Discovering the right shade of blonde is not an easy task. I asked Louise Galvin, one of the UK’s leading colourists and daughter of the legendary Daniel Galvin at whose London salon she is based, for her advice.
Not everybody can go blonde. How do you decide if blonde hair is for you?
“In general, the rule is to not go more than three or four shades lighter than your natural colour. Stay within that spectrum and you will find a flattering blonde for your skin tone.”
Choosing the right shade of blonde is not easy. How do you choose the right blonde for your skin tone?
“If you have high colour, i.e. pink or red skin tone, I would recommend avoiding anything too warm or golden tones. Never be afraid to go to a salon and ask for a professional consultation. All good salons offer this as a complimentary service. They will then look at your eye colour, skin tone and natural hair colour to advise you on the correct and most flattering colour for you. Where possible avoid over processing hair to protect the condition.”
Can you go from brunette to blonde?
“You can certainly go to a dark blonde. If you have dark, Middle Eastern colouring you will need to be careful that you don’t end up with anything too light as this would be damaging to your hair. Your natural colour will be an indicator on whether your colourist chooses highlights or a tint to achieve the blonde you want.”
If you have dark eyebrows should you change them?
“No! If you are lucky enough to have dark eyebrows, enjoy them!! The eyebrows frame the face in the same way that your lashes frame your eyes.”
What shades of blonde suit more mature women?
“This is again dependent on your skin tone and your natural hair colour. If you look at some of the more mature actors they each have a blonde colour that suits them personally. Helen Mirren has highlighted blonde hair, Meryl Streep is a tinted blonde and Glenn Close is a creamy blonde which is a tinted blonde with highlights.
“Also when looking to colour more mature hair remember the most youthful blonde is one without any brassy tones and well-conditioned locks. I would recommend a twice weekly Intensive Treatment Masque (www.louisegalvin.com £26) to restore moisture and shine.
Also have your hair cut regularly to keep dry ends away but don’t think you have to have your hair cut short as you get older. Hair can be worn longer if it is well conditioned.”
What are the trends and how do you adapt them?
I still believe there is no fashion or trend in hair colour other than the hair colour that suits you.
How do you stop blonde hair looking brassy?
“My Vitox Highlight Brightener (www.louisegavin.com £25) is a phenomenal vitamin infused natural detox for the hair. Vitox will lift out both environmental and product build- up leaving highlights refreshed and free from the khaki tones that can be a result of mineral deposits in our water supply or swimming in chlorine. Well-conditioned hair is so important to achieve shine and a more youthful glow.”
What’s the best way to prevent your colourist over highlighting?
“Ask your colourist to apply colour to the roots only (the Vitox Treatment mentioned above is perfect to refresh blonde highlights after your colour). Also make sure your colourist picks out the same highlights to avoid roots becoming over processed and too solid. This will help with maintenance too, If too solid the regrowth will show almost immediately.”
Examples of celebs that look great blonde and those that don’t
Kate Hudson and Goldie Hawn, two very different generations who both have blonde hair and look fabulous with it! Cate Blanchett is a great example of an Icelandic blonde, Jennifer Aniston a beautiful golden blonde and Alicia Silverstone a pretty cool blonde.
I much prefer Nicole Kidman with red hair and Julia Roberts is another actor more suited to being a brunette (Sleeping with the Enemy) or a redhead (Pretty Woman) than a blonde.
By Daralyn Danns