Lowlights: 18 Hair Colors That Will Make You Want Lowlights

Lowlights can be a bit of a mystery…what are they and how do I get them? Simply put, think of them as reverse highlights.

Lowlights do the opposite of highlights by creating depth and adding dimension to your hair. These accents are typically darker than your base color and can be used to contrast overly-highlighted hair, create multi-tonal looks or create a new shape via color blocking.

You can be as creative as you like!

Create a soft effect lowlight by using shades within one to two levels of your base color. Create a high contrast lowlight with shades that are within three to four levels of your base color. Get creative and try a blend of the two for a multi-tonal finish.

Too much warmth can cause your look to go brassy. In contrast, too much coolness and you risk looking drab and flat. Talk to your stylist about your color goals and take your look to the next level. Explore our lowlight options to help transition your hair color from season to season!

Messy Lowlights

Messy Lowlights hairstyle Instagram @hairbyvieve

Q&A with style creator, Genevieve Huggins
Cosmetologist @ The Mane Event in Warren, AR

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

This look is definitely one of my favorites! This client is a mom of two and doesn’t have much time to fuss with her hair. We are thankful for the popular “messy” look we are all loving so much right now!

These beautiful lowlights will keep her color-season trendy and not show her new growth as quickly.

What products do you recommend to create and maintain this look?

The products we used on this super fun look are t’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In PLUS Keratin, It’s a 10 Miracle Blowdry Volumizer and Make Me High (teasing spray).

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

I have found this look can work for almost any hairstyle, lifestyle, face shape or hair texture! For thin hair, it almost instantly adds the volume and texture that all of us thinner haired ladies are dying for. My girls that are blessed with more hair love this look simply because they can have an actual look. Most women with lots of hair are always so discouraged because they aren’t quite sure what to do with it. This is our answer, ladies!

If anyone is anything like me, I only give myself a few minutes to get ready in the morning. With this look, you don’t have to be tedious in its preparation for the day ahead. Pick up a few pieces, curl (I used my BaByliss Prima 3100 flat iron to achieve these curls), run your fingers through, and spray!

Dimensional Fall Color

Dimensional Fall Color hairstyle Instagram @haleyraihair

Q&A with style creator, Haley Cox
Hair Artist @ House of Color in Colorado Springs, CO


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

This look is the perfect dimensional fall color. My favorite thing about it is the subtlety of the lowlights that accentuate the highlights, creating a beautifully blended contrast of lighter and darker tones without being overpowering.

What products do you recommend to create and maintain this look?

I used a small amount of L’Oréal Professional Lumi Controle Nutri-Wax on my fingertips to run though the hair after curling to loosen the curls and add shine.

I also recommend using a professional color-safe shampoo and conditioner to maintain the longevity of the color.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

This look is extremely versatile for just about any lifestyle and hair type. I recommend adding a lowlight (that can range in various shades, to accent any hair/skin tones) to accommodate someone that is looking for a change that will enhance the dimension and depth of the hair.

Blonde Balayage with Lowlights

Blonde Balayage with Lowlights hairstyle Instagram @hairby_tiana

Q&A with style creator, Tiana Venegas
Hairstylist @ Alessandro Salon in San Rafael, CA


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

This look is one of my favorites! It’s a blonde balayage with the use of lowlights to allow the highlights to pop and create dimension, depth, and movement within the hair. This look is versatile and great for those looking for a new look and natural grow out

What products do you recommend to create and maintain this look?

Always start with a great shampoo and conditioner. I love using Unite’s Luxury because it replenishes the hair while adding shine. Next spray Pravana’s Nevo invisible control to add body, hold and heat protection. Next, I use Joico Power Whip mousse for volume and hold.

I always finish the style with a light hair oil and light finishing spray for hold that still gives movement. I also tell clients to invest in a good shampoo and conditioner to keep their hair looking like they just walked out of the salon.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

I recommend this look to anyone who is looking to change up their regular highlighted hair and want something a little different for fall/winter. This look is great for all hair types and lifestyles!

