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Here Is Everything You Need To Know About Going Platinum Blonde

Do you have seven hours and $755? That's a start.

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Platinum-blonde hair isn't anything new, but quite a few celebrities (especially brunettes) have been getting the dramatic icy-blonde makeover lately.

But going from jet-black hair to platinum-blonde locks isn't as easy as it looks, so we wanted to explore the whole process.

We asked BuzzFeed employee Peggy Wang to walk through the process of going platinum from start to finish.

Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed Life / Via Alice Mongkongllite for BuzzFeed Design

With the help of Jan-Marie Arteca, a colorist at Jeff Chastain Parlor salon in New York City, BuzzFeed Life learned exactly how much time, money, and maintenance platinum-blonde hair takes.

First things first, there are a few things to consider. One main concern is the potential damage your hair will face.

Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed Life / Via Alice Mongkongllite for BuzzFeed Design

Even when it's done by a professional, bleaching your hair will damage it a bit. Because going platinum blonde usually means at least two rounds of a bleach process (and potentially a third or fourth process depending on how your hair reacts to bleach), it's even more damaging than the usual blonde highlights. To minimize damage Arteca suggests following the tips above.

Besides the physical preparation of your hair, there's the mental preparation of taking on a completely new look.

Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

Peggy says, "I photoshopped a photo of myself with Soo Joo Park's hair. I always wanted to go platinum, but I was mostly worried about how it would look with my skin tone. When I had mentioned it to other people, I got totally varied answers from, 'You can totally pull it off!' to, 'Um, I'm scared for you,' to, 'That only looks good on Korean girls.' I wasn't even scared that my hair was going to fall out or that my hair would be damaged to the point of no return. I just wanted to make sure that if I was going to such lengths for vanity's sake that I didn't end up looking dumb and foolish in the end."

Once you decide to go platinum, here's what happens first. Bleach is applied to the hair with a brush for what's called the first process of color.

Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed Life / Via Alice Mongkongllite for BuzzFeed Design

Time: 2 hours, 14 minutes

Cost: $200

The first process of bleaching lightens hair from its darkest point. Because the bleach is first applied to the back of the head and then the front, the back is washed out before the front. This way, the bleach will be on the hair for the same total amount of time, ensuring an even color all over.

Next, heat is applied to the hair, and when it's time, the bleach is rinsed out of the hair and the hair is blown dry.

Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed Life / Via Alice Mongkongllite for BuzzFeed Design

Time: 57 minutes

Cost: This cost still falls under the $200 for the first process.

Heat helps bleach to process faster, so heat is applied to the front of the head to speed up the process, which will make the front and back a uniform color. The rest of the bleach is then washed out of the hair, and it's blown dry to prepare it for the next process of bleach.

Peggy had dyed her hair within the past year, which is why the lengths of her hair didn't lighten to the same blonde color as the roots.

Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

When bleach is applied to dyed hair, the dye pigment in the hair shaft won't allow the bleach to lighten the hair as much as the new hair growth that's never been dyed. Due to this, Arteca suggested that Peggy get a haircut to get rid of the dyed hair and have one uniform platinum-blonde color.

Finally, a second round of bleach is applied all over the head for the second process. Once that is washed out, the hair is cut (which is optional but suggested), a toner is applied to the hair, and it's blown dry.

Lauren Zaser for BuzzFeed Life / Via Alice Mongkongllite for BuzzFeed Design

Time: 3 hours, 37 minutes

Cost: $200 for process, $40 for toner, $125 for haircut and blow dry.

The second application of bleach takes the hair from blonde to an even lighter blonde. The toner is what eliminates the yellow tint in the hair, making it a true white blonde. While a haircut isn't necessary, it's usually a good idea to cut off some length to get rid of the damage at the ends after bleaching hair, Arteca suggests.

As for how it feels, Peggy says, "My scalp burned. Oh god, it burned. It felt like it was searing into my brain and I felt dizzy every time I thought about it. Especially when they put that toner in at the end."

Now, let's go over the upkeep that platinum-blonde hair requires, shall we?

It's definitely not low maintenance, and there are a few key changes you need to make to keep the blonde looking its best.

Alice Mongkongllite / Via BuzzFeed Design

By following these guidelines, your hair will remain healthy and you won't have to deal with the yellow tint that can happen when platinum hair isn't cared for properly.

If you want to stretch the time between touching up your roots, Arteca suggests going to the salon every eight weeks for foil highlights instead of a single process of bleach. The highlights will help avoid the "banding" effect, which is what can happen when the new hair growth doesn't match the mid-lengths of bleached hair.

At the end of the day, here's about how much money it costs to have platinum hair.

Alice Mongkongllite / Via BuzzFeed Design

Plus, you'll have to factor in about $200 for maintenance every four to six weeks or so. Prices will vary by location and salon.

And if you change your hair color so dramatically, it's a good idea to adjust your makeup too.

Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

We consulted makeup artist Yana Markevich on the best way to adjust your makeup for platinum-blonde hair.

Highlighter: Because bleaching hair can take away some of its natural luster, using a highlighter or a luminous tinted moisturizer will give the skin a healthy, fresh finish.

Eyebrow Pencil: Avoid an overly done eyebrow, but define the brows you have with a light eyebrow pencil.

Black Eyeliner: Using a black liquid eyeliner is a simple way to make the eyes stand out without using color.

Bronzer: This helps to give definition to the face shape. Just stay away from a bronzer that is too orange or too warm-toned, which can look artificial, especially with platinum-blonde hair.

Warm-Toned Red Lipstick: Bright, bold lipstick colors play well with icy-blonde hair, and keeping it warm-toned will help to brighten the whole face compared to a cool-toned hair color.

Going from jet-black to platinum-blonde hair is quite a transformation, and when it's done right, it looks pretty badass.

Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

"Overall, it really helped me get out of my who-gives-a-fuck rut. I had just totally stopped caring about how I looked. I was wearing the same outfit every day; I barely looked at myself in the mirror because I just felt and looked boring. Now I'm just a little bit more conscientious about everything I do appearance-wise, and it's weird how those little everyday motions affect your confidence level. Putting more effort into my hair and makeup helps me hold my head up a tiny bit higher every day, and that makes it all totally worth it," says Peggy.

Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

"Overall, it really helped me get out of my who-gives-a-fuck rut. I had just totally stopped caring about how I looked. I was wearing the same outfit every day; I barely looked at myself in the mirror because I just felt and looked boring. Now I'm just a little bit more conscientious about everything I do appearance-wise, and it's weird how those little everyday motions affect your confidence level. Putting more effort into my hair and makeup helps me hold my head up a tiny bit higher every day, and that makes it all totally worth it," says Peggy.

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Lauren Zaser / Via BuzzFeed Life

"Overall, it really helped me get out of my who-gives-a-fuck rut. I had just totally stopped caring about how I looked. I was wearing the same outfit every day; I barely looked at myself in the mirror because I just felt and looked boring. Now I'm just a little bit more conscientious about everything I do appearance-wise, and it's weird how those little everyday motions affect your confidence level. Putting more effort into my hair and makeup helps me hold my head up a tiny bit higher every day, and that makes it all totally worth it," says Peggy.

Colorist: Jan-Marie Arteca, Jeff Chastain Parlor
Makeup Artist: Yana Markevich
Model: Peggy Wang
Special thanks to Jeff Chastain Parlor

Services were provided to BuzzFeed Life free of charge.

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