Chopping and Changing, Quite literally



Out with the old, as they say.

Every morning I wake up, I drag a brush through my hair and chuck it up in a bun or a ponytail. It’s very boring, but when I have it down it just sits there, dull and dingy. This needed to change. I’ve had the same style since I was 13, and it really should have stayed in the noughties, along with gypsy skirts and pencil thin eyebrows.


Everyone has parts of them that they love, and parts that they hate, but studies show that if you and 9 other people all put your problem area in a pile, 90% of the time, you’d choose to have your own.


I was jabbering away to my hairdresser this weekend, telling him about my hair woes, and he promised me a miracle. I’ve always gone darker than my natural colour, I have no idea why. I’m naturally a mousy brown but I’ll semi regularly chuck a box of rich chocolate coloured temporary hair dye on it to mix things up from time to time. Like hell am I going to risk it with permanent, I’m not that brave.


I actually rather dislike going to the hairdressers, the last time I went (February – I know I should be ashamed.) the woman told me off 3 times for different things.


  1. The obvious – straightening my hair. Ok so maybe the bottom third of my hair was only attached because it had been fused there by the heat of my GHDs, I’m fully aware it’s deader than the dodo, no need to tell me 13 times!
  2. How I wash my hair. When asked how I do it, apparently ‘with shampoo’ was not the right answer. Turns out my ‘the harder you scrub, the cleaner it gets’ method is completely wrong.
  3. The frequency at which I wash my hair. Well excuse me if I like to wash my hair every day after I’ve been in the gym. I thought that was called hygiene.


That woman had me convinced I was going to wake up one morning bald.  After that, there was no way I was going back to her, to pay to be insulted! So after hearing wonderful reviews of Ben’s work (I’ve linked his Facebook here, you may even get a cheeky discount if you tell him I recommended you), and my love for supporting local businesses, especially when I know the person, I took the plunge and dropped him a little message.


Lately I’ve been loving that balayage look, and I’ve seen so many people rocking it, it’s given me hair envy to the max. I made my decision and told Ben and he booked me in for this Sunday just gone.


He recommended using Optalex hair treatment to protect my hair from the lightener he was using. In fact, he said he wouldn’t lighten anyone’s hair without it. Why run the risk of damaging hair if you can prevent it?


I spent a total of 4 and a half hours with Ben, chatting about absolutely anything and everything while he worked his magic on my hair. You all know how I love a good pun or double entendre, so those were out in force. For the first time in a long time, I’d been called a virgin, but apparently my virgin hair would be a dream to work with and with regards to the length, we discussed different peoples interpretation of an inch and I told him I wanted to take of the inch that my first boyfriend described, not to be mistaken for the inch that my second boyfriend described, which somewhat resembled a centimetre.

nicole 1


That look of sheer panic when you think you’ve changed your mind, mid colour.



I’m normally shy and awkward when I first meet people, and although I actually went to school with Ben, it’s been a good 10+ years since I’ve seen him, so I thought I would struggle to make conversation and just look downright pained the whole damn time. Complete opposite, he mixed professional with personable so well, it’s obvious to see how he gets repeat business.



We talked about making the best of bad situations, we’ve both been unlucky at one time or another, but share the same stance that it’s not an experience to regret, but to grow from. It was so lovely to be around someone with such positive energy, and you all know how I adore anyone with ambition and a positive outlook.


When the colouring element was done, and all that as left was to cut and blowdry, Ben refused to let me see the colour until his masterpiece that was sitting on top of my head was complete. I tried to grab a cheeky glimpse, but he caught me and said it was a surprise. I am so very glad he made me wait for the finished result, because seeing it half wet and just hanging there would not have done his work justice.


The big reveal reminded me somewhat of the Princess Diaries, except without the wacky styles before the gorgeous end result.

Before and After

Yes, yes, I know. These photos aren’t great, but they do the job – you can see dark hair in the first and light hair in the second, what more do you want from me! 😉


I am literally beyond thrilled with my new lighter hair, and even though I have chucked it up in a bun today (hey, its Monday what’s going to win, an extra 10 minutes in bed or those damn straighteners?) I will definitely be wearing it down with pride a hella lot more.


What I learned is that when colouring your hair, always explore the best treatment available. Ask your hairdresser how to care for coloured hair. You hair is the only accessory you have that you cannot take off and change at will, look after it.




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