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33 Balayage Hair Color Ideas for 2017

What is balayage, you ask? With its French definition meaning ‘to sweep or to paint”, it is exactly that when it comes to hair! Balayage is a hair coloring technique where the color is literally painted onto the hair. This result is a graduated, natural-looking color that is all the rage right now.

Balayage can be done with a variety of color combos on a variety of hairstyles. This collection of balayage hair ideas will show you just how versatile (and how gorgeous!) this color technique truly is!

  • Disconnected Bob

    disconnected bob balayage

    Instagram @shannasimms

    Q&A with style creator, Shanna Henke
    Hairstylist and Color Educator @ Dominic Michael Salon in Chesterfield, MI


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is a short disconnected bob with a natural balayage. My favorite thing about this look is the modern and fresh take on a classic design that can be styled a variety of ways.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    This look was created using Kerestase Demsimorphose mousse on wet hair for thickness and texture, then finished with L’Oreal Professionnel True Grip for texture and Infinium 3 for hold and memory.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    This is a very natural color pallet that is extremely versatile. It will flatter most skin tones or can be easily customized for each client. Staying close to the client’s natural level is key. The haircut is great for fine or thick hair as you can vary the degree and severity of the undercut.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    This is a low maintenance cut and color combination. My biggest tip would be to use a demi permanent hair color for a softer grow out and a diffused balayage application.

  • Dimensional & Rich

    dimensional-rich-balayage

    Instagram @danicahair

    Q&A with style creator, Danica Vance
    Hairstylist @ Shannon Hair in Valencia, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I would describe this look as a dimensional and rich balayage. My favorite thing about it is the movement it creates in the hair, as well as the bangs because they make the look a little different than what everyone else has

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    For coloring, I would recommend Wella Multi-Use Blondor with 20 vol and toning with Wella Color Touch and 6 vol. For styling, use a 1 1/4-inch curling iron starting from the top and working down, leaving about an inch of the ends out. Comb fingers through hair and spray R+Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo Texturizing Spray.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I think any skin tone can tone pull off this hair color. I think this look in particular looks best on hair that is on the straighter side, especially for the bangs.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    My best tip in recreating this look is painting on the lightener with a soft brush and blending with fingers. Less is more, and it won’t be dimensional if you lighten everything.

    In regards to maintenance, the nice thing is that this color grows out amazing so just glossing in between color appointments will keep it shiny and rich.

  • Princess Elsa Inspired

    disney elsa balayage hair color

    Cassi Pierce-Lackey / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Cassi Pierce-Lackey
    independent stylist @ House of Color in Colorado Springs, CO


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look was created for the Disney Princess at heart, channeling Elsa! My favorite part of this style is how simple it is to maintain. Balayage forever!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    To achieve this style, I began with Biolage’s RAW Nourish shampoo and conditioner. This pair will give you really healthy, shiny hair. Use Kenra’s Revive Oil and Blowout Spray to smooth out your hair with a blow dryer. Curl with a 2-inch barrel wand (I LOVE the Paul Mitchell Unclipped wand) and finish with some Joico Hair Shake and a messy fishtail braid.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I love this color on anyone with fair skin. It’s a difficult color to achieve and maintain, even on naturally very light hair. It is possible to get here from dark hair, but it will be over many appointments.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    After creating this color with Kenra’s color line, I sent my client home with VIRAL Shampoo in Lavender to use once a week. I suggest getting a water softener for anyone that washes their hair with hard water.

  • For The Hectic Schedule

    hectic balayage hair color

    Instagram @danielletaren

    Q&A with style creator, Danielle Abarientos
    Hairstylist @ Fifth&Mae Salons in Roswell, GA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look was created for a busy client that is not able to be in the salon on a regular six to eight week schedule. It is well blended, has a very natural contrast, and works with a hectic schedule! My favorite aspect of balayage is that it is low maintenance. Some of my clients only get their balayage done once or twice a year!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I love Aveda products and have worked with Aveda throughout my entire career. For this look, I used a small amount of Aveda’s Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair to add some protein and protection during the blowout. o wave it out, I used Aveda’s Air Control Hairspray before, during, and after wrapping large vertical sections around a 1-inch straight barrel wand.

    I used Paul Mitchell’s Neuro Wand. It’s a favorite of mine! Also remember to alternate directions as you curl and leave the last one to two inches out to get a soft, modern tousle. Break apart the curls with Aveda’s Light Elements Smoothing Fluid and you’re done!

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Balayage is a very natural and organic way to highlight the hair and add dimension. Any hair type, texture, and length can pull off balayage as long as it’s tailored to your specific style. For my client, these light golden tones helped warm up her skin tone, making her look like she’s still in summer!

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Maintenance on balayage should be very simple and straightforward. I recommend coming in every 12-16 weeks for a simple gloss (to adjust the tone/reduce unwanted warmth) and a cut! An hour-long appointment every couple of months makes certain that your balayage lasts and lasts. You can decide when you want your highlights brought back up and that will be when you need your balayage done again.

    My best tip ultimately is to take care of your hair! Use products that cater to your needs, cut down on heat styling, and get regular glosses and trims. Healthy hair will always look best!

