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Tips from a blonde: How to maintain platinum hair without your hairdresser

WORDS BY JONTI RIDLEY

Being platinum blonde in isolation is a specific brand of torture.

From the bottom of my heart, I know I was born to be blonde. It’s the colour I know it was meant to be. But by some cruel twist of fate, I was born brunette with copper undertones.

Now if you’re anything like me and refusing to let the laws of nature hold you back, you’ll know adopting a new colour is anything but easy. My colour of choice has been platinum blonde, so let’s just say my challenges are compounded.

Getting to platinum is a hurdle and a half, but chasing after that even, crisp, near-white look is another ordeal in itself. Remove regular salon appointments from the equation, and there’s a good chance you’re starting to panic. 

First of all, never underestimate the power of a talented hairdresser. I wouldn’t even be able to write this without the blessing of my colourist (thank you Marilyn, from the bottom of my brunette heart). Patience and communication is the road to platinum hair. You need to listen to their expert advice, as well as be realistic in what your hair can achieve. Real talk, half the platinum looks your find under #hairspo are either wigs, or photoshop – but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible, it just means your need to put the work in.

For the same reason you wouldn’t paint a canvas without white primer, your hair must be bleached to a funny-looking white and yellow colour before you can reach a lovely pearl. Post-bleach, your hairdresser will concoct a magical combination of toners to redeposit colour back in, bringing it to this platinum effect.

Provided you’ve already gone through this specific brand of torture, right now your hair is probably becoming less 2016 Taylor Swift at the Met Gala, and more like 1991’s Drop Dead Fred

As a writer for Fashion Journal, I occasionally get access to the right products and expert tips for maintaining my platinum hair. It would be rude not to share them, so below is a collection of expert advice, product recommendations and life hacks to support you through this challenging time.

First, I have tips from Evo’s head of education Jay Kownacki. Jay has heard the cries from the faux-blonde community (me) and so sent over some guidelines to help. His first tip?

Protein, protein, protein 

“Blonde hair typically is always in need of added strength, so the best way to keep your hair looking its best is to make sure you are using a protein treatment weekly.”

As an Evo ambassador, he recommends using the brand’s new Fabuloso Platinum Blonde Shampoo in conjunction with its Fabuloso Platinum Blonde Colour Boosting Treatment, once a week. I tried the duo just last night and I have to say, I agree. The results are something to behold. 

The new shampoo is stronger than other purple or blonde-specific shampoos and is perfect for blondes who struggle to keep the brass at bay (@ me next time). It has been formulated to leave the hair incredibly soft and shiny, because keeping haircare simple doesn’t have to mean compromising your results.

Jay also says the treatment, in particular, is a great solution for worried blondes because it is loaded with protein as well as moisture. “It’s used in between your regular shampoo and conditioner once a week, and helps to repair hair so that it looks strong and healthy.”

Practice makes perfect

If you want platinum hair, without feeling it disintegrate between your fingers, it won’t happen overnight. Personally, it took multiple sessions of lifting and bleach to remove the years of dye-backlog within my hair before I could reach ground zero. But even on your best behaviour, bleached hair is more likely to break, feel brittle and frizz like no tomorrow. For example:

Yes, ma’am, my hair has been looking crispy and crunchy these past few weeks. My hair is naturally porous, meaning it soaks up everything and anything. You’d think this would be a good thing, but it often means other toning shampoos have a ‘grabby’ effect, leaving me with uneven, purple patches. It also makes it harder to retain moisture. I really won the genetic lottery, if you were wondering.

This is why proper nourishment is so important; it’s no use having great colour if it’s making your hair snap between your fingers. My natural copper undertones and previous damage were undoubtedly my biggest hurdle, and my hair has certainly suffered because of it. Evo’s shampoo and treatment are packed with pigment, but unlike a lot of toning products, also provide a heavy dose of nourishment that blonde hair desperately needs. Healthier hair not only retains colour better, but it’s easier to manage and style too. 

Some helpful changes for your daily routine

Swapping out my regular cotton pillowcases for silk ones has dramatically reduced my frizz-factor, as has using old cotton T-shirts to dry my hair, rather than towels. Due to the fragile state of my hair, I also make a conscious effort to reduce my interaction with heated tools (which is a feat given how often I want to straighten my post-mullet regrowth to avoid a Karen-esque bouffant). 

If you are facing additional heat damage, Evo also has a wearable leave-in treatment (called Happy Campers) that offers heat protection. It won’t have you walking around with sticky roots, but will provide lightweight moisture to colour treated and brittle hair. Jay says the three-in-one product not only smells amazing but leaves your hair feeling incredibly soft. Which, after taking a big whiff, I’m happy to agree with. 

Honestly, give Fabuloso a go

As I mentioned earlier, both the Fabuloso toning shampoo and the colour boosting treatment are filled with pigment to intensify and extend the life of your blonde hair. This is why it’s important to read the instructions with your glasses on, and realise before you’ve put it into your hair that you should use gloves to prevent staining. Exhibit A:

But even as a serial over-toner with porous hair, it couldn’t have been easier to get a natural, even result. This is the third time in my life being platinum blonde, with multiple missteps in between.  I’ve tried literally dozens of toning products before that left me shades of aubergine or with a mop drier than a haystack. Evo’s Fabuloso products have together made bleach blonde easier than ever. So you can let your hairdresser know that you’ll keep up the good work until you can get back in their chair.

This article was made in partnership with Evo, who supplied Jonti with products they genuinely love. Find the Fabuloso Platinum Blonde Shampoo and Fabuloso Platinum Blonde Colour Boosting Treatment here.

evohair.com

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