Blonde hair specialist FDP Hair Salon in Singapore swears by Olaplex, a miracle hair repair treatment that dramatically reduces chemical damage. Our digital lead, Crystal Lee, road-tests the miracle potion in her 10-hour journey from brunette to blonde
I didn’t think I would be nervous about going blonde. I’ve been there before – the whole double process of bleaching and toning. But as I was waiting to get my name called at FDP (Franz de Paris) Hair Salon, my mind was running to extremes. Is it going to hurt more than usual? Will it look bad on my collarbone-grazing do? What if – gasps – my hair breaks and falls out?
“It’ll be fine,” said Angeline Tan, my hair stylist and creative director of the prettily-styled hair salon, who assured me as we began our what-turned-out-to-be-an-hour-long, in-depth consultation. Her Instagram handle is peppered with images of gorgeously lightened locks, some of which belong to local celebrities such as Tabitha Nauser and Silver Ang. What’s more, she has been a blonde herself for eight years. So, if you want to go blonde, Angeline’s your girl. I asked her about Olaplex, and if she’d used it on her own (perfect) hair (yes).
In essence, Olaplex is a hair repair treatment that rebuilds broken bonds in the hair structure caused by heat and chemicals. Unlike other conditioning treatments, it repairs strands from the inside without coating hair shaft with silicone or protein. Miraculous as it sounds, the keywords are “dramatically reduce”, so some damage is to be expected.
I wanted to go as blonde as possible in one sitting, and Angeline suggested beige blonde with free-hand highlights (or what she calls “freelights”, to create dimensions) after hearing about my hair history, my everyday style, and even how I wear my makeup. She also warned that a full blonde ‘do requires a certain level of commitment. “The upkeep for blonde hair can be expensive,” said Angeline, “Salon treatments, great products, and frequent touch-ups are necessary to keep your hair in tip-top shape”.
Then, the epic process began. I was first given a standalone Olaplex treatment to strengthen and prep my hair for the onslaught of chemicals ahead. Next was the bleach; Angeline carefully painted ammonia-free peroxide on my hair, leaving about an inch of the roots untouched for last. After making sure every hair strand was covered in bleach, she mummified my head with cling wrap and turned on the hair colour processor. After 20 minutes, the bleach was rinsed out and Olaplex was applied for 10 minutes at the sink before I went back to the salon’s chair for drying. This process of bleach-heat-rinse-Olaplex-blowdry was repeated for the second time to drain more colour.
Did my scalp hurt? At this point, not much… although my head felt really hot. The actual pain came later during the colouring/toning process – turns out those girls who went platinum on America’s Next Top Model weren’t exaggerating after all. Even though I’d experienced this before, it still felt as though someone poured acid on my head – and there was nothing I could do about it except grit my teeth and wait. The last couple of hours were a lot easier – my hair was rinsed, treated again with Olaplex, given some freelights (plus Olaplex), trimmed and blow-dried straight. 10 hours later, I was officially a blonde.
The result was amazing, to say the least. Not only did I get the colour Angeline had promised, but my hair feels soft, lustrous and strong, impossible as it may sound. Sure, there was some discomfort during the process, but the good folks at FDP Hair Salon made sure I was well taken care of throughout my visit, even feeding me biscuits so I wouldn’t go hungry. Here’s the best part: one week and a few washes down, my blonde locks feels perfectly textured (like having permanent sea salt), more voluminous, and I have less hair fall. What’s not to love? Oh, I’m also heading back to Angeline in about six weeks to go even lighter.
FDP Prestige Hair Care, #B1-06 Kembangan Plaza, 18 Jalan Masjid, Singapore 418944, p. 6841 0511.