It seems to be a pattern lately… Girl gets lob. Girl the loves lob so much she gets a bob. Girl goes a little blonder. Girl loves lightest pieces so much she wants them all over, so girl goes platinum. And I love this game! When it comes to the palest shades of blonde there are some things you should know that will help you enjoy the cool-girl platinum life a little more. The brightest shade of blonde always has and always will be classic so whether you’re new to the world of “bleach and tone” or a total veteran, you can use this guide to help better your process. Let’s discuss…
PREPPING FOR PLATINUM:
Don’t shampoo that day. I always encourage my clients to avoid shampooing their hair the same day they’re getting it bleached and toned. A common misconception is that if the hair is dirty the bleach may not cut through. That’s not true at at all. In fact, I typically encourage my girls to not wash two days before they come in for a bleach and tone. Natural oils help coat the scalp and make it less painful in my, and my client’s, opinions. When you shampoo the hair the same day, you’ve stimulated the scalp and bleaching after that can be quite painful. So dirty hair is good! Avoid excessive brushing on the day of as well!
Newness is key. When going platinum, you don’t want anyone “out of touch” doing your color. Instead you may want to go to to a colorist who educates themselves on what new advances are being made in the color world. There are so many new toners, new bleaches, and new additives that you, as the client, depend on your colorist to research and find to make your experience and color as wonderful as possible. Make sure your colorist is up on the newest advances being made in hair color. Of course there are classic/old school techniques and if they work and you’re happy with them, great,
Don’t be cheap about platinum hair. Go to someone who uses Olaplex with their color! It’s a bond rebuilder that gets added into your bleach and it’s worth every penny. I use it on so many people and it’s such a game changer for a bleach and tone. You’ll pay a bit more for the color but your hair feels like it’s never been bleached!
Have realistic expectations. If you’ve never been platinum before, it may not happen the first time around. You may have to settle for a sweet shade of “champagne” or a “winter wheat” that’s almost platinum but not quite on round one. Platinum hair happens when you’ve literally emptied the hair of pigment so getting to that point can take a couple visits, end of story. If your colorist gets you there on the first try, count your lucky stars! But if it doesn’t, have patience. Below is a photo of Allie Marie Evans’ first ever round of bleach and tone. While it’s very pale and very pretty on her, it’s not completely white. And I made sure to tell her that might be the case before we did it. Sometimes it just takes a couple times! Depends on your natural lightness, darkness and previous colors in the hair!
Stock up on platinum stuff! You’re definitely going to want some purple-based toning supplies for home use. Purple is opposite yellow on the color wheel so when you’re trying to cancel out unwanted brassiness and yellow tones, you’ll need things that have purple pigment in them. Here are some of my favorites:
- Schwarzkopf Bonacure Shampoo Okay, this shampoo is scary purple when you look at it in the bottle. People are often afraid of it when they see it for the first time, but it’s hands down my favorite purple shampoo for toning out yellow. It’s not as intense as it looks in the bottle, it tones amazingly well (and smells sooooo good).
- ColorWow Brass Banned Mousse This stuff is pretty cool. It’s basically like a styling mousse but with tone in it! You apply it to damp hair and then blowout and style as usual. I love this because you don’t wash it out and most things that you use to tone at home get washed out but this is great for any intense yellow-y sections you may have. Mousse is mainly used to boost volume at the root and most platinum girls get brassy at the root more than anywhere else, so this is a win-win!
- Rita Hazan Gloss Breaking Brass I love this because this is something you can do on your hair at home to tone and create shine. It’s like toner and treatment in one! I like to tell clients to put this on the root area for about 5 minutes after you shampoo, then work some through the middle to ends for 2 additional minutes (ends will soak it up much faster than the roots). Then you rinse everything and condition. It’s a great substitute for anyone who can’t get into the salon for a gloss in between colors.
- Sachajuan Silver Conditioner There are a trillion purple shampoos but there are not a lot of great purple/silver conditioners out there. For someone who really gets brassy it’s great to use purple shampoo but maybe it’s not enough? Maybe you like it super silver-y. Maybe you need additional reinforcement with some purple conditioner! I’ve been super into Sachajuan’s conditioners in general lately, they’re SO good!
- Shu Uemura Colour Lustre Cool Blonde Holy grail. The most intense at-home gloss toning I’ve ever seen. This is for those who love that ashy silver look ONLY. It’s pretty amazing but no joke, you must like ashy or silver tones. It’s expensive but very worth it. You put it on like a conditioner after you shampoo and it tones like crazy, not to mention, makes the hair epic shiny and soft. Ah-may-zing.
- Shimmer Lights A budget-friendly classic! This pack comes with shampoo and conditioner together. It gets the toning job done, but it’s not my favorite for the way it makes the hair feel. But if you’re trying to save money this will do the trick and you’ll like the way it makes your wallet feel! Maybe do a deep conditioner or coconut oil application once a week if you use this.
- John Frieda Toning Shampoo and Condtioner LOVE this for subtle toning. Let’s say you’re at that perfect platinum place, and let’s say you just need to maintain, this will be your jam (your very affordable jam!). It has subtle purple tones in both the shampoo and conditioner. It’s not overpowering and won’t make your hair ashy. It keeps the hair a nice shade of neutral.
- Bumble and Bumble White Dry Shampoo This isn’t like the other white dry shampoos. It doesn’t become translucent and blend into the hair. It’s a pretty intense white powder that stays I would encourage you to get if you end up with brassy roots. You spray it anywhere you feel too yellow-y and it blends out the yellow nicely. You don’t want to over-do it with this or you might end up looking a little too Marie Antoinette for your day-to-day liking. But it conceals any yellow at the root temporarily, making it appear more white.
Don’t wait 2 months to get retouched. Okay, I understand if you like the platinum look with roots. Very cool-girl for sure. However, if you wait too long in between visits, it can be difficult for your colorist to control the consistency of color at the root. Your natural body heat accelerates the bleach at the scalp, if there’s more than a full inch or so of regrowth, you could end up with what we call “bands”. Bands are inconsistencies in the hair that you can usually see when you lift the hair up straight from the head. You don’t want them and the best way to avoid them is to get your platinum hair redone every 4 to 6 weeks at the latest.
Don’t book other things around it. From a colorist’s perspective, you’re asking for a miracle if you want to go platinum for the first time and then make a dinner date a few hours later. Just don’t. Make sure you don’t put a time constraint on your hairdresser when you’re doing this for the first time. It can take all day or maybe just a couple hours. Better to plan for more time for both you AND the colorist.
It’s going to be more expensive for the first time around. Depending on your hair, you could have a lot of color correcting that needs to happen in order to get to the palest blonde. Once you’re there, root upkeep is a different story. But the first time you do this, you’re probably going to pay a pretty penny. Just know that. When I take a client platinum for the first time, I charge them in the same way I would for a color correction, because you just don’t know how long it will take and how many bottles of color you’ll go through. The first time is an investment.
If you have any favorite tips, trick or products you like to share with your fellow PLATINUM peeps, leave them in the comments below! We love hearing your favorite things, too and so do our other readers. XX