Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens “hard” features… just ask Kelly Osbourne

Kelly Osbourne

Everyone is talking about how great Kelly Osbourne looks lately—because if there’s one thing our appearance-obsessed culture loves, it’s a good old-fashioned makeover story. Apparently she had some dirtbag cheating boyfriend, but she ditched him, dropped a few El Bees, dyed her hair blonde again and emerged looking pretty freaking great. (How do I know all this? Well, it’s not for nothin’ that the only mag I subscribe to these days is Us Weekly.)

Anyway, I don’t think I’ve EVER seen Kelly look this good. And although I applaud anybody’s efforts to achieve a healthy body weight, it actually doesn’t have anything to do with her size at all. It’s really a combination of beauty stuff: the hair colour, the hair style (although perhaps it could be a tiny bit less poufy on top), the absolutely flawless skin, the superb makeup (just lashes ‘n lips)…

But mostly it’s about the hair colour.

Because you see, blonde is sort of magical in that it casts a flattering halo of light around the face, diffusing and softening any features that you might not like.

Dark hair, on the other hand, is like a frame around a picture—it just draws MORE attention to your features. Anybody who has ever dyed their hair darker knows this. The very first thing everybody tells you is “Wow! It makes your eyes really stand out!”

This works for some people, yes, but as you can see, not so much for our Kells:

Kelly Osbourne plum hair Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens hard features... just ask Kelly Osbourne

Now I know we’re comparing different hair styles here, but do you see what I mean? Girl has a fairly prominent chin/jaw line, and I just think the blonde (combined with a softer hair style) makes it less in your face. With the blonde, you’re more likely to notice her pretty eyes and smile and skin. Right?

Now don’t get me wrong—I’m not saying blonde hair is good for EVERYONE. There are enough celebrity examples out there of women whose skin tones just cannot pull off the blonde. (Others, like Nicole Richie, are hair colour chameleons who can go back and forth from blonde to brunette without a hitch.) And I certainly detest the cheap n’ tacky Heidi Montag-style solid platinum blonde that a certain segment of our population continues to perpetuate.

My advice is simply this: if your colouring does suit blonde (some advice on that here), and there is a feature you wish to de-emphasize, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to lighten things up.

Just look at Ashlee Simpson, for example:

Ashlee Simpson Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens hard features... just ask Kelly Osbourne

Even pre-nose job, the blonde made it less obvious…

Ashlee Simpson pre nose job Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens hard features... just ask Kelly Osbourne

Or Tori Spelling:

Tori Spelling brunette Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens hard features... just ask Kelly Osbourne

Now, I’m not AT ALL a fan of her current hair colour (it’s way, waaaaay too platinum blonde), but when she was preggers, I thought she had a really nice, flattering, colour. (Holy boobs though!)

tori spelling pregnant Fact: Blonde hair (if you can pull it off) softens hard features... just ask Kelly Osbourne

So… do you agree?

Is blonde hair—on the right skin tone—more feature-flattering?
Or do you think it’s simply a matter of what shade suits your skin tone?
Have you experienced the blonde versus brunette flattery scale yourself?


Monday, October 18/2010 at 6:16 pm

Definitely. Also, I’m not sure if you mentioned it, remember when Cameron Diaz had brunette hair? She looked kind of…haggard…during that period, but when she dyed her hair back to blonde, she looked basically ageless again. I say ageless because I’m sure she has a whole team at her disposal.

Kelly Osbourne has never looked this good. It really isn’t just the weight loss, it looks like she’s done a beauty/hair overhaul. Sometimes that’s just what a girl needs! Sometimes people do look better as a brunette (Wynona (sp?) Ryder is a natural blonde), but I definitely agree with the blonde halo effect. It just lights up their face.

As a general rule of thumb, I think it works better if your skin is lighter than the color of your hair. It’s obviously not always true, but this definitely applies to me…one thing I’ve never agonized over is my hair color! My hair is black with natural dark red/brown streaks. But I’ve also never dyed my hair…thank god, because I blow so much money on other beauty/skin maintenance!


Monday, October 18/2010 at 8:41 pm

Sorry, I meant Winona Ryder.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, October 19/2010 at 4:48 pm

Totally agree re: Cameron! She’s so.much.better as a blonde. (Although to be fair, she doesn’t really have “harsh” features… more just, as you say, haggard from too much time in the sun and God knows what else. Sigh.)

I agree with you about the lighter-skin-than-hair rule. Good idea! Jessica Alba is one example that comes to mind. I really don’t like blonde hair on her.


Friday, October 22/2010 at 10:33 am

When I dove into the blonde hair pool head first I was very nervous. I am very fair skinned and thought that the blonde would make me look really washed out … but it actually suited me quite well. I don’t think I have harsh features that I need to disguise, but I will say that I did notice my eyes poppin’ a bit more.

Here’s another great pic of Kelly Osbourne. The hair is a lil’ big for my liking, but you can really see what it does for her face: http://entertainment.ca.msn.com/celebs/photos/gallery.aspx?cp-documentid=26014963&page=10


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Friday, October 29/2010 at 4:48 pm

Oh wow, Kelly looks amazing in that photo.

I guess in general blonde just brings light to the face, doesn’t it? I don’t feel like I have any “problem” features I need to hide either, but I think I definitely look better with blonde hair.

But that could be the blonderexia talking :-)


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