32 Trendiest Caramel Brown Hair Color Ideas for 2018

Warm, rich caramel is a beautiful shade for brunettes! Some are deeper and some are lighter, but all variations of this color scheme are warm and delicious. Explore these caramel brown hair colors and get ready to try a new hue! Brunettes, get ready for a rich, caramel-inspired color! From light and sweet to dark and dreamy, the possibilities are endless. Give it a try!

Picture Perfect Short Layered Bob

Picture perfect short layered caramel brown bobInstagram @meraki_hairdesign

These sweet caramel brown strands on a layered bob could make anyone look picture perfect! You can also add some flirty waves for volume and depth.

Evening Out Waves

Picture of an evening out waves caramel brownInstagram @_hairbygabrielle

Dashing Long Balayage for Olive Skin

Picture of a dashing long caramel brown balayage for olive skinInstagram @solaciesalon

Head-Turning Caramel Brown Highlights

Q&A with style creator, Miranda Blancas
Senior Stylist @ Sharon Daniel Salon in Schaumburg, IL

How would you describe this look?

This is a long layered bob with a caramel balayage. My favorite thing is the way the lighter pieces of the balayage make the face-framing layers and shorter layers pop.

Any advice for someone considering it?

For this client, she needs to use a color safe shampoo and conditioner and a protein building product. My personal favorite product is Alterna Caviar Infinite Color Hold Shampoo & Conditioner.

As a leave-in product to rebuild the hair after lightening, I always recommend either at home Olaplex #3 or Alterna Caviar Instant Recovery Protein Cream. It depends on your styling needs or something to bring the layers to life would be great. We used Alterna Perfect Texture Spray as a finishing Spray for some touchable movement here.

For the caramel color, I suggest not going too close to your skin color because it will wash you out. So for this particular client, we kept it darker with a deeper gold tone than originally wanted but added a few brighter pieces away from the face for dimension.

Personally, I always like balayage for a low maintenance look. This is for the college students and busy moms who don’t like the harsh highlight outgrowth lines and don’t have the time to be in the salon every 6-8 weeks getting a big service done but can stop in for a quick toner at 6-8weeks  to keep the ends fresh!

Neck Length With Ashy Tones

Picture of a neck length with ashy tonesInstagram @styledbynelly

Q&A with style creator, Nelly Cardenas
Stylist @ Topstyles Hair Salon in Oakwood, GA

How would you describe this look?

This look reminds me of warmth meets cool. I love how it goes from this light brown to this really bright white/silver blonde color.

The contrast of it just works perfectly with each other. It gives the hair a lot of dimensions because there’s a mix of different shades, it kind of just adds more texture to the hair. This color is also a style that you don’t see too often so it makes you stand out and that’s the best part about it!

Any advice for someone considering it?

My advice is just to go for it! We can all rock this type of style with the right shade to go with your skin tone.

This does require a little maintenance. We all know ashy shades fade out a little faster so if you want it to stay looking ashy you do have to come back at least every 4-6 weeks to tone it back to the beautiful shade you desire.

Getting your hair done is an investment, so please use the products your stylist suggests for you to use. We suggest this to get you more bang for your buck. Remember color takes time and patience especially for those really bright ends, so please be patient with your stylist.

You build on different levels of lightness over time but it’s achievable and that the end result will turn out AMAZING!

Beautiful Long Loose Curls

Q&A with style creator, Claire Goodwin
Hair Artist @ Diva Salon Spa in Calgary, AB

How would you describe this look?

This is a more subtle sun-kissed look. I like that it’s very natural and it just looks like you’ve been out in the sun for a bit!

Any advice for someone considering it?

This color is great for someone who is new to hair coloring. It is a balayage so it is lower maintenance. The nice thing about this is you won’t have to come in to touch up your new hair growth as often.

I would definitely recommend a color conserving shampoo to prevent the color from fading quickly. This is good for darker hair types who are looking to add a little bit of dimension to their hair.

