It’s been quite the journey (over a year in a fact) from when I first decided to dye my hair a raspberry red color for a collaboration with L’Oreal (watch the YouTube video here) to then deciding to become a full-fledged blonde. But let’s back up a bit and start from the beginning…
When I was little I had hair that was naturally sun-streaked and highlighted, which I think actually set me up to always try and recreate it. Because when I became a teenager and my mom offered to let me get “subtle highlights” I slowly but surely became the blondest my hair could handle. I took it way past subtle or natural! (Helena actually talks about it happening to her in one her latest posts.) In 2004 I was at an all time highlighting high but luckily social media didn’t exist back then so one has to see my bleach blonde hair that was just all sorts of wrong for my skin color.
Then right before I moved to New York, I had a mishap with the girl who was doing my hair at the time where she messed up and gave me blonde zebra stripes that didn’t even match up with my hairline. And no, this wasn’t a “it’s supposed to look grown out” situation. It was bad. And at that point, I’d had it and so had my hair. I decided to go back to my natural color, which is a light brown, and began the process of low-lighting my poor locks. Once I moved to New York, I went to a salon on my block and had them dye my hair dark brown, and just like that I was some version of a brunette again for the next ten years. (I did a post on all my different variations of hair colors and cuts, which you can check out here.)
And now, 12 years later, I’m blonde again! But this time, I found a colorist, the lovely Francesca, who actually knows what she’s doing and who worked with me on finding the right shade of blonde for my skin tone, making me feel great about it every step of the way. She patiently explained everything to me during our sessions, and why it can be tricky to go from such a saturated red to an entirely different color. She said that red is the hardest to keep but the hardest to get rid of too. I still can’t believe she transformed my hair from bright raspberry to the pretty light blonde hair color I have today, which believe me, was not an easy feat, so hats off to her!
Now that I am a full-fledged blonde, I have begun scouring the internet for products that people love for color treated hair, and asking all my blonde friends what they use. I had no idea how much upkeep went into the actual quality of the hair, but as Francesca pointed out to me today, you wouldn’t spend $300 on a cashmere sweater and then treat it like crap, right? The same goes for having color treated hair. It requires upkeep and maintenance, especially blonde hair because the bleach and highlights can really change the texture of the hair and if you don’t take care of it, it can become brittle and start to break off.
MY HAIR COLORIST AND STYLIST:
I’ve worked with Arrojo for a while now and I’ve trusted different stylists over the years with my cuts and various hair color changes. Most recently, I have been working with Clare and Francesca who work out at their newest Williamsburg location who I absolutely adore. These gals are pretty amazing and so talented.
MY HAIR PRODUCTS:
I am not yet an expert on being a blonde and am still learning the proper way to take care of my newly lightened locks, but here are some products I am either already using or am looking into buying because I have heard such great things about them.
I currently use Arrojo’s Color Save Shampoo.
I have been trying Living Proof’s ‘Restore’ Conditioner for Dry or Damaged Hair because I love how soft it makes my hair feel and it helps detangle it.
I keep Nexxus’ Emergencee Repair Reconstructing Treatment in the shower and use one tube every week.
I have heard amazing things about Aveda’s ‘Blue Malva’ Color Conditioner and that it really keeps the brassiness under control.
I just read about Shade Variation Care – Baby Blond, 250ml on Into The Gloss and am very curious about it, but since it’s a little pricey, I might try this one, which is supposed to be a great drugstore find.
Also, I’ve been using a bit of coconut oil on my ends when I get out of the shower to help with frizz and infuse some intense moisture without having to do a whole hair mask.
A GREAT HAIR STYLING TIP:
Yesterday after Clare gave me a fresh, blunt cut, which I am obsessed with, I was telling her some styling issues I come up against when doing it myself. I always struggle with the fact that the front pieces of my hair curl in this weird sideways “m” shape, right by my part, but since I have fine hair I am told it’s best to only wash it a few times a week. This is annoying because there is only so much dry shampoo and heat styling that will fix wonky hair, especially if I am super sweaty after a work out or whenever it’s super humid in New York. She suggested tying up the rest of my hair into a shower cap or towel, and pulling down just the front pieces and only washing those sections. Then to spray it with a heat protectant spray, dry it and going forth my regular hair routine. This might sound like something I should know, but that never occurred to me! Genius.
I hope this post was helpful and please leave me any comments below if you have any questions, comments or suggestions of products I should be trying – I would love to hear from you! xo
// A PHOTO DIARY FROM RASPBERRY TO BLONDE //
March 2015 – June 2016
Thank you Arrojo for all your support over the past four years! You guys are the best! xo