John Frieda Go Blonder Horror Story

Fleur DeForce is one of my all time favourite beauty gurus - on both YouTube, and within the beauty blogging community. I recently decided to go back and watch some of her old videos that I hadn't seen before, and I came across this one: HERE - In the video Fleur goes on to talk about a horrible experience that happened to her because of John Frieda's Go Blonder Shampoo & Conditioner. Fortunately for Fleur, she is no longer dealing with her issue. However, for the past 2.5 years I have been battling and suffering through the consequences of using this shampoo and conditioner. 

I am now going to take this time to apologize in advance for this crazy long post.. so get ready, and I suggest you get comfortable!
Back in March of 2011, I got my hair partially highlighted for the first time in my life. Once I hit the ripe old age of 16, my beautiful bright blonde hair began to turn a dirtier blonde colour, and I was not happy. Once I got my highlights I wasn't totally satisfied, and I wanted my hair to be a brighter blonde so my friend suggested that I used John Frieda's Go Blonder Shampoo and Conditioner to lighten my hair. I purchased the shampoo and conditioner, and I continued to use it on a daily basis for the rest of 2011.

In December of 2011, I had just finished the first semester of my first year at university, and I decided that I would get my hair re-highlighted for my birthday! On December 21, 2011 (my birthday) I went to the salon and the colourist used the exact same lightener that she had used on me back in March. I was super happy with my highlights and went home to celebrate my birthday and participate in Christmas festivities.

A few days after my birthday I began to notice that every time I took a shower that my hair became a "birds nest" - A birds nest is the only way to describe it, because the top half of my hair became a tangled, frizzy, and dry mess. I was mortified, it took me 20-25 minutes to brush out my shoulder length hair. There was no reason in the world to explain why this had happened, so I called my hair dresser (he is also the owner of the salon) and explained my situation.

He had never, ever heard of this before and felt SO bad. He told me that he would talk to a few of his friends in the industry and give me a call back. A few days later, he called me back and told me that the only reasonable explanation is that the chemicals in the lightener, reacted with the chemicals that were in my hair from using the shampoo and fried my hair... He told me that he wanted to try and correct it, by putting brown streaks to break up the blonde.

So back to the salon I went.. I was not happy. The whole point of highlights was so that I could have my bright blonde hair back. I was now stuck with brown, and destroyed hair.

Here is a little throwback to my dark hair.. (and round face due to the lovely frosh15)...

To try and make this long story a little bit shorter, I continue to deal with it every time I get in the shower. I have tried dozens and dozens of different moisturising shampoos and conditioners, hair masks, detanglers, special combs... You name it, I've probably tried it. Nothing has corrected this unfortunate issue, but the use of some products help, and make my hair a little more manageable.

The ironic part of all of this is that John Frieda claims that "The formula, contains a natural Lightening Complex, that gently reduces the colour pigments in the hair." The website also claims that the shampoo and conditioner are gentle enough for daily use, they are ammonia and period-free and that it is designed for all shades of natural, colour-treated or highlighted blonde hair. My situation proves that is clearly not the case...

So I bet you are all picturing me with a horrible mess of hair on top of my head.. I thought that I would be brave, and just show you. These pictures were taken right after I stepped out of the shower.. (It's crazy how the top of my hair looks dry)

I guess the bright side to this story is that my hair looks "perfect" and somewhat healthy once it is styled. If I didn't write this post, no one would have ever known that this is what I deal with most mornings. My roommates only recently realized a couple of weeks ago, when I walked out of my room still half asleep, with totally unbrushed hair to make myself a cup of coffee. 

There have been times over the past two and a half years that I have wanted to totally shave my head out of frustration. I have cried over the fact that my hair is destroyed, and I have recently come to grips with the fact that my hair will (most likely) never be the same. I am not writing this post to hate on John Frieda products, as this product and other John Frieda products may have, and may still be working for some of you! I am just writing it to tell everyone about my experience, and warn them, because I would never in a million years, want this to happen to anyone else in the world.

Since writing this post, I have googled and read hundreds of other similar horror stories.
If you have a John Frieda horror story, please leave a comment and let me know!


  1. Poor you Ash. I really hope that all your new hair is as it always has been before it changed. Did you try contacting John Frieda for advice? Xxxx

    1. the new hair that grows in is still damaged, it's a nightmare.
      & i did try contacting them, and they said that a "chemical reaction would be impossible" because they use "gentle and natural" ingrediants, so i gave up on them.

  2. Your pictures look JUST like my hair after a few months of using this product!(shampoo&conditioner) I have shorter hair and now need to cut it to a boy cut and hopefully fix:'( John Frieda PLEASE TAKE THIS CRAP OFF THE MARKET!!!!!!

  3. Your pictures look JUST like my hair after a few months of using this product!(shampoo&conditioner) I have shorter hair and now need to cut it to a boy cut and hopefully fix:'( John Frieda PLEASE TAKE THIS CRAP OFF THE MARKET!!!!!!

  4. I only use it once or twice a week until its the shade I want even if directions say daily. That sux though!