We're happy to present this story from our friends at Allure:
Hey, Olivia Wilde, you look pretty great as a blonde! The actress, who dyed her hair for her upcoming flick, Rush, is inspiring some of us around the office to lighten up. You in? Before any of us reach for bleach, though, I thought I'd check in with Sharon Dorram of Sharon Dorram Color at Sally Hershberger in New York City, who made it clear that going from brunette to beachy blond requires more than just making an appointment.
Here's what you need to know:
If you have gold highlights, then lucky you. Unless you want to go blond. "Some brown has so much gold in it that it will lift through a lot of shades of gold before it goes blond," says Dorram. That makes it really tricky to get the color right without damaging the hair. So you'll need to do a test run first: Bleach a small section of hair underneath — if it lifts easily, you can go lighter without frying your strands.
If your hair is medium brown, bleaching the entire head will make you look like a beauty queen — in the worst sense. "When dark hair is lifted, it can turn canary yellow, otherwise known as pageant blond," says Dorram. "It's so unattractive." You're better off taking your base color to a lighter brown and adding blond pieces around the face. "It gives your hair the illusion of being lighter than it really is," she says.
If your hair is really dark — even if your skin is fair — then you may want to reconsider your blond ambition. You'll need to lift your shade in stages (or give up and get highlights instead). "The color just won't lift nicely in one go," says Dorram.