Five Tips for Going Blonde with Top Knot Stylist, Kortnee VanCleave

Kortnee VanCleave, Owner of Top Knot Stylist

Meet Miss Kortnee! She is my incredible stylist, who loves what she does and you can tell it in her work. She spends hours upon hours learning, studying, and continuing her education to keep up with the latest trends and to craft her skill.

– Before –

I met Kortnee through a mutual friend in the fall of 2018. Before I went all in with lightening up my hair, I wanted to try balayage to test the waters.

– First Balayage –

I loved it and wanted to keep the process going, so did another round of balayage:

– Second Balayage –

I was hooked and decided it was time to dive in and go blonde!! I loved all of Kortnee’s blonde looks that she posted on Instagram and knew it was time to go blonde!

After just two sessions, here is what it looked like:

Then went a little icier for winter and LOVED it!

I asked Kortnee to share 5 tips for going blonde, and here’s her best pro tips:

Pro Tip #1

Blonde takes time. It doesn’t normally only take 1 or 2 appointments to get there, so be patient and know it will take a few months and each appointment will take anywhere from 3-5 hours, so plan accordingly and maybe pack a snack. 😉

Pro Tip #2

Find a stylist who is really good with blonde and knows what they’re doing! You’ll know a good stylist by their website or social media page. There should be a lot of beautiful HEALTHY blonde pictures posted. In this industry you get what you pay for so if you want cheap hair, that’s exactly what you’ll get.

Pro Tip #3

Listen to your stylists product recommendations! They aren’t just trying to up your service bill to make a quick buck; they’re trying to help you keep your hair healthy and extend the life of your color appointment. You’re already investing time and money in getting the service done, so don’t strip, clog and ruin your hair by using the cheap stuff from your grocery store. Your stylist will know more about your hair journey than the consultant at a local beauty supply store.

Pro Tip #4

Moisture, moisture, moisture! When you put lightener on your hair it will feel dry so be sure you’re doing some sort of either reparative or moisture mask/treatment. Your stylist will know what to recommend. (I’m a big fan of Olapex and Kenra!)

Pro Tip #5

There are about a million shades of blonde and there is a shade for everyone! If you get to being blonde and you don’t like it, ask your stylist what shade would look best with your skin tone. It’s most likely a quick and easy fix with a toner.

Happy blond-ing, ladies!


You can find Kortnee on Instagram, Facebook, and on her website at

Have you ever wanted to go blonde but haven’t taken the plunge?

Share below! I’d love to read!!

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