Bella is as much known for her dark brunette hair as for her air of cool and sculpted cheekbones but debuted a lighter look back in March, posting an Instagram photo with the caption, “Back to dirty blonde, back to my roots” signalling the start of her transition to summer blonde. A good idea, since going from brunette to blonde can take several trips to the hairdressers plus an array of different hair-healing products.
And while it’s not totally clear if the look is a permanent one, the sunny blonde shade taps into the wider trend of going lighter for summer, wherever in the world you may be. But how to do it properly? Other than leaving the sun to do its work and naturally lighten hair, here’s Vogue’s guide to getting it right:
Ensure hair is healthy before colouring
Going lighter requires bleach which damages hair, leaving each strand more porous, prone to breakage and devoid of moisture. Avoid this as much as possible by employing the use of a hydrating and fortifying hair mask – try Philip Kingsley’s Elasticizer or Kevin Murphy’s Hydrate.Me Masque a couple of times a week prior to your appointment. It’ll stand hair in good stead for what’s to come.
Consult your colourist on what shade to go
“The best way to choose a shade is to talk it through with a professional colourist,” says Nicola Clarke, the woman behind Kate Moss’ insatiable blonde, “Bringing photos of blonde hair you like is a great starting point but also let your colourist know a little about your lifestyle.” That includes factors like how often you’re able to visit the salon and how you style your hair; techniques like balayage might work better than normal highlights for those who don’t want the commitment of getting colour retouched every six weeks.
For a general guideline, lighter blonde and strawberry hues look good on light skin tones; golden or honey blonde hues look great on medium skin tones, while dark skin tones should opt for darker blondes that don’t veer too many shades away from their natural colour. “Work with your colourist to get the right shade and colour for your skin tone,” recommends Clarke.
It’s difficult to go from brunette to blonde without an extreme amount of damage. The bleaching process involves raising the hair’s cuticle, leaving it vulnerable, brittle, inelastic and unable to retain hydration. Olaplex, the secret to all celebrity colour transformations, is a three-step in-salon treatment that essentially helps prevent bonds breaking in the process whilst rebuilding and repairing the ones that do get damaged. Put simply, it’s the saviour of bleaching. The third step, the No 3 Hair Perfector can be bought for at-home use; use it regularly to strengthen hair.
Treat hair well after your appointment
“Use a really good quality sulphate-free shampoo and conditioner to help protect colour and cleanse hair without stripping it,” says Clarke. “It will keep colour as fresh as possible and in the best condition.” She also recommends applying a leave-in conditioner or an oil containing UV protection whilst enjoying the sun – it will act as a barrier to protect hair from sun but also keep hair moisturised. Try the Josh Wood Colour Everything Mask or Kerastase Soleil Huile Sirene.
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