Are you considering a chocolate brown balayage but unsure if it would suit your skin tone or lifestyle? Here I’ll help you choose the best one and show you some stunning examples. I also consulted Victoria Reyes, a professional colorist and stylist, who shares her expertise and experience in achieving and maintaining this popular hair color trend.
Meet The Expert
Victoria is a hair artist with over 14 years of experience.
You can find Victoria at The Modern Babe in Mamaroneck, NY
Determining the Ideal Shade for Your Skin Tone
When choosing the right shade for your skin tone, Reyes suggests looking at your veins. People with green veins tend to have warmer complexions, while those with blue veins have fairer complexions. Warmer, ashier tones work well for warm complexions, while warmer tones are better suited for fairer complexions. If determining your vein color is difficult, neutral tones incorporating warm and cool tones will work well. Reyes believes anyone can pull off a chocolate brown balayage, regardless of skin tone, as it falls on a natural, warm hue.
Maintaining the Vibrancy of Your Balayage
Reyes recommends using sulfate-free, silicone-free, and paraben-free shampoos and conditioners to keep your chocolate brown balayage looking fresh. Sulfates are harsh chemicals that can strip and fade hair color, so avoiding them is essential. Natural grade-based products are best for color-treated hair to maintain vibrancy and health. Avoiding hot water when shampooing and investing in a water filter for your shower head, especially if you have well or hard water, can also help maintain your color. Reyes advises staying on top of your color schedule, typically every 6-8 weeks for balayage touch-ups, where re-glazing is required to restore the tone. Glosses are typically Demi-permanent, meaning they only coat the hair and fade over time.
Discussing Your Lifestyle with Your Colorist/Stylist
When considering a new hair color, discussing your lifestyle with your stylist is essential. Reyes asks her clients, “How much effort are you willing to put in?” as at-home maintenance is crucial to maintaining your color’s vibrancy. Factors such as how often you wash your hair, the products you use, and your everyday styling routine should be considered. If you lead an active lifestyle involving swimming or aren’t interested in extensive at-home maintenance, there may be better choices than a vibrant or platinum color. A more natural and low-maintenance option, such as a chocolate brown balayage, may be a better fit.
Photos of Enchanting Chocolate Brown Balayage
Screenshot or pin your favorite ones!
#1: Layered Hazelnut Brown Hair
When you think of highlights in dark hair, what comes to mind? Sunkissed, warm, golden, rich, nutty browns. All beautiful tones will be easy to maintain and looks natural. Natural highlights will be around the hairline and through the mids and ends of the hair as if the sun gave them to you over a long summer by the beach.
#2: Brown Hair Balayage with Lighter Ends
Opt for a brown balayage with lighter ends. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance highlight, this is it. Staying within 2-3 levels of your natural base color is key. Ask for your balayage to be more of an ombre effect. This way, your ends are much lighter, and your roots and mid-lengths are dark. This color will last you a long time, depending on your preference. You could go six months without coloring your hair with glossing treatments every 8 to 12 weeks. Glossing helps to minimize brassiness and keep the tone.
#3: Rich Chocolate with Brown Chestnut Highlights
Ask about rich chocolate with brown chestnut highlights. When you’re ready to add some spice, you can update your old color with rich new brown. If you have previous color in the hair, you may need to do a little color correction to achieve the best results. Always be honest with your color history with your stylist to get a phenomenal result.
#4: Rich and Warm Chocolate Brown
Brown hair with rich and warm chocolate hues will make blue and green eyes pop. I recommend a toning conditioner like Aveda Color Renewal Color & Shine Treatment – Warm Brown. Use it once a week to make sure your color always looks stunning.
#5: Dark Brunette with Caramel Highlights
For a soft diffused caramel highlight, ask your stylist for a foilyage. Foilyage highlights mimic a balayage. They allow for more lift encapsulated in a foil, which is necessary for darker hair tones. With the previous color, you must lift it out properly before depositing a lighter tone.
#6: Golden Chocolate Brown Waves
A chocolate balayage will give you a reflective golden brown when lifted to level 6 from a darker base. When staying within 3 levels of your base color, you get a natural color that will grow seamlessly. This gives you a low-maintenance color. Check-in with your stylist every 8-12 weeks for a trim and gloss for an easy refresher.
#7: Natural and Soft Balayage for Brunette Waves
Go for a wavy natural brunette with a soft balayage. Subtle golden highlight accents are naturally dark hair nicely. Highlighting the face through the mid-lengths and end is a beautiful, soft look. It complements warm skin tones. Show off the dimensional color with some beachy waves.
#8: Mocha Balayage Hair Color
Chocolate with notes of reds and gold give off a mocha vibe. For a deep-rooted look, ask for a shadow root shaped like a teardrop. This is when it’s lighter around the face and gets darker through the back. This technique can be done with the highlighting or glossing portions. It just depends on your stylist’s technique and your preference.
#9: Brown Hair with Subtle Toffee Highlights
Here’s a brown hair color with subtle toffee highlights. For a dimensional brunette, try a balayage that will bring out natural warm tones in your hair color. This color is a great option for younger girls who want to be introduced to blonding on a subtle level.
