Going blonde—in the hierarchy of major life decisions, it probably lies somewhere above choosing your college major and below choosing your first-born’s name. Well, OK, not really, but blonde hair does require a lot of thought and commitment. Not only will you spend hours at the salon to go lighter, but you’ll also need to overhaul your haircare routine with the right hair care solutions.

If you’ve thought long and hard about the process and upkeep and are still set on achieving your blonde ambitions, the next step is to consider the best blonde shade for your complexion.

Briefly: Ash tones or those on the icier side look great on those with fairer, paler skin tones; golden and caramel hues work with medium skin tones; bronde (a hybrid of brown and blonde), as well as highlights, complement morena skin; while pastel hues look especially striking on dark skin. It’s still best to bring pegs and have a discussion with your stylist to figure out the best hue for you.

A Selection of Blonde Shades

If you’re ready to, ahem, see the light, here are some of the blonde hair shades you can choose from: 

Super cool: platinum blonde.

Issa Pressman rocking both a boy cut and platinum blonde hair just oozes confidence!https://www.instagram.com/pressmanissa

Be an Ice Queen in the best possible way with this palest of blondes. Platinum blonde oozes Cool Girl appeal with celebs like Cara Delevingne, Solange Knowles, and Issa Pressman taking it out for a spin.

Keep in mind, though, that given how light it is, it’s one of the hardest blonde shades to achieve and maintain. This is because when your roots start showing, you’ll need to visit your hairstylist every 4 to 6 weeks.

A K-Pop idol staple: ash blonde.

Ash blonde is definitely a popular hair color these days!CREDIT: instagram/katchmejias

Popularized by your favorite K-Pop idols—from Blackpink’s Lisa to SNSD’s Taeyeon—ash blonde has a grayish hue, with cool undertones that set it apart from traditional yellow-toned hair.

The hybrid: bronde.

This color is great if you’re too scared to commit to fully blonde hair.https://www.instagram.com/hairbymelissatran.xo/

This blend of brown and blonde is achieved through balayage, a color technique wherein the stylist expertly colors hair with a vertical sweeping motion. The result is natural-looking tresses with a lot of movement and depth.

The natural-ish blonde: ombre.

If you’re new to coloring your hair, ombre is much easier to maintain!https://www.instagram.com/ERIKARAE.P

Blonde ombre hair is a great middle ground if you’re not ready to go for a totally blonde head of hair. With this style, your dark roots transition gradually to lighter blonde ends. Book a stylist like Katchie Meijas, Jing Monis, or Mate Grafl who are experts at making the change from dark to light look seamless.

The subtle approach: highlights.

If you’re thinking of dyeing your hair slowly, trying highlights first is a good idea.https://www.instagram.com/lashmelash/

Not quite ready to take the plunge? Try blonde hair in small doses. Honey, golden, or caramel highlights are a subtle change that can instantly brighten up your look. 

Your Blonde Haircare Kit

Blonde hair requires extra care and maintenance, so aside from having a nourishing shampoo and conditioner, you’ll need to add these haircare products to your stash:

Purple shampoo.

After spending hours in a salon chair, the last thing you want is for your blonde locks to turn rusty. Keep the brassiness at bay by using a purple shampoo like TRESemmé Pro Color Series Blonde Brilliance Shampoo, which deposits violet pigments to neutralize those brassy hues and help you hold on to your color for longer.

A hair mask.

Because Asian hair has loads of dark pigment, you’ll need to bleach it to go blonde, but bleaching really stresses out your hair—it makes it more brittle and gives it a walis-like texture. Help restore its moisture and strength with a weekly hair mask like TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Treatment Mask, a thick and creamy formula to give your blonde hair the TLC it needs.

Heat protectant.

It’s best to avoid heat styling to preserve your new color and prevent further damage to your hair, but if you must use your blow-dryer or straightener, make sure to protect your locks.

Aside from being ready for all the maintenance, you also have to be ready for all the attention—blonde hair makes a bold statement and can really turn heads in a sea of dark hair. You’ll want everyone to look at your hair for all the right reasons, so keep it looking healthy.