The Longest Caramel Waves

Q&A with style creator, Mylena Vittori
Hairstylist / Co-owner @ Meraki Hairdesign in Winterthur, Switzerland

How would you describe this look?

This is a perfect look for this Spring season. The highlights add a fresh nuance to the warm caramel brown tint. The colors tangle smoothly and shine with curly as well as straight hair.

Any advice for someone considering it?

I recommend it for brunettes with long hair, it keeps them at the top of their game despite not refreshing the color monthly. The warm tint gives the look a unique intensity. Since the different shades flatter every color types, people of any complexion can dare this color adventure to be ready for Spring.

Natural Tone on Tone

Picture of a natural tone on tone caramel brown hairInstagram @kdmlabbeaute

Q&A with style creator, Krystel Waite
Hairdresser / Makeup Artist / Owner @ KDM & Cie. Lab beauté in Sherbrooke, QC

How would you describe this look?

I would describe this look as a natural, tone on tone color that was inspired by rich materials like leather and copper. With the textured set, we can feel all the different colors!

Any advice for someone considering it?

This look is perfect for people who don’t want to go to the salon very often. They can easily keep this color beautiful by using good shampoo and conditioner.

A 1 1/2-inch curling iron is needed to create the curls and, of course, a good thermal protection product is a must!

Caramel Cream Dimensional Balayage

Q&A with style creator, Jessica Scott
Manager / Master Stylist @ Tangles Salon and Spa in Easton, PA

How would you describe this look?

This is a caramel cream dimensional balayage!

My favorite thing about this balayage is that she was transitioned from a brassy, heavy highlight into a seamless, dimensional balayage. This look is nice for a lot of people, especially those who cannot make it to the salon every six weeks, because you will not get the growout line that a tradition foil highlight will make. The growout is seamless and will blend right into the natural color.

Another thing I love about this look is that you have the depth of the natural color near the roots, but a nice blonde at the ends. You have the best of both worlds, which is especially appealing to those who change their hair from dark to light often!

Ask your stylist about using Olaplex with your color service! This bond builder will help protect the hair and repair the bonds of the hair as your hair is being colored. It will make your hair feel like butter, I promise!

Any advice for someone considering it?

The maintenance on this balayage can range anywhere from four to seven months, depending on the look you are going for. Anyone can achieve this look and it is a great option for moms, busy working women, and anyone who travels!

Anyone who colors their hair also needs to use good products recommended by their stylist. Why spend the money to get your hair done, but not invest in products to keep it maintained? I recommend using a sulfate -free shampoo and good conditioner, a leave-in conditioner (which is like your daily vitamin for your body, but for your hair), and great styling products like an oil, a smoothing product, or a volume cream!

Subtle, Wearable, and Healthy

Subtle, Wearable, and Healthy hairstyleInstagram @arisa_hair

Q&A with style creator, Arisa
Stylist @ Muse Hair & Beauty Salon in Vancouver, BC

How would you describe this look?

I describe this look as subtle, wearable, and healthy. One of my favorite things about this look is that it gives a natural and bubbly look to the client.

Any advice for someone considering it?

I recommend this look for anyone who has a busy lifestyle and is always on the go. This color is manageable and low maintenance, but still fun looking! This color matches best with fair skin tones.

I also recommend using L’Oreal’s Smart Bond Hair Treatment for all hair coloring services as it helps strengthen and gives the hair more resistance after any hair coloring process.

Chocolate Brown Lob with Caramel Highlights

Chocolate Brown Lob with Caramel Highlights hairstyleInstagram @colorbycoco

Q&A with style creator, Coleen Figiel
Balayage & Blonde Specialist / Owner @ Thairapy Hair Salon in Tannersville, NY

How would you describe this look?

I would describe this look as a rooty chocolate brown lob with caramel highlights.

Any advice for someone considering it?

