Why can I not get to the platinum blonde colour I desire?

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Hey there,

I have a terrible problem with dying my hair blonde! In my younger years I was naturally a very light blonde, but my hair gradually turned into a dirty blonde or light brown colour. I have dyed my hair every colour (besides black), professionally and with a box, but have managed to maintain healthy hair.

Now that I am trying to go platinum blonde, I cannot get it right! A couple of months ago I got very light highlights. Now in between dyes, I made the big mistake of touching up my own roots with an ash blonde box dye, which didn't make it any better (or any worse).

What steps should I take, or get a stylist to take, to get a full platinum colour? I am desperate!

Thank you,

Sasha, Cape Town

Hi Sasha,

Unfortunately you did not tell me how long your hair is. The length of the hair makes a big difference with the colour process.

I can tell you that the only way to achieve a platinum blonde is to bleach the hair to an ivory colour first. The hair needs to be as light as possible with no traces of yellow before a platinum colour can be applied for the colour to look amazing.

Please do not try doing it yourself. I suggest you find a top salon in your area which specialises in hair colouring. A good colourist can advise you in a real life atmosphere, and they will assess your hair condition first and the length of your hair before deciding which way to proceed with the application. They will also make a decision as to which strength of products to use.

If your hair is thick and strong in structure and of short to medium length, it should be a straight forward application process. However if your hair is long or has patchy sections of over processed hair, the procedure can be very different and may take two or more applications during different sessions to the salon.

Most of the world's top celebrities who change their hair colour from dark to platinum blonde have highly professional help and use the very best available pre and after care hair products to keep their hair healthy and shiny.

I also like to make you aware that once you have the platinum blonde hair you desire, you will need more visits to the salon to touch up the roots - it needs a professional colourist to keep your hair from breaking, and to maintain your hair in tip top condition. It is also essential that the colourist does not overlap the already coloured hair when applying the new colour during future applications, this will prevent breakage. Keep in mind that you will need the best professional home hair products to maintain your hair's health.

To keep your hair looking its best at all times can be expensive, you also need to consider changing the colours of make-up you use. I strongly believe that the face tone (your make-up) needs to match the new hair colour, platinum colour can make your skin look drained. For make-up ideas you could check out some of the 'platinum blondes of the world' on ‘Google’.

I am sure you will soon find your ideal colour/stylist to make you look amazing. A new you!

Pierre Alexandre of Pierre Alexandre, Manchester

Achieving that platinum blonde (think Gwen Stefani and Marilyn Monroe) is best left to a professional colourist. Unless your hair is naturally Scandinavian blonde, this shade cannot be reached with a hair colour. It must first be pre-lightened with a bleach, then toned to achieve that pure platinum reflect.

Speak to your colourist and see whether your hair is in a good enough state to be bleached. Remember it is a big process and it means you must take your hair care routine very seriously. Moisturising shampoos and conditioners are a must!

John Clark, Head of Colour at Brooks+Brooks, London 

A platinum colour is not easy to achieve or maintain. The best advice I could give would be to go into your salon and speak to your colourist as they will be able to help you achieve the colour you desire best. They will probably advise you to bleach the hair and then to put a platinum toner throughout. If your colour is not even and you have a different shade throughout, they will need to use a different level of bleach and a toner to achieve great coverage all over. 

Michael Wilkonski, Position Stylists at Joseph Koniak, London

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