Reality check for rainbow hair

rainbowSo I’ve covered how to care for blonde hair, and how to fix damaged hair, but I wanted to address a personal favourite of mine – rainbow hair.  By this, I mean any unnatural/pastel/crazy/bright/unicorn/mermaid/add-your-own-adjective hair.

I’ve been MOST shades of the colour wheel over the last 12 years (in fact – I think I’ve now come full circle!) and every week I have more clients requesting brighter shades, so I would like to pass on a few tips on what to expect, and how to extend the life of your colour.

  • GO TO A TRUSTED COLOURIST.  Now, I’m not saying this to promote my services, but I’ve seen way too many botched jobs in my life to not stress this fact. Even if it’s just to apply lightener/decolouriser (bleach, in non-salon terms) to your roots every 6 – 8 weeks.  I often do my own colour, but I’ll always have the roots done in-salon.  Once you overlap bleach onto already lightened hair, you run the risk of a chemical cut (i.e. your hair snapping off!), and your hair will have the consistency of chewing gum.  Niiiice.  So step away from the box.
  • Your dream Pinterest colour might not be achieved.  Sorry to burst your bubble.  It could be that your hair is too damaged, too porous, too stubborn.  BUT!  If you’re willing to be patient, and really treat your hair (refer to this post for product recommendations), you might be able to get Pin-worthy hair after all!  Your colourist will suggest lifting your hair in stages, and then toning brassiness down after each session until you get to the desired lightness to go all out bold.  Trust them on this! As a side note – loads of Pinterest hair pictures have been digitally altered and does not look like that in real life.
  • Expect to pay for quality.  These colour processes usually take up to 4-5 hours, in which your colourist could’ve seen other clients.  This is also where experience comes in, especially when it comes to advanced techniques such as balayage.
  • To get the purest colour, your hair needs to be lifted to the colour of the inside of a banana peel.  ANY stronger yellow, orange, or red in your hair will affect the result, and you could end up with a murky colour.  You’ll then need to lift it lighter.  I’d always recommend waiting at least 6 weeks, whilst doing intensive protein treatments, before going for another lifting process if the first session haven’t done enough.
  • Lavender/silver/light blue and generally all other pastels are sometimes the hardest shades to achieve (and incidentally the most sought after shades).  This is because your hair needs to be lifted to an almost pure white blonde, Khaleesi style (same reasons as the previous point). These tones are very delicate, and would need to be re-toned quite often.
  • Your hair might be a bit more sensitised.  Be gentle with it.


  • You wouldn’t throw a £20 000 couture gown in the washing machine, would you? Stop washing your custom coloured hair with the equivalent of dishwashing liquid then!!  Make sure you use colour safe professional products, (the no sulphate shampoos and conditioners from Pureology are ideal) and definitely boost the protein levels by using strengthening treatments – Redken’s CAT still is my favourite.
  • Maintenance.  You will most probably need to do touch-ups quite often.  Depending on a few factors, your colour will start to fade after a few washes.  An easy trick (for a straight-forward colour) is to fill up a small bottle with conditioner, and add a few drops of your colour.  Shake, and use once a week instead of your normal conditioner – you might want to use gloves for this!
  • Step away from heat.  This includes the sun, excessive blowdrying, other heated tools, and hot water.  Also, try to stretch your shampoos out as far as you can to keep the colour stronger for longer.


Treat your hair like the delicate fabric it is, and it will reward you with double-takes, a confidence boost, and the best ice breaker there is for awkward events where you don’t know anyone.  Have fun with it!!

For the bright-haired babes out there – what do you wish you knew before you went bold? Any tips you’d like to share?

7 ways to care for blonde hair

blondeToffee, honey, caramel, strawberry, peach, wheat, champagne – No, I’m not listing ingredients for a cocktail, these are just some of the delectable shades you could achieve in blonde!

So whether your colour muse is Gwen, Jennifer (Aniston, Lopez OR Lawrence), Cara, Taylor or Rosie, these tips will keep your blonde tresses looking glossier for longer.