This is a great look for someone who is naturally brunette and wants something low maintenance. Since the highlights are teased up before being colored, it allows for a more natural, rooty look that will grow out seamlessly and doesn’t require much upkeep (maybe a refresh every four to six months). The lob is also a great cut for this color because it will also grow out very nicely along with the highlights, meaning you only have to get it re-shaped when you go in to touch up your color.

It’s a great cut for someone who doesn’t like to have to do their hair every day because even if you just wash and go, it still looks like you have a “style”.  You would want to wash your hair with good quality shampoo and conditioner made for color treated hair and if you don’t feel like doing much else just, throw in some texturizing balm to show off those caramel highlights and the piece-y ends of your textured lob.

Chocolate Caramel Balayage

Chocolate Caramel Balayage hairstyleInstagram @hairbygagz

Q&A with style creator, Alex Gagliardi
Master Color Expert @ Hair By Gagz in Roselle, IL

How would you describe this look?

This is a chocolate caramel balayage. It reminds me of a Carmello candy bar.

My favorite part about it is the way it blends and the rich colors. Also, I’ve always hated to Balayage in a foil, but I’ve recently found a new way that works for me and I used it here!

Any advice for someone considering it?

I suggest this color for anyone who has warmth in their skin or anyone who is more narrow in their chin and jawline (triangle or heart-shaped face) or has a wide or square forehead (square rectangle or round face shape). The darkness at the top can diminish the width or length and the ends being lighter can give the look of a less narrow chin, creating the illusion of the perfect face shape which is oval.

I also think it’s worth mentioning that although it will look good both ways, it will look different straight. It’s great for someone who wants low maintenance because the balayage grows out softly. It is a good option for people with dark hair who want a change but don’t want to be too light!

Balayage and beach waves, in general, are just super trendy right now. You see the combo everywhere! It’s also fun for us colorists because it’s not as uniform and gives us such freedom. The possibilities are endless.

Soft Caramel

Soft, natural-looking caramel is both beautiful and luscious. Slightly lighter ends and darker lowlights help to give this combo a more natural look.

Soft Natural Caramel Hair Color

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that look great in a range of warm colors also look fabulous in this light caramel brown. Hair that is naturally a light brown is the perfect palette for creating this multi-dimensional caramel color.


When looking for a stylist to achieve your perfect color, check out their Facebook page, Instagram account and website to see their work before making your appointment. This gives you an idea on what kind of creative color work you can expect.

Peek-a-Boo Caramel

Rich caramel brown with lighter blonde accents peeking out through the top layer and underneath give this color a fun yet still office-friendly look.

Caramel Brown Hair Color with Blonde Accents

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Medium to darker skin tones wear this shade of caramel well. Hair that is a medium to light brown is a perfect starting point for achieving this color.


Be specific about where you want your blondes to peek out. Discuss both the haircut and style you plan on wearing with this color so your stylist can give you just the right amount of peek-a-boos!

Lush Caramel

Rich, dark caramel with oh so subtle lighter pieces give this color style and texture, with or without curls!

Dark Caramel Hair Color with Texture

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Medium to dark skin tones that look fabulous in dark burgundy, navy and black wear this hue best, while hair that is naturally dark makes it easy to achieve this color.


Giving your hair some curls can brighten up any day and give you a “dressed up” feel.  Try different methods and irons when curling hair. Search our tutorial section for more styling ideas!

Caramel Accent

A soft brown hair color with added caramel accent highlights brightens the face and is a perfect year-round color scheme!

Soft Brown Haircolor with Caramel Accents

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Lighter skin tones look best in this softer color, while hair that is blonde to light brown is a good starting point for achieving this color.


If you are going darker from blonde hair to this rich caramel hue, it is important to ask your stylist for the right shampoo and conditioner to maintain your color. A lot of shampoos will quickly pull fresh color out of previously blonde hair. Sulfate-free, color safe shampoos are a must!

Lightly Caramelized

Sometimes less really is more. Slightly lighter and caramelized highlights brighten the face and give texture and interest to this curly look.

