I am not a risk taker. Despite months of having an Instagram of a platinum bob screenshotted on my phone, I keep searching for a compromise that didn’t involve a double process. Just the phrase “double process” evoked hard work and an enyclopedic product knowledge. I have a drugstore shampoo/air dry lifestyle, but I also kept ogling the icy blonde on my phone who was probably out for drinks in a designer leather jacket and not home staring at a screenshot from Instagram.
But I was scared. My research always led me to tales of nine hours in the salon, scalp burn, and the inevitable breakage. And then there’s the maintenance: You have to go back every six weeks to get your roots done. Have I talked you out of double process yet? Great, because I have news for you: You can still go platinum without all that work.
Ariel at Cutler Salon in New York City was on board right away when I told her I wanted (needed) to go platinum without an all-day double process. When I explained my hair care habits, which frankly don’t include root touch-ups, she decided on highlights. Since my natural color was already a dirty blonde, we could paint in the platinum for a look that Ariel assured me would provide the brightness and boldness of platinum without the root line of demarcation. We had arrived at a perfect solution for the cash- and calendar-challenged.
Fair warning for chemical purists: Ariel did still bleach my hair. She used individual foil wraps that took less than half the time of a day-long bleaching. Since my last round of blonde highlights had long been grown out and chopped off, the bleach worked quickly. It could take longer for those going in with color-treated hair. Once I was stripped of color, Ariel moved onto toning and glazing to achieve the perfect shade (this part can take two appointments to build the density of your desired blonde, whether its icy white or a more natural pale).
Any sort of color-treated hair needs care, and my stylists recommended products like Redken’s Color Extend Magnetics Sulfate-Free Hair Color Shampoo and the Blonde Idol line. In terms of styling, Cutler’s Micki Charles recommends sea spray and other products that help create a texture to match my new gritty look. Does blonde count as gritty? It does to me!
Disclaimer: I received my hair treatment gratis.