Thursday, 7 June 2012

The road to blonde-ness...

Ok, so I thought I'd share my story of a hair colour change and things I've discovered along the way that have made it a little easier, whether you've had a similar experience or are thinking about going down the blonde road, this hopefully might help you out info wise :) For reference, I've been dying my hair since I was about 14, and it's been a variety of colours including blue, red, black and blonde (not all at once!), so I'm no stranger to the dye bottle...

I'm in no way a professional when it comes to hair colour, so I went to my hairdressers and got lots and lots of highlights put through my hair, leaving me with quite a lot of my natural base colour left (a very dark brown). I've had this process done twice now, and each time less of this base colour remains. I wanted to go lighter gradually and help minimise the damage to my hair, but my end result will hopefully be a very light blonde/silver, which I plan to tint pinky lavender and fully leap onto the pastel hair bandwagon ;) I also get my hair cut each time I dye it, helping the ends out and making it grow much faster, regular cuts really do make your hair grow- I've learned not to fear the scissors!

Anyway, onto some products! These are my best ones and really make a difference to my hair in terms of condition and also the colour maintainence. I would recommend some of them to anyone with dyed hair (hair oil is a must have), not just blonde, but some are more suited to lighter locks (such as the toning shampoos and Directions dye).

Lee Stafford- Bleach Blondes Toning Shampoo & Conditioner (available at most high street chemists, Boots, Superdrug). These are toning treatments, and are bright purple in colour. You're only meant to use the shampoo once or twice a week to avoid ashy tones (but I love those, so I mix it with regular shampoo whenever I wash my hair), but I think you can use the conditioner whenever you like. If you use these (particularly the shampoo) on silver/lilac hair you can maintain this colour much more easily and if you leave it on for five minutes + you can add more purple tones to the hair. These products help keep your blonde hair looking bright in between visits to the hairdresser. I find them to lather up and moisturise my hair well, and they smell like cake to me- always a good thing!

Pro-Voke Touch Of Silver- Daily Maintainance Shampoo (available from most high street chemists). This is another purple toning shampoo, which you can use daily if you wish. I prefer the Lee Stafford version and it lathers better than this, but I know people who absolutely swear by this product (we had complaints in our shop when we ran out of this from lots of older ladies!). I think this does work better on naturally light hair though, which is why it's probably favoured by the blue rinse brigade... ;)

John Frieda- Full Repair Conditioner (get this at Boots, Superdrug, larger supermarkets etc). LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS RANGE! Ahem, anyway... totally buy this, even if your hair isn't dyed but you suffer from dry ends (this works a treat). I have the conditioner and the hair mask, and I'll be buying both again after they've been emptied. It's a long while since I've found a conditioner that works so well for my hair and doesn't make it greasy or heavy. This stuff smells lovely too, and has a heat protector element included. Win!

VO5 Miracle Concentrate Elixir (find in Boots, large supermarkets etc, the individual hot oil treatments are really good too). Everyone needs some hair oil, it just makes my ends feel lovely and it doesn't add any grease to my hair. Apply a few drops after towel drying and before you blow dry to get lovely soft hair. Completely recommend for any hair type, but will really help over-dyed/styled hair's appearance and feel. 

La Riche Directions Silver Dye/Toner (Semi-Permanent). Find on Amazon/ebay, 'alternative' shops such as Blue Banana etc. This stuff has a cult following, I've seen it described as a toner, even though it says 'dye' on the bottle. This only works on pre-lightened (bleached) hair, not on dark shades. It can help cancel out yellow tones and make hair appear whiter/silver depending on how long you leave it on for. This can also help make pale blonde hair extensions go silvery white (please don't bleach them!!). A very good product for the upkeep of very pale blonde/platinum shades or those who bleach their hair or roots. This stuff doesn't have a harsh smell either, or stain my hands :)

That's all for now, I hope you found some of the info useful. I'm really looking forward to getting my pale hair and putting some pink in it, if you're doing the same thing then let me know, do you use any of these products or know of any good ones?

Also, hello new followers! Nice to have you on board, thank you very much! :D


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