  • Rooted Look

    rooted balayage hair color

    Alohi Lewis / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Alohi Lewis
    Hairstylist @ Cristophe Salon in Newport Beach, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is effortless, yet perfectly polished. My favorite aspect about this dimensional blonde is giving it a more “rooted look” and keeping more of the internal depth present.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    In the salon, I use a combination of different lines. For this look, I used Wella lightener and Wella Color Touch Demi color. I also supplemented Brazilian B3 into my lightener. This helps prevent breakage when going lighter.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Honestly, anyone can pull off this look! Skin tone is definitely crucial for choosing your tone. For this client, I wanted warmer tones to melt into creamy tones on the bottom. This way the color that was closest to her face wouldn’t wash her out.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    I painted on lightener as if the sun naturally would. I sectioned off her hair into three sections: one in the back and one on each side. I worked in horizontal sections, always keeping in mind to leave enough of her natural color for depth. I did two glosses after her shampoo. The first one was applied from root to her mid lengths and the second gloss was for her ends.

    To maintain this color, I always recommend using professional hair products. My favorite shampoos and conditioners are color safe and sulfate-free. I work a lot with Kérastase. It always keeps my clients’ hair super shiny and healthy. I also always recommend maintenance with toners and treatments as the color fades. The timing on this depends of each client’s lifestyle and how much heat is put on the hair. For this look, she will be able to stretch her next color appointment anywhere from three to five months!

  • Blonde Mermaid

    mermaid balayage hair color

    Carrieann Njaastad / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Carrieann Njaastad
    Hair Artist & Colorist @ Style Onsite in Schaumburg, IL.


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is what we call “mermaid hair”! It truly does have the colors you would see in water — light blue, teal, dark blues, and even a hint of purple for some drama. It’s beachy, edgy, and fun.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    As far as the color melt application, Pravana Vivids and Joico Semi Permanent Fashion Colors are what I used to create it. I also used Kenra’s Violet Semi Permanent Color.

    As far as maintenance after the color application, a color protecting shampoo and conditioner are a must. I’m obsessed with Matrix, Redken and KMS products. As far as creating the beach waves, all I did was curl the hair with a 1-inch iron and spray it with Kenra’s Super Hold Hairspray. Voila!

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Anyone can achieve this look. I have to admit, it’s much easier for someone who is already a highlighted, healthy blonde or someone who has naturally lighter hair and can get light enough easily without breakage. As far as skin tones, the fair to medium skin tones always look amazing with these bold colors. I love muted colors and pastels on dark skin tones.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Absolutely use a color protecting shampoo and conditioner. Always use a firm hold hairspray for beach waves. Here is my best secret for beachy waves. Before any styling I ever do, I spray “It’s a 10 Miracle Spray” on the hair before I blow dry. I like to keep the hair as healthy as possible before I use any heat tools. Lightly spray the hair before you curl it, curl it, and then spray it again afterwards. As far as the fashion colors, make sure the hair is as light as possible before applying the semi permanent pigment.

  • Sun-Kiss Hair

    sun kissing balayage hair color

    Instagram @okstephair

    Q&A with style creator, Stephanie Orr
    Hairstylist @ Salon Kingston in West Hollywood, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I’ve lived in Los Angeles my whole life and that is probably the biggest reason that I gravitate to the balayage look. To me balayage is meant to mimic naturally sun-kissed hair, which is why I love it. When most people think of southern California they think of sunny skies, tan skin and sun kissed hair. My favorite thing about this look is that anyone can have it. It’s the best way to add lightness to the hair without ruining the integrity of the hair.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    The best product to use with balayage is always a color-safe shampoo. I prefer Elements by Wella which is a high conditioning shampoo and conditioner that is sulfate-free. For styling, recreating a beachy curl is the best way to show off that color. Remember the look you are going for is sun kissed, so what goes best with sun kissed hair? Beachy waves!

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Anyone can have this sun kissed look. If you have dark hair, the light pieces should be no lighter than a light brown/dark blonde. Redheads can have strawberry blonde balayage and blondes can go lighter.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Balayage is the most low maintenance color out there. The highlights are meant to be so blended with a rooty look so you can go longer between services. I recommend one gloss service four to five weeks after, then coming back in for touch up no longer than three months after the original service.

  • A More Natural Balayage

    Q&A with style creator, Renee W Owens
    Owner/Stylist/Redken Color Specialist @ Sunshine Hair Designs in Tarboro, NC


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This client came in with grown out, brassy foil highlights and wanted a lighter, softer, more natural balayage look. She wanted to stay more natural through the top to allow for a softer grow out.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I balayaged her all over using Redken flash lift with 40 volume and Redken PH bonder to protect the integrity of the hair. I processed at room temperature for 30 minutes. After processing, I went back with Redken shades Eq 1 part 9v and 1 part Crystal clear for 15 minutes to glaze, tone and seal.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    This look can be worn by most anyone since we kept her natural tones through the top and lighter through the ends.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    This color technique is great to use on clients who don’t want to come in every six to eight weeks for touch ups because it grows out beautifully!

