How I Prepared for my Balayage Appointment

Balayage Prepvia Hair World Mag

I wrote, a while back, about considering getting Balayage highlights.

After a long time, a lot of consideration, and a consultation at which I asked my poor colorist half a million questions, I decided to take the plunge. I booked for Tuesday, September 20.

Here’s how I prepared for my balayage appointment.

What I Asked

Remember, I’m a total haircolor novice. I’ve never gotten color at a salon before. My only experience has been my DIY Hair Glaze (which I have on lock), which is nigh-impossible to mess up, and a foray into box dye over a decade ago. Paraphrased answers in italics.

Is what I want achievable in one session?

Based on the condition of [my] hair, yes.

Is what I want realistic based on my current hair, lifestyle, and my habits?

Yes! Balayage is the lowest-maintenance haircolor option there is. Because balayage highlights are applied free-hand in a sweeping motion, there’s no harsh line that necessitates a certain frequency of touch ups. It’s also the most graceful to grow out if you decide at some point that it isn’t for you.

What state does my hair need to be in when I come in? Freshly washed and free of product, or is it OK coming straight from work with some product in it?

However is fine. Several days of product, eh not really but a day is alright.

What does after-care look like? Do I need to refrain from using certain things on it for a certain time frame? Do I need crazy special stuff like purple shampoo?

You should not use shampoo on your hair for 72 hours after your appointment. You can get it wet and use conditioner. After that, it’s fair game. You shouldn’t need purple shampoo, but you might find you like it if you feel your highlights look brassy after a while.

What I Did to be Prepared for My Balayage

A Week Prior

As soon as I made the decision to book, I used a cocktail of super-rich conditioners every time I washed my hair, which was four times between appointments. I mixed Aussie 3 Minute Miracle with Tigi’s Moisture Maniac and Self Absorbed conditioners.

The Saturday before

I applied Living Proof Overnight Perfector throughout.

Last Shampoo

The last time I shampooed before my appointment was Monday morning, and I applied the Living Proof product to the ends on Monday night.

My hair appointment was on Tuesday, and despite having pieces exposed to bleach, it looks and feels fantastic. I can’t recommend deep conditioning in advance of a hair appointment more.