I Did It: Going from Red To Blond with Olaplex

Olaplex was sent for review. Hair services and products paid for by moi.

I've been a redhead for the last 21 years. It's part of my identity. All of my bosses have called me Red more than my own name. Now that I'm not a redhead, many people I deal with on a daily basis aren't recognizing me. Ninety-nine percent of people whom I tell that I was naturally a blond don't believe me. But it's true. I only became a red head after I accidentally dyed my own hair red, trying to make it a honey blond after the sun had taken it platinum. But that is for another story on another day.

(My hair about 3 weeks before going blond. I know. It's really, really pretty.)

The reason I wanted to go from dark red to blond is because of my gray hair. I went gray really early. I started to turn before I got married; my naturally blond roots were speckled with gray sparkle. However, ten years later, the sparkle has taken over my entire head. And I'm certain the sparkle could be beautiful on it's own,.  However, when the roots start to show one week post-color, it looks more skunky than sparkly. This fact makes me insane. Sure, I could get some take-home color from my colorist, or stop by the salon every two weeks for a quick touch up. But it's so much work. And I'm just not that into dedicating a solid two hours to coloring my hair every other week. I'm busy. I have things to clear out of the basement/non-profits to create IDs for/friends to visit/dogs to walk/work/dusting/etc.


With a plan in mind to gently fade into my natural color to lessen the transition from red to gray, my amazing stylist at Laboratorie started added massive amounts of hand-painted highlights called balayage. I got lighter at a snails pace, month after month. Then Bethany started asking me if I had heard about Olaplex, a new chemical service additive that all of the celebrity stylists were raving about on social media. I hadn't heard of it and couldn't find anyone in my circles who had heard of it, let alone actually tried it.

Which made me want to learn more immediately.

Olaplex is a two-part salon (-only!) service that helps maintain the health of your hair when you color. If you've ever had highlights or bleached your hair, you know that you have to go slow or risk breaking and ruining your beautiful locks. Olaplex claims to stop the damage by adding a chemical to the color service and then conditioning with a special treatment before shampooing.

According to the company, "Go Blonder. Push the envelope further without compromising the integrity of hair. From the photo shoot to the salon chair, colorists are set free from the fear of damaged hair. From Base Color to Balayage, Olaplex multiplies bonds making hair stronger, healthier, while color lasts longer with more vibrancy."

When I arrived for my appointment, Bethany examined my hair and gave me two options:

1. Try to highlight around the other heavy highlights. This option seemed impossible to me. I would have zero patience to do that myself.

2. Bleach my entire head and hope nothing breaks at the scalp.

Since Bethany hadn't used Olaplex before and was only going on what she had seen posted on social media, she suggested I take the safe route. However, the Veronica Mars Product Sleuth I am was leaning towards the latter. After being reminded that my hair could break off really, really short, I took a deep breath and stayed the course. We were going to bleach my entire head.

Fifty minutes of processing later, my hair felt HOT and was starting to foam, which I'm told means it's usually finishing up the processing (I don't think this is normally how it goes). In the directions for Olaplex, it clearly states that you need to use a higher volume of lightener, allow the hair to process for longer and be patient. After 50 minutes, we decided it was time to rinse and see what was there.

Nervous with anticipation and the high hopes my hair didn't break off, we rinsed out the bleach. Next, we added a toner to add a little ash to combat some of the left over red. Bethany was not thrilled with how my hair felt post bleach, commenting that it "felt a little slimy and was angry." However, almost no hair was coming out when we rinsed the bleach. And almost no hair came out when we rinsed the toner. The final step was to apply the No.2 Olaplex conditioning formula to my hair and wait for five minutes. We rinsed again. My hair now felt like regular hair that had just been processed (or so I'm told) and very little hair came out in the sink.

There was zero obvious breakage. When I blew my hair dry, very little hair came out in the brush, too.

Over the next few days, my hair color began to settle down and the usual dryness that goes along with bleach began to make my hair very thirsty for all things moisture. My go-to is always Oi--nothing seems to help my hair more than the Beautifying Potion from Davines. I slathered on Coconut Oil, It's a 10 Keratin Spray, a Joico Treatment, a Davines Re-Plumping Treatment and some Wen Re-Moist. (Wow, writing out all of those options kind of makes me seem a little crazy. Oh well. It was working!) There is also a process your stylist can do in another appointment that involves more Olaplex without any hair color to help repair the hair. Ask your stylist (it's helped me more than anything else!).

I returned to see my stylist the following week for a cut. She was a little disappointed that my hair wasn't in better shape, dryness-wise. However, I can say that my entire head is behaving better than my highlights did in the weeks after the original highlighting. It's super shiny and very manageable when dry.

(This is me, yesterday. Something about that bronzer makes skin look amazing! I have to remember to wear it daily!)