  • Merlot Melt

    merlot melt balayage hair color

    Patricia Perry / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Patricia Perry
    Owner of Patricia Perry Salon in Westfield, NJ


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look was originally a summer blonde balayage. Transitioning into the fall, she wanted to spice up her color into something a tad warmer. We decided on this merlot color and melted it into her previously light blonde hair, then glossed with a golden blonde. I call this a burgundy color melt!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    We are a Davines Salon, all of our styling products are vegan and low impact. To keep the hair looking healthy and shiny, we recommend the Minu shampoo and conditioner, followed by Minu hair serum to protect from heat while blow drying, and also add moisture and shine to the hair.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Merlot complements a large variety of skin tones. Due to the fact that it contains violet, the range can span from light to dark skin tones. I would not recommend this color if the person naturally has a lot of red undertones in their complexion. The red will draw out more red and therefore enhance skin blemishes and/or rosacea.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    When recreating this look, select a vibrant red violet in a level 5 or 6. As stated earlier, this color was melted over a six week grown out balayage, so the roots got some depth while the midshaft became more vibrant. I always seal a red with a clear gloss, or in this case a golden blonde to refresh the previous blonde.

  • Lived-in Highlights

    Lived in balayage highlights

    Mola Raxakoul / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Mola Raxakoul
    Hairstylist & Colorist in Burlingame / San Francisco Bay Area, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I love this look because it’s so effortless and soft. I created this type of highlight to make her hair more dimensional as though it’s her natural hair color. I darkened and melted her root for a seamless grow out. Clients love this look because it’s very low maintenance. It’s a great “lived-in” highlight/hair color.

    Which products would you recommend to help create and maintain this look?

    I love Oribe shampoos. My two favorites are Beautiful Color and Gold Lust. I also love the Gold Lust Serum to help the hair look shiny and soft. A client will want to come in anywhere from 8-12 weeks to help keep the shine and richen the color with a color glaze. The glaze will help to maintain the vibrancy of the hair.

    What type of person would this look work best for?

    This look is great on everyone! It’s a beautiful golden with different brown dimensions. This particular client has thick hair, but it would also look great in someone who also has fine hair since it will appear fuller because of the dimension in the color.

    I added long layers in the hair and gave it a good textures taking off some of the weight. This look is great for someone who can’t come into the salon as often because it’s very low maintenance. The highlights could be redone every four to six months, and the root color every three to four months.

    What’s your best tip for someone who’s considering this look?

    My best tip for someone who would like this look is to be sure their hair is healthy. There is nothing worse than someone wanting highlights when the ends are dried up or fried up and they don’t want to cut it.

    I always recommend my clients do a coconut oil hair mask (use organic and raw) one to two days before their highlight appointment. After shampooing, towel dry the hair and add coconut oil all over from the mid shaft to the ends. Either leave it on for 30 minutes or overnight before washing it out with shampoo. This treatment helps to lock moisture into the hair while we process. It limits breakage and helps keep the shine in the hair. Just know that it is very important to be to fully rinse the coconut oil out before the appointment!

  • Sunkissed Blonde

    Sunkissed blonde balayage

    Shelby Fischer / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Shelby Royster
    Hairstylist @ Elite Salon & Day Spa Jacksonville, FL


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a sunkissed beachy blonde on a nice fresh cut for those who like to keep their length, but also want something with a little more shape. My favorite thing about it is how she has natural-looking dimension that really gives her hair some depth.

    Which products would you recommend to help create and maintain this look?

    On this look I used a few different products; Nevo smoothing cream to tame her frizz, Evo blowout spray to prime her for a nice blowout, and Indie sea salt spray for added texture after giving her beach waves with a flat iron.

    What type of person would this look work best for?

    This style would work well on most hair types and with most lifestyles. Since she has balayage, she has a more long term color that will require her to come in less often than traditional highlighting would. The length is suitable for most since it has a fun shape but can still be pulled into an upstyle.

    Fine hair would work well for this cut as well, but would need much less layering. This particular client had a lot of bulk, so I thinned her out as well as layered her hair heavily to relieve some of the weight.

    What’s your best tip for someone who’s considering this look?

    My tip for those looking to get this style is to make sure that they use professional products at home and keep their heat styling tool temperatures as low as possible to maintain the health of lightened hair. To maintain the cut, they will probably have to come in every eight weeks or so. If your starting canvas is very dark, have patience! Blonde is an investment, both in time and money.

  • Ruby Red

    ruby-red-balayage

    Natasha Fehlhaber / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Natasha Fehlhaber
    Stylist & Salon Owner @ Reveal Salon & Spa in Omaha, NE


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is bold and sassy. I love how the light catches the ruby red balayage!

    Which products would you recommend to help create and maintain this look?

    To achieve this look, I used Aveda Daily Hair Repair and Keune Satin Oil to condition and soften the hair. Due to her natural curl, I used Evo Easy Tiger to smooth and defrizz. I added Keune Root Boost at the scalp for great volume and Keune Mousse throughout to give a soft, bouncy hold. I pieced out her curl with Aveda Control Paste for a little shine and separation.

    What type of person would this look work best for?

    I love this look for those who are ready to amp it up and make a statement. This is look is fun and bold, but not too ‘in your face’. Her natural curl makes this style a breeze on quick days, and here we did a blowout and added a beachy curl to spice it up. Those with not too wide of a jawline or too ruddy of a complexion are perfect candidates for this overall look.

    What’s your best tip for someone who’s considering this look?

    Think about what works for you. The maintenance? Your lifestyle? TALK to your stylist. You have to be ready to turn some heads with this look as well. Red is definitely for the bold!

  • Sandy Beach Blonde

    Sandy beach blonde balayage hair

    Michael Greene / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Michael Greene
    Stylist @ PR at Partners Hair Salon in Washington, D.C.


