Clash talks to the salon founder about launching in your local chemist.

Babyliss, Bumble & Bumble and now Bleach; A-list hair brands you’ll find under B at Boots. The latter starts hogging shelf space today, with its purse friendly debut at a store near you.

“We always had plans to bring out a range because we have always mixed our own colours,” Bleach founder Alex Brownsell tells Clash. “We spoke with a lot of manufacturers and hair brands about working together, but Boots were an amazing partner who were able to help us develop the range exactly as we wanted it.”

Said range features names such as ‘Total Bleach’, ‘DIY Dip Dye’ and ‘Washing Out Liquid’ alongside ‘Bleach Super Cool Colours Parma Violets/Bruised Violet/The Big Pink’ (and some).

“It’s really exciting for us, I don’t think many people have heard of Bleach outside of London so we’re quite nervous to see what the reaction will be,” Brownsell continues.

If you haven’t heard of Bleach, and we find this a little puzzling, you’ll have seen their results. Jessie J’s shaved head was courtesy of top stylist Alisha, while Rihanna’s grey weave (circa July ’13) was dyed in-store.

And then of course there’s all the sugar coated heads rocking around the capital (and New York, where the girls set up shop on Valentines Day), each one a product of Brownsell and her business partner Sam Teasdale’s Bleach dream (directly or otherwise).

Teasdale takes care of business while Brownsell does the dye dabbling. The pair started with a couple of chairs at Sharmadean Reid’s WAH Nails store on Kingsland Road in 2010, before WAH moved on and they inherited the shop. Similarly the two share a space downstairs at Topshop’s Oxford Circus flagship.

So exactly who is the new range for? “Anyone who is tempted to experiment with their hair,” we’re told. “Perhaps people out there who wouldn’t have the confidence to go into the salon and ask for something daring who can now dabble with hair colour at home. We also want to be the new core go-to brand for experienced bleachers who can use our range for upkeep and maintenance,” she continues.

Music is a running theme at Bleach. Not only do they take their name and font from Nirvana’s debut, but now and again the salon doubles as a venue too (Splashh performed back in March). Pale are currently overplayed on the in-house stereo, while the stylist’s personal clients include Florence Welch and Twigs.

Alex’s own hair takes its everyday inspiration from the fictional character Worzel Gummidge (or so she claims), and given the chance she’d give the Queen a Bleach-over. But what’s next for Bleach London, given this is just the beginning? “There are loads of colours (still to come). Some are coming next year and we’re still working on others. It’s all a big secret at the moment!” 

Words: Zoe Whitfield


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