Go Blonder With John Frieda

If you asked 100 people what they thought of the John Frieda Go Blonder range you’d get some very mixed reviews. I’ve heard awful things about peoples hair turning orange, breaking off and even.. falling out! These issues I believe are predominantly down to user error. I know that’s a little controversial because there are a huge amount of people out there claiming that this range ruined their hair through no fault of their own but barring actual allergic reactions (eg. Fleur De Force – see her video review here) I think the majority just don’t understand what they’re putting on their hair!
I wanted to talk about this prior to my review because of the sheer volume of bad experiences there have been. There will be some who skim read this post or just look at the pictures and go straight to comment “don’t use this, it will wreck your hair!!!” but I thought if I started with the cons perhaps they’d catch a few lines of text too.
First of all the shampoo and conditioner contain no peroxide, they claim to lighten naturally with citrus and camomile and while I was skeptical lemon is a bleaching agent so I gave them the benefit of the doubt. The way I use it is.. I wash my hair and leave the shampoo in for 5 to 10 minutes while I’m in the bath I then rinse and apply the conditioner. I cover my hair in a towel or a shower cap and leave the conditioner on for as long as I can, that could be hours but I haven’t attempted overnight yet. When I wash it out and dry my hair it is soft, shiny and visibly lighter. People have complained of dryness and I’m not sure why, I don’t know if its the amount of time I’m leaving the conditioner on that is combating this but my hair is not 100% healthy and I’ve had no problems whatsoever.
We’ll break for some photos then get in to the spray…
My ‘before’ hair
 These shots were after using the shampoo and conditioner once
This is after 2 weeks of use and two applications of the lightening spray.
Now the controlled lightening spray is a totally different animal and this is where I believe people are going wrong. This product does contain peroxide and no matter how diluted or how gentle the formula you are effectively still bleaching your hair every time you use it. I would imagine many will use this along side the shampoo and conditioner as their regular hair routine and that regular use is going cause damage. We are so used to spritzing ourselves with all kinds of product that if it comes in a bottle we don’t really think about how much or how often we’re using it. I believe most are using this as liberally as we would a styling spray or worse still.. in the place of a heat protectant before blow drying. We wouldn’t dream of bleaching our hair once a fortnight let alone several times a week and yet this is how this product is being used and that’s why everyone’s hair is falling out! One girl commented on my video that she was appalled to still be waiting for it to fade out months later.. that was when the penny dropped.. people have no idea what they’re buying. I’m not blaming John Frieda at all and it would seem they’ve taken steps to clarify adding a new label to the the box stating in bold “this product contains peroxide‘ but it’s not their fault.. it is in my opinion the fault of the retailer. This product should be sold in the hair colour aisle alongside it’s dated equivalent, ‘Sun In’ and all the other at home bleaching products. If you saw it there you would treat it appropriately!

That being said I would have thought regardless of where you bought it it was pretty obvious this is a permanent lightening spray and not for regular use. I have used it twice and don’t intend to use it again for at least another month, It’s taken me too long to get my hair to the condition and length that it is to ruin it now. The comments that were common on the video where I hauled these products were “It will make your hair so orange” – it hasn’t, “Your hair will be so dry” – it isn’t and the most popular had to be “Don’t use this!!”. I wanted to put my views out in the blogosphere to counteract some of the negativity surrounding John Frieda’s Go Blonder range. No it’s not going to be for everyone and if you’re worried.. just don’t risk it but if you’re already considering home bleaching or highlights It’s going to be gentler than that so I’d say, why not?

My personal experience has been positive, the shampoo and conditioner alone have been very effective and left my hair feeling no different to normal. The controlled lightening spray did leave it feeling a little dry but after a deep condition it was back to it’s healthy(ish) self. I wouldn’t recommend you use these products every day, it’s common sense to alternate with something that’s a little more nourishing when you’re using colour products of any kind but I will continue to use them on and off to give my blonde a boost. My highlights have lifted considerably and because I’m not too light I could potentially put off a professional touch up for several months as my roots are also blending well. Overall I’m really happy that I tried this. Reviews of skin and hair care always have to be taken with a pinch of salt and a lot of the time it’s impossible to know what will work for you until you try it for yourself!
You can purchase the range here with prices starting at £5.99
One last note, to give you a more well rounded idea of how this works for other people you can check out the review page at MakeupAlley here where the feelings are as previously mentioned.. mixed!
Miss BB


  1. 25 April, 2012 / 2:32 pm

    Brilliant balanced review. I think youve done a really good job of pointing out things people must be missing on a regular basis. It also says “for use on dark or medium brown hair. I am a bleached blonde who's naturally dark. I've used this once and am happy after brightening my blonde. For now ill be using it on my hairline and roots on occassion.


