Blog: Blonde ambition

By admin
21 June 2013

Our blogger tries out a new haircare range for blondes and reminisces about past attempts at blondifying her tresses

Sun-dried

Many moons ago, when I was an air hostess, there was an ad in the London Underground advertising a product called Sun In. It was meant to be sprayed onto hair before blow-drying to magically transform an ordinary mousey-blonde into a blonde bombshell.

My friend Carla and I each bought a can of the stuff. And it worked! After about a week my mousy-blonde hair had turned pearly white and Carla’s light brown tresses were strawberry blonde (okay, more pale orange).

I loved my blonde locks. I felt as glamorous as Goldie Hawn as I floated down the cabin aisle, inquiring, “Coffee or tea?”.

My South African hairdresser was not as impressed. He nearly fainted when he saw me about a month later. My hair was as dull and dry as Highveld grass in the middle of winter. And it was starting to fall out.

It took me six mousy-blonde months to nurse my “bolla” (airline lingo for hair) back to health. It was hell, because although I spend hardly any money on make-up, my hair is my crowning glory. All I have in my make-up bag are foundation, lipstick and mascara, but my hair paraphernalia takes up two shelves in my bathroom. I definitely don’t want to have to struggle with my bolla.

And I’d learnt my lesson. Since the Sun In experiment I’ve kept my hair white-blonde the old-fashioned way: with professional highlights every two months. Over the decades highlights have become more advanced and now hairdressers tackle tresses with a complicated combination of hues to give it depth and texture so it’s bright and shiny in the summer sun and has a rich, warm glow on grey winter days.

Washing in the white

Fortunately products for blondes and wannabe blondes have also become more advanced. These days purple shampoo makes your hair even blonder and not blue, and while aerosol products may not turn it white within a week, it will at least keep it healthy and strong.

A pack of fancy products for blondes landed on my desk recently – Paul Mitchell’s Forever Blonde range: shampoo, conditioner and Dramatic Repair. These products are in fact so fancy you can’t buy them at Clicks or Pick n Pay – they’re available only at salons. It goes without saying the prices are equally fancy: shampoo R245 for 250 ml, conditioner R245 for 200 ml and Dramatic Repair R260 for 150 ml.

But the range looks beautiful on my bathroom shelf: the shampoo and conditioner come in sleek silver tubes and the Dramatic Repair in a slim silver spray can.

As you’d expect from quality products for blondes the shampoo and conditioner are purple. Pale purple to be exact. They’re obviously not meant to turn your hair blonde but to make your blonde hair – which may end up dry, brittle and dull from years of bleaching – healthy, strong and shiny. The purple pigment should also tune down that horrible brassiness that develops if you wait too long to have your colour touched up.

I wash and condition my hair every day, so I was concerned the blonde range would be too potent and cause my locks to go limp. But no worries – the products can easily be used daily. And after about four weeks I could swear the intensity of my colour had improved... I certainly feel blonder.

But it’s actually the third member of the blonde range that my hair immediately fell in love with. The Dramatic Repair is stunning stuff. All I had to do was spray it onto my hair after towel-drying and, as promised, it gave my locks extra strength and shine. It also untangles the hair, gets rid of static, and when touched my hair feels soft and silky – just like when you leave the salon.

Would I swop my ordinary shampoo and conditioner for the blonde range? Probably not; I’m more likely to go for the least expensive option. But I’ll happily exchange my lipstick, mascara and foundation for a can of Dramatic Repair. It’s pure magic.

Now I’m just waiting for Paul Mitchell to come up with a Forever Blonde Dramatic Extra Volume, then I’ll be as happy as Goldie Hawn on a shopping spree on Rodeo Drive!

- Joan van Zyl

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