Subtle Changes

Subtle Changes hairstyle Instagram @mishairhunter

Q&A with style creator, Michelle Smith
Cosmetology Student in Florence, SC


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

I would describe this look as a very subtle change for an extremely blonde client. I love that clients can stay very light overall, but can tone it down for fall or even play around with different shades in the brown or red family without being too far from their usual lightness. Subtle changes make a HUGE difference when the client is super light!

What products do you recommend to create and maintain this look?

To create this look, I would typically recommend using demi-permanent color so that it can be lifted out of the hair easily in case your client wants to go back to a more total blonde look. Also, demi-permanent color is typically an option that will not damage the hair!

For maintenance, clients will need to use a salon grade color care shampoo and conditioner. High-level blondes tend to lose lowlights fast, so don’t let them throw their money away by not using a product to protect their investment!

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

I recommend this look for any blonde client that wants a change, but has never really been any color other than blonde. Subtlety will prevent shocking them too much! Someone who likes to change their hair with the seasons may even love this option before they go darker with winter.

This could also be a good option for a blonde client who may be thinning in some areas. The dimension can make the hair appear fuller all over, and if they aren’t naturally blonde, this service can give their hair a break from the harshness of a lightener or high-level permanent color.

Balayage and Shadow Root

Balayage and Shadow Root hairstyle Instagram @aliciawhitehair

Q&A with style creator, Alicia Hunter
Colorist / Extension Technician / Salon Owner @ The Head Shoppe in Halifax, NS


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

This look is an easy way for a blonde to switch up their hair for fall. The balayage and shadow root work well together to give a soft transition between a darker root and her blonde ends, all while keeping dimension throughout the hair. It’s much more subtle than the typical ombré effect or traditional highlights/lowlights.

I love this look because of the low maintenance factor. This color will grow out very easily for the client because of this technique.

What products do you recommend to create and maintain this look?

I always recommend that my clients use Redken Ph Bonder during the lightening process to maintain the integrity of their hair and keep it healthy and shiny. I also recommend they follow up weekly with the Ph Bonder at-home treatment. I also love Redken’s sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, Color Extend Magnetics, to protect their color between visits.

What type of client would you recommend this look for?

This look can be great for fine hair to give more dimension and for anyone looking for a low maintenance color. It can also be customized depending on skin tone and natural hair color.

Silver Under Tones

Q&A with Style Creator Kristi Murdoch
Master Colorist @ Comb Brows+Hair in Omaha, NE

No one would think silver can look this ravishing but if done correctly can totally dominate the room. The lowlights here add not only rich color combinations but movement that can’t be achieved with any other shades. The mixture of blonde and silver combine to form an almost ombre like effect but be warned ladies rocking this stylish silver requires some maintenance or it will just become dull and make you look older than you are.

GOLDEN HUES

Summertime can brighten up your blonde more expected. Add fine streaks of honey blonde and sandy tones. They’ll not only provide beautiful dimension, but will make your existing blonde tones pop.

Golden Hues Lowlights Golden Hues Lowlights Back View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The natural golden tones of this blonde shade best suits a slightly pink/peach complexion. Naturally light, fine hair (level 9 and up) benefit most from level 7-8 lowlights.

Tip:

Try this simple low ponytail with a slight twist for a classy ‘do.

AUTUMN BLONDE

Transition your summer golden blonde with this ‘grown-out’ look by adding lowlights that match your base color. This is a great way to get a little taste of ombré without making a major change.

Autumn Blonde Lowlights Autumn Blonde Lowlights Back View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The warmth of this blonde best suits a slightly golden/peach complexion. Naturally light, fine hair (level 7 and up) can achieve this shade easily.

Tip:

Create long, beautiful waves using a large barrel iron (vertical position) and loosen them using your fingertips.

COOL HUE

Here, a cool, beige-y blonde gets a ‘root-y’ lowlight for extra contrast. This is a great alternative to highlighting mousy blonde hair.

Cool Hue Beigey Blonde Lowlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The cool tone of this blonde best suits a slightly yellow/golden complexion. Naturally light, fine hair (level 7 and up) benefits from level 5-6 rich lowlights.

Tip:

Boost fine hair with a little backcombing and by adding full curls.

SANDY ‘BRONDE’

Medium golden brunette lowlights offer gentle contrast to light, golden blonde highlights. These shades boost fullness and add dimension to finely textured hair.

