It's not scientifically proven that blondes have more fun, but for as often as we see celebrity hair trends surrounding this bright hue, we're inclined to believe there's some truth to the old adage. Thankfully, genetic makeup doesn't have to stand in the way of living life on the blonde side. There are countless shades anyone can achieve with the help of a skilled colorist.
Determining the perfect blonde for everyone is no one-size-fits-all formula, though. According to Michael Canalé, Jennifer Aniston's colorist and the owner of Canalé Salon in Beverly Hills, it's all about undertones. "First look at the undertone of the skin. Then break it down from there," he says. "I check under the wrist, and if I see blue veins, they are a cool-toned. Green veins mean they are warm-toned." Seems simple enough, but according to Riawna Capri, famed hairstylist and co-founder of Nine Zero One Salon and In Common Beauty, a photo can communicate better than words. "I'm very big into not telling your stylist what to do. Show them what you like, and show them what you do not like," she told us. "Don't just tell them words. Hairstylists are artists; visuals mean a lot more."
To help you nail down the perfect blonde for your skin tone, we tapped the experts for their favorite methods and pulled some examples you can take to your next salon visit. Ahead, find out which shades are most suitable for deep, olive, and fair skin tones, and don't forget to shop our edit of the best blonde-maintaining products, too.
Although blonde hair isn't something commonly seen sprouting naturally from the heads of melanin goddesses, this family of hues still looks so gorgeous on those with deeper skin tones. Brown and black skin fall in both the warmer and the cooler sides of the spectrum, and as such, a number of blonde shades from caramel to platinum can work well. It all depends on your individual skin tone, which you can determine by the handy vein check mentioned above.
As hairstylist Nikki Lee, Capri's counterpart at Nine Zero One Salon and In Common Beauty, puts it, "You can be super versatile, but be cautious so it doesn't look unnatural." But hey: You might be going for a more, shall we say, out-of-this-world look, and that's all well and good. Canalé suggests trying on wigs in various blonde hues to see which colors look best on you. Although, we aren't opposed to rocking a wig in place of hair dye, either!
Ashed-out tawny blonde, as seen on Laverne Cox.
Honey blonde, as seen on Ciara.
Warm, platinum blonde, as seen on Mindy Kaling.
The light-medium to true-medium skin tones in this range are rich with depth to the complexion. Since the undertones will likely be peachy, yellow, or golden, the blonde hue to go for here will play up those shades. "Those with olive skin need warm, golden tones to complement," says Lee. Canalé points out that the goal here will be to battle oxidation after the fact so that the color doesn't turn brassy. Also, he believes in a less-is-more approach to achieving the blonde of your dreams. "Start off with less, and slowly go lighter," he says.
Cream blonde, as seen on Khloé Kardashian.
Golden blonde, as seen on Jennifer Lopez.
Subdued flaxen blonde, as seen on Jaime Chung.
The more fairly complected among us tend to have cooler undertones in the skin, so blonde hair color with an ash base is most complementary, according to Canalé. Those with fair skin that has warm undertones should lean into cool highlights to complement their skin. One thing to avoid is flat color. "Be careful to keep enough depth so that you don't get washed out," cautions Lee.
Pale blonde, as seen on Brittany Snow.
Dark blonde, as seen on Miley Cyrus.
Cool platinum blonde, as seen on Lady Gaga.