I’ve been around the block – Hair colour wise that is! I have been anywhere from bleach blonde, to a level 2/3 brown, to red violet, to vibrant red ombre, then a disastrous attempt by a lazy stylist at lightening all that mess which then resulted in a self-colour correction of her colour correction which left be with lovely chemical burns on my scalp. After that I did some repeats of previously mentioned colours, added some pink and purple ends, had extensions and didn’t have extensions. The whole time I was trying to get the colour I had in my head to become a reality.
For years, I had a stylist who was afraid to challenge the standard formulas or take on the task of something that required a bit more effort than she was used to, in an attempt to create something beautiful. This lead to extreme and unnecessary brassiness, green colour bases, and a level of breakage you only have nightmares about. I am happy to say that after about 6 years of describing the perfect cool-toned dark blonde/light brown. It has finally happened. It took a passionate stylist to share my vision, and my love of cool tones.
Above are my before and after shots – displayed in chronological order. The very left was our starting Point. Due to all of the colour that has been put in and taken out of my hair, my hair naturally pulls and fades bright copper. Something I can not stand is orange or copper tones in my hair. It has plagued me for years, and made me seriously dislike my hair on many occasions.
Before I did this colour correction I hadn’t coloured or chemically treated my hair in just over 2 months and firmly practiced the curly girl method of co-washing/”cleansing” with conditioner. Before getting in the shower I regularly massaged a mix of jojoba and rosemary oil into my scalp, running it through to the ends and letting it sit for 5 – 10 minutes. It was extremely important that I make my hair as hydrated as possible.
My hair appointment was with the lovely Jenny, at Locks Hair Design in Victoria, BC. You can find some beautiful pictures of their work at http://www.instagram.com/lockshairdesignyyj . I have known Jenny for years and our life paths just moved away from each other as time passed, as so often happens, but we were together when she started her journey as a hair stylist and her passion for the craft is something inspiring. She is a courageous artist, always learning and improving her talent. After years of frustration I knew exactly where to go to have my vision shared.
Something that is extremely popular right now is a product called Olaplex. Olaplex is the newest thing in the hair colouring industry as it’s intention is to preserve the integrity of the hair during any chemical processes. Here is an explanation right from the Olaplex website:
“Olaplex is free of silicone, sulfates, phthalates, DEA, aldehydes, and is never tested on animals. Olaplex reconnects broken disulfide sulfur bonds in the hair. Hair bonds are broken during thermal, mechanical and chemical services.”
Please don’t be confused, this is not a miracle product that can take the place of a great colourist, this is a tool to be used in conjunction with your stylists’ knowledge, creativity, and professional discretion. This is not going to keep the integrity of the hair intact if you put 40vol peroxide + bleach on already bleach blonde hair. Kiss your strands good bye. Think of Olaplex as the helpful people that stay and clean up after a kegger. If the party was insane, the clean up crew can only do so much to restore the house to it’s natural glory.
Jenny used Olaplex in conjunction with L’Oreal’s professional colour line, to create a beautiful ash base, and cool blonde highlights. After this process, my hair is definitely in need of some TLC. I am continuing with my Curly Girl method, doing minimal heat styling, and using a heavy duty leave-in conditioner.
Something important I do have to say to all the curly-haired mavens out there is to avoid using keratin infused products on the daily. The type of keratin bonds present, genetics, and the shape of your hair follicle determine your hair structure/texture. It is a complicated road to travel when trying to answer the question what is the difference between straight, wavy, and curly hair.
One of the main factors, and one that I want to focus on for maintaining healthy curly hair is the distribution of keratin proteins. Under an electron microscope strands of curly hair are shown to have an uneven distribution of keratin resulting in its spiral shape. Straight hair has a more or less even distribution of keratin amino acids from root to tip. Adding keratin products to your daily hair care routine will only disrupt the natural amino acid structure of your hair and over-keratinize your strands leaving them brittle and dry. This will only make the dryness worse and lead to breakage. You don’t need keratin to impart moisture – you need fats. Think shea butter, avocado and coconut oil, everything high in tri-glycerides and natural fats. These products are high in vitamins essential for cell development and health, as well as hydration! Take your hair off of its diet and feed it well!
My hair colour currently looks very natural and is very complexion flattering, it is beautiful!