Claire Harmeyer
Updated May 19, 2020
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Like many of us regular folk, Lana Del Rey is missing her salon appointments because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Going months without our usual haircuts and colors is a learning experience, and as time in quarantine ticks on we’re left to our own devices to find an at-home hair care solution. Lana Del Rey has dipped her toes in many hair colors over the years, including blonde, brunette, and auburn. However, the singer has maintained a dark brunette shade for the past few years—that is, until quarantine made her become a blonde again.

Last week, Lana Del Rey posted a photo to her Instagram account highlighting how her hair color has changed during quarantine. The singer turned to an old-school (and sometimes ill-advised) technique to cover her incoming roots and opt for a blonde head of hair: She used lemon juice to attract the sun and, in turn, lighten all of her hair.

In true Lana Del Rey form, she posted a moody selfie and wrote: “When you have no choice but to go back to being a blonde because Kevin Tracey and Jacob are gone and there’s nothing but lemons left to cover your roots for nine weeks.”

Although we’re applauding Del Rey for her take-matters-into-your-own-hands mindset, hair experts aren’t so quick to encourage the lemon juice technique. The grocery store solution is effective in lightening hair, but the acidic properties in lemons are quick to dry out your hair and scalp. And although Del Rey’s hair has nice-looking results so far, for natural brunettes, using lemon juice can leave your roots looking orangey in the long run. If you have lighter hair, the color will likely look pretty, but the process generally isn’t good for your hair health. If you’re reaching for the lemons, make sure to start in small doses and see how your hair reacts before using more.

“Spray-on hair lighteners never stop lightening,” says celebrity hairstylist and owner of Core Salon Michelle Parkes. “So you may find that your blonde locks turn into an orange mess, and your stylist won’t be able to fix it for you until non-essential businesses are permitted to reopen.”

Although spray-on hair lighteners aren’t a long-term solution for dark roots, during quarantine, they’re the quick fix you’re likely craving. So if you’re looking for a formula that’s more reliable than Lana Del Rey’s lemon juice technique, shop the hair-lightening alternatives below.

John Frieda Sheer Blonde Go Blonder Lightening Spray

Target

This spray is formulated with a blend of citrus (hello, lemons) and chamomile that gradually and gently lightens natural and color-treated blonde hair. One reviewer says, “If you use it carefully, and maybe with purple shampoo, it does great things for light brown to dark blonde hair.”

Sun Bum Blonde Formula Hair Lightener

Target

This Sun Bum spray uses lemon and honey to help brighten your hair by amplifying the natural highlighting effects of the sun. One shopper says, “Can’t get to the salon, so I sprayed my roots with the lightener. You’d think I was a natural blonde! This is my new favorite product. Already recommended it to a friend and she loved it too.”

Christophe Robin Brightening Shampoo with Chamomile

Sephora

This shampoo is formulated with chamomile and cornflower, which work to lighten natural, colored, or highlighted hair. One shopper says, “I’m a natural dirty blonde and recently outgrew an ombré, and I can say this stuff took all the brass out of my highlighted hair. AND it made my natural hair lighter.”

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, HelloGiggles is committed to providing accurate and helpful coverage to our readers. As such, some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, we encourage you to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments, and visit our coronavirus hub.