Why I Stopped Coloring My Hair (+ Why I’ll Probably Start Again…)

Meghan Donovan in Brooklyn Heights in a Herringbone Plaid Jacket I wit & whimsy
Last year – somewhat spontaneously – I decided I wanted to stop coloring my hair. I had been highlighting my hair blonde since 2005 (with the exception of one incident in 2012 when I did single process brown/red-ish color and it was awful) and suddenly I was tired of the whole experience. The joke when I was living in California for eight years was that I was going progressively blonder every year. It wasn’t wrong! I’ve been a variety of shades of blonde for a while now and I realized last year I had no idea what I looked like with my natural color anymore.
Hair Inspo I Meghan Donovan of wit & whimsy
Costa Nova Day Trip - Portugal I wit & whimsy
Club Monaco Heleni Coat I wit & whimsy
Affordable Outerwear I wit & whimsy
Fall in Central Park
After deciding this last year, I had an evolution of hair color identity crises as seen from the above photos! I was growing out my roots but trying to make it look somewhat presentable by doing some balayage vs. foil highlights at the root. I by and large didn’t like how it looked last year but it was necessary to start growing out the color. This past January though I was invited to Nexxus Salon in Tribeca to get a gloss and the colorist asked me "do you like how your hair looks right now?" and I replied promptly "I mean, no" and proceeded to explain I’d been growing out the color since August of 2018 which was the last time I’d added any color to my hair. She recommended matching the remainder of my colored hair to the few inches of un-touched hair I had at my roots and I decided to trust her to do so. The photo at the onset of this post is how it turned out and therefore since January 24th I’ve been living life as a brunette instead of a blonde. I’m so glad the colorist made this recommendation so I could speed along the process and get to the point I had been working towards. I now know what I look like with my God-given hair color.
As a bit of background, before I started this journey, about four times a year I was spending at least 2 hours (and nearly $200) in the chair getting my hair highlighted. I always loved the results afterwards but a few weeks later my brunette would be peeking through and I’d feel stressed over it. (Which felt silly). So I figured it was time for a change.
Since I stopped coloring my hair my hair has felt so much healthier and so much shinier. I don’t stress over my roots or damage being done to my hair by the bleaching involved with blonde highlights.
That being said, an unforeseen side effect popped up. I came to realize that the volume I got in my hair was due to the color that had been applied. My hair styled so much more easily when it was highlighted and truth be told I’ve really struggled with styling it since it’s been more au natural. I did recently start using the Nexxus Volumizing shampoo and conditioner and LOVE them, though. I definitely see a difference in my hair when I use it combined with this Alterna mousse. I had seen on Instagram a hair stylist say mousse is they key to volume at the root of the hair and have been basking in the glow of this recommendation because I finally am seeing some volume when I style my hair. I like how light and non-sticky this mousse is, too. Finally, to combat the thinner hair I was seeing, I also started taking these vitamins earlier this year which I think has helped combat this new-found fine hair.
All this aside, I also think I’ve realized I like how I look better as a blonde. It seemed to suite my skin tone and overall coloring and now I am finding I kind of miss being blonde! It means 2018 was a bit of a wash of bad hair color as I grew it out but in the end, I am glad I gave myself a break from the chemicals, from the time and from the cost. I am not sure when I’ll start adding blonde back in but I do know I’d like to be doing something more low maintenace in the future. I’m pinning some inspiration here in the meantime.
Do you guys have a preference on me? Blonde? Brunette?
p.s. things to do know about coloring your hair and my holy grail hair products.

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