1. Silver shampoo silver shampoo

Over time, your colour might go a bit brassy.  A silver shampoo will act as an instant pick me up, gently toning down the yellowness. You see, purple is exact opposite of yellow on the color wheel, which is why it cools the brassy tones down.  I sometimes even suggest this to my golden haired clients to use before their next appointment, just to brighten up the colour a bit more.  My favourites are by L’Oreal Professional, Bleach London, and Schwarzkopf.

2.  Low heat

As you might well know, your hair could be a bit more fragile after a lightening treatment. Limit hair breakage by using your hairdryer on a lower setting, avoid overusing heated tools. And ALWAYS use heat protection!

3.  Treatment

I’ve already written a post about how to look after sensitised hair here, where you could read more about my product recommendations.  A few extra minutes of doing a deep conditioning treatment once a week could keep your hair stronger, healthier, and glossier.

4.  Dry shampoo

Little cans of wonder.. Batiste is my tried and tested brand, and a little goes a long way! You don’t want to be shampooing your hair too often.  The more you wash, the more you remove the necessary natural oils your hair needs to be healthy, and by overstimulating the scalp you end up creating more oil, with the result being you having to wash your hair more often.  It’s a vicious cycle!


5.  Colour Gloss

This has two uses – to get rid of unwanted brassiness, and add a beautiful shine to your hair.  Your colourist might be doing this at your regular appointments already (toning your hair) but to prolong the life of your colour, you might want to opt for a gloss inbetween visits.  It’s not as harsh as other colour services, and a lot of glosses have got conditioning benefits too!

6.  Add dimension with lowlights

After years of doing a full head of highlights, does your colour appear a bit flat?  By adding a second colour to the mix (this could be close to your natural base, or even just a different shade of blonde) you’ll fool the eye into thinking that your hair is much thicker, and your blonde will appear brighter, as there’s more depth in the colour.  Having one of the darker tones close to that of your natural colour will allow for a much gentler regrowth, too!

7.  Balayage

Not sure you when you could make your next appointment?  Enter the BALAYAGE. Balayage is French for sweeping, and in recent years a lot of our brunette sisters have been using this technique to subtly brighten their ends of the hair by freehand painting.  So by darkening the base of your hair, sweeping the colour into the blonde ends, you’ll create a similar effect, leaving you with a new look, and much less maintenance! (But please – do not try this at home!!) This will also add much more movement and depth, similar to lowlights.

I really hope that you managed to get a few tips out of this, and would love to know what YOU do to keep your blonde looking gorgeous!



2014 hair collageYes, I’m going ALL OUT cliched today.  New Year, New Beginnings, etcetera.  Yes, I solemnly pledge to start blogging more frequently.  I haven’t blogged in almost 2 years (!) but I plan to rectify that.  Promise.

Instead of rambling on about the last year’s happenings, I thought I’d share collages instead, one with some of my hair creations, one with some of my photoshoot/behind the scenes highlights.  You could follow me on Instagram for more!

Elbie van Eeden

I’ve also started to be more active on Pinterest, if you’d like to to join me in procastrinating and killing a few hours by looking at pretty pictures :)

I’m truly grateful for so many blessings in 2014 – I’ve met loads of inspiring people, stayed in a french castle, done make-up on a mermaid, worked with live animals, created superhero hair for some of the most amazing women I’ll ever know, won a competition hosted by the V&A Museum, and I’m super excited about what 2015 holds!

This year has been great, but it also felt like I was missing something big – specific direction and goals.  I’ve been so busy working IN my business, that I kind of forgot to work AT it.  That is all going to change.

So what will this year bring?  My plan is to build this little blog of mine into something better, I’d like to venture into vlogging (eek – my mug on a screen!), create an avant garde hair collection, and looking into starting a creative studio with other creatives.  There.  I’ve said it, now I have to achieve it.   No biggie, right?

I’ve started to use Veronica Dearly’s Terrific Project Planners to kickstart me into gear – check it out here

terrificSo here’s to an adventurous, exciting, challenging, go-big-or-go-home new year!

Now I would like to know – what are YOU going to change in 2015?




About Love Scarlett..

Photography -  Hair - Headpiece -

Photography – Lisa Jane
Make-up – Me
Hair – Smooth You
Headpiece – DC Bouquets

Penny from Tigerlily Weddings had a dream.  She wanted to create a platform to showcase the best of UK’s talent in the wedding industry and beyond. After months and months of hard work, her efforts has paid off, and Love Scarlett was born.