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I would describe this as the sandiest of beach blondes! I love the seamless melt from her natural base into a bright blonde.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I used R+Co’s One to prep the hair and added High Dive for moisture and shine. I ALWAYS shoot for shine when taking someone blonde, as it is often what’s missing.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    The wonderful thing about this hair color is that it can be customized for any combination of skin color and style. For this particular shade, my client has olive undertones and rich brown eyes. Her style lends toward a modern, bohemian look, which is what drew us to the effortless color.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this look?

    The best part of this color is how low maintenance it is! I would recommend haircuts and color touch-ups every three to four months (or once a season). Ask your stylist for a full balayage/hand painting service, and be sure to take home a weekly treatment/bond builder like Olaplex to maintain the hair’s integrity.

  • Caramel-Toned

    caramel-toned-balayage

    Amanda Vandongen / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Amanda Vandongen
    Hairstylist @ Kelly Cardenas Salon in Salt Lake City, UT


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a caramel-toned balayage on long hair. My favorite things about this look are how seamlessly the colors blend, and that the hair will look amazing straight or curled.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I would recommend Paul Mitchell’s Super Strong Shampoo and Conditioner to maintain hair health after the color. For styling, I would recommend Extra Body Daily Root Lifter for volume at the top, then Hot Off The Press as a thermal protectant with light hold. I used the Paul Mitchell Unclipped 1-inch rod to curl the hair, then finished the look with Sugar Spray for a beachy texture.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    People with fair to tan skin tones can pull this color off well. Thicker hair that is with or without natural texture can copy this style the easiest.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this look?

    I recommend touching up the base of the hair and the tone of the caramel every six weeks to keep the look fresh and poppin’!

  • Blonde Sombré

    Blonde sombre balayage hair color

    Lindsey Little / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Lindsey Little
    Hair Artist @Viselli Salon in Boston, MA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I would describe this balayage as a blonde sombre’. My favorite thing about it is how effortless and natural it feels! The soft fade from a slightly warmer root to a bright blonde on the ends gives a summer vibe that’s suitable for all seasons.

    Which products would you recommend to help create and maintain this look?

    For this look I would recommend using a 1 to 1 1/2-inch wand to create a loose, beachy waves. I love to use Kevin Murphy Hair Resort Spray over dry hair to create that cool beachy texture after I’m done with the styling.

    What type of person would this look work best for?

    This look would work best for anyone who loves to be blonde, but wants a low maintenance color. The shadow root that I created let’s the new growth come in with no line. Any face shape and skin tone can pull this off, but it may be most flattering on those with lighter skin.

    What’s your best tip for someone who’s considering this look?

    My best tip for someone who’s considering this look is to understand the styling time and tools that are needed to achieve it. Hair texture and density is also a factor. I always tell my guests that a picture is just a bas line or an idea, the end result will always vary depending on the person’s hair type and natural color.

  • Red, Balayage Ombre

    re-balayage-ombre-hair

    Katie Formica / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, Katie Formica
    Stylist @ Salon Blk. in Sewell, NJ


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is so simple, yet super chic! This is one of my absolute favorite color/style combos. Balayage ombres are so beautiful alone, but combining the touseled waves with the color brings the whole look together. 

    My favorite thing about this whole look is how easy and low maintenance it is! You can easily recreate this textured look at home just by using the right tools and products. The color needs to be done by a professional, but the minimal upkeep is one of the reasons this color is in such high demand.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    To recreate this look you will first need to curl hair using a large barrel curling iron wand. I would recommend using Matrix’s “Airy Builder” to add texture and body to your dry waves. Follow up by using Matrix’s “High Amplify” flexible hold hairspray. This will hold the style without leaving it stiff and crunchy. Finish off the style with Matrix’s Biolage Sugar Shine Illuminating Spray for a light, non-greasy shine.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    For this particular color/style combo, someone with a warmer skin tone and hair that already has a slight wave and texture to it can easily pull this entire look off. 

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Have fun! Use this color/style as inspiration and put your own spin on it. Don’t be afraid to change things up to accentuate you or your client’s facial features in regard to skin tone, face shape, etc.

  • Rooted Foliage

    soft-waves-ombre

    Sammie Rodriguez / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Sammie Rodriguez

    Hair Artist @ Wander Salon Barnone in Arizona


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is a lower maintenance version of highlights or balayage. It is a bright honey blonde with a deeper root for contrast. This look is amazing because it stays with the current trends for blondes while keeping the client happy their hair healthy. It looks good either straight or curled, so that’s a double bonus!

    Which products would you recommend to help create and maintain this look?
    For styling, I used Matte Waves Texture Lotion and Gold Lust Oil by Oribe before blow drying. I then curled the hair in alternating directions (away from the face on both sides) and finished by spraying in a dry texture spray and using my fingers as a comb to separate out the curls.

    What type of person would this look work best for?

    This hair color works best for someone who doesn’t like to have the high maintenance of highlights, but wants to stay current on trends while having an easy growout along the way.

    The color in the picture works best for lighter skin tones, but the amazing thing is that you can simply tone this color more or less warm to fit any skin type!

    What’s your best tip for someone who’s considering this look?

    The best tip that I can give someone thinking about going for this look is to do some research on the stylist you are going to see. Make sure they are current on trends and know how to do a shadow root so you end up getting what you want. Also remember that in regards to styling, messy and imperfect is better! The more texture you have, the better this style will look.

