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    How to Choose the Right Hair Color

    Side by side photos of four women with different skin tones
    If your skin tone is cool and blonde is your goal; here’s what to do and what not to do.

    Laura asks:

    Hi, I am pretty confused about what skin tone I am. I can get REALLY tan, but I usually burn before I tan (at least at first). I am a natural brunette, medium to dark, but I get blondish high lights very easily (sometimes they are reddish). My veins are blue, though. I have never dyed my hair and I want to go blonde but I’m scared that I’m too dark for it. Then I see celebrities like Jessica Alba who have a darker complexion rocking blonde and it makes me hopeful. Should I chance it, and if so, what shades won’t look horrible with my skin tone??

    Jessica Alba- warm blonde . . . uuuugRihanna Short Hair Style
    Jessica Alba- too blonde!Jessica Alba – warm and cool tones

    Hi Laura:

    I think Jessica Alba is a good choice to look at when considering a hair color change such as you are. From the above description I think you fall into the ‘cool’ category as does Jessica Alba. That doesn’t mean your skin tone has the same depth of color, but you both still have cool skin tones, cool natural hair colors and cool eye colors.

    Consider high lights rather than an all over color to lighten your hair! My eye says, Jessica Alba looks much better when she stays closer to her natural hair color than going too light. My favorite hair colors for her are the chestnut browns with mostly cool (and some warm) highlights. These hair colors compliment her skin tone and eyes best. Darker hair compliments blue and brown eyes better than a light blonde hair color.

    The best way to go lighter with your hair is by first placing two or more shades of highlights around your face. Keep your high lights within two shades of your own natural hair color and it will look more natural. Two or more shades of highlights will add dimension to the hair. Start slow and see what you like best. You’ll hear compliments if your hair colorist gets it right.

    Don’t make the mistake of opting for such a drastic hair color change all at once (from your dark brunette to an all over blonde.) This especially holds true if you have never colored your hair before. Slight changes with hair color will make a big change in your appearance and not compromise the health of your hair as an overall lightening would.

    Another big thing to consider when choosing a new hair color is the time and $$ you are willing to spend on upkeep. To go an overall blonde, you will need a root touch-up every 4 to 6 weeks. With highlighting, you can go possibly 2 to 3 months between tough-ups!

    I don’t recommend the over-all blonde for you. I think it could wash you out, like it does on Jessica Alba above. Opt instead for the more natural looking highlights, no more than two shades lighter than your own hair color, and I think it will be just what you’re looking for!


    Barb Quinn on Google+  



    1. It was helpful how you mentioned that in choosing a hair color I also have to consider the amount of money that I’m willing to spend on it because the price varies. I was planning to have a blonde overall with a few orange highlights here and there because I want to look my best on my sister’s wedding. Now I realized it might be a little expensive, maybe I’ll ask a hairstylist about what they think. Thanks for the article. I learned a lot!

      Comment by Marina Wellis — November 20, 2017 @ 10:50 pm

    2. Hi Clarrie:

      Check out this article and the related articles at the end of the article:

      Comment by Paul Lynn — July 6, 2011 @ 10:18 am

    3. Hi, i’m thinking about changing my hair colour. At the moment i have ash blonde hair and my natural hair colour is dark blonde. I have blue eyes and have quite pale skin…I was just wondering what colour I would suit?

      Comment by Clarrie — June 27, 2011 @ 11:39 am

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