Love Scarlett is a beautifully designed online journal, featuring a team of people, including fitness instructors, sommeliers, photographers, DJs, and hair and make-up artists, to name a few.  By letting the normally ‘behind-the-scenes’ wedding suppliers have a platform, Love Scarlett aims to educate and enlighten people, whether they’re getting married, or just want to be inspired.

I’m proud to be one of the partners, you could view some of my work on the journal here, here, and here.  I will also be doing more how-to’s, shoots and events with the team, including workshops, so keep an eye out for them!

I hope that Love Scarlett will inspire you as much as it inspires me.  I’m looking forward to watching this precious flower grow.

Love Scarlett Website // Love Scarlett Twitter // Love Scarlett Facebook


BLOWDRYING 101 – Part One

Blowdry 2

Further to my ‘How to make the best of your hair’ posts, I wanted to go into more detail, explaining how to do a salon-quality va-va-voom blowdry.

Often, it could just be one or two things that you might not do at the moment that will make a world of difference!

Starting at the basics:


Elbie van Eeden

1. Hairdryer:  A good quality hairdryer is going to make a LOT of difference.  I use hairstylist favourite, Parlux 3500 Compact.  Although it’s one of their lighter models, it’s still pretty heavy to do a  blowdry if you’ve got loads of hair.  You could also look at Diva hairdryers, or trusty Babyliss.

2. Nozzle:  That little pointed attachment you got with your hairdryer? Hope you kept it! This is almost as important as your hairdryer itself.  Frizzy hair will greatly benefit from using one.  If you don’t use a nozzle, the dryer will blow your hair all over the place, and open the cuticle (the outer surface of your hair) making the hair appear even more frizzy.  A nozzle will help you direct the airflow along the length of the hair from roots to ends to smooth the cuticle, create more shine and give hold to the hairstyle.

3. Hair sectioning clips:  You could get these from most beauty supply stores. Crocodile clips work well if you have a lot of hair.  As soon as you start sectioning your hair in smaller  pieces to blowdry, you’ll have much more control.  You will also end up saving time in the long run.

3.  Brushes:

  • Tangle Teezer:  Believe the hype.  This will brush through your hair painlessly, getting rid of knots and cause less breakage in the long run.  Use on wet or dry hair.
  • Basic Round Brush: This versatile brush works best to manipulate hair, to create volume and movement/loose curls.  Choose one with a heat-retaining barrel to help with keeping the desired shape.  I use these ones from Denman.  I like having a little bit of weight in my handle, I feel that it gives me more control when blowdrying.  Vary the size of the brush head depending on how much hair you are working with and how loose or tight you want the volume/curl.
  • Boar Bristle Brush: Whether you’re using it to create a sleek ponytail, or to blowdry, the densely packed bristles of a boar brush are great for smoothing hair.  This brush is great for blowdrying hair straight, as it smooths and straightens at the same time.

4.  Hair product:  Not everyone agrees with me, but I still insist on using some kind of heat protection in your hair before you use any heat.  You wouldn’t (well, shouldn’t!) lie in the sun without sunscreen, would you?

Some of my favourites (although these change!)

  • For smooth locks:  Kérastase Oléo-Relax – Trust me on this one.  a little goes a LONG way.
  • For mega volume:  Redken Guts 10 Spray Foam – Spray the mousse directly on your roots, no mess = genius!
  • For everyday heat protection:  Redken Satinwear 02 – a non-oily heat protectant, especially good because it won’t make you feel like you have ‘product’ in your hair.

I hope that this inspires you to look through your existing tools, and possibly invest in a few new ones to make your life easier.  I will go into more detail as the series continues, but feel free to let me know in the comments what your go-to hair tools are!


Time for a change?

*EDIT* – The promotion is now extended until the end of March, if you book to have a cut and colour done during weekdays between 9:00 and 16:00 you’ll still get 15% off!


Some of you might already know that apart from doing make-up and hair for shoots and weddings, I’m also a fully qualified hairstylist and colourist!  I’ve started my career training to be a salon stylist, and have been doing hair for the last 10 years.  I love a challenge, and my clients range from having chic highlighted bobs, to rainbow hair (I’m looking at you, Mrs Rock ‘n Roll Bride!)