  • Hand Painted Pearl

    pearl-bayalage-hair

    Pamela Adam / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Pamela Adam

    Hairstylist @ Bloom Hair Studio in Edmonton


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?
    This dimensional balayage is classic, yet modern. I love that you can easily dress it up or down! 
    Which products would you recommend for this look?
    Always use a heat protectant or oil to prep the hair for heat styling. I prefer Davines Oi Oil and 1 1/4-inch Hot Tools curling iron to create beachy waves. To recreate these waves, curl away from the face and begin the curl in the mid shaft for more volume. 

    Use a texturizing mist/hairspray to finish the style and give it an undone look. I LOVE Kevin Murphy Doo Over. It’s a hairspray, dry shampoo and powder puff all in one bottle. It gives a beautiful matte finish without any residue and will hold the style all day.
    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?
    This particular client has a very fair skin tone, but the cool tones work because her base color still contains warm tones to complement the skin. Her hair was maintained during the lightening process with a bond builder. I prefer Schwarzkopf FIBREPLEX for both me behind the chair, and for clients to use at home for maintaining the health of their hair.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Hair doesn’t work, unless you do. Invest in the proper products and in the health of your hair. This client has been lightening her hair over several sessions to ensure the integrity of her hair was never compromised. The beautiful thing about balayage is that you are able to go longer between appointments due to the natural grow out process. However, take the time to utilize heat protectants and at home treatments!

  • Darling Balayage

    long-bayalage-hair

    Pamela Adam / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Pamela Adam

    Hairstylist @ Bloom Hair Studio in Edmonton


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This look is a classic “bronde”. My favorite part of this look is the contrast of the warmth and beige tones and how they suit her skin tone perfectly.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    This particular client had a fairly strongly contrasted ombre beforehand, and we have gradually been taking her lighter throughout to break it up. Because of that, purple shampoo (I’m obsessed with Fanola No Yellow) is an absolute necessity for her home care routine. This just ensures her hair maintains a nice tone and doesn’t get brassy on her.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    This is an excellent approach for clients of all hair types and skin tones looking to brighten up or move away from a grown out ombre. Asking your stylist for a combination of babylights and balayage on any grown out ombre with a heavy demarcation line will yield beautiful results!

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    To maintain this color, it is integral to use the correct products and/or head to your stylist in between colors for a toning service if you’re not ready to commit to another lightening session. When going lighter, ensure you are taking care of the health of your hair by using a masque or moisturizing treatment. I love Kevin Murphy Hydrate Me Masque. It is full of luxurious ingredients that make a difference after the first use!

  • Workin’ It!

    beautiful-balayage-color

    Amy McManus / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Amy McManus

    Hairstylist and Colorist in Massachusetts


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a very blended, rooty blonde balayage highlight. My favorite thing about this look is that it looks beautiful when styled straight or wavy.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I recommend a sulfate-free moisturizing shampoo and conditioner since we used lightener on her. For styling products, I recommend a light serum to help keep the hair polished cock-tailed with a foam to add volume and control.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    The skin tones that can pull off this color would be medium to light.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    To recreate this look you’d need to have or create a base level at a 6 and balayage to create a seamless start to her highlights, then saturate throughout the midshaft and ends for the ombre part. We achieved this over three balayage sessions. To maintain this color, she comes in every eight weeks for a toner and light trim.

  • Soft & Subtle

    dark brown balayage color

    MacKenzie Kleinert / Instagram

    Q&A with style creator, MacKenzie Kleinert
    Hairstylist and Master Colorist Hair Designers in Keokuk, IA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is one of my favorite balayage looks! I call it a sunkissed brunette simply because it is such a natural look and is so easy to maintain. It’s healthy, shiny and simple!
    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    My first go-to product for this look is Redken Pillow Proof Blow Dry Express Primer on damp hair. When styling, I used Redken #18 quick drying instant finishing hairspray. I love this hairspray because the hair is still has moveability!
    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I believe this look is best for women with dark hair. When adding the blonde to the ends it gives a beautiful contrast. This is a very subtle balayage, so it could work with anyone’s skin tone.
    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    This client came in with an all natural level 5 base. All we did was add the balayage effect using Redken Flashlight with 20 vol, then we toned with Redken Shades of eq 07p with processing solution. After coloring, we gave her a very blunt haircut with no layering.

    To maintain this color, I would rebook an appointment with your stylist for a touch up every four to six weeks.

  • Natural, Sun-Kissed

    sun kissed balayage hair color

    Instagram @hairbykalet

    Q&A with style creator, Kalet Budge
    Master Stylist @ D’Ambrosio Hair Design in Scottsdale, AZ


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I achieved this look by doing a global color application with an open air balayage. What I love about this color is the natural and sun kissed look it creates in the hair. It is a low maintenance way to create dimension in the hair and clients love that they are not having to touch up the highlights every eight weeks.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I used Alphaparf 7/0 for her global color and Pravana’s clay based lightener with the high developer for her sun kissed highlights. I glossed her with Tedken shades eq 6t for 15 minutes.

