For the longest time I've been totally unhappy with my hair. I've always been a blonde since a very young age but the problem with being blonde and getting highlights is that very few hairdressers can get the colour just right. It's a lot more difficult to perfect blonde hair than it is darker tones so I've always been wary about who I get my hair done with. I used to get it done with my cousin Sophie and I was always happy with the results but when she gave up hairdressing I was at a bit of a loss as to where to go and get it done. That's when I asked you guys on Twitter if you could recommend anyone in the Manchester area. I'd been to a very well known chain in Manchester just before Christmas and they completely ruined my hair so I was very wary of going somewhere new and the having the same thing happen again. However, after being recommended Catherine Boden on Twitter, I had a look at her website and instantly knew this was someone I could trust with my hair.
Catherine is a well establish hairdresser based in Manchester who is known for the special 'Hollywood Colour Blend' technique. She's worked with celebrities all over the world and has regular clients coming back to her time and time again. Do any of you remember when Tulisa made her come back and went from jet black to amazing multi-toned ombre hair? Well that was Catherine's amazing work! She's also worked with soap stars and the wives of famous sports stars. After learning all of this I though 'Hey, if she's good enough for them, she's certainly good enough for me' and I dropped her an email to enquire about an appointment. Catherine tends to have a relatively long waiting list and when I got in touch at the end of April, I was told she was fully booked until June. However, when I spoke to her lovely assistant Debbie and told her I'd love to get it done before my holiday at the end of May, they managed to squeeze me in. I went for a consultation a few weeks later so Catherine could check the condition of my hair and see if it could withstand the treatment. She told me my hair is damaged from bleach over-use due to hairdressers I've been to in the past overlapping bleach around my roots. She was slightly wary about doing it as her number one priority is to ensure no damage is caused to her clients hair but because it was only one area of my hair that was damaged, she told me she could work around that and not add any more bleach to the affected areas. I was chuffed to bits and couldn't wait for my appointment!
My actual appointment was on Thursday and I took the day off work as the treatment can take up to five hours due to all the different stages and techniques. As I mentioned earlier, Catherine is known for her 'Hollywood Colour Blend' technique which involves using various different tones in the hair to give it beautiful dimension as well as shading around the roots with a natural colour so it looks more natural. One of my biggest pet hates about being a blonde is dark roots - they look so unsightly when they come through and it means having to make appointments to get my hair bleached every 8-12 weeks. This isn't good for my hair at all and was just causing more damage so I told Catherine I'd love the top section of my hair to be my natural colour and then get lighter towards the ends - a bit like the balyage effect that's so popular at the moment. She told me this was easy enough to achieve and got to work!
As you can see from my before and after photo, my hair was pretty much all one colour so the first step was to add some lowlights to break it up and give my hair some dimension. Catherine said she'd normally add more to make it blonder on the ends but because mine is damaged, she only put a few pieces through to brighten it up. When my hair is in better condition, I'll be able to get more. After washing those out, she then shaded my roots with a colour close to my natural hair colour to give it a more natural look and that soft balyage effect. This also means that when my roots come through, they'll blend in with my new style and I won't need to keep getting my hair covered in bleach and causing further damage. The final step was to tone it all and get rid of any brassy tones so she added an ash toner and as you can see, it's definitely helped remove all of that nasty brassiness. I then had a good few inches cut off the ends as it had gotten way too long and the ends were frazzled with split ends.
As you can see, the final result is a pretty big difference! Before, my hair had no dimension , it was brassy and the ends were frizzy with split ends. Now it has lots of dimension, looks way more natural and ten times healthier. I can't thank Catherine enough for doing such a great job. If you're interested in having Catherine work wonders on your hair too, you can check out her website for all the details, prices and some amazing before and after images. I have to say that this is a pricey treatment and definitely more expensive that your standard highlights at a hair solon but I truly think it's worth the cost as no hairdresser has been able to do this to my hair before. Plus, with this treatment you only need to get your hair done twice a year, sometimes only once, depending on how well your hair keeps colour. That means a huge saving over time - especially if you're like me and usually get your hair done every 8 weeks to cover unsightly roots! Also, as the salon is in Catherine's home, it has a very relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. Keeping up with the Kardashians was playing on the TV (ideal!) whilst I was there and I was offered drinks and food throughout the whole day. They even made me a lovely lunch which was a very unexpected treat!
I'm so happy with my new hair and I can't thank Catherine enough for listening to what I wanted and achieving it so easily. I'm also looking forward to getting my hair back in to a good condition now I don't need to keep having it bleached! Bring on healthy long locks!
What do you think of my new hair?