From brunette to blonde

blonde-hairRegistered Nurse and hardcore blonde Karon Gibson describes her own makeover…and shares her perspective on why many nurses nationwide could use a makeover, too.

Scrubs: Tell us about your makeover.

Karon: I went from black hair to blonde and started a special skin regimen. I love the results.

Scrubs: Why the radical change?

Karon: I didn’t go straight from black to blonde overnight! When I was in my late teens, my neighbor streaked my hair with blonde highlights and I was immediately asked out by a guy I had worked with for months. I thought I’d go that route with my hair now that I’m an adult and getting some “white natural streaks.” I started off by highlighting my hair as a progressive change to hide the beginning of the gray. It worked so well that I trusted my stylist to change the color to blonde, and she did so without any damage.

Scrubs: How did it feel going from dark black to pure blonde? Did it inspire you to do more?

Karon: As soon as I went blonde, I started receiving compliments on my hair and was even told it made me look younger. I just found a chemist creator of organic skin creams and a noninvasive way to diminish lines and collagen drooping of the eyes. As president of a health care agency and a TV host and speaker, I need to make sure I look as good as I can. But when I look at my nursing colleagues, I realize that we nurses across the board need to take more notice of how we look. We look very different than the women in other business ventures.

Scrubs: Tell us how nurses differ in style from a typical corporate management type.

Karon: Women in business situations tend to dress well and find the time for facials, hair and nail treatments. Nurses, however, work very busy and tiring schedules, and may not feel we can find the time or the money to do these things. Even so, I’m disappointed to see hospital nurses looking unkempt. We used to be so proud of our clean, crisp white uniforms and caps that distinguished us from the ancillary personnel. Now, you often can’t tell which are the professional nurses and which aren’t.

Scrubs: Nurses look great when they express their individuality, though. We see so many wonderful new print scrubs – some funny, some very sophisticated. So why do you think nurses can look less “professional?”

Karon: I think it’s more about how they feel than how they look. I attend some seminars in business and others in nursing, and I notice a distinct difference in the appearance of most of the women. Even when not wearing scrubs, the nurses appear to wear less business-like outfits and comfort seems more the norm.

Scrubs: What beauty makeovers do you recommend for nurses who just feel too exhausted or broke to get facials or hair treatments?

Karon: Nurses could start by just taking notice of how dress and makeup affect our professional demeanor and appearance. It’s no secret that when you look a little better, you can feel more confident. Also, many beauty treatments like hair coloring and facials are available at a lesser cost today than they were even six months ago. And you can start small like I did…ask a neighbor to streak your hair with blonde highlights!

Karon Gibson, RN, CCM, is the producer and host of the TV show Outspoken, shown in prime time for 28 years in Chicago and 67 suburbs and communities in Illinois, Los Angeles and Santa Monica. She’s also the CEO of AmericaNurse and the coauthor of Nurses on Our Own (St. Martin’s Press, Avon and iUniverse). Email her at or


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7 Responses to From brunette to blonde

  1. I really enjoyed reading Karon’s Article. I’m a Nurse who is Disabled, & haven’t worked for over 4years, & I miss it terribly. But I feel very strongly about that Nurses should look like the Professionals that they are, because it does reflect on how they feel about themselves. I know how tiring that we all usually are, especially if you have a Family to take care of, when you get off of work. So, just when do we fit this beauty regimen in, that all Nurses deserve? And what about being able to afford it too? Well, I have a few suggestions for all of you hard-working Girls & Guys. Let’s start with an inexpensive facial. And I don’t mean by giving yourself one. For those of you, who have never had one, a Beauty Operator handles these. I had my very first one, as a Birthday gift from my Wonderful Mother, & I had never felt so good & relaxed in my life! If there had been a fire, I wouldn’t have been able to get up, because I was just limp! LOL. I had it done at a Beauty School, where the cost is a whole lot cheaper than a regular Salon. They had told me that they even had Men coming there on their lunch breaks, for a facial. Ladies & Gentlemen, that is where you must start, & you’re skin will be glowing after also. As we all know, if you feel good on the inside, then you will start to feel good on the outside. Also, I go to the elite Merle Norm 1 time per month for a free 25.00 facial! So check around Nurses. There’s some ways out there for you to get some good deals on getting your beauty regimen’s started without leaving you broke! As for makeup, make an appointment at a makeup counter, & get a free makeover. When you start taking care of yourself, a little bit more, you feel so much better, & the compliments that you’ll be getting won’t feel too bad either! LOL. I like getting a makeover at a counter that I really like, because then you can see what really looks good on you, & you’re not left guessing at the Dept. store, where you usually can’t try any of their make up on. So, I buy 1 or 2 things that I really like after my makeover, & the rest at a Dept. store, because it’s cheaper. Also, after your makeover, ask if they have any samples of what they just put on you, & usually they do. I could go on & on, but it’s 4:45 a.m. in Illinois! Good Luck & Sweet Dreams!