    For her style, I blew it out out Scruples Smooth Out and a medium-sized round brush.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I have found that warm skin tones look best with warm rich caramel tones like these. Cool skin tones are really able to rock those cool blonde tones.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    I have always been a believer in the “less is more” theory. I do recommend that a stylist take a class in balayage to learn the most efficient methods in application and placement. My favorite classes for this are a twww.thebusinessofbalayage.com. Most importantly, do not over highlight. It is the depth that really makes this hair color and style pop.

  • Bouncy, Multidimensional Tones

    multidimensional tones balayage color

    Instagram @hairbychanel_c

    Q&A with style creator, Chanel Carstensen
    Owner/Educator @ The Mane Loft in Costa Mesa, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This entire look is definitely one my favorites. I love how the soft bouncy curls showcase the balayaged pieces in her hair. Unique, multidimensional tones are a some of my favorite personal touches for clients.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    My favorite lightener to use for this look is Schwarzkopf Blondeme lightener with 40 volume developer. I always use B3 Brazilian Bond Builder in my balayage formulas to keep my client’s hair looking and feeling amazing. After processing, I shampooed with Fanola No Yellow shampoo and I custom toned with Redken Shades EQ 9nb/9v.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Since a balayage service is unique to each client, results can aways vary with different hair types and textures. This look was achievable after her third session with me. The dimensional tones in her hair would look amazing on clients with light/medium and medium/dark skin tones.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    Consistency of your lightener is everything when it comes to the perfect balayaged highlight. If your lightener is too thick, it can dry out quickly and stop processing. If it’s too thin, it could bleed and look splotchy. Most of my clients with this look have their hair done two to three times a year, however I always recommend that they come in for a toner or gloss in between their balayage services. I stress the importance of using professional products at home to maintain healthy and beautiful looking hair.

  • Soft Butterscotch

    Q&A with style creator, Meagan Reitz
    Hairstylist & ColorProof Specialist @ Skin Bliss Spa and Salon in Albuquerque, NM


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a soft butterscotch balayage on a textured bob. I love that it is such a lived-in, soft look. It looks just as good six weeks later as it does day one!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    To style this look I used all ColorProof Evolved Color Care products. I prepped her wet hair with CrazySmooth Extreme Shine Treatment Oil, followed by ControlCraze gel for texture and hold on her fine hair. After curling with a flat iron, I sprayed in TextureCharge texture spray and detailed with FiberBlast texture cream.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    The beauty of this color, cut and style is that it can be worn by almost all hair types and colors. Using your client’s natural color as a base, lift the balayaged pieces to three shades lighter and tone to the shade that best suits their skin.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    To achieve this look just remember one word — texture! Add texture through color. Add texture through point cutting or razor at the ends of the cut. Add texture with a hot iron and add more texture with your products!

  • Smoky Plum

    smoky plum balayage hair color

    Instagram @ mtbstyles

    Q&A with style creator, Melissa Taylor
    Master Colourist & Stylist @ Artel Salon in Vancouver, BC Canada


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This cut and color was created to make growing out a pixie cut look stylish! I added micro bangs and texture in the lengths around the ears to give versatility in how she styles it. I love that it can be worn sleek and straight, or mussed up for a little edge. We went for a smoky plum color over balayaged highlights and melted a deeper brown root to blend. My favorite thing about this look is that even while growing out a haircut, this little bit of edge can make all the difference and keep one from chopping it all off!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    For color I mixed Pravana Violet, Lilac, Magenta and Silver. For styling, I used NÜLA’s Surf Spray for some gritty texture along with NÜLA’s Ylang Ylang Hair Serum for shine and softness. I would also recommend Kevin Murphy’s Free Hold for some pieced out bits in the bangs. And finish with your favorite hairspray! Mine is Kevin Murphy’s Session.Spray.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I love this shade of this purple as I feel it is flattering on most skin tones. In fact, I haven’t found one that it hasn’t looked stunning on yet! Thick hair, whether fine or normal, works best for this combo. You need the weight in the bangs to lay flat and in place as well as the ability to have texturized ends to create the roughness.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    My best tip is to wash and rinse in cold water to maintain the color, frequent little touch ups with the bangs and a little clean up around the nape as the hair grows. Bang trims make all the difference in keeping the cut looking fresh! If you’re asking your stylist for this cut, ask for a very short tapered bob, leaving longer bits around the ears with blunt micro bangs!

  • Honey Caramel

    dark-brown-balayage

    Charesse / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Charesse

    Owner of The C in Color in Seattle, WA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a lived-in balayage, inspired by my two favorite stylists, Anh Co Tran and Johnny Ramirez. My favorite thing about this look is that it can be worn casually or even for a night out. It is super versatile and isn’t “too done” for an everyday look!

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    To recreate this look, you definitely need a 1 1/4-inch (for lengths that brush the shoulder or shorter) barrel curling iron or 1 1/2-inch (for lengths that are shoulder length or longer) iron. You want to start by curling the first half of your hair, slide down, and eave out one to two inches of the ends out, depending of length. You want to do this quickly to create a wave verses a curl. To get that bedhead look, spray Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray (splurge) or MoroccanOil Dry Texture Spray (save) on your roots. And don’t be afraid to break up those curls with your fingers!

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    This color is described as a “bronde” and it is a universal shade that works with absolutely everyone! Bronde is between brown and blonde and can be formulated in cooler or warmer shades to best match the client. The best thing about the lived-in look is that it can be done with ALL lengths!

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    In order to maintain this look, you should get balayage’d every 10-12 weeks (you can go even longer if you’re super low maintenance) and glossed every 6-8 weeks to refresh the color.