It's quite a big change and I'm not sure I'm used to seeing it myself. It's been a really long time since I've been this blond! People's responses (but mainly, their lack of responses) have been very mixed. The first question everyone asks is, "do you like it?" Which is code for, "My god woman, you did that on purpose?"

For those of you that don't know, when you bleach out your entire head, you basically get what you get. Sure, you can tone it, but toning can't make you look like Gwen Stefani if you've got Connie Britton's hair color. In other words, going blond is an expensive, time-consuming project and the end results can't be guaranteed. Going from red to blond is one of the hardest transitions to conquer. I'm getting more accustomed to the color and as soon as we tweak it in a few weeks at my next appointment, I'm confident I'll love it 100%. In fact, I kind of love it already! (Even though one night I got up to go to the bathroom and literally screamed at my reflection, as I had apparently forgotten about it while sleeping.)

Before you go for highlights or a major transformation, ask your stylist about Olaplex. It truly minimizes damage as well as allowing your stylist to go farther than previously possible in one appointment. If you've tried it, tell me all about it in the comments!

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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.


StriVectin-TL "Roll Back The Years" 3 Piece Collection on QVC TSV TODAY!

Sent for review. 

Looking for a way to roll back the years? QVC has partnered with StriVectin-TL to bring you a three piece collection that offers tightening from the top to your toes!

According to the company, "TL Neck Serum is StriVectin's newest antiaging solution for the neck area. Its innovative roller applicator massages product into the skin to "Roll Back the Years" and help your neck to feel smoother, and appear firmer and youthful-looking.

In a consumer perception study of TL Neck Serum, 94% said skin felt softer 1 hour after application, and 94% said skin felt smoother and more supple after 2 weeks. In just 4 weeks, 97% said skin felt smoother and supple, and 84% said their neck looked firmer.

TL Face Serum is a lightweight treatment that, in a clinical study, elasticity was improved in two weeks

TL Body Cream is a rich, hydrating moisturizer for the body. In a clinical study, 89.7% of subjects saw a reduction in skin crepiness after 8 weeks of use. It does not contain parabens, mineral oil, artificial dyes, or colorants."

If you love StriVectin, you won't want to miss this collection. Sold separately, it retails for $237.00. Today only, you can score all three for only $124.96.

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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.

Makeup Wars: Skin-Saving Products

Purchased by me. Sent for review. Affiliate links.

Every now and then you find yourself in need of a skin rescue. Having tried a ton of skincare, here are the products that have brought my skin back from the brink.

Try Votre Vu Au Revoir. When a zit pops up, this little pink miracle reduces swelling and redness with a quickness.

When your skin freaks out from too much of anything; wind, sun, nature or anything else, Miracle Skin Transformer Miracle Balm will almost instantly soothe irritated skin.

When dryness seems to take over, Boscia Tsubuki Oil babies your skin while plumping fine lines and helping your skin find its balance again.

Have other skin woes? Click the tiles below for more solutions from Makeup Wars!

Enter to win a $1000 Sephora Gift Card!

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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.


Lipstick League: Do You Share Your Makeup With Friends?

Question of the Week: Your friend borrows your makeup and returns it in awful condition. What do you do? Lending friends your makeup is a thing? Huh. I can honestly say I've never lent anyone my makeup. I suppose if it were a lipstick, I'd shrug it off and never again lend them anything. If it were a palette, I'd ask them to replace it. I guess. Sharing makeup is like kissing. If you don't want to kiss them, don't lend out makeup.

  Prime Beauty - is not very adept in the kitchen, but she can make BECCA's Beach Tint Shimmering Souffle present beautifully!

  Phyrra - Love Urban Decay? I share my Omen Tutorial, plus we're giving away a ton of Urban Decay Eyeshadows! Open Worldwide.

  we heart this - calling all blush addicts; Ellis Faas has something you're going to want to see...

  Beauty Junkies Unite - Take a sneak peek at the newest hair color innovation from Garnier, Color Styler. Now you can rock bright, bold hair hues without the commitment or damage of traditional hair color!

  Clumps of Mascara - gifted a reader with her own personal post of makeup tips from beauty bloggers!

  EauMG - shares her most complimented perfumes of all time! Some of the ones that made the list will surprise you.

  Gouldylox Reviews - I love you guys! Find out why and enter to win a $2000 VIP Beauty Treatment! Please enter, I really want one of you to win so you'll tell me what a $2000 beauty treatment is like!

  My Beauty Bunny - Remember how I raved about Onsen Secret last week? Try it for yourself by winning a $1000 shopping spree from my new favorite skin care line.

  (Wondering what the Lipstick League is? Find out here.)
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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.


Fab Five Friday: Sweet Lips, Real Oil, Sexy Eyes and More!

Purchased by me. Sent for review. Affiliate links. 

