Love it or hate it – blonde hair is having a moment that looks set to last says Shevelle Rhule.
I don’t think I’m being presumptuous in saying that you either absolutely love blonde hair on black women or want to drag the weave/wig/hair off anyone who actually has the audacity to wear it. From the colourful discussions I’ve had on this very matter it’s a real marmite tête-à-tête. But I’ve always advocated pro choice and that includes doing whatever you want with your hair, whether that’s going natural, wearing a super dupa weave or dying it a Marilyn Monroe inspired platinum blonde. With stars like Rihanna, Ciara and Emeli Sande recently coming over to the light side I decided to talk to a few professionals to get their take on this blonde-tastic trend. “ Few people with darker skin tones can carry off blonde hair,” thinks award winning hair stylist Craig Chapman. “Songstress Emeli Sande’s platinum blonde ages and hardens her gorgeous face, while Rihanna’s blonde wig is too yellowy against her honey skinned complexion.” Point one to the haters. Lets try our vivacious Entertainment Editor, Mary Bello who has a sweet penchant for some caramel, “ It’s not something I always do, but blonde hair makes you feel like a cheekier, funnier, sexier and more amped up version of yourself, it’s just the thing for the warmer months.” Back up to deuces. Senior stylist from award winning Hype Coiffure, Natalie Joseph is a fan too, “I love Emeli and Rihanna’s hair at the moment their blonde shades totally rock! They look fierce and bold, demonstrating bravery, confidence and femininity”- game, set, and match?
Colour Me Bad?
Lightening dark locks to a blonde hue can often be a damaging process so it’s imperative that your tresses are in good condition before even considering it. “ What’s frustrating is the fact that so many people are willing to compromise the health of their hair to go blonde after seeing their fave celebrity” complains Craig. “But rarely does the celebrity ever meddle with their real hair!” Steer clear of permanently colouring your strands if your hair is weak, fragile or you suffer from a sensitive scalp. “ Bleaching hair is a timely process as Afro hair contains so much red pigment. So opt for highlights or add a panel of block colour to a certain section of hair to stand out from the crowd”, adds Natalie. With any hair colour aftercare is essential, deep conditioning treatments and colour maintaining products should become part of your hair regime. The temptation to keep up with the latest hair colour trends can be too tantalising to miss but as Craig believes, “when faced with the prospect of being left with irrevocably damaged hair it’s the best option.”
Being in the public eye A-Listers often have an army of hairstylists constantly priming and prepping their hair, which will naturally cause a lot of stress on their tresses. So wigs are a natural choice for most celebrities, giving them the freedom to try different colours and styles. “Rihanna uses a blonde wig to create the desired bold shade without damaging her hair. As they appear so realistic many people are fooled into thinking that Afro hair can cope with the stresses of harsh chemical treatments,” says Natalie. The clever options are definitely hair additions to give you the desired golden hue without the accompanying issues. “For anyone considering going blonde, I’d advise trying blonde pieces of hair near their face first, so they can get an idea of how it would look before opting for a new shade.” As the trend is to have darker roots showing there is no need to worry about having some of your own hair on show if you opt for extensions over a full head weaves or wigs.
Blonde For All?
From Nicki Minaj to Keri Hilson the common consensus is that this look better suits a fair skinned complexion. So if you’re more Kelly Rowland than Beyonce is this trend really for you? “ For those with darker skin, I’d recommend a more subtle blonde. Try the ombre effect; dip – dyeing hair with a deep caramel blonde shade (like Ciara) or go for subtle highlights in light copper tones,” says top hairstylist Tiff J from 3thirty Hair and Beauty. Then again rules are meant to broken and “ironically when chocolate skinned ladies rock their cropped virgin Afro hair in a platinum hue – it looks absolutely amazing!” adds Craig.
Is blonde hair for everyone? Well no. But should that stop you enjoying the attention of luscious golden hair? Of course not! So throw caution to the wind and let us know whether blondes actually have more fun @pridemag.