Browsing Tag:


best hair products for blondes

Posted in Style by

best products for blondes

I love being blonde. It’s become part of my identity, and I love it, but it sure is expensive to stay blonde. Not only are the regular salon visits pricey, but upkeep afterward can get up there in price too. It’s worth it to me, though, to extend the life of my blonde and push it as long as possible before going back under the dye cap.

I’ve been dyeing my hair for more than half my life (woof, I’m old) so I have more than a few tips and tricks to maximize that dye job. Let’s roll tape on the best hair products for blondes!

Best Shampoo for Blondes

Unite Blondia Shampoo: This is a new product for me. I picked up a travel bottle at the salon on my last appointment because I had two trips coming up and didn’t want to fuss with pouring my existing shampoo into a travel container. The instructions say to only leave it in your hair for up to 60 seconds, so I got super pumped thinking it would tint my hair lilac if I left it on long. I paired it with Aveda’s Blue Malva conditioner, and it did take out the yellow that was starting to shine through. My friend said that it had that nearly-purple tint too, so mission accomplished! (It smells like grape, so if you’re scent-sensitive, skip on down the road.)

Jhirmack Silver Brightening Shampoo: This is the lowest-price shampoo I use, so it’s become my daily shampoo. You can get it at drugstores like Walgreens, and it works pretty well! (It’s cheaper in-store than on Amazon, too.) I tend to use it more after a few weeks post-dye when I’m washing my hair more than once a week. This has been my go-to shampoo for about four years and I keep coming back, even after trying out more expensive products. I think that says something.

Drybar Blonde Ale Brightening Shampoo: I decided to try out this fancy shampoo on the last Sephora VIB sale. It’s lightly scented but not too overpowering. It works fine, but I hate the bottle. The push-top doesn’t open very wide, so it’s tough to squeeze out enough product. It’s alright, but there are other more cost-effective options that work just as well (in better packaging.) I did try the matching conditioner as well, but I still like blue malva and Joico a lot more.

Kevin Murphy Blonde.Angel.Wash: A stylist friend of mine introduced me to Kevin Murphy a few months ago, and I’ve tried it a few times. I like it a lot because it doesn’t get overly bubbly – it definitely is a wash, more than a shampoo, and it hydrates hair really well. I like it, but can’t justify the cost.

Lush Daddy-O Shampoo: I love the smell of this shampoo from Lush, but I didn’t feel like it actually worked all that well. I had really high hopes, but my hair still looked a bit yellow-y after use. Don’t get me started on the companion conditioner bar either – I would scrub and rub it into my hair, and still not feel like I had even gotten any in or on my locks.

Bedhead Dirty Blonde Shampoo: Oh, memories. This was the first purple shampoo I ever used. It’s not too pigmented, so if you spend serious money coloring your hair, I’d opt for a different choice. If you’re a natural blonde just hoping to pull out some of the yellow from hard water, this is a great (and inexpensive) choice.

Tigi Catwalk Fasionista Violet Shampoo: I picked this up during an Ulta hair care sale. It’s very bubbly and soapy – it has a nice scent, but I don’t love it. Honestly, I think that the Jhirmack shampoo is better than this one. It’s inexpensive, but still not worth it.

best products for blondes

Best Blonde Conditioners

Aveda Blue Malva Conditioner: Don’t let the price tag on this one give you a heart attack. It really is worth it. Douglas J Institute has been my go-to salon for over five years, and I held off on buying any of the pricey products for a long time. In December 2015, though, I caved. I got the best dye job of my life and the stylist sold me on this conditioner. It’s the best thing I’ve ever put in my hair. It makes it feel super healthy, has that light Aveda scent, and really brightens and tones hair. I use it once or twice a month. I definitely recommend buying directly from Aveda, either online or in a salon, and joining the pureprivilege program to collect points. You can also get 15% off your first order online! I’ve not tried the blue malva shampoo, but I’m sure it works just as well.

Joico Color Endure Conditioner: This was an impulse buy when I was between blue malva treatments but my hair was starting to feel really brittle. It hydrates really well, and it’s sulfate-free, which helps keep your color healthy. It’s a great, inexpensive option to keep in your shower.