I’ve added a price list below, and today I’d like to offer a 15% discount in Jan/Feb if you have a cut AND colour done (includes highlights).  Spaces are limited.  Based in South East London.

For more information, please email me at: info(at)elbievaneeden(dot)com

Elbie Hair Price List

How to repair damaged hair

damagedWhether you’ve been toying with the ombre trend, been a devoted bleach bunny, or dappled with pastel tones, you probably have noticed how your hair has started to become a bit brittle. This could range from being slightly dry, to completely snapping off (what we refer to as a chemical cut!)  Obviously you would like to try to avoid any breakage and damage, so I would like to share a few tips and tricks!

  • ALWAYS go to a professional to have bleach done.  This almost goes without saying, but I can’t recall the amount of times I had a client in my chair on a Monday morning with patchy, frizzled, orange and yellow hair that a friend has done on a whim, and has ended up in a lot of tears!
  • When considering a make-over, be open to set up a plan with your stylist.  The colour you have in mind might not be advisable to do in one visit, so when you work with a plan, going to the salon every 6 weeks, lightening your hair gradually, you’ll leave the salon with healthier hair, toning down the unwanted ‘inbetween’ colours. It’s so important to have a good relationship with your stylist, so make sure that you’re both on the same page!
  • Bleaching will dramatically alter the structure of your hair.  Without being too scientific, I will try to explain it like this:  Hair consists mainly of proteins.  Once you start chemically altering your hair, the proteins break down.  That’s what makes the hair sensitised and brittle.  I swear by using Redken’s CAT treatment before the bleach treatments (you could start a few weeks before you see your stylist), spraying it on your hair before bleach is applied, and then using it as an aftercare product.  Use this product 1 – 2 times a week, depending on the condition, after shampooing, but before conditioning.  What makes this product work, is that it prevents the hair from forming cysteic acid, which causes the hair to feel like bungee cord when wet.
  • You could also get a protein overdose, so alternate with a moisturising treatment to get the balance right.  Try using Redken’s All Soft Heavy Cream once a week, instead of your conditioner.  A little goes a long way, you’ll only need the size of a 20p coin for thick shoulder-length hair.
  • Take it easy on heat styling.  Give your hair a break over weekends, and ALWAYS use a heat protection product before using any heated appliance, whether it’s a hairdryer or a styling iron.
  • Go for regular cuts. If you’d like to maintain your length, let the stylist know, but also know that if you have damaged ends, you will need to have a good trim. (I’ve once had a client asking me to remove ‘half the damage’?!?!) Your hair will grow, and isn’t better to have healthy shorter hair than have long, wiry ends?

Everyone’s hair is different, and reacts different to products, so I’ll also recommend the following treatments:

I really hope that this has helped some of you!  I’m considering making these blogposts a regular feature, so if you’d like any questions answered, please leave a comment below, and I might use it in a future post!

Kryolan Relaunch – Chemistry Centre

Last week I got asked to do a last minute booking – super stylist Joey Bevan needed a hairstylist for a major relaunch for international make-up brand, Kryolan.  I’ve been planning to go this event with my dear friend, (and fellow make-up geek!) Ana, in anyway, and it was because of her that I actually ended up doing the hair for the event, under Joey’s watchful eye!

The event was held at the Chemistry Centre in Burlington House, which tied in perfectly with Kryolan’s strap line, Make-up is a Science.

The launch had 6 key looks, using Kryolan’s amazing products, and the make-up looks were truly extraordinary!  The looks were Beauty, Theatre, Body Art, Cinema, Special FX and Fashion.

For the official photos, please have a look HERE

I’ve had a brilliant time playing with Annabelle’s Wigs, using them for volume, length, a colour change for one of the models, and a winge (fake fringe!!)

For the fashion look, I’ve made a hair bow using the model’s natural hair.

For the body paint model, the whole head was covered with silver pin curl grips (in this picture, it’s still unfinished) This was to complement the futuristic feel of the body paint (which included a Kryolan QR Code!)

For the cinema look, inspired by Audrey Hepburn,  I’ve had to use quite a few hairpieces, including a fake fringe, as the model’s hair was much lighter than the colour we wanted.  Isn’t she gorgeous!