  2. 25 April, 2012 / 2:36 pm

    Great review, as with most people I was really put off after what happened to Fleur's hair but like you said everyone is different. I definitely think I might consider trying this out in the future ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. 25 April, 2012 / 3:21 pm

    i use this and it makes my hair lovely and glossy and bright ๐Ÿ™‚ not had an issue but is interesting to think whats actually in it! x great review as always hun x

  4. 25 April, 2012 / 3:25 pm

    even though i wont use it, i have no need too. I really enjoyed this review, both balanced and well written, talking about pros and cons & how to use it! xxx

    • 25 April, 2012 / 5:49 pm

      thank you! I know I'm as guilty as anyone else for just reviewing something as rubbish but at the end of the day we're all different and it's not like a lipstick where we can state it is a good formula or it isn't.. hair and skin care is so individual!

  5. 25 April, 2012 / 3:43 pm

    Great review! I love the spray, but have always been scared to try the shampoo and conditioner since Fleurs review, but maybe Ill give it a go now! I think it all depends on your hair and what you want from it and thats where people go wrong. I hve nautrally mousey blonde and greasy hair, and wanted it much lighter so I use the spray all the time and have nothing but good things to say for it. It has dried my hair out a tiny bit, but I welcome that as it used to be so greasy, and I just balance it out with a hair mask once a week. People really need to get to now a product before they jump the gun and use it wrong x

  6. 25 April, 2012 / 3:46 pm

    Thanks for the great review, I'd definiely give it a go if my hair was still blondish!

    Lucy x

  7. 25 April, 2012 / 5:00 pm

    nope scrap my comment! i havent used this one its the sheer blonde the one in the gold tube! not yellow sorry ladies! although i do want to try this now!

  8. 25 April, 2012 / 5:20 pm

    Great review – I have recently bought the shampoo and so far so good! I think I will try the lightening spray next to put off going to the hairdresser for a while! I think you're right in that people do not pay much attention as to how they should be using the product, but it does also come down to store placement which is an agreement between the manufacturer and retailer…so John Frieda is to blame in some respects! xxx

    Rachel from http://whatabeauty.co.uk

    • 25 April, 2012 / 5:52 pm

      yes you're probably right, that's the main issue in my opinion. If you bought it from the hair colour aisle you'd know what to expect, buying it next to shampoo people aren't reading the label and just spritzing themselves silly!

  9. 25 April, 2012 / 5:44 pm

    Grate review, I myself had no idea I was putting bleach on my hair and then blasting it with heat every other day until my friend who used it every day told me her hair was snapping due to it. The product itself is brilliant at lightning roots in between salon visit but, like you mentioned the problem lies in the fact it is placed with hair styling products. Also maybe a little more attention should have been brought to the fact it was a form of colorant during the advertisement of this product. Such a shame as the product itself truly delivers. x


    • 25 April, 2012 / 5:54 pm

      you're the exact target of my post so I'm glad it reached you! I mean for example If you've used the shampoo and read citrus and chamomile why would you think the spray was any different, I'm glad they've made it clearer on the box but it should be called more than lightening spray just to clarify to those who aren't paying attention.

  10. 25 April, 2012 / 6:09 pm

    fab review, I don't use the shampoo and conditioner, but I do use the spray just to blend in my roots and it works so well! saves me the money going to the hairdressers all the time oxo

  11. 25 April, 2012 / 9:07 pm

    I think this is the best informative and constructive review I have read on the JF Blonde range. Being a hairdresser you could not be more correct in saying people don't understand what they are using, or maybe are just misinformed. You review is balanced and to the point. I think you got amazing results, I too noticed a difference when using the shampoo and conditioner. Not tried the spray but I'm now a light brown (Coloured darker I'm a dark blonde naturally) and am happy with this. In the summer I think the spray would be great for giving more of a sun kissed glow – especially in the UK if we don't get any sun! Mel x

  12. Anonymous
    25 April, 2012 / 9:50 pm

    I'm glad it worked for you and it's good that you're telling people to be sensible with it. because of Fleur's video I would never use it though… it looked like her towels had been bleached. It may say there's no peroxide in it but it didn't seem that way from what i saw in her video. But if it works for someone then that's fine ๐Ÿ™‚

    • 26 April, 2012 / 10:41 am

      lemons and citric acids have been used to naturally bleach skin, hair and even disinfect for years, When I watched that video I didn't really understand why she was shocked that something that can lighten hair can also lighten fabric. I understand the skepticism but a large company like John Freida can't get away with lying about ingredients, there have been so many people that didn't like this, don't you think at least one has sent it off to be tested in the hope of discrediting them?