It’s a 10 Miracle Blonde Leave-In Conditioner: This is a summer gamechanger for me. Since I love being outside (no surprise) my hair cooks a little fast. (By cook, I mean drys out, obviously.) I’ve never tried the regular It’s a 10 formula, but this blonde one is a must-have. It helps with frizz, detangles, and moisturizes, and also helps to protect your color against the sun. When I first started using it, I noticed a marked difference in the brightness of my color!

best hair products for blondes

Other Hair Products To Use

Invisibobble Hair Ring: I got these in a Sephora value set, and holy, cow, you guys. These are the best hair bands ever – especially for working out. I used to use the Scunchi hair ties with the rubber, but they always stretched out and hurt my hair when pulling them out. The Invisibobbles don’t move at all, and the coils don’t leave any “bend” in your hair either. This was the only hair tie I brought to Memphis, I had it in and out of my hair over the course of four days, and I made a blowout last the entire time because there was no crease or anything in my hair. I can’t recommend or talk highly enough about these!

Wet Brush: I ordered a wet brush on a whim a few years ago, and I can’t imagine using any other kind now. It’s built to not pull or snag your hair, which keeps it from getting frizzy or frayed. This paddle version is my new favorite.

Dry Shampoo: When you aren’t washing your hair often, dry shampoo needs to be used religiously to keep your head feeling fresh. My favorite is Batiste’s Brilliant Blonde because it blends in super easily, so you don’t have to brush it in too much. (Ouai has a dry shampoo foam that I really love too, but it does take a bit of working in, depending on your tone.)

Alligator Clips: I like these for styling out my hair. They’re what cosmetologists use in salons – they don’t pull too much on your hair, and you can section it out really easily. (They’re also great for just easily throwing your hair up to get it out of your face.)

What do you think are the best products for blondes? Do you have any holy grail hair products?

July 10, 2017

#GetAGrip: Kenra Grip Trio review

Posted in Style by

I received free product from Kenra to review, but all opinions are my own.

kenra grip trio review
I have super thick, very wavy hair. Even though I have hair for days, there’s no texture to it at all. I’ll try to give it some height or volume and it will immediately fall flat. (Don’t even get me started on humidity.) For the last few years, I’d sprayed it down with sea salt spray and called my “beachy wave look” a day.

Kenra’s new line of Grip products claims that they’ll add 50% more grip and up to three times the volume, so I was excited to try them to see how it’d hold up in use. I used all three products to glue my hair into place for a long, humid Memorial Day party a few weeks ago. My first reaction was that I liked how it smells and how it feels – the Air Grip Spray has great grip without being sticky. Even the Kenra Whip Grip Mousse has a nice feel. Typically, I hate mousse because it feels so crunchy, but there’s none of that here. I put some mousse at the roots of my hair after towel drying, then took a blow dryer to it. Next, I sprayed the Air Grip in and used my fingers to scrunch it up. I finished it off with the High Grip Spray – Kenra has long been one of my favorite hair sprays, so I liked that there’s one in this line. The hairspray in this line has a matte finish, so it doesn’t add extra shine to your hair.

Kenra Grip Trio Collection

It felt like it was set pretty well, so I headed out to grab the bus in the muggy Chicago heat. A 45-minute CTA ride plus a 20-minute walk had me feeling pretty melty, but my hair held up really well! It didn’t fall flat, and anytime I reached up to scrunch the ends or “fluff” the top, the volume came right back to life.

I definitely recommend the Kenra Grip Trio Collection! It’s especially great if you have thick or fine hair that doesn’t typically work with other products.

June 26, 2017

top 5: holy grail beauty products

Posted in Living, Style by


Somehow, sometime, I became a little bit of a girl girl in that I LOVE makeup and beauty products. Trips to Sephora and Ulta are therapy for me, and some of my favorite BFF activities with Dani have been nights we’ve stayed in, painted on eight different masks, and given ourselves at-home pedicures. In light of that, I thought I’d share some of my favorite products today – they might even spark some gift ideas for you!

Read more…

November 18, 2016

Make-Up & Hair Ritual

Posted in Living by

daily face ritual/make-up applicationphoto via death to stock photo

As soon as I got in my apartment I knew I would have to install at least one shelf in my bathroom to get my makeup products out of the sink – the original apartment they showed me featured a huge counter in the bathroom, which was one of my selling points on picking this place. but naturally, as with every other part of this move, that wasn’t to be in my actual apartment (when you see me whining about how everything has gone wrong with this move on social media – I’m not just being a drama queen, it’s really turning out to be true!) So, inspired by my pretty new shelf, I thought I’d cover the products I slather on my face and through my hair every day.

