Going Blonde: A Guide for Asian Hair
14 September 2018
Embarking upon the road to blonde is a monumental decision. It’s true that for very dark-haired girls, going platinum blonde is one of the most drastic changes you can make. Thanks to advances in hair technology, however, the risk of a colour catastrophe no longer has to be added to your list of blonde anxieties – once upon a time, Asian hair was disobliging in the realms of dye, due to its particularly thick follicles and intense concentration of melanin. But those days are long behind us! Keep scrolling to learn a little more about the process before you commit to becoming legally blonde.
It’s Time To Prep
We rarely walk through the salon doors without a clue of what we want done – unless we’ve just been through an extreme breakup and have adopted a “new start, new me” type philosophy – but with a change as dramatic as this, it is imperative to really take the time to think it through.
Although it may be harder to identify an Asian skin undertone, cool, warm, yellow and olive tints still shine through. Therefore, you may be yearning to go as platinum as possible as soon as possible, but take a moment to consider if this is the best shade for your skin.
Determining Your Undertones
Warm skin tone – You suit more golden accessories. Opt for a honey/ash blonde; it will ensure you don’t look as washed out as a cool blonde could make you look.
Cool skin tone – If you’re as cool as a cucumber, you’ll suit silver jewellery better. Choose a lighter shade, you can pull off more ashy tones. If in doubt, your stylist is an expert at choosing the right shades for the right skin tones so don’t hesitate to consult them first!
Next, it is important to refrain from washing your tresses in the days leading up to your hair appointment. Any expert will express in a heartbeat that bleach can be very harsh on the scalp, and that the best way to fend off injury is to let its natural sebum build up. Otherwise, you could be in for quite an unpleasant shock...
Blonde tip: To avoid hair damage in the face of oxidation (the discolouration process), it is advisable to use a protective product such as Smartbond by L’Oréal Professionnel during the colouring process, in order to make sure that the health of your strands is not compromised on your journey to blonde.
You’re now in the salon chair, magazines at the ready, phones on charge, and the next step on the journey to blonde is discolouration. This involves the application of bleach to your strands, which can often take a minimum of eight hours (yes, you heard that right!), depending on the length, thickness and intensity of melanin in your tresses. You may will the process to be over, but it’s necessary for your hair and definitely worth the wait. This process can also take more than one session and often, people tend to slowly lighten their hair over the course of several months to maintain hair health. Again, this is something you will need to consult a professional with.
When your colourist deems your hair ready, he/she will then tone it your desired colour – whether it’s ash, honey or platinum – removing the yellow and red pigments that are often common in Asian hair. You can even add some depth to your new blonde mane by colouring your roots a different shade to the bulk.
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Bonding systems ensure the integrity of the hair follicles remain intact during colouring processes. This can help to minimise damage to the hair therefore making colouring hair a little bit easier.
Congratulations, you’re now blonde! But the journey doesn’t end at the salon. As we know, bleach can have punishing consequences on our strands, so it’s important to treat them with the care they deserve.
Firstly, use a bespoke shampoo – preferably with purple tones, such as Blondifer Cool Shampoo from L’Oréal Professionnel – in order to prevent that undesirable yellow-tinted glow that can often manifest after bleaching. Furthermore, to replenish your locks with the nourishment they lost during the blonde process, smooth on Kérastase’s Masque Densité on a regular basis – equipped to repair and restore resiliency, daily use of the lightweight gel can restore your locks back to their pre-bleach heyday.
Making this dramatic change can be scary, but if you do it right (and take your time), you’ll have nothing to regret!
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