Hey guys! I wanted to pop in today and share my experience going blonde. Man, has it been a long time coming! Four years in the making if we’re counting. And I was. 😉
Blonde Gone Wrong
I had several bad experiences with a few hairdressers and it had me terrified to attempt blonde again. A few months after having my son I had lost some of the baby weight and was feeling good. I was ready for a transformation and went to someone (who came highly recommended) with plenty of pictures and virgin hair that hadn’t been touched in years. A medium/dark brown at the time, I wanted to come out of her chair a medium blonde with lots of color contrast. She said it was doable.
I sat down, and four hours later she turned me around and said, “Sorry, your hair really didn’t want to turn blonde, but you’ll see some highlights when the sun hits it right. That’ll be $200.” I about died. She also chopped it four inches shorter than I had wanted. I remember driving home mad, disappointed, and crying my eyes out.
After that failed attempt and a few others, I decided to do it again, myself. (I was that desperate) You better believe I’ll never, never ever, attempt to bleach my hair again. I remember looking in the mirror as I washed it out and my hair was orange. Bright orange. I called in an emergency favor from a hairdresser friend who didn’t do hair much anymore since having kids. She drove over and made it light enough so I could go purple, and I kept that for 6 months.
After the novelty of being purple wore off, (and the fact that I was so over retouching it weekly) I took a box and died it back to brown and kept it that way for the last two years.
How I found Lavish Salon & Brooke
You know me and IG, it’s how I find everything these days. From local places to eat, to books, to home decor and fashion, to beauty. IG is where it’s happening. So when I stumbled upon Lavish on Instagram I figured I’d give them a go for a simple hair cut. I liked it so much I went back again a few months later for another cut.
Lavish has a very trendy vibe. It’s located at 1021 West 1st Avenue. I love that they’re in the heart of Downtown Spokane. Being in Lavish reminded me a little of being in Seattle. (aka my fav city) I love that they took an older building, repurposed it into a salon, but kept the buildings’ history alive with all the little details. It’s urban, hip, the salon is decorated in my favorite shade – gray, so you all knew I was gonna fall in love with it. 😉
Brook was my hairdresser the second time I got a trim and I loved her cut and style. Checking out her work on IG, she did amazing things with color. I thought, now’s the time, let’s try this again!
Originally I wanted something like the photo below, and sent Brooke a few pics asking if it could be done. She asked to meet me for a color test and to talk about what it would take to go this color. That’s when I knew she had to be good. All my previous hairdressers just said, “Sure! Let’s make an appointment,” never asking to do a color test or check my hair to see if what I wanted was really a possibility.
The Hair Chat
I met Brooke at the salon and we sat down and chatted about my vision for my hair. She was very honest, which was super refreshing. We went over what would be involved, how long it would take, and the cost of trying to go gray in one sitting. We decided that although gray wasn’t off the table as a possibility for the future, right now we simply needed to get me started going lighter.
Brooke actually says it best:
“What we started out with was dissecting the inspiration photos. We knew we wanted blonde but how much, and what would be flattering. After a discussion on silver hair and how lengthy and expensive the process we agreed on a foliage.”
I booked my appointment and showed up a few weeks later ready for a transformation!
Time for blonde
It might be time to disclose that I have a lot of hair. It’s very fine hair, but there’s a ton of it. Brooke booked out quite a big time block but my hair took it all and more. I was there for a good four hours getting the foliage & cut after. A couple of the other girls that worked there pitched in to remove some foiled sections that were done while Brooke was working at a steady pace to finish the other half. They were all so sweet and overall the salon felt super warm and friendly.
I can’t begin to describe how much anxiety lifted when I saw the foils being pulled out and I spotted the beautiful blonde underneath. I trusted Brooke, but had been disappointed so many times previously I was afraid my hair might be unable to go blonde. Glad I was wrong!
Brooke explains the process
Since I don’t talk hair, I asked Brooke to summarize what she did to get me to the blonde we were after:
“We did Foliage, meaning heavy foil, and in between the foils are lightened as well. In the process of coloring I started with a low developer choice and a protective lightener, this combo is Silk Lift Strong by Goldwell and 10vol. It’s my lightener of choice on big projects like this. The silk protein protects the hair while it lifts! On your natural hair I didn’t want to overwhelm the hair by over processing, know this would take some time. I microweaved the foil to the scalp and in between back comb the hair so it resembled natural grow out.
After you processed I root smudged you back to your color to give you a shadow effect then toned you with colorance by Goldwell patented to replenish lost lipids in a lightening process so your hair feels healthy once again. I used 9na 9ba and 10v, you pulled a lot of warmth so I had to neutralize those tones. After 3.5 hours we had your amazing hair!”
Is it just me or does that sound like a ton of work! So glad she put in the time and effort though because it turned out amazing!
By the time Brooke finished with my hair she didn’t have enough time to cut it before her next appointment so she passed me off to Katie who was equally as sweet and talented and finished off by giving me a fun cut to go with all Brooks hard work.
I’ve been absolutely loving the cut and color. It has so much dimension and is fun to play with up and down. I especially enjoy curling and brading as they bring out all the fun tones my hair has in it now. I can’t recommend Brooke and Lavish highly enough. If you’re local support Lavish and visit them downtown!
Blonde requires upkeep! Katie was kind enough to walk me through the products that her and Brooke recommended for keeping the brass away from my blond and making sure it stayed healthy.
She really liked the MELU hair shield. Perfect for if you blow dry, curl, and straighten your hair a lot. (I do all of the above.)
Katie also said for blonde its good to do a hair mask once a week. She recommended Living Proof restore mask treatment and I love it! It smells devine and my hair feels so soft after each use.
She also talked about great purple shampoos and conditioners and said Milk Shake was a solid option.
I’ll be going back to Brooke soon and see if we can get my hair even lighter! She recommended visits about 10-12 weeks apart. I feel extremely grateful (and lucky!) for randomly stumbling upon Lavish from scrolling my Instagram feed!