Vanilla often has the reputation for being boring, dull, flavorless, you get the gist. But when it comes to vanilla blonde hair, there’s nothing ho-hum about the hue. The creamy shade has been around for some time, though it is seeing a bit of a rise in popularity with starletts like Sydney Sweeney donning the hair color.
And that’s not the only reason why vanilla blonde has become so sought-after these days. “A current trend is leaning into your natural beauty and there’s nothing unnatural about this shade of blonde,” shares Hidden Crown Hair and Color Wow ambassador Bradley Leake. “By design, it is customizable to any skin tone and has a soft finish that looks as effortless as it does flawless, whether you style it or not.”
Read on to discover everything you need to know about the vanilla blonde hair color trend to see if it’s right for you!
Vanilla Blonde Hair, Explained
What differentiates a vanilla blonde from any other blonde out there, you might be wondering? It’s all about softness and balance with this hair hue. “Vanilla is a perfect shade of blonde that creates a soft statement with your hair,” notes Bradley. “A creamy blend of cool and warm tones is a staple of this look, which allows the color to balance with your skin tone.”
It’s this “perfect balance of both cool and warm colors [that] creates a gorgeous creamy tone that is bright,” shares Kathy Debski, a colorist at SPACE by Alex Brown in Chicago. Finding that balance is an integral component of achieving this shade.
What to Know Before Going Vanilla Blonde
One of the best parts about this hair color, according to both Bradley and Kathy, is that it works for literally every skin tone. The blend of warm and cool tones means “anyone can pull it off,” shares Kathy. Bradley does make the note that it all comes down to using the right stylist to ensure they know how to blend the tones seamlessly for your unique complexion. Additionally, he suggests taking your eye color into consideration. “Both factors can help assist in deciding the exact vanilla shade to best compliment your features,” he says.
While this color looks great on everyone, it does require a bit of maintenance. “This look will require frequent salon visits to keep a nice light root and to ensure the contrast and dimensions are blended properly,” shares Bradley. Kathy mentions that “the darker you are, the more tone you have to control. So coming in for a routine toner would be very beneficial.” She also suggests using a thermal protector to manage color fading between sessions.
How to Get the Color
As a client, Bradley mentions that the keyword is “soft.” He suggests you tell a colorist you want “soft contrast, soft blend, and a soft balance of warm and cool tones.” Adding onto that, Kathy mentions you “should ask for a bright neutral color.”
For our colorists reading this, Bradley and Kathy have some useful tips for you. Bradley makes it a point to note that you’ll have to adjust your technique for each individual client, but the general tips still apply. “To keep the contrast soft, lift the base color one to two levels,” he says. “This warmer base blends with the cooler highlight to create an all-around lighter finish.”
Kathy reccomends that you “lift the client to a clean level 9 (inside of a banana). Then, use a glaze that has gold and violet in to make the perfect creamy neutral.”
Our Favorite Takes on Vanilla Blonde Hair
Bradley and Kathy each shared some of their favorite vanilla blonde hair colors to use as inspiration. And we sprinkled in a few of our favorites as well.
After you go vanilla blonde, be sure to use one of THESE best shampoos for blondes to keep your hair and color healthy!