By Danielle Sinay

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Bright blonde hair had quite a renaissance this year, with everyone from Kim Kardashian to Gigi Hadid dabbling in Pamela Anderson–inspired platinum. Now that temperatures have cooled, however, the go-to blonde shade for the new year is all about warmth. “Warm golden tones are becoming more popular for the new year,” says Jennifer Korab, hairstylist and owner of Renaissance Salon & Spa, who calls the warm golden tone “cozy blonde.”

“For years now, the ‘ashy’ blonde trend has been one of the most requested hair colors from my clients at the salon, but I think we are going to be seeing more gold and honey tones in 2023,” adds hairstylist Nicholas Taylor. “The Playboy bunny golden blonde is making its comeback, as well as deep honey blondes like Kim Kardashian’s new color.”

Kardashian is far from the only celeb who’s gone cozy blonde this month: Khloé Kardashian, Ciara, Camila Cabello, Zoey Deutsch, and Hailee Steinfeld debuted their own takes on cozy blonde over the past few months. Clearly, the cozy-blonde movement is already well underway, and considering how low-maintenance it is, it’s not hard to see why.

“Cozy blonde is a term used to describe a super-low-maintenance approach to being a blonde,” says Michelle Cleveland, celebrity hair-extension artist and Wella master color expert. “The look embraces more depth in the hair with low lights and strategic placement of lighter blonde shades, allowing for a low-maintenance blonde that works for any season.” She points to Ciara’s medium-blonde shade as a prime example.

As for who makes the ideal cozy blonde candidate? According to Korab, the shade is great for natural blondes, anyone with highlights or balayage, and light brunette hair. However, it also works for anyone that’s currently blonde, whether it’s dyed or natural, Cleveland says.

“Anyone who feels a little washed out from the overall brightness [of their blonde] usually transitions very well into wearing this look,” Cleveland says, and it also applies to those who are tired of upkeep that is too time-consuming, expensive, or damaging. “In this case, your stylist can create a cozy blonde that gives you the best of both worlds.”

Translation? If you’ve been on the hunt for blonde-friendly fall hair colors, congratulations: Your search stops now.

If you’re planning to dye your hair cozy blonde, here’s what to ask for at the salon. “Cozy blonde has a lot of dimension to the hair,” Korab says. “You can achieve the look by adding lowlights and asking for a golden or honey blonde, but you want to keep the face frame bright while adding fine lowlights throughout.” Cleveland agrees, and she also notes that you should reiterate you’re still interested in seeing yourself as a blonde, but would love to make it a bit more low-maintenance while seeking a softer grow-out.

Just remember: Low-maintenance does not mean no maintenance. “That’s the biggest mistake clients make when moving into a look such as this,” Cleveland says. “It’s super low-maintenance compared to being an allover blonde, but it still requires some upkeep to keep the color looking fresh.”

To maintain and protect the color, be sure to consistently use heat protectant and color-protecting shampoo and conditioner, as well as a hydrating hair mask and gloss.

As for styling, anything goes with this kind of low-maintenance shade, but Korab thinks the more effortless, the better. “I love to style cozy blonde hair with a lived-in look, such as a beach wave,” she says. To get the look, simply let your hair air-dry and style it with a hair waver and generously spritz sea salt spray for the ultimate laid-back look.

Start your cozy blonde journey today, and shop the essentials below.

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