Platinum Blonde Maintenance: Purple Products At Every Price Point

I think we can all agree that alliteration was unavoidable.

Making drastic changes to your appearance can be like
an episode of Are You Afraid of the Dark?
or waking up every morning like it’s Xmas. The horror! The wonder!

Look, I’m real sorry if you’re living la vida lackluster,
but for those gleefully on a Groundhog Day loop of good hair days, I'm sure
you, too, have been told that with a great coloring job comes great
responsibility. It’s not enough that
you’ve suffered through the tedious processes at which dudes simultaneously
roll their eyes and salivate once your boner-inducing transformation
is complete. Your colorist may shove some products in your hands (jackpot!)
and send you on your way, but for the most part, they will probably recommend
some house products you can buy on your way out, which, for the amount of money
you spend on some hair processes, is just, like, so rude to me.

My colorist Zoe, angel that she is, gave me a couple
full-sized Bumble and bumble products, mostly for moisture care rather than color protection,
including everything from their Quenching line. The hair mask and the serum do a great job at conditioning and keeping away the poofs; however
the shampoo and conditioner won’t do anything for the Dawn of the

Since I’m not jumping into any chlorinated bodies of water, nor am I
baking my head in the sun, I didn’t really see why brassiness would be an
issue. I mean, didn’t I just remove all the pigment from my hair? How is it
possible that some rogue orange tone just appears out of nowhere?

Well, science
be damned, that’s totally a thing that happens.

Zoe brushed a subtle gloss on
the hair near my roots to give my platinum some depth and grit, which looked
awesome day one, but come day four or five, was indeed taking on a much warmer
tone. It was like learning you’re not invincible for the first time, which, as a
late-20-something with no health insurance, is all too relevant. So I did
what any rational person would do remedying an ailment that I have never
experienced before: I vigorously researched products on the Internet and then
acquired way too many of them.

Due to the apparent obsession with blonde maintenance out there, there are tons of products geared towards not only keeping your platinum brass-free, but also repairing damage--or at least making it feel less damaged.

Purple shampoo is a no-brainer to any head familiar with peroxide, but all the other ingredients other than the purple are equally important.

Clairol Shimmer Lights Shampoo

Clairol Shimmer Lights is a big duh product for blondes.
It’s available at nearly every drugstore, less than $10, and most importantly,
it works. I read somewhere that the
darker the purple in the shampoo, the better the toning, and this stuff is like
vibrant Gak purple.

Drawbacks include mostly them moisture-sucking formula and the smell. It smells like the cheap Chinatown-sidewalk version of Chanel No.5, like Bridge night at the old-folks home, like an explosion at the talcum powder
factory in 1936. And for all the times I’ve had nice-smelling shampoo that made
my showering experience like rolling around in a meadow, if but for that brief
time, Shimmer Lights’ scent sticks around, unlike the aforementioned wimpy

I used this shampoo for the second wash after I got my hair bleached, and it really did not do much to help with the dryness. Granted, my hair
was extra-thirsty already so I’m working from below sea level here, but the
brassiness that I initially spotted had been thoroughly vanquished, so I can’t
be mad about it.

Lush Daddy-O

Having never delved into the wackily packaged
natural-yet-sparkly products of Lush, their name came up quite a bit when
searching for moisturizing toning shampoos with pleasant scents. Their Daddy-O
violet shampoo, like all of their products, are made with fresh ingredients,
this one’s top ingredients being organic lemon and bladderwrack seaweed infusion (which sounds like how I felt after seeing Gatsby in theaters). But
for reals, seaweed's got those vitamins and minerals that, if I could, I would
push under the cuticles of each strand of hair myself.

The scent is like a subtle floral blend
that, while a bit froofy for my taste, is much better than
Shimmer Lights, AND it goes away pretty much after you condition. I used this
shampoo the third time around, washing my hair (which, BTW, is once every five
days for me) and my hair definitely felt softer and soothed.

This could certainly have something to do with the
conditioner Lush sent me along with the shampoo, their Marilyn hair treatment.
You slather this pre-wash treatment on your dry hair 20 minutes before washing,
and it makes your hair feel effectively stronger and softer, post shower. It
has linseed, chamomile, lemon and olive oil in it for lightening and moisturizing,
which are pretty much its only two functions as a conditioner. At $22 for
nearly eight ounces, it’s worth it if you have short hair like me and can get multiple
uses out of one tub; but if you’ve got long, thick hair, you’re likely to use
all of it in one go, since you have to really pile it on.

Daddy-O shampoo is available in three sizes, from 3.3 ounces to 16 ounces, but
considering the mindful expiry sticker on each of Lush’s products, I don’t
think I can use up my eight-ounce bottle in two month’s time (very infrequent washings,
remember?). When you think about it, $9.95 for 3.3 ounces, which you'll
probably be able to use for more than two months, is not a bad deal; $19.95 for the eight-ounce bottle isn’t a total splurge, but if you’re finicky about freshness, maybe stick
with the baby bottle.

Davines Alchemic Silver Shampoo & Conditioner

The Beyoncé of toning shampoo and conditioner for me has got
to be Davines’ Alchemic Silver products. Alyssa suggested them right away, and they did not

Aside from toning, their aim is to protect and moisturize the hair,
using a gentle olive-oil-based cleanser. Both have milk proteins for all the
thirst-quenching a hair could want. The shampoo has the signature dark violet
color, but is bluer than the others, and more translucent. The conditioner is
again a vibrant “You’re turning violet, Violet!” purple and has the consistency
of a mud mask, so you can glop it into your hair and mold fun shapes with it as
you wait for it to do its thing.

Davines seems to favor the dowager scent as well for these
products, but otherwise, they work like a dream. My hair color appeared noticeably
brighter once dried and actually felt smooth and soft. It was an expensive miracle!

It’s a pricey set, but it’s
worth its money for its Boarding School
for Troubled Girls
effect on my hair. My boyfriend twirled his fingers in
my hair and asked if I had done something to it because it felt so silky. I
said yes and then smacked his hand away and told him “NO TOUCHY HAIR.”

I know you’re not supposed to use these toning shampoos
every time you wash your hair. Since my hair’s been more porous and dry, it
takes much longer to become intolerably greasy, which is great because that
means I can extend the time in between lathers. I use a toning shampoo about
once a week, every other time I co-wash. In conjunction, my hair feels so much more like human
hair and not rubbery broom straw, as it did a month ago.