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As the weather changes, it only makes sense to change your style with it. The fastest route to a completely revamped look? A new hairdo! Changing your cut or color will immediately make you feel like a brand new woman.

Autumn presents the perfect opportunity to finally try that new style you’ve been thinking about. There are just a few things to keep in mind so that you’re happy with the results.

Use the fall palette

This isn’t necessarily the right time to go with shimmery highlights—save that for next spring or summer. Instead, stick with rich or ashy browns and warm blondes. Caramel, golden, burgundy, chocolate and mahogany are all great shades for this season. This is also a lovely time to take the leap and go red. If you want something a little more “out there,” try an icy platinum, gray, cherry or purple.

Consider the chill

There’s nothing quite as thrilling as a drastic new haircut. However, it’s already starting to get cold outside. The shorter your hair, the more protection you’ll need to wear to protect yourself from the chill. It might be worth waiting for warmer weather to go for a pixie cut, although on the other hand, a short cut also presents a great reason to invest in some awesome hats. If you’d like to radically change your haircut without losing too much hair, try a short bob, bangs or layers.

Don’t cheap out—go to a pro

Some people are quite adept at cutting their own hair. If that’s you, more power to you! Dying your hair, though, is a different story. Going to a professional is almost always a better idea than attempting to dye your hair at home, and this is particularly true if you’re lightening your hair. Bleaching at home is simply a risky proposition.

Know what you want

It’s best to have an actual photo handy so that you can show the stylist the exact look you’re hoping to imitate. If they start going rogue during the middle of your appointment, don’t be afraid to speak up! You don’t need to worry about hurting your hairdresser’s feelings. They’re there to perform a service for you, after all, and you’ll save yourself both time and money by speaking up when it counts.

Take care of your new locks

Once you have the fall hairdo of your dreams, it’s important to maintain it properly. Some hair colors benefit from using special shampoo or conditioner. If you’ve bleached your hair, a protein treatment and regular masks will get it back to its previous health. Most haircuts need to be maintained once a month to every few months.

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