#10: Auburn Chocolate with Root Melt
For a naturally bleach-free balayage, you will get a subtle contrast that warms the soul. Your stylist can lift your hair 2-3 levels if you have virgin hair, meaning zero colors are processed on the hair. This creates a gorgeous warm, and seamless blend.
#11: Black and Dark Brown Balayage
Try a black and dark brown balayage for some depth and dimension. Removing old black hair color can be tricky but not impossible! Black hair, especially black color, tends to lift very warmly. Instead of fighting the warmth, try landing on it! These beautiful chocolate tones can be a great way to enhance your dark hair.
#12: Dark-Rooted Medium Chocolate Brown
Dark-rooted medium chocolate brown hair is the perfect color. Incorporating a soft foilayage can add blended tones to your all-over single color. Adding a soft amount of copper can also give your dull hair reflection. It’s important to note warm tones reflect light, and cool tones absorb light. If you want to feel a bit brighter, this may be a good opportunity to play with copper and gold tones.
#13: Dark Choco Hair with Light Brown Highlights
Dark hair with highlights is a gorgeous way to add a lived-in dimension to your single-toned hair color. Keep your roots deep while allowing lightness to saturate the ends. This will give the illusion of longer hair. I recommend finding a stylist specializing in lived-in styles to achieve a style like this. I also recommend using an at-home treatment after your lightening session. I love the BES Silkat N3 Nutritivo Nourishing Cream for the best results.
#14: Dark Chocolate Cherry Hair
Dark chocolate cherry is this year’s new color trend! It’s important to note the deeper tones you use, the more vibrant you’ll need these red tones to be. I recommend using a red violet base to achieve this warm deep brunette color. Adding subtle highlights to blend into the overall mix is also a great idea to add some soft pops of red violet.
#15: Chocolate Brown with Peek-a-Boo Blonde Highlights
Enhance your brunette, chocolate brown, with peek-a-boo blonde highlights. Adding dimension to your solid hair color is an edgy yet subtle way to add interesting tones to your hair. A balayage or foilayage technique would be the ideal way to achieve this. It’s important to use different tonalities throughout a solid color. Using these techniques helps aid in this type of effect.
#16: Long Wavy Chocolate Swirls
A dimensional brunette is beautiful like these long wavy chocolate swirls. For a brunette style with visual movement, doing highlights will create this effect. Keeping the tones warm and reflective would be best to mimic a chocolaty vibe. To recreate these waves, I recommend using a 1-and-a-quarter-inch wand for soft curls.
#17: Light Chocolate Brown with Voluminous Waves
Try a light chocolate brown with voluminous waves if you have an olive skin tone. This soft and subtle balayage packs a big punch with color! You can add any tone with this placement. However, this seamlessly blends with naturally deeper hair colors. Ask your stylist for cool coffee tones with slight contrast to achieve this look.
#18: Medium-Length Choco Balayage Hair
A medium-length choco balayage hair style is a subtle yet impactful style for a change. This is a beautiful way to enhance natural tones in your hair. If you are a natural brunette, sometimes it feels overwhelming to think of going lighter. This is a great alternative for you. Chocolate tones naturally enhance brunettes. This is a great way to lean into your natural undertones.
#19: Brunette Subtle Highlights on Dark Hair
Try subtle brunette highlights on dark hair for added dimension and depth to your color. Incorporating soft, warm lowlights can pique some interest in your sold hair color. Be sure to ask your stylist for a subtle dimension. It’s important to keep this hair color very soft and blended. My favorite tone is a caramel warm sun-kissed color.
#20: Milk Chocolate Balayage Hair
A chocolate balayage is flattering on most skin tones. The color is very rich without being too warm. Upkeep is relatively easy. You can get away with a basic retouch and an all-over glaze every 6 weeks. Ask your stylist what products are best to maintain this color’s richness!
#21: Sultry Brunette Balayage Highlights
Sultry balayage highlights look amazing on brunettes of any hair length. Its rich tones make it a classic color that will never go out of style.
#22: Dark Chocolate Brown Curls
If you want a timeless hairstyle, dark chocolate brown curls could be your answer. When choosing brown colors for your hair, remember that all warm tones complement each other. Warm browns will have gold, copper, or red undertones.
#23: Choco Brown Hair with Soft Dimensional Balayage
If you want new color ideas for fall, try this choco brown hair with soft dimensional balayage. Talk about your chocolate hair options with your stylist at your next salon visit.
#24: Chocolate Brown with Hazelnut Tones
Here’s a chocolate brown hair color with hazelnut tones. If you’re looking for brown balayage hair ideas, try a level 7 warm blonde. You’ll start with an all-over balayage to pre-lighten. Then, a chocolate hair color can be melted from the roots to an ombré blonde.
#25: Chocolate Brown Bob with Warm Highlights
Ask about a chocolate brown bob with warm highlights. One way to level up a bob is with highlights. Create dimension into brown hair with a warm highlight in the mid-lengths and ends. Request a few highlights around the face. A warm highlight of copper and brown will look beautiful on darker levels 1-4.