One of the most important thing I got out of looking into color analysis is the idea of embracing our unique coloring and beauty. I grew up with parents who weren’t against colored hair, but who stood behind the idea that God is the greatest artists of them all. While that may be a little too spiritual or free-spirited for you, I think it’s a beautiful idea. I personally went light with my hair a few years ago then proceeded to go lighter and lighter every year it seems. Then in 2012 I went very light and very short.
I blogged about my experience with short hair, with the pros and the cons, here and I stand behind how good it was for me to go short. Looking back I wish someone would’ve sat me down and asked what my end goal was, because I would’ve said long + wavy, but that’s alright! I went for the pixie cut + went platinum/level 10 blonde. After going so short I saw hair differently, was free to switch it up monthly, and my perception of beauty changed.
And now after a year and a half of growing it longer, I’m ready to go a lot closer to my natural color, or to at least find the most flattering shade of hair for my coloring.
I tried out a new Aveda Salon in town earlier this month, after seeing great reviews for a stylist there on Yelp, and went in with great expectations. I wanted her to be on the same page with me of working to help grow my hair out, and to work to find the most flattering hair color for me. I had really thought the stylist and I were on the same page. She had nodded her head at everything I said, responded with words like “ashy” and “tone down redness in your face” which is everything I wanted to hear. And then, my hair turned out like this. Oh, this was bad.
As she dried my hair, all of the lightener + toner washed out, she had my chair turned away from the mirror, and I could feel her apologizing with her fingers and she tenderly dried my hair. She took off the cape, told me how tan I now look, then walked me to the front desk without cutting my hair. Not about to have her walk me back after how things were going I tipped her over 20% [stupid. stupid. kyra] and left.
I put my hair up that weekend then called Monday morning explaining just how orange my roots were. Luckily the owner of the salon called me back, and offered to get me in Tuesday evening to fix it herself.
After three hours, that really only felt like 45 minutes, we had arrived at a color that we were both happy with. It’s not perfect, and it’s going to take a few more appointments + time to get to that perfect glossy natural blonde but I’m happy to say “so long!” to the level 10 platinum blonde highlights + all over color.
If you want to play with your hair color, do it, of course! But after a few years of testing things out here’s my tips for moving forward:
- When scrolling through inspiration pictures keep in my mind your long-term goal. It’s easy to be distracted by something you think is a beautiful style. But like with color, there’s a difference between a beautiful cut or color, and a cut or color that looks beautiful on you. The two aren’t always the same
- Be comfortable with the idea of finding your best hair color, regardless of what’s trending. Why let a website or magazine tell you what will look best on you?
- Don’t be afraid to sit down with your stylist or good friend and ask, “what would be the most flattering shade of color for me?”
- If you do decide on a light platinum blonde, purple shampoo should be in your arsenal for keeping it pretty
- Consider if you enjoy visiting your hair dresser often to get you color touched up. Turns out I don’t. I love going in for a cut or the idea of getting my nails done, but sitting in foils for hours isn’t my idea of relaxation and pampering. If I can avoid it, I will. I can’t wait for my roots to grow in, just for it to finally not be a big deal!
- and finally, Find someone who will work with you. Do they offer suggestion, admit when they’ve made a mistake, and work with you to achieve the look you want?
I’m hoping the stylist I first saw at the Aveda salon was having an off day. But I was the most disappointed that she didn’t own up to the fact that things didn’t go how we’d planned. It’s hair, for goodness sake, so let’s also be comfortable realizing that happens. But I need to be able to count on having someone who will go back to the bowl with me, and make it better.
In 7 weeks I’m going back to the same salon, with an appointment with the owner. And I vow to not start the highlights cycle, where in a years time, I’m platinum blonde all over again.