For the theatre look, I’ve tonged the model’s hair, then used a wig to bulk out her own hair.  I then used some of Annabelle’s Wigs Clip in Extensions to bulk out her hair even more, and to add more length.  The look was finished by spraying Kryolan’s white hairspray at the roots.

The beauty model’s hair was set to acheive big curls, then we used TWO of Annabelle’s Wigs 3/4 wigs to boost her hair.

Unfortunately I didn’t get a good picture of the special fx models, but you could have a look at the inspiration here.


I’ve been using Kryolan since I’ve starting playing with make-up, and I was so excited to hear that they have revamped the range!!  I’ve been so inspired by the brand video, which you can see here.  It’s a short film to show the heritage of the family-owned brand, and you’d even be able to see how they manufacture some of their products!

The key products of the range for me are the following –

Lipstick in LC334 – This bright orangey-pink lipcolour feels really moisturising on the lips, and it’s a surprisingly wearable shade given how bright it looks in the tube.

Shimmering Vision Palette – I just HAD to invest in this for my kit!!  Gorgeous cream colours that blend like a dream, can’t wait to use this in shoots!

Make-up Blend:  Created to be mixed with cream make-up to make it smooth or dilute, whether it’s foundation or lipstick, this little bottle of wonder is set to be a kit staple now.

Eye Shadow Primer:  A tiny drop blended across your lids is all you need for eyeshadow to stay put, without any creasing.

All of these products will be available at the new look Charles Fox in Covent Garden, London.  I’ve paid them a visit yesterday, and it really is a make-up junkie’s dream!!

DIY: Cacharel-inspired coloured bobby pins

The weather in London has started to turn gloomy, so I thought what better way to spruce up a dark winter’s day than some colourful hair accessories?  I first spotted the look on Cacharel’s a/w 2012 catwalk, and thought that it would make for a great diy, using things that you most probably already have lying around your house!

You will need:

How To:

  • Fold the piece of card in half, then fold both sides back, forming a zig-zag shape. Position it so the middle part stays upright.  This is to make it easier to paint, and to prevent the grips from sticking together when it’s painted.
  • Push the grips halfway across the folded card (see picture)
  • Paint both sides of the grips with your chosen colour. Do two or more coats, but wait until each coat is dry before you do a next one.
  • TADAA!!!

This tutorial is so ridiculously easy, and it’s a quick and cheap way of changing things up a bit.  Have fun with it, paint it with glitter varnish or varied colours!  This is also ideal if you’re growing out a fringe, to keep your hair out of your eyes during the ‘inbetween’ stage.

Have you tried making any fashion-week inspired accessories yet?  Would love to see your versions!!

Wonderland Announcement!!

I’m happy to announce that selected work from the Wonderland series will be exhibited at three venues in the near future!!  For those of you who have been following the series, created by my dear friend and photographer/designer/magic-maker Kirsty Mitchell, and me doing the hair and make-up, this is an opportunity for you to view the images in limited edition size!

I do have to stress that this is not the final Wonderland exhibition, and that as soon as we’ve finished with the entire series, it will be exhibited as a whole.

Two of the exhibitions will be in London, the other in Korea.  The details are as follows:

SW1 GALLERY – September 11th – 15th

This will be Kirsty’s first solo exhibition, and selected Wonderland pieces will be on show.  Please view SW1’s website for more details.

QUAGLINO’S – September 19th – November 13th

Wonderland will take over Quaglino’s restaurant in Mayfair for about two months!!!

ULSAN INTERNATIONAL – 30th August – 6th September, Korea

Kirsty have been selected as 1 of 16 international artists to be showcased at the Ulsan International Photography Festival in Korea.  The following Wonderland prints will be exhibited: “The Queen’s Armada”, “Gammelyn’s Daughter” and “The Lavender Princess”.  Other artists include Oleg Dou, Gao Brothers and Thomas Devaux.

For more up-to-date news, please follow Kirsty’s Facebook page.

I would definitely urge you to see the works in print, that way you could appreciate the  true detail that has gone into each and every picture.  When I saw some of the big sized prints at the Karen Millen installation a couple of months ago, it was as if I’ve seen the images for the first time, they really come alive in print!!

I’m hoping to see some of you there!!