Dark Brown Haircolor with Caramel Highlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that look fabulous in warmer tones wear this color beautifully, while hair that is rich dark brown to light brown can achieve these gorgeous highlights easily.


Don’t overdo these soft highlights! They are meant to be subtle, so talk to your stylist and bring pictures to show how much of the highlights you are looking for.

Dark Chocolate

The darkest richest brown with subtle dark caramel highlights makes this color scream beautiful!

Dark Chocolate Haircolor with Subtle Caramel Highlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Warm, dark skin tones wear this color wonderfully, while hair that is naturally dark brown is the best starting point to create this look.


Forget the “Bump It”! To add extreme volume to your next pony try using a volumizing powder before you backcomb. My favorite is Pravana’s Lived In. Sprinkle a little in and feel it go from a powder to a cream for easier application, and then transform back to a powder!  Follow up with a little backcombing and you are ready to rock a seriously bumped up pony.


Light brown hair with a warm caramel glaze keeps locks looking fresh and beautiful.

Light Brown Hair Color with Warm Caramel Glaze

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that look great in warmer colors such as yellows, reds and oranges wear this color nicely. Hair that is naturally light brown is the best starting point to achieve this color.


Not sure if you’re ready for a permanent hair color? This is a great look to try it out with a demi-permanent color. It will give you shine and glaze over your natural color and will fade off in a few weeks.

Caramel Cream

Soft, flowing caramel highlights through a rich, darker caramel-toned brown is always in style! Pair it with a classic twist updo and you’re ready for an afternoon party or a night out!

Caramel Highlights on Dark Brown Haircolor

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that look great in warmer colors wear this shade well. Hair that is healthy and starting at a medium to dark brown is a great base for these rich highlights.


When looking to achieve this color, you will only need to ask for a partial highlight. This will bring lightness around your face and through the top of your head, leaving the depth and darkness underneath.

Lavish Caramel

Rich tones of lush caramel create a natural-looking color that looks great on most everyone!

Natural Rich Caramel Hair Color

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones look fabulous in this warm color, while hair that is naturally light brown is a great starting point to achieving this hue.


Shiny curls like these are great for so many occasions. Before curling your hair with a small to medium barrel curling iron, apply a heat protecting spray. Curl hair in small sections, then rub a small about of shine serum in your hands. Work the serum through your curls after they are completely cooled.

Warm Toffee

Just like a delicious toffee bar, this color is extra sweet! Just the right amount of lightness and depth paired with gorgeous curls will turn heads everywhere you go.

Warm Toffee Caramel Haircolor with Curls Back

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that look great in blues, greens, and oranges look great in this bright caramel highlight. Hair that is starting at a medium warm brown is the perfect canvas for these face framing highlights.


Love her curls? The best curl-staying tip I have is to use a medium hold gel or mousse before blow drying hair. Let your curls cool completely after curling with an iron before you manipulate them, and don’t go over board on the hairspray. That can actually weigh down curls, causing them to fall out!

Bit O’ Honey

Warm, lighter pieces of honey streaming through soft caramel brown hair that is softly curled creates both interest and texture.

Soft Caramel Brown Hair Color with Honey Highlights Back

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light skin tones that look fabulous is shades of blue and green wear this color wonderfully.  Hair that is starting at a light brown or dark blonde is the perfect starting point for creating this hue.


Be sure to bring pictures of what you want your caramel brown hair to look like to show your colorist. This will ensure you are both on the same page!

Caramel Highlights

Soft, caramel-toned highlights brighten brunette locks while adding dimension and texture to curly or straight hair.

Brunette Hair Color with Caramel Highlights

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones look stunning in this highlighted look. Hair that is naturally medium to light brown is a perfect base to create this highlighted look.


The first time you get highlights is always the best! If you are going in for a touch up, talk to your stylist about just touching up the already established highlights and not adding any additional ones so you don’t end up too light or over-highlighted.