  13. Anonymous
    25 April, 2012 / 10:37 pm

    Well said! Your hair looks gorgeous. John Frieda should hire you for a commercial.

  14. Anonymous
    25 April, 2012 / 10:39 pm

    ….Oooops published too soon. I meant to say your hair looks so natural. It's a good advertisement for the product. I will def be trying now and thank you for pointing out the difference between the shampoo/conditioner and spray.

  15. 26 April, 2012 / 10:47 pm

    This is a brilliant review. Perfectly written and I love how you have been so clear in balancing the pro's and the cons. xx

  16. Amy
    2 August, 2012 / 8:32 pm

    ive just discovered this review, and i cant thank you enough for it, ive just spent all evening reading negative reviews of the spray after buying it and i was so scared of trying it but now my faith has been restored. thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • missbudgetbeauty
      6 August, 2012 / 9:23 am

      yay!! ppl giving it a bad review in my opinion are using it too frequently.. think about what you’re putting on your hair! x

  17. Olivia Duke
    28 August, 2012 / 4:20 am

    I used to use this product when my hair was blonde and I personally thought it was brilliant!! Although I was using the spray far too often (everyday) which caused my hair to break off this and the combination of pre-bonded extensions ruined my hair causing it to be dyed brown.. thank god for Moroccan oil products!!!!

    • missbudgetbeauty
      29 August, 2012 / 8:22 am

      ahhh love love love moroccan oil! I’m pleased you realised every day was too much and didn’t just think the product ruined your hair lol

      • Olivia Duke
        29 August, 2012 / 7:11 pm

        It hadnt actually occurred to me until recently was blaming the extensions.. Love your blog!!

        • missbudgetbeauty
          30 August, 2012 / 2:48 pm

          Thank You! I understand that if you see it with the styling products you wont necessarily think it’s gonna be uber harsh but it’s very strong.. there needs to be a bigger warning or it needs to be placed with the dyes!

  18. Karen
    6 November, 2012 / 1:45 am

    I’m curious to hear if your hair is still healthy??
    My hair didn’t start snapping off until about 6 months after I stopped using the shampoo and conditioner, when my new healthy hair had grown about 2 inches. Breakage started around the ears, then to the back. My hair was a very long, one length style, now it’s been chopped off to a short, layered bob in an effort to disguise the severe breakage ;(

    • missbudgetbeauty
      8 November, 2012 / 9:06 am

      my hair hasn’t fallen out from the roots or anything lol but I used it carefully

  19. Sarah
    1 June, 2013 / 8:32 am

    So i bought this shampoo and conditioner yesterday, really excited to use. It was stored in the shampoo section. I was really excited to use it as i am a natural blonde, never dyed my hair, however, i felt like it was going a little naturally darker than i wanted i to so i thought this shampoo and conditioner would help lighten it a little. After reading this im not too sure. I love my hair and dont want it ruined! Not sure what to do now, i really wanted to use it but now i just dont know. I still want to use it, any advice?!!

    • missbudgetbeauty
      1 June, 2013 / 11:21 am

      oh I wouldn’t worry about the shampoo and conditioner.. it’s only the spray that will be damaging

  20. nigela
    3 June, 2013 / 2:03 pm

    My hair has snapped off as I used it in between streaks at the hairdressers-bleach on bleach-no good!

  21. 4 June, 2013 / 11:00 am

    I have mousey brown hair and would like it lighter

  22. 4 June, 2013 / 11:02 am

    I would like my hair lighting

  23. sue
    21 July, 2013 / 9:12 am

    The lightening spray caused my hair to snap off around ear length and I had to have layers put in to disguise it. It is far worse than sun in but is advertised as gentle and natural. The shampoo and conditioner are very good though and seem to have some effect

    • missbudgetbeauty
      22 July, 2013 / 9:08 pm

      It’s definitely not gentle, it’s bleach and the new labels are clear.. it wasn’t previously obvious how damaging it was however so if you have an older bottle it’s totally understandable that you may not have known x

  24. bre
    1 September, 2013 / 12:32 am

    I haven’t used this product but i have medium brown hair with natural red undertones. I’ve had highlights before and know from experience that my hair goes from brown to red to copper to blonde during the highlighting process. if you have auburn or brown with red undertones of course its going to turn red. but it should gradually fade out.

