Belfast Telegraph

Achieve your blonde ambition without mangling your mane

Honey or icy? Gold or platinum? Everyone can embrace a golden touch - you just need to find the right shade that suits you. The professionals tell Katie Wright how to attain the perfect look

Colour consultation has really moved on from traditional guidelines, according to Christel Lundqvist, founder of STIL Salon ( "It's a bit of a myth that someone with, for instance, pale skin and blue eyes should be one type of blonde, compared to someone with darker skin and brown eyes" she says.

"Colour is bespoke to every individual, taking into account their personal fashion style and lifestyle as well."

That said, there are still some guidelines that colourists agree you should follow before hitting the bottle (or even the salon).

From selecting a shade to maintaining your mane, these are the pros' top five tips for achieving Goldilocked perfection.

"When deciding which kind of blonde would best work for a client, I like to first identify their skin tone," explains Danielle Llewellyn, UK hair ambassador for eSalon.

"Skin tones generally fall into two categories - warm or cool. Warm skin has yellow, golden or peach undertones, while cool skin tones look pink, blue, or beige.

"With hair colour, you'll find the most flattering effect when you complement it with tones opposite of your skin tone.

"For example, if you have warm skin, try cool blonde colours containing violet, blue or neutral tones. And for cool skin, try blondes containing golden or red tones.

"Look around at other people that have similar hair colour, skin colour and eye colour to you as a reference for what you think will suit you," advises Schwarzkopf LIVE colour ambassador Lyndell Mansfield.

"Most people know what makes them feel good when they wear colour, and generally that is the colour that would suit them best," says Lundqvist.

"Our clients are very aware what suits them, and it's rare they're dead set on shades that wouldn't be suitable - but, of course, we're there to guide and steer in the right direction."

"Going from brunette to blonde in one sitting can create unwanted damage and hair breakage," warns Llewellyn.

"If you're thinking of lifting or lightening hair more than two levels, it may be best to visit a salon, so your hair can be cared for under the watchful eye of a colourist."

"If you're after a look that's a little more low-key in maintenance, highlights are great, as the re-growth is often softer when it grows out," Lundqvist recommends.

"A full head of colour, especially if it's bright, will often give a more noticeable re-growth line."

Mansfield says: "If you're an all-over blonde, then always colour your roots before the hair has grown longer than 1.5cm to get the best colour result and avoid a visible 'band'."

"A must for every bottle blonde is a purple-toning shampoo to counteract brassiness. Toning shampoos work wonders towards reducing unwanted warm or golden tones," Llewellyn says.

Dye it yourself with these at-home heroes.

  • Schwarzkopf LIVE Intense Lightener 00B Max Blonde, £5.49, Superdrug (
  • Colour Freedom Cream Bleach, £7.99, Superdrug (
  • Nice'n Easy Permanent Colour 9.5 Natural Extra Light Blonde, £5.99, Boots (
  • L'Oreal Paris Recital Preference Permanent Hair Colour in California, £9.49 (

Keep that colour fresh with.

  • TIGI Catwalk Fashionista Violet Shampoo, £9.75, and Conditioner, £11.15 (
  • eSalon Tinted Love Colour Enhanching Treatment, £11 (
  • Mane 'n Tail Color Protect Shampoo and Conditioner, £6.99 each, Boots (
  • Sachajuan Silver Shampoo, £20 (

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