Light Caramel Perfection

Lighter shades of caramel winding through a rich brown gives you a flattering lightness around your face. Keeping it dark underneath gives serious depth, creating the perfect color combo for half up styles.

Rich Brown Hair Color with Caramel Highlights Side

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones look best in this mutli-dimensional hue, while hair that is starting at a light to medium brown will make it easier to achieve this color.


Bringing a picture in to your stylist is one of the best ways to get exactly what you’re looking for. Make sure you discuss what your idea of caramel is as it varies sometimes from person to person in regards to exactly how light, dark or warm caramel is.

Caramel Sombre’

Lightening just the ends of your hair creates a trendy look that is super easy to maintain!

Easy Caramel Sombre Hair Color

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Medium to light skin tones wear this caramel-inspired color best, while hair that is currently a medium to dark brown is the best base to start with.


Be very specific when requesting a ombre type hair color. Bringing in a picture helps your stylist understand how you would like your highlights placed, as well as the target shade.   Based on the consultation, they can advise you as to how you can achieve your chosen color.

Soft Caramel

Keeping a soft caramel flowing from scalp to ends gives a richness to your color while being easy to maintain .

Easy Soft Caramel Haircolor

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones that tend to wear more light pinks, greens and other pastels wear this color beautifully. Hair that is healthy and naturally or colored light brown is a good starting point to creating this color.


A full head of highlights can be maintained easily by alternating appointments between full and partial highlights. Talk to your stylist to see if this is an option for you!

Caramel and Buttery Blonde, Oh My!

A mix of buttery blondes and caramels that vary in lightness and darkness provides hair with depth and dimension to give you an amazing glow!

Buttery Blonde and Caramel Hair Color Side

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light skin that looks great in creams, yellows and oranges will be stunning in this buttery shade, while hair that is already dark blonde supports this color nicely.


Keeping hair slightly darker underneath gives more of a natural look to this blonde. The sun naturally lightens the top layers more than the underneath, but that means they need a little extra TLC too!


Rich caramel streaming through chocolate brown is a fun and easy way to brighten up your hue! Pair this color combo with curls for a stunning finish.

Caramel Brown Hair

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones look fabulous in this warm tone, while hair that is layered around the face gives a great base for the highlights to really frame your face.


Adding lots of curls keeps this style looking fresh. Curl most pieces away from your face to open it up, but pick one or two curls to direct towards your face to give it a more modern feel.

Face-Framing Highlights

Adding lightness around your face brightens your skin and gives you a mini face lift of sorts!  Keeping your highlights in the mid-caramel range makes it a softer version, with still just as much interest.

Brunette Hair Color with Mid Caramel Highlights Back

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Medium to darker skin tones look best in this darker look, while hair that is a medium brown great starting point to achieve this color.


Keep your hair looking great with regular trims! A dusting off the ends every eight weeks will do wonders. Ask your stylist if they have any specials if you book ahead.

Flowing Caramel

Soft, flowing, light caramel highlights not only brighten up dark blonde or light brown hair, but it give it a gorgeous glow as well!

Soft Light Caramel Highlights on Dark Blonde Hair

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Light to medium skin tones look best in this lighter hue, while hair that is new to highlighting, or a dark blonde, creates a nice base color for these highlights.


Keep the lightest pieces around your face and gradually add darker colors as you go back towards your crown of your head. This keeps it the color looking natural and will really brighten the face.

Shot of Caramel

A rich pop of caramel around the face softens this dark hue and keeps you right on trend!

Dark Brunette Haircolor with Pop of Caramel Side

Best Skin Tone and Hair Type:

Medium to dark skin tones that look great in warmer colors are perfect for this hue, while hair that is naturally dark brown provides a perfect canvas for these face-framing highlights.


Keeping  hair shiny and healthy can make your color go from nice to fabulous. Adding a deep conditioning treatment weekly or bi-weekly to your hair regimen makes a huge difference. My favorite is Pravana’s NEVO 60 sec deep treat. In only one minute, hair is soft and shiny!