What do you do when the familiar and comfortable stops working? In blogger Jane Aldridge of Sea of Shoes’ case, the answer is simple: You chop it off and dye it. Aldridge is known for her elevated, unexpected, and vintage-influenced style, and also for her shockingly red hair—a shade that instantly sets her apart in a swarming sea of style bloggers. Which is why we were surprised to find out that this signature fiery shade—which seems so fitting with her style and complexion—isn’t actually her natural colour. “My hair is naturally light brown, but I have been dying it red for six or seven years now,” Aldridge tells us. “I’ve always been extremely pale, so red seemed natural, and it definitely worked with my complexion. I loved it.”
Yet change is inevitable, and lately, Aldridge found that her strawberry-red shade seemed to be interfering with her style choices. “My mum and I … were styling a lot of bulky structured ’80s pieces, feeling really excited about the story we wanted to tell with them,” she explains. “Something wasn’t right with the styling, and we both agreed that it was my hair. Long red hair did not feel modern with all that vintage. The bright hair took away too much from the clothes!” Rather than hem and haw or put off change, Aldridge went straight to the styling chair for a brand-new cut and colour—and brought us along for the transformation. The end result is nothing short of stunning—fresh, choppy, and fit for a vintage princess. Keep scrolling to see the new look!
>Where did you find inspiration for your new hair color?
Aldridge: Well, I honestly didn’t really get to choose my hair color! It is very hard to go anywhere from red, color-wise, so I’ve been told. Once it’s there, it does not want to fade. When I went in for my color consultation, they said that I basically had to go very dark to neutralize the red tones before I did anything else. I was up for anything, so I just went with it.
style="line-height: 20.8px;">How did you decide on the new cut?
style="line-height: 20.8px;">Aldridge: Once I was told that my hair was going to have to be very dark, I started mentally preparing myself for that change. I knew it would be dramatic against my pale skin, so I started thinking a very blunt cut would be super cool and graphic with that contrast. My friend Jessica Watts at Chad Rookstool Salon gives the best haircuts on the planet, so I knew I was safe in her hands.
style="line-height: 20.8px;">Are you emotionally attached to your hair?
style="line-height: 20.8px;">Aldridge: I thought I might freak out over this change, but I didn’t! My colorist, Rachel, was saying, "How are you being so calm right now?!" I loved my red hair, but I didn’t want that to be my identity forever. I was definitely ready for the change, and I think it is a much more modern look for my style. I love it!
>Describe how you feel right now:
Aldridge: Insanely happy! I'm very excited to have a fresh look.
>What was your thought process like throughout the coloring process?
Aldridge: I was very surprised by how dark it turned out, but I ended up loving it a lot. I brainstormed outfit ideas to go with my new look during the process.
>How long did the coloring process take?
Aldridge: About three and a half hours, and took three layers of color and three shampoos. It was intense.
>Describe your new hair in one word:
Aldridge: I think it’s a bit spunky, and I like it! Let’s go with spunky.
>How do you think you’ll be styling your new hair?
Aldridge: Probably either center-parted and pushed to the side, always ruffled, and not too perfect. Sadly, short hair does not mean it dries any faster. I already love using Redken's Dry Finishing Spray ($18) on it!
What do you think of Aldridge’s hair transformation? Sound off below! And if you’ve got makeovers on the mind, we’ve got another dramatic haircut for you to check out.