Happy Friday! This week flew by and I'm ready to relax. I'm still trying to get my newly blond hair under control (it's dry!), perfect dewy skin and figure out my new favorite lip color. Here are my favorites from the week! I know there are more than five. I can't help it!

Moroccanoil pitched me a few weeks ago. While I want to try new stuff, I told them that I don't want to waste samples, that their original formula of the oil didn't contain enough oil for me, and I wasn't interested in knowing about anything unless they stepped it up. Low and behold, a few weeks later, a brand new Pure Argan Oil  from Moroccanoil appeared on my doorstep. It's clear, it's light and it's 100% argan oil. Good on them (it's pretty great, too)!

This Cat Eye's Palette from Too Faced makes my heart race. If you haven't seen it yet, check it out and purr to your heart's content. Just went I was running out of cat's eye ideas, this palette is packed with new ideas and ways to wear the classic look.

While we are talking palettes, this new Tarte Rainforest After Dark Eye and Cheek Palette is perfect for right now! That time when you realize summer is half over and things will go back to normal way too soon. This palette offers up some shimmer, some matte and some beautiful contour colors. Plus a cheek color that looks amazing on pale skin--love it!

While I only like white chocolate, lovers of the darker variety will adore this lip butter from Teadora. It's so hydrating and so cocoa-flavored you won't be able to put it down. Or so I've been told. It's too chocolaty for me, but my friend Finn loves it. Try it for yourself. P.S.: It's vegan!

Want to polish your skin without abrading it? You'll love Bella Schneider Beauty Instant Micro Exfoliating Cleanser. It's a powdered cleanser that manages to polish your face without harsh abrasive nubs. I wondered why my skin looked so fresh after using it ... it didn't feel like a regular exfoliator. It's much more gentle, but yields similar results. If you visit their site, you're going to want to pick up the beauty globes. THEY ARE AMAZING. And not just at de-puffing your eyes, but also at helping a headache settle down, believe it or not...

I've been trying a lot of mascaras lately, looking for the best one for length. While nothing has beaten my MAC must-have Studio Sculpt, Bobbi Brown's Smoky Eye Mascara is a close second. It coats each lash with a dark kohl and never clumps. It takes a few seconds to dry down, but it's really buildable. It gives a thicker lash than the MAC. The MAC is my favorite, though. Long, skinny lashes make momma happy.

Finally, if you haven't entered this contest, please do it now! I'm pretty sure it's the biggest giveaway I've ever been a part of. If you win, you'll get a $2000 VIP Beauty Treatment. I really want one of you to win so I can find out what a $2000 beauty treatment is like! You've got to check it out (and report back to me immediately, if you win)! If you enter a photo, send it to me and I'll share it on Facebook!

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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.


Why I Have the Best Readers + Enter to Win a $2000 VIP Beauty Treatment!

Advertorial content and contest provided by Regency Beauty Institute and Refinery29.  

A few days ago, I ended up being a on shoot in NYC that was unexpected. By unexpected, I mean I got a call on Sunday for a last minute shoot and had to scramble to come up with a plan.

Despite the frustration of a last minute project, it ended up being an amazing opportunity. I got the chance to chat with June Sarpong and Penny Abeywardena, two of the most amazing women I've had the chance to meet. June has worked with Nelson Mandela, Bono and others to enact new policies benefiting women and children for the UN. Penny currently works for the Clinton Global Initiative to help women and children at home and abroad. Listening to them tell their stories about how they have dedicated their lives to helping other women was such a powerful experience. It turned out to be quite the enlightening and inspiring day!

And while we aren't changing the world here at Gouldylox, we do have one of the best beauty communities around, if I do say so myself. We always lift each other up instead of pushing each other back down. Your comments and the ensuing discussions never go negative. It's a great place to talk beauty, our insecurities and how we deal with everyday life!

Beauty grows all around us and it just takes a little looking to realize that small changes in your life can lead to a happier life not just for you, but for others. Whether it's helping someone carry groceries, holding the elevator or doing amazing hair, following your passion doesn't just impact you alone. It impacts all of us! Since I'm so proud of the women that we all are becoming, I thought I'd share this video and the chance to win some major swag and treatments from Refinery 29 and the Regency Beauty Institute.

Check out the video above from the Regency Beauty Institute to see how harnessing your passion for the beauty industry can lead to beautiful things! You can also enter to win a seriously luxe VIP beauty treatment for yourself from Refinery29 and Regency Beauty Institute by checking out their summer looks and posting your own take on Instagram with the hashtag #ShareBeautyContest. (Who knew that metallic eye could be worth so much?)  Visit here to enter. And share the video with your friends. Even if you aren't looking to go into beauty school, the message is lovely.

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Find Kelly on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. Official disclosure/disclaimer statement can be found here. Subscribe and never miss a thing! Copyright 2009-2014, Gouldylox Reviews. All Rights Reserved.

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