A Much Needed Hair Makeover

I'm someone who is constantly bored with my hair. When it's long, I want it short; when it's short, I want it long. I'd dyed it a few times before in the past, each time with boxed hair dye at home and with some variation of a warm red-toned brown shade. In the past few years, I've sported my natural hair color, a very dark brown/black, and I've realized that short to mid-length hair suits me best, as my hair tends to look quite thin and straggly at longer lengths. When I went in for my hair appointment two weeks ago, I was ready for a change.

New hair!
My hairstylist is Natalia Bolanos, and I've been going to her for years. You can follow her here on Instagram to see her work, and if you're in the Orange County area, I'd highly recommend her! Below were my hair inspirations going into my appointment. I wanted my hair cut to slightly longer than shoulder length with a subtle A-line, and for my color, I wanted something that would be quite dramatic on me and different from anything I'd had before. On the left is the inspiration for my cut (photo credit: Anh Co Tran), and on the right is the inspiration for my color (photo credit: Cherin Choi). I showed my stylist these two photos at the very beginning, and she took care of the rest!
My hairdresser first washed my hair, cut and dried it, then she got to coloring. She painted on warm brown highlights that start at my roots before painting on the bleach mixture on the bottom half of my hair. The highlights aren't too visible in these photos, but they add an overall warmth to my hair and helps incorporate the golden blonde/brown ombre that you see. 

After washing out my color, she blow dried my hair and curled it with a 1.25 inch curling iron. She wrapped about 1.5 inch section of hair around the iron, leaving out an inch or so at the ends and omitting the clamp, and made sure to hold the iron perpendicular to the ground, never horizontally. With the exception of my bangs, which she curled away from my face, she curled the two or three sections around my face on each side towards my face, so that the waves would fall towards me and accentuate the subtle A-line shape of my cut. She said that for the pieces in the back, I could alternate the direction of the curl if I wanted to and to not even bother with the sections underneath. Afterwards, she finger combed through the curls and spritzed it with hair spray. Here's the finished result! 
photo credit: Natalia Bolanos
photo credit: Natalia Bolanos

I'm usually quite lazy with my hair, so although it looked amazing when my stylist styled it, I'm really happy the cut and color look great when my hair is worn straight too, which is how it is most days. Here, after letting it air dry for about 30 minutes while I did my makeup, I just ran a bit of the Living Proof Perfect Hair Day 5-in-1 Styling Treatment through my hair and blow dried it for about 3-4 minutes (my hair dries quickly).
Here, I've curled it with this Remington Teardrop Wand using the same method my stylist taught me (the wand is okay...not sure I'd recommend it), and I think it looks pretty good, if I do say so myself :) The best part is that it only takes me about 8 minutes to do!
Something that is to be expected when coloring your hair, especially when bleach is involved, is that your hair will become more dry. My stylist told me not to worry about my hair becoming super dry, brittle or breaking off, because we were using only small amounts of bleach (as in, I wasn't trying to become platinum blonde). I'd say that while my hair isn't as soft or silky as it was, it's only a little bit drier to the touch than it was before, and it's definitely not brittle or damaged feeling at all. I'll talk about all the products I use in my hair in another post soon.

Overall, I'm in love with my new hair. I love how golden the color turned out (very different from anything I've had before!), and I think it's the perfect color for me for spring and summer. As for the cut, I was pleasantly surprised by how much more full and voluminous my hair feels! I like that the subtle graduated A-line keeps the long bob (aka lob) from looking too young and juvenile.

Funny story: I've actually had a lot of mixed reactions to my hair. Some people have told me, "Wow! I love it! It looks so good on you!" while others react with, "You....changed your hair....(nods in silence)." Doesn't bother me either way, because I LOVE IT :)

If you're interested in visiting Natalia, feel free to check her Instagram for her contact info.

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