From hot oil treatments to Olaplex, we've tried everything out there to save our parched locks from the inevitable damage of bleach. Now that there's more colour inspiration than ever before, we're finding it hard to curtail our experimental attitude towards hair. Can we ever have fun with our tresses without compromising their health?
Bleach devotees rejoice, and meet east London's Not Another Salon. Founded by Sophia Hilton, the salon's speciality lies in bold, statement colours that complement – rather than take over – who you are. On a mission to give clients the hair they want without the lasting damage, they're introducing their new technique: anti-bleach.
"New clients were coming to us with such extreme damage that we'd have to refuse to bleach their hair. After seeing so many brought to tears, we had to look at other options," Hilton explains. So what exactly does the anti-bleach technique entail? "Anti-bleach is an option that helps you achieve bright, vivid shades without having to bleach first, leaving the hair in better condition. We start to apply the new blonde lightener tint to the root, meaning the client can grow out bleach over time, too."
If you're looking for fiery reds and oranges, comic-book blues and greens, or purple and pink fizzes, this technique could work wonders for you. However, "You need to rule out pastels and ash tones, as we just can't lift the hair light enough," Hilton tells Refinery29. "If you're going from scalp bleach to anti-bleach, as the hair grows out you can see the difference between the two, so you need a vivid colour that's deep enough to sit over the top and blend them both together."
So what's the maintenance? The root top-up takes the same time as bleach, and you'll need to return to the salon every six weeks. "You need to top up the vivid shades in the shower yourself, too. We love INNOluxe Elixir, which rebuilds the hair while colouring and afterwards," says Hilton, admitting that "bleach is still needed every day in our salon (and we couldn't live without it!), but we're always looking for new ways to give the client something that'll tick all of their boxes."
If you're keen to achieve the same kapow colour but want to protect your tresses in the long run, anti-bleach might just be the treatment for you.
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