Do you know that thing where curly-haired girls really want to try straight hair and girls with straight hair do anything to get even the most subtle of waves? Same thing goes for brunettes and blondes – or at least it did for me. Here’s a little hair history for ya!
I’ve never been a stranger to dyeing my hair. I remember even at age 12, my friends and I would play around with colour washes and dye each other’s hair in subtle shades of purple. The thing would wash out in a week or two and no real harm was done – if you don’t count the webcam selfies uploaded onto the 2005-versions of social media. That was, until I discovered drugstore bleach.
We’re throwing it waaay back to 2006-2007 here, when I went from being a natural brunette to being a redhead. The culprit? A blonde spray from Kruidvat. I call this: the horror, pt. 1.
To be fair, I did meet my boyfriend at this time so I guess I was doing something right. 14 years later and he has stuck with me through it all – the good, the bad and the terrible hairdo’s.
In hindsight, it was not fair of me to expect the blonde spray to turn my dark brown strands blonde. Bleaching my hair was very much a trial-and-error thing back then – and little did I know it does. not. work. that. way. The orange shade lasted for a solid two years until I eventually decided to go brown again (with a box from L’Oréal – I still wasn’t ready to see a professional that knew what he/she were doing). But that also didn’t last long.
Onto the phase where the ombre trend really kicked in – the not-so-subtle partially bleached strands were everywhere, and I wanted to go from a boring brunette to a 2010 ombre blonde. Once again, I found a kit at Kruidvat and decided to DIY an ombre at home. It started very subtle, and I amped up the strength of the bleach kits I used along the way.
After all, the year was 2014 and that’s just what you did.
In all fairness – it didn’t look as horrible as it probably should have for someone that didn’t know what they were doing. Nevertheless, purple shampoos were lost on me and I rocked the brassy blondeness well throughout college and university.
In 2016, after landing my first job and paycheck, I finally decided I should visit an actual grown-up hairdresser and I got my first balayage at Toni Kalin in Antwerp.
I went a little blonder and had my dead ends chopped off and I loved it.
After a recommendation from a then-colleague, I ended up switching to The Pony Club and went a little blonder with each visit. I always loved the result, but eventually looked for a colour specialist closer to home. After another recommendation, I ended up at Novo Look in Herentals, which is where I still currently go!
Now that you’ve had a hair history you didn’t ask for – onto the actual blonde to brunette part. I loved having a blonde balayage but hated the upkeep and the fact that it showed that it wasn’t my natural colour. When lockdown happened, I 1) stopped wearing make-up 2) tried to improve my hair’s condition by not washing it as much (and failed) and 3) decided it was time to let the blonde locks go. There was no way to see a professional and my roots were showing beyond salvation. It’s like the hair Gods were telling me my days as a blonde were over.
So I went to Novo Look, discussed swapping out my blonde balayage for a brunette one and saw myself as an actual brunette for the first time in over ten years. It was weird, but it felt right. Kenny, the owner at Novo Look, helped me transition from blonde to brown and explained that the colour would probably wash out quickly – as he didn’t recommend using permant dye. It did – but I was prepared. It made all of this a gradual process I could ease into.
The way it is now, I visit Novo Look about once every two months for a ‘brunette top-up’, as I like to call it: either a brunette balayage, a root shadow and/or a toner. Over the past visits, the blondeness of it all has started to not peek through as much, and the brunette is slowly taking over.
Hope you’re all doing well & staying safe!
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Until next time,