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The Platinum Factor

People have been bleaching and colouring their hair since the mid 1800s. The ability to change the colour of one’s locks has not only allowed greater personal expression, but also has provided a chance to stand out from a sea of blonde, brown, and black tresses.

With all the developed dyes and shampoos today, people can now colour their hair a range of shades and hues from vibrant red to even a deep cobalt. However, not all choose to match their hair colour to a crayon. Platinum blonde is like —but much paler and brighter to the point where it almost seems white in some lighting.

This hair color is rocked by models, celebrities, and singers alike. Not only is it a more striking take on the classic blonde shade, but it also provides a fresher and crisper touch to one’s look. Although it has recently been seen quite often on modern celebrities such as Kim Kardashian, platinum hair has existed since the beginnings of hair alteration.

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Platinum Debut: Kim Kardashian wowed the world when she stepped out of her hotel during Paris Fashion Week with her unusually bright hair. (Getty Images)

The white-gold yet silvery shade has always made a statement from Marie Antoinette’s powdered wigs to Kim Kardashian’s recent new hairdo. The platinum blonde colour became a huge hit when the term was first coined to describe the hair of Jean Harlow, an actress who starred in the 1931 film—wait for it—Platinum Blonde. Other actresses, such as Marilyn Monroe, took on the unexpected shade to flaunt their luscious curls and to stand out from the crowd.

Male icons also embraced the bold colour, such as Andy Warhol, an artist famous for his iconic silver/platinum wig, which he used to cover his ailing hair. It was even rocked by Tom Felton in his role as Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter series.

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The Blonde Inspiration: Andy Warhol was an inspiration to the modern world, whether it was the art he made or the art he wore and became. (The Hayward Gallery)

Bleach has always been in fashion, but until recently the white-blonde locks were associated more with the indie and rock genre, courtesy of singers Gwen Stefani, Courtney Love, and Sky Ferreira. However, the mood for platinum blonde has become far chicer and sleeker, and has grown on long hair, instead of being cropped short to a bob.

Such hairstyles have been seen on models walking down runways, such as Sasha Luss, whose light hair gives her an angelic look especially with her equally pale skin, and Soo Joo Park, a model who outgrew her classic black hair colour and instead adopted an extreme platinum blonde.

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Soo Joo Park: Supermodel Soo Joo Park hopped onto the Platinum Bandwagon not too long ago. (Wilhelmina Images)

However, there’s no need to bleach one’s hair to destruction in order to achieve a stunning look. Another trending hair colour is rose gold: a beautiful blend of pink, red, and blonde, and maybe even a bit of lavender. Not only does it match with makeup products, but it also works well as ombres on dark and light locks like those of Sienna Miller. A rose gold sheen on bright blonde hair adds nymph-like vibes, while one can also achieve a strong, dramatic look by pairing the soft shade with fiery red roots, creating an interesting fade-out effect.

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A Fresh Look: Lots of people, like Sienna Miller in this photo, decided to go with a more playful approach by adding tinges of pink to her already blonde hair. (Mike Marsland)

Although bleach and dyes can take the life out of one’s hair, it’s worth trying a new look and changing one’s vibe. A simple change in something like the colour of one’s hair can completely alter one’s outlook and presence in life. Will you switch your hair to a striking platinum blonde? Or colour your hair rose gold, or another, perhaps more vibrant hue? Leave a comment below!

– Seiyeon Park (’17)

Header: Getty Images, Instagram
Captions: Faith Choi (’16)

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