How To Know If You Can Successfully Go From Brunette To Blonde

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Blonde hair is an iconic hair color that is always on trend. We're used to seeing celebrities undergo a complete hair transformation, rocking a brunette hairdo one day and then stunning us with a beautiful blonde the next. Kim Kardashian shocked everyone by sporting a glamorous platinum blonde color at the 2022 Met Gala with her Marilyn Monroe-inspired look, which took her hairstylist 14 hours to achieve. But, is it really that easy to go blonde? 

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For most of us, it's not realistic to go from brunette to blonde overnight, and there are a few important things to consider before taking the leap. The last thing you want to do is to leave your salon with damaged tresses, or a color that you definitely did not plan on getting. Before you book your appointment at the salon to lighten your locks, there are a few essential questions to ask yourself.

Consider the necessary cost and maintenance of blonde locks

Blonde hair is not for the low-maintenance girls out there — it takes multiple expensive trips to the hair salon to go from brunette to blonde, and you'll also have to keep up with the aftercare treatments for healthy locks. It's important to know if blonde hair suits your lifestyle, and whether or not you're okay with going to multiple sessions at your salon to achieve your dream blonde color. Keep in mind that blonde is an expensive dye job, with the pricey shade even being deemed as a new trendy color known as 'expensive blonde'. 

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Treatments to boost your hair's hydration are also essential when you're a blonde. Khloe Kardashian's colorist and Redken creative consultant, Tracey Cunningham, tells Marie Claire, "You need lots of moisturizing treatments in between each service to help maintain healthy hair." These treatments are far from cheap, so make sure you're willing to dish out the necessary cost to keep your hair hydrated, strong, and healthy.

Check if blonde hair compliments your skin tone

Your skin tone is a major factor in deciding whether blonde is the color for you. By going for the wrong hair color, you could risk looking dull or washed out, which no one wants. Nicola Clarke, a celebrity hair colorist, tells Harper's Bazaar, "Bringing photos of blonde hair you like is a great starting point ... but know that you might have to go with an interpretation of that shade to suit you." If you're not sure whether blonde hair will flatter your skin tone, book a consultation with a professional hair colorist to discuss your options.

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Fortunately, with blonde hair, there are plenty of variations of the color you can go for to suit your skin tone. From a subtle cashmere blonde to the vibrant buttery blonde trend, there's no shortage of gorgeous blonde shades you can try to suit your skin tone.

Ensure your hair is healthy enough for the change

If your hair is color damaged or not in the best shape, you may want to tend to your tresses before transitioning to blonde. To get lighter locks, your hairstylist will have to bleach your hair, and there are some side effects to be mindful of. According to WebMD, after bleaching your locks, they can become drier, weaker, and more prone to breakage. In the event that your hair is already damaged, this could be a recipe for disaster. In the worst-case scenario, overbleaching your locks or bleaching unhealthy hair can lead to your hair breaking off and falling out.

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"Coloring damaged hair is about much more than just split ends or straw-like strands, it can affect the color itself and how it is absorbed in the hair" Tracey Cunningham tells Marie Claire. Ask your hair colorist to check the integrity of your hair prior to dying it, as you want your hair to absorb the blonde as best as it can.

Decide whether you can limit the use of heat styling tools

Heat styling tools can give you that perfect sleek hairdo or those luscious, bouncy curls you adore — but they also increase the damage done to your hair. Decide whether you can opt to go for a natural look more often and break out the hairstyling tools occasionally. If not, blonde may not be the best hair color for you. Your locks will inevitably sustain damage from being bleached to go lighter, and if you add the regular use of heat styling tools on top of that, your tresses won't be left in great shape.

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When you do use heat styling tools, opt to use a heat protectant beforehand. We recommend Bumble and Bumble's Hairdresser's Invisible Oil Heat & UV Protective Primer. This oil will keep your hair protected from heat while also keeping unwanted frizz away, giving your locks a smooth and velvety finish. 

Consider your time frame

Consider whether or not you're willing to dedicate the necessary amount of time it will take to reach your perfect shade of blonde. Unlike Kim Kardashian, you won't be able to achieve blonde hair in a day if you're looking to keep your hair's integrity and health. It's recommended you set aside at least six months to a year to get to your desired shade (via Harper's Bazaar). The length of time it'll take for you to become blonde also depends on individual factors, like your current hair color and the state of your locks.

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Ricky Fraser, an editorial hair stylist, tells The Zoe Report, "Everyone's hair exists on a scale from dark to light, with one being the darkest black and 10 being the palest blonde, with varying shades and tones within that spectrum ... Considering which level you start at and where you want to end up can definitely determine the amount of time and money it will take to achieve the look you desire."  Be realistic with your expectations and accept that it may take you longer than planned to get your perfect blonde tresses.

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