Sun-kissed hair is back – just in time for beach season! As fashion trends continue to turn toward ’90s nostalgia, salon colorists say their clients are moving on from icy platinum hues to more buttery blonde locks. These golden strands are gaining popularity as a way to infuse sunshine into the day, a signal of their hope for brighter times ahead. There’s a more organic vibe and less of a salon look to this updated buttery shade, which feels more natural, lived-in, and youthful.
Celebs Are Warming to the Trend
In recent weeks, Selena Gomez dyed her hair a bright blonde, while Lucy Hale revealed her new honey-lemon tresses. Margot Robbie is a blonde icon for low-maintenance girls; her color gives the best of both worlds, bright blonde and easy grow-out. Reese Witherspoon loves an iconic blonde that combines bright with darkness at the roots for a more natural look. Blake Lively’s golden blonde is worth a try if you want a classic boho vibe. The hue warms up the complexion and looks perfectly effortless.
The colorist behind Nicola Peltz’s honey blonde calls the shade “old Hollywood.” It’s a more classic hue than platinum blonde, he says, and these days, classy tends to fit better than trendy.
More Flattering, Less Work
Warmer tones are generally less maintenance than cool blonde shades. Even natural blondes spend a lot of time and money maintaining hair integrity when they go platinum. Cool hues can also be harder to pull off, while warmer shades flatter many different skin tones.
If you’re planning to dive into full-on butter, be sure to consult your colorist. They will look at your underlying skin tones, eye color, and lip hues to determine which shades are too buttery or just warm enough. You want a warmer tone to be more golden than straight-up yellow. Then weave in some cooler tones for balance.
Honey Blonde + Dark Roots = 2021’s Grown-Out Look
If you can visit your colorist regularly, a bright, all-over blonde can be worth the time you’ll spend at the salon. Otherwise, try a more subtle look with buttery tones throughout. A little bit of a shadow root will help soften the look of the highlights.
For those weeks between trips to the salon, try a purple shampoo to stop the warm tones from turning brassy.
IGK Instafamous Blonde Shampoo ($24, shop here)
K18 Biomimetic Hairscience Leave-In Molecular Repair Hair Mask ($75, shop here)