I start in the shower with my face wash. I don’t really have a specific product, I just kind of use whatever is around or on sale. Right now I’m using the St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub which I picked up on sale at Ulta this summer and paired it with an additional coupon and rewards points, so I got two bottles for $2. I try to do a deep clean twice a month with Boots Botanics Ionic Shine Away, but sometimes I forget. Oops.

This summer I was in the market for a new primer, and right now I’m using Urban Decay Naked Beauty Balm for its added SPF benefits. It’s not really a true primer so it doesn’t seem to hold makeup as well as Hourglass or Laura Mercier.

After months of trying to make do with a foundation I hated, I picked up the Naked Foundation from Urban Decay as well. It’s smooth, natural, and buildable and I apply it with a stippling brush from elf.

For my cheeks, I’m a long-time Nars Orgasm devotee. On my Ulta haul earlier this summer I was really into contouring, so I picked up a Cargo Swimmables bronzer.

Mascara is one of my favorite makeup items, and right now I use Tarte Lights Camera Lashes from the Sephora Lash Stash right now but I don’t love it. I find it a little sticky.  I don’t really wear a lot of eye shadow anymore, but I do have the Naked Basics palette from Urban Decay that I occasionally use for daytime. At night, I like using the Orgasm blush for some color. To set my face I spray on Urban Decay All Nighter – apparently I’m something of an Urban Decay loyalist now (blame all the Hard Candy nail polish I lusted after as a youth?)

Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain has been my favorite go-to lip product forever, but Revlon has forsaken me and discontinued it this summer. I also like their lip butters a lot.

That’s my “everyday” face. When I’m feeling really lazy, I will just throw on some Garnier BB cream (SPF!) and call it good.

makeup shelf

At night I use whatever face wipes are on hand to scrub off the day. Right now I’m using Simple, but I also use Neutrogena and the Yes To line a lot. I really like Yes To Grapefruit – has a great smell.

My hair is kind of my baby – I use whatever shampoo is cheap, but I’m devoted to Suave’s Professionals line for conditioner. Deep conditioning once a week with their Morrocan oil-infused coniditoner makes your hair so soft (and it’s always pretty cheap too.) When I moved, my sad, broken, sucks-your-hair-in-the-motor hair dryer did not come with me, and I upgraded to a Hot Tools hair dryer, which came with a pik I’m newly obsessed with. On really humid days, I use Aveda Smooth Infusion Style Prep to try to tame the mane a little more. Apparently the cheap hair products work too, because last time I got my hair cut (at Aveda) they assumed that I used the full Smooth Infusions line because my hair is so healthy and strong. Who knew.

What’s your favorite beauty product? I’m in the market for new concealer so make some suggestions!

August 28, 2014

{fall favorites}

Posted in Living by

This fall I’ve been trying to get out of my usual cycle of Glee, Buzzfeed, and the same sad music (no matter how much I love it.) Here’s what I’ve been digging lately!


The League – this semi-scripted show about fantasy football is HILARIOUS. I started watching it at a friend’s one night and ugly laughed the whole way through. There’s even an episode called “The Marathon” which had me rolling on the floor laughing. I need to put an asterisk on this one – I HATE fantasy football, so it’s really saying something that I love this show!

Fashion of Glee – this is a website I didn’t know I was missing until I found it. It attempts to source anything and everything the cast or characters wear. Now that I’m losing weight and can fit into a lot of these things, it’s fun to buy a Rachel Berry sweater and embrace my inner style nerd (when the pieces hit clearance, of course.)

herbal-essences-long-term-relationshipHerbal Essences Long Term Relationship – this shampoo has made my life SO MUCH EASIER! I should have known it would be great because in high school I used (and loved) their straight hair formula. It smells so good, my hair is shinier and more easy to manage than it has ever been, and I’m sure it’s from the shampoo. On Black Friday I plan to get the conditioner to see if it makes it even prettier. – MTV VJ Dave Holmes was long one of my childhood crushes. Fast forward ten years and we are Facebook friends and he’s a writer for Vulture. Last week they did features on fame in 1998, and I lost my mind for them. I miss the 90’s.


Drive-By Truckers – they’re a band I should have always loved. They’re the south’s answer to the Hold Steady (my favorite band) but when I gave them a try a few years ago, I didn’t love it. They’re my friend’s favorite band, and he made me a mixtape of their best stuff. I get it now.

What are you into this fall?

November 25, 2013