In praise of pastel (and how to find your perfect shade)

We have been seeing pastel hues in hair color for a couple years now. Kylie Jenner was the queen of blues and greens and Nicole Richie rocked lavender like it was her job. Of course, Katy Perry has probably had every shade under the sun, looking fabulous in each one. And just when it seems the trend to rule them all was slowing down, Hilary Duff stepped out of her salon rocking an envy inducing turquoise shade last month. I think it’s safe to say that pastel hair isn’t going anywhere. And that’s a great thing!

Hair color is no longer something we use to just cover up our grays (not that we have to do that, at all!). We use a new hue to bring out aspects of our personality. Our hair color, in today’s world, is just an embodiment of the women we feel we are on the inside. And on the inside we are electric, ever-changing and not afraid to make a statement, amirite? So feel free to flaunt that spirit—from your follicles.

If you decide to try out this trend (that is so not just a trend), there are definitely a few things you should know beforehand. First, it’s important to choose the right hue for you. If you have a cooler undertone to your skin, go for a lavender or a teal. If you are warmer, go for more of a pink or orange tone. You can easily tell what your undertone is by looking at the veins in your wrist. If you’re more purple or blue based, you are clearly cool toned. If your veins are more green, you are warm toned.

After you’ve determined what shade you want to go for, you’ll have to decide on how to get there. Most women have pigment in their hair already and will need to bleach that out in order to deposit a pastel tone. Because bleaching can be really harsh (especially on finer or brittle hair), you’ll want to consult a hairstylist to make sure you can handle it. After all, what’s a gorgeous shade of purple if you only have four hairs of it? If you are lucky enough to already have a lighter blonde shade, you’ll be able to just deposit. However, I would still consult a hairstylist to actually achieve the perfect hue.

I typically will suggest strengthening treatments in between bleaching for women who decide to go for it. As long as you are constantly replenishing your hair for each chemical process you do, you should be fine to get there in a few steps. And once you do have your envy-inducing shade of pastel, you’ll want to continue adding moisture and getting rid of those dried ends to keep your hair looking and feeling healthy. Do this with regular deep conditioners and maintenance trims.

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