  25. Emma
    17 October, 2013 / 2:50 pm

    Very nice review and explanation about this product, anyway I just started using the Go Blonder Shampoo so I still can not give a proper review and I also purchased the tone correcting one (purple shampoo). I didn’t know for how long to leave in the Go Blonder shampoo but I will follow your practice and leave it for 5-10 mins. My issue here is with the purple shampoo, do you know if these shampoos can be used together and how long should I leave in the purple one?

    • missbudgetbeauty
      20 October, 2013 / 10:39 pm

      you can use both and time is difficult to advise on but if you leave it on too long and it looks a little blue/ashy don’t panic.. it will wash out and leave your hair a lovely whiter toned blonde

  26. Christine AF
    23 October, 2013 / 6:18 pm

    Hello! I have dark brown (light brown in the sun) hair, and have been using the Garnier chammomille blonde shampoo for a year or so. There hasn’t been much of a difference, though in summer it tends to get lighter, naturally. I was thinking of using the shampoo, (not Conditioner, or spray), as im scared of getting a brassy look. Do you think i should go ahead and use it? I’d prefer to get it to a lighter brown colour than full on blonde.

  27. Sam Langford
    17 February, 2014 / 9:15 pm

    Really want to use this but very worried about my hair. I have it on order

  28. Katie
    2 April, 2014 / 11:34 pm

    Hello ! I used the spray like four times (in between 3 or 4 weeks) and I’m getting very nervous after reading some comments about it. It’s driving me crazy all those people saying how the thing caused their hair to break off.. Please can you tell me how your hair is now after several months ? Would you know how to minimise the damage ? I hope someone will be able to reply, I would be extremely grateful ! X

  29. Kalin
    25 April, 2014 / 6:29 am

    Hello, Love your review! Your hair looks very natural and I’m glad I came across this. I just bought the shampoo, conditioner and lightening spray today. Then my guilt started to sink in.
    My hairdresser of 19 years has been scolding me for using sun in last summer when I was unaware of the hazards. My mother gave it to me and I didn’t question it. My hair is dirty blonde and I have never (except that one sun in incident) bleached or chemically treated my hair. A miracle I know.
    So my hairdresser says there is an orange ring around the top of my head from the new hair. It is much darker and oily. I was hoping this product would reverse the damage done.
    My extremely long, detailed question is, Did this product give your hair any kind of ring around? And do you think it would be more beneficial to return the lightening spray and stick to more natural ways (like lemon juice)?

    • missbudgetbeauty
      25 April, 2014 / 9:11 am

      I can only think she meant the regrowth when she described a ring.. I’ve never heard that before but I wouldn’t suggest you use any further lightening sprays to fix it

  30. maria
    14 June, 2014 / 8:50 pm

    hiii, i neeed urgent help please, i used this range too, the lightening spray hasn’t damaged my hair luckily well for now and I stopped using it after using it 3 times, it has made my hair more blonder, i have naturally dark blonde hair, my hair is so much blonder, i never died my hair before and don’t want to die it but i want my hair to go back to its natural shades, will that ever happen? how long does it take for this product to fade away? please please help me, I’m very worried and didnt think i wouldn’t like my hair blonder i really want it back to my natural shade, you seem very knowledgable, what do you advice me? thanks in advance.. xxx

    • missbudgetbeauty
      14 June, 2014 / 9:19 pm

      it’s bleach.. it’s not going to fade out so you have the option of dying it to a similar shade to your natural one of waiting for the bleach to grow out.. sorry!

  31. Valery
    16 November, 2014 / 3:09 am

    Curious: did your hair really get that light with only shampoo and conditioner or did you use the spray lightened as well?

    Thanks a bunch! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • missbudgetbeauty
      16 November, 2014 / 9:02 am

      No I used the spray too

  32. Katlyn
    4 March, 2015 / 4:02 am

    I have strawberry blonde hair and in the winter it gets very orange from lack of sunlight. Do you think that it could make my hair a totally wrong colour? My sister had it for awhile but I only ever used the conditioner once and I didn’t notice a difference at all.