  • Sun Kissed

    long-blonde-hair

    Lenna Kelly / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Lenna Kelly

    Hairstylist @ Ziggy’s Hair in Los Angeles, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a classic balayage. It’s soft and blended with no harsh lines. The overall look we were going for was natural, sun kissed, and lived-in. My client is fairly low maintenance, so what I love most is that she won’t need to come in every six to eight weeks, but rather every three to six months, depending on her preference.
    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I really love Kevin Murphy. We retail it at the salon I work at and I couldn’t be happier with it. I sent my client home with Hydrate Me Masque by Kevin Murphy because she has such long thick hair and it will help keep those ends from feeling dry. I also recommend Blonde Angel Wash, also by Kevin Murphy. It’s purple-based so it will help keep out brassy tones. This purple is amazing and doesn’t over deposit which is perfect for blondes that don’t want to be overly ashy. Purple shampoo is a must for most blondes! All color used to create this look is by Wella.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I’m a firm believer that anyone can pull off a balayage. It’s all about working with your natural hair color. If you want less maintenance, I don’t recommend going lighter on the base color, but rather working with the natural color and creating a blend.

    A balayage is much different than a highlight. There is much more dimension. You really have to envision what color will look best against your natural hair color. For this look, I didn’t lift my client’s base because she can’t be in the salon every two months. To avoid a line of demarcation or a “band of roots”, I hand painted a balayage and left her base natural.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style? 

    Toner refreshers are wonderful! I offer toner packages to all my balayage and blonde clients so that they keep their color fresh in between services. The toner is usually a semi-permanent, ammonia-free color that can help neutralize unwanted tones. It is great for up keeping that fresh blonde look!

    As for the style, use a 1 1/4 to a 1 1/2-inch curling iron. Alternate the direction in which you curl the hair so that the curls don’t end up merging together through out the day. This method keeps the curl defined and more “beachy”. To finish, I sprayed this style with dry shampoo (Fresh Hair by Kevin Murphy) and gently shook the curls out with my fingers. Happy styling!

  • Faded Pastel

    faded pastel balayage hair color

    Instagram @salamanda21

    Q&A with style creator, Amanda Halladay
    Stylist in American Fork, UT


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a faded pastel balayage! I love how low maintenance balayages are, and pastels are also easy. Just know that they rinse out faster than other colors, so it’s easy to change from color to color. If you you want the same color however, they are higher maintenance because they rinse out so easily.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I recommend a pastel pink and purple mixed together (1/2+1/2) and put over platinum hair. It will start out brighter than you think, but as it fades it will fade to this purple pastel pink. If you want this exact look, dilute with some clear as well. Just know it won’t last long!

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I feel like anyone can pull off a balayage because it has both dark and light tones. It comes down to a matter of preference! Some clients love warm pink tones, and some prefer cooler purple tones. If you’re still unsure, ask your stylist and they’ll lead you in the right direction.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    To maintain any professional color, use a professional shampoo and conditioner! Drugstore shampoos and conditioners will strip your color so fast! Professional shampoos are formulated to help the pH level on your hair to make it healthier, stronger and shinier. I always recommend Olaplex or some kind of rebonding treatment when you get a fashion/fantasy color done because it will seal the cuticle. Sealing in the color gives you more longevity and makes your hair extremely healthy.

    I also offer my clients a specially mixed conditioner with their specific fantasy/fashion color in it so that when they condition their hair, they’re refreshing the color as well! Keeping heat off your hair will make your fantasy/fashion color last A LOT longer. I color my fashion color once every two months and it always looks bright and freshly done because I keep heat off of it as much as possible. I heat style maybe once a week. If you do need to heat style your hair, do not put any heat on the hair for 24 hours after they’ve let it air dry or blow dry. Even if your hair feels 100% dry, there is still water in the cuticle of the hair for 24 hours after you’ve washed it whether it’s air dried or been blown out. So if you’re heat styling right after drying, it’s like putting heat on wet hair and it will damage your hair and the color will come out faster.

    Low heat is always recommended when having fantasy/fashion colors because high heat will literally take the color out right before your eyes. I always use a leave-in conditioner, (my fave is L’anza Trauma Treatment) and oil, (Redken Diamond Oil) at the very least to provide moisture, shine and heat protection.

  • Lived-in Feel

    Q&A with style creator, Brittany Sandretto
    Owner and Stylist @ Salon 43 One in Birmingham, AL


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This balayage look has a lived-in feel and is very low maintenance. You can have dark hair with dimension and lightness around the face without having to get your roots touched up every four weeks.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    The products I used on this style were Oribe Supershine, a 1 1/4-inch curling iron, and Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    This particular color combo works best with brunettes. Blondes can work this style as well, but will need to go lighter on the base color for sure. The good thing about this style is that it works for a lot of people. It is very versatile, I’ve done this style on both shorter hair and longer hair.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    My tips for keeping this style looking fresh is to definitely use a color safe shampoo and conditioner. It is a very low maintenance color. Unless you need grey touched up, I usually suggest my clients come back every 12 weeks.

