Tennis pro Emma Raducanu's hair color transformation has got us all wanting to head to the salon. The young athlete has debuted a new summery take on the ‘expensive brunette’ trend, with caramel highlights and it’s actually a really attainable look—no matter your hair type. So here’s exactly how to recreate Emma’s new hair color yourself, according to her stylist.
Clearly feeling the summer vibes, Emma wanted a change and requested a lighter look from her hair stylist John Clark. She asked and he most definitely answered—using a trendy new hair technique to achieve her sunkissed hair called ‘glowlights.’
Posting Emma’s new hair color transformation on his Instagram, the expert hair colorist at John Frieda detailed exactly how he lifted Emma’s dark hair into a tonal masterpiece with soft highlights to mimic where "sunshine would naturally make it shimmer"—we love that.
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How to recreate Emma Raducanu’s hair color transformation
In the Insta carousel debuting Emma’s new, honey brunette hair, Clark explained that he has used John Frieda’s ‘Glow Light’ technique, "to lift her naturally very dark base to a multi-tonal brunette with lighter areas around the face and where the sunshine would naturally make it shimmer."
So to get the look yourself—we asked him what kind of hair types and colors it works on, what to ask your stylist for and how to care for it. But first need to know exactly what the ‘glowlight’ technique entails…
What are ‘glowlights’?
'Glowlights' is a technique created by John Frieda colorists Zoë Irwin and Nicola Clarke—and once you see the color, you’ll recognize it on so many celebs like 90s model icon Kate Moss.
The method, as explained to Refinery29 involves "a mixture of beige and gold tones next to something ashier." It’s a subtle style, that keeps your natural color but adds a warm glow throughout. It can also be done on every hair color if your goal is lighter but still natural.
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What hair type and color do 'glowlights' work best on?
"The best natural colour to create soft cool light brown glowlights is anything between natural medium brown and very dark brown almost black," Clark tells My Imperfect Life.
"It works on any texture from super curly to natural sleek and straight. It adds texture and dimension to fine hair so creates volume!"
How to ask your stylist for Emma Raducanu’s hair color
The technique involves a combo of blonde highlights and glazes, with the lighter shades applied around the hairline and the darker tones at the tips, worked into dry hair, through backcombing—which Irwin explained prevents that stripy highlight look. The glazes are then applied to wet hair to add even more dimension.
"When going to the salon ask for a colourist who is specialised in lightening services and knows how to create multidimensional hair colour," advises Clark.
He adds, "request a full head of highlights lowlights and tip outs followed by a glaze to create the same sort of effect."
If you’re headed to the salon, we suggest taking a snap of Emma’s new hair with you as a helpful guide. It’s also a similar premise to balayage—which if you search on Pinterest will award you with an endless supply of inspo pics. The key is a natural mix of your natural color, with a blend of golden blonde tones to make your hair look as though the sun is shining on it 24/7.
How should you prepare your hair for the change?
"Keeping the hair in great condition is key to getting it to shine and be light reflective," says Clark.
"Minimising the use of bleach and using gentler high lift tints is also better for health of the hair fibre."
How should you care for hair post-color?
"Colour safe products (i.e. shampoo and conditioner) without sulphates are essential," advises Clark. "And don’t wash your hair every day. Think of your hair like a silk shirt dyed with the finest of colours—you wouldn’t wash it in harsh detergents or put it in the tumble dryer!"
"Products-wise, I love Virtue Labs Color Kick [although this is an in-salon treatment] and Recovery Shampoo and Conditioner. Olaplex No. 9 Serum is a worthwhile buy too, as it's incredible to enhance the shine of the hair."
We'd suggest requesting the salon's best Olaplex treatment when you head there too—and investing in Olaplex No.3 or the new Olaplex purple shampoo would definitely be a good idea if your goal is lighter, sun-touched hair.
Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team, where she covers everything from entertainment to fashion and beauty, as well as TikTok trends for Woman&Home, after previously writing for My Imperfect Life and GoodTo. Interestingly though, Naomi actually has a background in design, having studied illustration at Plymouth University but lept into the media world in 2020, after always having a passion for writing and earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ.
Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.
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