Brunette to Blonde

Brunette to Blonde is a tough decision. Often, dark haired or previously coloured clients come into our salon and ask for the transformation.

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Going from Brunette to Blonde.

Firstly, we want to make it clear that going from Brunette to Blonde isn’t as simple as you may think. Its not a case of walk in Brunette and walk out Blonde. Hopefully with this blog, we can help you to understand the process and why.

Often dark haired or previously coloured clients come into the salon and ask for ash blondes or silvers and greys. We tell them it’s either not going to happen or it will, but it will take repeat appointments. It WILL be a lot warmer/golden than they expect for a while and they need to invest in some aftercare.

There are many factors to take into consideration before any bleaching work is carried out.

The condition of the hair has to be good and strong to be able to take the bleaching process. If it’s already damaged then further processing could result in the hair becoming split, dry, snapping, thinning, unmanageable and matted … not a good look, right?

When lightening hair that’s dark, it’s a process that will take repeat appointments. During this process your hair will need to be looked after at home to prevent dryness and damage.

We always recommend the correct shampoo and conditioner for each individual’s hair. The hair needs a good balance of moisture for softness and protein for strength. If the correct aftercare is used alongside Olaplex, we can create the change in colour with minimal damage. Not following the advice on aftercare will lead to poorly conditioned hair that cannot be lightened further, and the progression in lightening of the colour will slowdown or stop completely.


We have our saving grace OLAPLEX.

Olaplex isn’t just another conditioning treatment. It’s a system that permanently rebuilds the damaged disulphide bonds in your hair that are broken during the chemical process. If you’ve over bleached or had highlights for years then Olaplex is the perfect solution. It allows you to rebuild the strength, structure and integrity of your hair; a ‘reset’ if you will.

We use stage 1 mixed into the colour to prevent damage, stage 2 at the backwash to rebuild the bonds and stage 3 is a take home treatment that we recommend to use once a week.


Going from dark to blonde? Expect Warmth.

There are 10 shades between black and the lightest blonde. Every depth of hair colour has an underlying pigment that is exposed when its lightened.

Black hair has a strong red underlying pigment
Dark browns – orange/red
Mid brown – orange
Light brown – orange/yellow
Dark blondes and pale blondes – yellow

Natural hair colour lifts much easier than previously coloured hair. If you have had colour applied to your hair then it is important for you to be honest with us about the previous history as it will affect the end result.

Generally speaking when lightening the whole head, depending on the history of the hair, it will lift a few shades lighter after each application.

Changing from a Brunette to Blonde, you should expect to be a lighter brown first, then work up to warmer blondes, before being able to reach the cool tones EVENTUALLY.

To achieve the cooler, lighter blondes, the process will need to be redone again and again until the RED/ORANGE/YELLOW tones are cleaned out. This will leave a pale yellow which can be toned to become white, ashen, silver or grey. We cannot achieve those tones if the hair doesn’t lift enough.

So basically what it means is, depending on the condition of the hair and the previous history with colour…

  • It can be done, however, not in one appointment and you will not achieve the lightest ashy blondes with zero warmth the first time.
  • It will be golden and warm for a period
  • You need to invest in the correct aftercare. Boots and superdrug will not do.
  • It wont be cheap.

Hopefully now you have some insight into the world of ‘Brunette to Blonde’ and why when a previously coloured brunette sits in the chair wanting an ash blonde or grey balayage, it’s not going to happen in one appointment. Unfortunately, In some cases, not at all.

It’s not because we aren’t good enough. It’s not that we are doing anything wrong. We can’t magic super blonde hair in an instant. As well as the hands that place the colour creatively and the brain that factors in absolutely everything, including counteraction and correction of colour; there is the theory, science and integrity of the hair.

To book a free style consultation please take a look at our dedicated Hair page

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