Beauty, Hair

A Song of Fire & Ice: Decoding Summer’s Hottest Hair Hues

via Christina Aguilera's Instagram

via Christina Aguilera’s Instagram

It doesn’t take much for me to change up my hair color, but the summer usually inspires everyone to break out of their color comfort zone. And this year anything goes as Austin R. Medearis, colorist at Ted Gibson, explained, “[There’s been] a universal shift into ‘exploring one’s individuality.’ We’ve moved into a time where we’re constantly hearing ‘love you,’ ‘be you,’ and ‘do you.’ This shift is allowing people to try things that they’ve never tried before. I, personally, don’t believe that any two women should have the same hair color.” But while the colorist is all about customization, two trends seemed to rise to surface that are worthy of closer examination: the red tide versus the icy white-out. He not only shared his take on the trends but also offered ways to get the look with minimal damage.

The Red Queens — From Christina Aguilera to Ariel Winter and beyond, it looks like everyone’s seeing red lately. But Medearis notes there’s a lot to consider before opting for a rosier hue, including eye color, skin tone, makeup, lifestyle, and desired maintenance. So if you don’t want to shell out money every month to maintain a fiery hue, this trend may not be for you. “Finding the ‘perfect’ red for you make take a couple of tries,” the colorist admitted. “However, a well-trained professional should be able to put you in the ballpark of where you should be. Once you find the perfect red, your hair maintenance will increase exponentially. Red can be the hardest color to maintain and needs constant attention.”

The Ice Princesses — Taylor Swift was one of the biggest names to feel the Elsa effect this season, joining the likes of Gwen Stefani as an icy cool blonde, which stands in contrast to the bevy balayaged blondes and pastel pretties of 2015. While Medaris notes that the hue’s trend will turn over with the tide, any lightening of your locks needs extra TLC to stay healthy. “The blonder you go, the more moisture you’re going to need,” he explained. “I recommend clients insist their colorist use a bond restructuring agent such as Olaplex or B3 to help keep the hair in good shape when making a drastic color change. These agents help to maintain hair integrity and also help to maintain great color results, as damaged hair does not hold on to color very well.”

The Final Word — Regardless of what shade you eventually decide to try, maintaining that hue is the real battle. Medearis noted that excessive heat from styling, lots of sunlight, and other chemicals (like chlorine) can easily ruin your hue and cost a lot to fix. “Do not put any heat to the hair without a good thermal protectant, use a shampoo with UVA and UVB protection and understand that chemicals such as perms, texturizers, relaxers, keratin treatments, Brazilian blowouts, chlorine, and well water will affect color,” he advised.


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