    P.S. You all deserve to feel good about yourselves, inside & out. Thank You for taking the time to read this!

  2. Shadow

    I’ve always worn my hair (which happens to be longer than my shoulders) up in a ponytail at work. But I have very flattering bangs…and a few little whispy side curls in front of my ears that are wearing a cute pair of earrings… in addition, my scrubs are so cute, since I choose them as carefully as I do my other off-duty clothing, that patients (women, since men don’t notice clothes…just that you are attractive or not) often tell me they love what I’m wearing. I also make sure my shoes are clean and not worn down. My makeup is tastefully applied. I am professional in my demeanor, and my knowledge is noticed by both patients and staff. If you have CONFIDENCE… you will show it by taking care of yourself. It makes YOU feel better all day..and your patients will appreciate it too….

  3. Ava

    This is ridiculous! nursing and business are two completely different fields! since when should us nurses try to look like business women? While it is very important to feel confident and look clean and well kept, its far more important to concentrate on your job and the work you are doing. Peoples LIVES are in our hands, and your worried about highlights and facials? i’m sorry, but this disgusts me. Get your priorities straight!

  4. liz

    Nurses do not need to look like tired hags. We need to take care of ourselves also. We’re no good to our patients if we’re running on fumes & look like we are, to boot!

    I think patients feel more confident with their nurse if she looks like she takes care of herself and didn’t look like she just rolled out of bed & pulled a pair of scrubs out of the laundry basket.

  5. I hope all Nurses will accept that this suggestion is to put us all in the best light. It is amazing what people will notice about our fashion and hair and the comments they make and how they accept us. The hair stylist in Chicago that made the great difference for me and out TV guests is Maria Paonessa of Campagnia della bellezza in Old Town at l500 N. Wells 312=944=6747. The skin care is with organic creams with no toxins and even a men’s line and a new lipstick. The Chicago Look with Frank Landon does hair and makeup and is located at l500 N. Wells. Chicago. For info: call 815 773 4497 which is our Outspoken with Karon TV show line. Visit us at for the show Outspoken with Karon.

  6. The article is ver good. Write please more

  7. Sandie Blanco

    OK I do believe that nurses should be well groomed, But come on I am not going to spend 2 hours getting ready for work. There are many quick things you can do in the shower such as quickie facial scrub which is also cheap such as ST.ives Exfoliating scrub(makes tired skin look refreshed, run a raiser up your legs and moisturize you’ll feel better even if no one can see your legs. and most important if your going to tie up your wet hair(lazy) at least apply pretty light colored lipstick and mascara looks like you meant to do that not like you were in a hurry. And also, aquaphor on your hands as well as nail/ cuticle oil on fingertips saves you from “Monster Hands” I call it my $20.00 purchase Q 4 months my million dollar look, i never get tired of hearing OMG your 40 I thought you were about 26 or 27 so COOL! and all I do is spend 15 min. beauty routine in the shower while i am conditioning my hair pass it on, My co-worker had passed it to me that was given to her by her mom/nurse….