‘Vanilla Lilac’ Hair Is Fall’s Newest Shade You’ll Actually Love

I'm obsessed with how gorgeous this is.

Hair, Blond, Face, Hairstyle, Hair coloring, Brown hair, Layered hair, Chin, Beauty, Long hair,
(Image credit: Instagram/@chrisweberhair)

There are a few things you can always expect to see during fall: Ugg boots, a barrage of PSL-themed Instagram memes, and sweaters, sweaters, and more sweaters. But something I didn’t see coming? A new hair color so light, soft, and pretty, it practically begs to be contrasted with leather jackets and vampy fall lipstick. Behold: Vanilla-lilac hair, the prettiest shade you’re about to fall in love with.

The Details

Typically, fall is the time when everyone you know breaks out a box of dye and darkens their hair to match the sunless mood of the season. Which is probably why, amid the thousands of inky hair colors on my Instagram feed, hairstylist Chris Weber’s photo stood out to me.

Weber posted a photo of a woman with a softly wavy lob that’s a perfectly blended, magical mix of brunette roots fading to cinnamon and vanilla hues, that gradually lighten to pastel lilac ends. Sounds confusing, right? But the result is gorgeous.

How to Get It

Weber, who is co-founder of Vanilla Loft salon in North Vancouver, Canada, tells MarieClaire.com that he used a mix of bleach and lavender tones to get create the look. “My client already had pre-lightened hair from previous sessions with me, so I mainly focused on dyeing her ends and her face-framing pieces,” he says.

After lightening her hairline and her ends with bleach to get it to a white-blonde shade, he mixed an ultra-light lavender toner (“you want the dye as pastel as possible, with very little pigment,” says Weber) and applied it from the mid-lengths to ends of her hair, leaving it on “for the full amount of time.” A little time and some magical incantations later, and Weber created this vanilla-y, lilac-y hair color that I’m truly obsessed with. Easy!


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(Image credit: Instagram/@kristin_ess)

keratin treatment

(Image credit: Rosdiana Ciaravolo)

Just kidding—a look like this most definitely requires an expert knowledge of blending, mixing, bleaching, and dyeing, which is why it should be left to the professionals only. Unfortunately, the majority of us don’t live in North Vancouver, which means if you want to try this look yourself, you’ll have to beg your favorite stylist to recreate it. But, notes Weber, “if your hair is darker, I would recommend starting with a darker, in-between purple shade, then gradually working your way towards the pastel lilac to make sure your hair isn’t getting damaged.”

Yes, Weber and his vanilla-lilac hair are officially my new favorite bright lights in the dark, dark days of fall, and for the first time in my beauty-editor life, I’m actually considering bleaching my hair to get in on the soon-to-be trend.

Chloe Metzger
Beauty Editor

Chloe Metzger is the deputy beauty director at Cosmopolitan, overseeing the editorial content and growth strategy of the hair, makeup, and skin space on digital, while also obsessively writing about the best hair products for every hair type (curly girl here; whattup), and the skincare routines that really, truly work (follow her on Instagram to see behind-the-scenes pics of that magazine life). She brings nearly a decade of writing and editing expertise, and her work has appeared in AllureHealthFitnessMarie ClaireStyleCaster, and Parents. She also has an unhealthy adoration for Tom Hanks and would like to please meet him one day, if you could arrange that. Thanks.