maintain healthiest looking hair.