8 Things I Wish I’d Known Before Bleaching My Hair White Blonde


Lockdown has seen many people go nuclear on their hair. Dua Lipa dyed her strands “orangina quarantina”, after first rocking pink. Hilary Duff switched from blonde to ocean blue, and over on TikTok the “just did a bad thing” challenge has seen hundreds of people attempt a DIY dye job. Some worked out great. Some…crashed and burned.

Thankfully I’ve so far resisted the urge to brighten my dull roots at home and instead am embracing months of re-growth (through gritted teeth) in anticipation of next appointment. As soon as professional help is available, I’m booking in to get my hair back to its bleachiest best.

My own color journey was sparked by none other than Taylor Swift. One minute she was mousy like me, the next, she unveiled this outstanding bleach blonde bob, totally transforming herself in the act.

Several years—and one striking, metallic Met Gala appearance—later, Taylor’s own hair may have returned to its safe place, but my obsession with those show-stopping strands had not subsided, so I paid a visit to top London salon Larry King to meet Harriet Muldoon, hair colorist to the stars (including bleach-queen Pixie Lott) and all-round blonde expert, to take the plunge.

My hair before and after bleaching it.

Charlie Teather

Now several years later and still converted (and utterly dedicated to Harriet and the rest of Larry King’s epic team), here’s my eight-step guide to the things you should know before getting white blonde hair.

1) Consult your calendar

This isn’t a decision that should be made impulsively. Having a bright white blonde hair is a serious transformation and one that will take some getting used to. I spent the first 24 hours in a panic that I would never recognize myself in the mirror again, and it took at least a week to acknowledge how much I really loved it.

Thankfully, I had a quiet week with no big plans. I wouldn’t recommend jumping in if you have, say, a wedding or family event to attend in the next few days. It’s highly likely that Aunt Joan will gasp, and you’ll want to be 100% confident with it to be able to take that on the chin.

2) There are various shades of white

If you thought that there was only one shade of white, you need to do a smidge more research before settling down in the salon chair. From creamy bleach to almost a purple, pearly white, it’s a good idea to think about what look you’re going for.


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