    • missbudgetbeauty
      4 March, 2015 / 6:57 pm

      if you hair is already naturally warm I wouldn’t mess with this.. the best you will get is yellow

  33. Euan MacDouga
    7 August, 2015 / 11:42 pm

    Your hair is not even blonde enough to make it an excuse to use John Frieda SHEER BLONDE! All these ‘wannabe’ blondes going to any length to get natural blonde hair. The reality is that it’s not going to happen!!! Lol

    • missbudgetbeauty
      8 August, 2015 / 6:50 am

      It’s not sheer blonde it’s Go Blonder which lightens your hair. Obviously it’s not natural

    • Zach
      15 August, 2015 / 11:54 am

      You are such a sad, miserable person Euan MacDouga to read an in-depth review of a product with pictures only to respond with a self-empowering insult to the author.. does that REALLY make you feel better about yourself? This is the internet, if this is where you are drawing your confidence from, you’re in truly miserable form. Also your degrading opinion that you expressed is entirely subjective. I happen to think that the author’s hair color BEFORE the lightening spray is even used is a natural dirty blonde/lightest gold brown color… and after the spray is used, it’s DEFINITELY in the blonde family.. so go get a life, and stop bullying people online to make yourself feel better. I bet you wouldn’t make comments like this in the REAL world to anyone’s face or call anyone a wannabe for that matter, so thanks for proving that the only wannabe on here is YOU. Learn to respect others and if you have an opinion that is possibly going to hurt someone else’s feelings, KEEP IT TO YOURSELF.

      • missbudgetbeauty
        15 August, 2015 / 8:51 pm

        Don’t worry.. I don’t think she’s going to hurt anyones feelings ๐Ÿ˜‰

  34. Anonymous
    13 August, 2015 / 11:43 am

    I have naturally blond hair but it goes a lot darker in the winter and I would like to use the shampoo and conditioner but don’t have the time to leave it in for 5-10 mins. Do you think it will still work?

  35. Sarah
    23 January, 2018 / 10:50 pm

    I had an incident today. I used the John Frieda go blonder spray last year as a cheap alternative to dying my hair.
    Now I finally saved up some money to get my hair done properly (about 8 months since I used the go lighter spray) and I mentioned this to the hairdresser, she was instantly worried and so took a clipping of my hair and applied the pre lightening solution and left it for two minutes. Within those two minutes my hair had turn elastic in nature, you could stretch it but then it would snap back and knot or just break off. In the end she told me she couldnโ€™t dye my hair until it had all grown out, which was heartbreaking but definitely the best option. Just ended up chopping off a lot of old growth and left with healthy(ish) hair and will return in a year or so to test it again.
    Iโ€™ve actually been told itโ€™s not about the peroxide itโ€™s about the metallic salts that are in this product which affect the sulphur bonds in the protein of the hair. Google incompatibility tests and it should explain better.

    • missbudgetbeauty
      9 February, 2018 / 10:58 am

      thanks for sharing, Sarah! Sending you positive hair vibes!

  36. Mandy Rubio
    26 April, 2018 / 3:44 am

    This review is quite perfect and informative. Thank you

    • missbudgetbeauty
      11 May, 2018 / 9:48 am

      thank you !

  37. Hestia
    13 June, 2019 / 12:41 am

    Your review rocks! I read it several times over, and then afterwards, followed your instructions exactly! Waiting right now to see how it turns out, as I have a towel wrapped around my head with the conditioner still in! I’ve used the spray before and it left my hair (which is naturally curly and dark ash blonde) super super dry and frizzy so I think I may stick to the shampoo and conditioner only! But looking at your results, that should still lighten mine up really well! Right now, mine is highlighted medium gold with the darker ash blonde also visible so I’m curious how it’ll turn out!

    Thank you for this – however it turns out. It was really thorough and I’m glad it worked for you! Fingers crossed I’ll be as sucessful!

    How many hours did you leave the conditioner in? I’m thinking maybe two hours (since it’s near bedtime)

  38. Ladonia
    23 July, 2019 / 12:17 am

    Hi just brought this my hair is highlighted also some greys will this product blend the grey also is the spray safe to use maybe once a month ? Also is it ok to still go to the salon for colour after using this product ?

    • missbudgetbeauty
      4 August, 2019 / 4:16 pm

      No! It lightens your hair but it’s not something hairdressers recommend/if you tell them you’ve used it they may refuse to colour your hair

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