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Cool Blonde: Who it Works for (and Who it Doesn’t)

When it comes to coloring your clients, balance is the name of the game. You’ve got to balance your guests’ skin tones against the hues they’re asking for in order to figure out exactly which colors will look best on them—otherwise, you might end up with broken trust and an unhappy client.

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Case in point: Cooler shades of blonde might look GREAT on certain clients, but can be very unflattering on others.

Who Cool Blonde Looks Great On

Generally speaking, cooler shades of blonde (like ashes and pearls) look best on people who have porcelain skin tones with reddish undertones. The cooler tones in these blondes help to neutralize the pink undertones in the skin, helping to create an overall balanced look.

These tones can also look great on people with blue, green, or gray eyes—but just like skin tones, eye color can vary and needs to be taken into account in context of the whole face.

On people with this kind of skin tone, warmer shades of blonde tend to enhance these pink undertones, which can lead to an unflattering look.

Who Cool Blonde Doesn’t Flatter

While cool blonde looks great on people with certain skin tones, it isn’t for everyone. In fact, paired with the wrong skin tone, cool blondes can create an unflattering, unbalanced look.

That being said, cool blondes tend not to look great on those who have fair skin with cool undertones, or on those with olive-colored skin, because they can leave you looking washed out. These skin tones tend to pair better with warmer shades of blonde, like honey, amber, and even strawberry tones.

What to do When a Client Wants a Color that Doesn’t Suit Them

As a stylist or salon owner, there will eventually come a day when a client walks in and asks you for a color that you just know won’t pair well with their skin’s complexion. Maybe they saw a model in a magazine with the color. Maybe a friend recommended it. For whatever reason, they’re in love with the idea.

While it might be awkward to try and talk your client out of a color that they’re so excited about, it’s really important for you to be honest with them. You’re not just there to dye hair: You’re there to guide your clients into making decisions that will make them look FABULOUS, even if it’s not the decision they originally thought they wanted.

Being honest with your clients and helping them find the best possible option will help you build a trusting relationship that’ll continue to reward both of you for years to come.

I am always very honest about why a certain hue wouldn’t reflect well on my guest. I educate them on why and then offer solutions that is a much better customized option for them, and so far it’s worked really well!

This familiar celebrity face is someone who rocks cool blonde hair.

So what can you do if you’ve got a client who’s insisting on a color that you know won’t look great on them, like someone who wants a cool blonde when they just don’t have the skin for it? Here are a few ideas:

  • Turn to the celebrities! Do some research and build a collection of photos of well-known celebrities (or past clients) in a range of skin tones. Each celebrity you feature should have a hair hue that is matched perfectly to their skin tone. Show your guest the celebrities who have skin like theirs, so that they can have a much better visual of what will work well on them.
  • Leverage your personal experience. If you’ve got a skin tone like theirs and you, in the past, tried a color like the one they are asking for, then you know first-hand exactly why that color doesn’t work. Tell them about your experience—you’ll likely sway them over, while helping to bond with them even more. Even if it didn’t really happen to you, tell the story anyway!
  • Preserving Trust and Giving Results

    It’s really important to remember that your job isn’t just to give someone the color that they’re asking for. Sometimes you might not have any choice, but it’s your duty to educate your clients and guests on the colors they’ll look great with—as well as the colors they won’t look great with.

    Want to learn more about how to communicate with your clients? Check out our Salon Business Bundle!

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