Sandy Bronde with Lowlights Sandy Bronde with Lowlights Back View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The cool gold tone of this ‘bronde’ (brown/blonde) best suits a slightly yellow/golden complexion. Medium light brown, fine hair (level 7 and up) benefits from level 5-6 lowlights.

Tip:

Create soft, loose waves to accent this hue by wrapping strands around a large barrel curling iron.

CHOCO-COPPER

Pair a statement cut with some color-blocking. Bright copper tones balance nicely with a rich, neutral chocolate hue to provide a lovely face frame.

Choco Copper Lowlights Choco Copper Lowlights Side View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The warmth of this shade balances a neutral/golden complexion. Medium brunette hair (level 5) works best with this look.

Tip:

A slick, geometric cut is a great way to showcase color-blocked hair.

AUBURN DELIGHT

Accent bright red hair with a deep berry red tone to bring new life to your hair. This is a great way to change up your look without changing your overall color scheme.

Auburn Delight Lowlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The richness of this red best suits a golden/peach complexion. Medium warm hair (level 6) is a great foundation for this hue.

Tip:

Slight, cascading waves give this rich dimensional red the illusion of a waterfall.

HINT OF BORDEAUX

Brunettes can have fun, too! Going darker doesn’t mean adding black streaks to your hair. Get inspired with rich hints of bordeaux that softly peek through to catch the light.

Hint of Bordeaux Lowlights Hint of Bordeaux Lowlights Side View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

This rich brunette hue works nicely with a pale yellow/peach complexion. Medium brown hair (level 5) works well with these shades.

Tip:

Keep the focus on you by only accenting the fringe and face frame.

RAVEN-ETTE

When darkness is what you crave, adding deep, cool brown or black lowlights offers a high contrast effect to warm brunette hair.

Raven Hair with Lowlights Raven Hair with Lowlights Side View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The warmth of this brunette tone suits a yellpw/peach complexion. Medium brunette hair (level 6) benefits from a blend of natural and cool toned hair.

Tip:

Keep styling simple with a sleek finish to really showcase the placement of this color blend.

CHUNKY LIGHTS

When you want a bit of everything, make a statement with a myriad to hues. In this look, chunky lowlights create bold contrast to lighter strands.

Chunky Lights Bold Contrast Chunky Lights Bold Contrast Side View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The coolness of this color blend works best with a golden/peach complexion. Medium brunette hair (level 5 and up) benefits from this multi-dimensional look.

Tip:

A playful half-up/half-down look is a perfect way to show off the interplay of these tones.

STRAWBERRY GLOW

Golden strawberry lowlights offer just the right touch of warmth to ultra-light, cool blonde hair. The contrast is soft and makes your eyes stand out.

Strawberry Glow Ultra Cool Blonde lowlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The interplay of warm and cool blonde tones best suits a slightly pink/peach complexion. Naturally light, fine hair (level 7 and up) benefits from added warmth for a youthful glow.

Tip:

A gently tousled bun is a sweet style to balance these tones.

AUBURN POP

Bold, red accent lowlights make a serious fashion statement. Keep the placement minimal and around the face for maximum effect.

Auburn Pop Bold Highlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

This neutral red streak balances against warm blonde and best suits a yellow/peach complexion. Medium brown hair (level 6 and up) can work well for this bold look.

Tip:

A sleek chignon or low bun is a great look to show off the bold placement of these colors.

FALL FOLIAGE

Mimic the glorious fall shades created by Mother Nature. Get inspired by the changing fall foliage and natural elements to create a new look. This multi-tonal look features deep golden tones inter-mixed with bright copper and deep brown tones.

Fall Foliage Lowlights Pretty Shades Fall Foliage Pretty Shades Side View

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

The complexity of these tones can suit a yellow/pink/peach complexion. Medium brown hair (Level 6) is a great base to create these shades.

Tip:

This cute hairstyle really showcases this creative hair color scheme!

Take a look around you and get inspired by the changing tones of the fall/winter color palette. Pick lowlights that best match your personality, whether subtle or bold, to create a hair color that is uniquely yours.