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1. Take Photos (But Not Just Any)
I’m all about bringing inspiration photos. But here are some helpful tips:
- Find someone as close as possible to your natural hair color. This helps you visualize realistic results.
- NO FILTERED PHOTOS! Those colors don’t exist in real life. Try to use a photo shot in natural light.
- It’s okay to have a couple of inspo photos. Just make sure they’re cohesive and not contradicting each other.
- Choose photos based on the tone and placement of the highlights.
- Tone- So you’ll need to decide if you want cool/warm/neutral tones.
- Placement- Take note of where you want your highlights to be. Do you want to be rootier (more of your natural root color showing) or do you want highlights that go all the way up to the root? Do you like brighter pieces in the front? All things you should think about.
- Amount- How much highlighting do you want? Do you just want to look sunkissed and just have a few bright pieces here and there? Or do you want more of a dramatic change and want highlights everywhere?
3. Arrive with Clean, Dry Hair
Don’t come in with dirty, oily hair. This makes it harder for your hair to lift. Just think, the bleach has to work through that layer of oil. You’ll just be processing longer, and it’ll be harder to achieve your desired look. You should try a clarifying shampoo the night before or morning of if you can. Don’t come with it styled with tons of product in it. Don’t deep condition the night before either. Once again, another layer the bleach would have to get through. I like coming in with clean, air dried hair.
4. Get a Haircut Beforehand
I personally like to get my haircut before I highlight. But that’s because I have thick hair that needs a lot of debulking. This way we’re not cutting out those beautiful highlights we just painted. This is a great tip for my thick-haired girls and those who have tons of layers in their cut.
5. Trust Your Stylist
Find someone whose work you admire. Creep on their Instagram. That’s what it’s for! Do your research. Know that they’ve done something similar to what you’re going for.
6. Be Patient
It may take two or three visits to get where you want to be. Patience is key. Big changes don’t happen in just two hours. If someone promises that, then they are probably jeopardizing the integrity of your hair. No one wants fried hair! Masterpieces don’t just happen overnight.