  • Sun-Kissed Honey

    long-balayage-hair

    Kat Aquino / Instagram

    Q&A with Style Creator Kat Aquino

    Hairstylist @ Salon Norrell in Tampa, FL


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a swirled caramel balayage. My favorite thing about it is how soft and natural it looks, while at the same time having bold pops of dimensional caramel tones. The alluring effect is a head-turner for sure! It is as if you have spent hours on the beach rather than hours in the salon.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I recommend Aveda’s Color Conserve Shampoo and Conditioner to keep the color vibrant longer, as well as the Color Conserve Strengthening Treatment once a week to strengthen and protect the hair and illuminate the color with shine. And I absolutely can’t go without the the Color Conserve Daily Color Protect which seals in the color and keeps it shiny and moisturized. Color conserving products are super important to keep those rich, caramel tones in longer.

    The styling products used for this signature blowout were Aveda’s Pure Abundance Style Prep and Phomolient Styling Foam which infuses hair with all day weightless volume and lasting results. I finished it off with a little of Aveda’s Brilliant Shine Spray. It all smells amazing and is super soft to the touch.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    The wonderful thing about balayages is that all skin tones and hair types can pull this off. With the appropriate styling products, the hair can move from sophisticated to tousled. Balayage has opened the door to creative hair color for many women.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    To maintain this look, my guest visits the salon every 12-16 weeks for more brightness added as it grows out. I often recommend glossing treatments between color appointments to keep the high shine.

  • Sun-Kissed Purple Balayage

    sun kissed purple balayage

    Instagram @beautybykb

    Q&A with style creator, Katie Brown
    Stylist @ Porcelain Hair Studio in Huntington Beach, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This purple balayage is a sun kissed, soft highlighted style that gives the hair a graduated, natural-looking effect.

    My favorite thing about any balayage is how low maintenance it can be. When done correctly, balayage grows out seamlessly. I also love that balayage is completely customizable and unique for everyone, like in the case of this fun color combo.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I love to style balayage with a big curling iron and finish with UNITE Texture Spray to give those sun kissed locks a beachy, soft hold and textured style.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Being that balayage is a technique of painting, it works for everyone and every style. Balayage works for a color or lightener.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    My best tip for anyone hoping to get a balayage done is to make sure they do their research on finding a stylist that either specializes in it, or has photos of their previous experience with it. It’s a lot harder then it looks to achieve that seamless sunkissed color, and there are so many different techniques out there. If the stylist hasn’t had too much experience, you could end up with some funky and chunky lines of highlights/color.

    To maintain this style once you find a stylist you love, be sure to prebook your next appointment with them. Not only are busy stylists usually booked up, but with this style being so low maintenance you probably won’t even notice you need your color done again until it’s too late and then you’ll end up having to wait to get back in. I always have my clients come back at least every 8-12 weeks for a toner touch up and trim.

  • Hazelnut & Cocoa

    brown-balayage

    Instagram / @gracedoeshair

    Q&A with Grace

    Hairstylist @ J. Anthony Salon in Whittier, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    This is a very subtle, naturally sunkissed look. I love that even though it’s ALMOST unnoticeable, it still compliments her haircut by adding some very soft dimension.


    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    I balayaged smaller sections of her hair with Wella Blondor hair lightener, then toned her using a customized formula with Keune’s Semi-Permanent color line. To style her, I used a 1-inch Hot Tools Marcel Iron, leaving her ends out then pulling my fingers through at the end to break up the texture a little bit.

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    I think this color goes well with medium to darker skin tones, but anyone who prefers their hair dark can get away with this color.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style? 

    The best way to maintain this color would be to refrain from washing your hair every day as it will prevent fading. To recreate the style, you can use your preferred curling iron/wand and wrap the hair around it away from your face, leaving the ends out.

  • Modernized

    balayage hair

    Instagram / @sarahgossetthair

    Q&A with Style Creator Sarah Gossett
    Hairstylist & Colorist @ Kyle Lawrence Salon in Simi Valley, CA


    How would you describe this look and what’s your favorite thing about it?

    I would describe this look as the modern balayage! More and more these days, you will see people wearing these “fun” or “fashion” tones. Instead of doing the entire head which is very high maintenance, you can overlay a color onto highlights or a balayage for a softer, more wearable look.

    Which products would you recommend for this look?

    To create the style in this photo I always start with a blowout using Kenra Blow Dry Spray to give the hair heat protection and shine. Once dry, I use Amika “The Shield” aerosol heat protectant before I curl. I use a 1 1/2-inch Babyliss curling iron in the vertical position and curl away from the face, leaving out the ends.

    I finish with Kenra Dry Texture Spray to give it that beachy, lived-in look. This client’s hair holds a curl very well, but if the person has straight hair that doesn’t hold a curl, I would suggest a workable hairspray before you curl and a firm hold finishing spray at the end. My favorites are Redken 12 (fashion work) and Redken 28 (control force).

    Which skin tones and hair types can pull off this color/style combo best?

    Pinks and purples are the most wearable of the fashion tones, so I would say that any skin tone can pull them off. My client in this photo is actually in her 50s, so don’t think that age makes a difference either! As for the style, anyone can pull off long hair with beach waves. It is an effortless, natural look that goes well with any hair type/texture.

    What is your best tip in regards to recreating/maintaining this color/style?

    The best way to maintain this color is to use the Viral color depositing shampoos at home. I sent her home with the Intense Purple and the Intense Pink and had her mix them together to create this fuchsia shade. As for maintaining the style, I love Kenra Dry Shampoo to make these waves last for days!