Dark brown hair with highlights is a great way to affordably and fashionably add color to your hair. Although a dark brunette color has a ton of depth, adding a pop of color with subtle or even bold highlights can turn your one-dimensional brunette hair into a multi-dimensional masterpiece. And the best part? You can highlight brown hair without bleaching your hair.
Before your next hair color appointment, check out these fabulous photos of dark brown hair with highlights ideas!
#1: Copper Highlights
If you want casual and textured-looking hair, try these copper highlights on brown hair. It creates this effortless but sassy style. To maintain the highlights for brown hair, I recommend Biolage Color Last shampoo. The copper tones and the rich mocha color complements dark brown and hazel, or if you have green eyes and warm skin tones that have yellow and golden tones.
#2: Thick Dark Brown Hair with Caramel Highlights
Thick dark brown hair with caramel highlights is easy to liven your locks up. By adding a warm caramel hue that highlights hair, this color creates depth and dimension. It brings life to long locks. It’s a great option for women with brown hair who want a more natural look that complements their skin tone. My advice is to remember that too many highlights can create a brassy effect. So work with an experienced colorist to achieve the perfect balance.
#3: Dark Brunette with Hazelnut Tones
Try a dark brunette with highlighted tones to add warmth and dimension to your hair. I recommend these highlights for brunettes with medium to dark skin tones. It seamlessly blends natural-looking highlights throughout the hair to create a sun-kissed effect. Ask for hazelnut highlights woven in the hair’s lengths rather than chunky streaks. This technique will create a soft, natural-looking contrast to the dark brunette base.
#4: Amazing Long Thick Dark Brunette Hair with Highlights
Here’s an amazing long thick dark brunette hair with highlights. Face-framing highlights on a dark base will help you contour your face shape. It will also brighten up your color. Stay within 2 levels of your base color. This can be a low-maintenance and natural-looking color technique.
#5: Dark Brown Long Hair with Light Pink Streaks
Go for a long dark brown color with light pink streaks. You might want to dip your toes into fun colors at some point, and there’s never a better time than now. Doing all-over highlights or a partial lift to a pale blonde will prep the hair for adding fun tones like a pale pink. Be aware that this color will fade fast. You will want an at-home pink toning shampoo or conditioner to maintain. Use it once a week to keep up this color.
#6: Subtle Highlights for Dark Brown Hair
If you want a simple and elegant look, go for subtle highlights on your dark brown hair. This could be the perfect chocolate brown highlights on black hair, too! It’s perfect for easy-going women that don’t need to be flashy. They want a small enough change to feel beautiful! It’s natural and easy for you to manage, and contrary to very drastic blondes, this type of color is fairly easy to transition to.
#7: Effortless Dimensional Curls
Opt for dimensional curls. It would be best to allow your hair colorist to customize your look using placement color. To get dark brown hair with highlights, tell them what kind of contrast and intensity you’re going for. It could be subtle or dramatic. They must use a gentle product on your curls. We still want it to fall in coils while allowing the colors to pop. For an easy-to-maintain result, I suggest a semi-permanent dye. Try L’Oreal DIA Richesse Demi-Permanent Crème Haircolor in chocolate.
#8: Gorgeous Dark Brown Hair with Caramel Highlights
Try gorgeous dark brown hair with caramel highlights. Solid dark brown hair can feel a little boring at times. One of the best ways to spice it up is to add caramel highlights. The lighter pieces give the illusion of dimension and shine, adding pop to your curls.
#9: Sexy Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
If you want to add a pop of dimension to your rich brown hair, I will opt for a subtle balayage. Ask your stylist for medium to thick-weaved panels. This will give you a more ribboned look when your hair is curled. Brown hair with blond highlights in front will also give your haircut the illusion of more shape.
#10: Sun-Kissed Dimensional Brunette
If you want to add some dimension to your dark color, aim for subtle ash brown babylights. Coloring your hair dark over a long duration of time can cause color build-up. Trying to lighten that build-up will cause your hair to dry out. So make sure to ask your stylist for a strand test to be done. That way, they will have more insight into getting you to your hair goal.
#11: Dark Brown Dimensional Hair
If you want to bring a little dimension to your dark hair, ask your stylist to give you highlights. I don’t recommend a chunky weave if you want a slight dimension. So make sure to ask for babylights that are spaced out. If you want your highlights to be ashier, use a purple shampoo at home to keep the warmth out.
#12: Glossy Dark Brown Hair with Cinnamon Highlights
Chestnut balayage is one of the most versatile colors because it goes well with any skin tone. That cinnamon tone highlights brown hair to perfection. The contrast of a dark base makes the lighter pieces bold and brighten up your face. Consider dyeing your hair darker if you have a naturally lighter base color. Remember to schedule regular appointments every 6-8 weeks for glossing and trimming. This helps to keep the shine and your ends healthy.
#13: Sun-Kissed Highlights with Beach Waves
Bring the summer wherever you go with these sweet sun-kissed highlights on dark brunette hair. That sun-kissed color highlights dark brown hair so well! For this style, consider adding some texture from the ear level smoothly down to your ends for an eye-catching dimension that’s perfect if you’re a dark brunette looking for rich shade. These warm brunette highlights flatter a tan skin tone and accentuate brown eyes best.
#14: Light Brown Highlights
Light brown highlights are a great way to brighten up your darker hair. If your highlights require too much maintenance, opt for a balayage or hand-painted technique to soften any outgrowth at your roots.
#15: Dark Brown to Ash Blonde Ombre Highlights
Dark brown to ash blonde ombre highlights work best on women with a naturally dark base. The ash-blonde ombre highlighting gives soft ribbons of blonde and dimension to the overall look. Ask your colorist for a light ash blonde ombre against your dark base if you want this color. This color idea also works well with light brown hair with highlights.
#16: Dark Mahogany Brown with Highlights
A shade of dark mahogany brown with highlights creates a subtle pop of warmth against the dark base. It would work best if you want a low-maintenance hair hue. Ask your colorist for some highlights on your dark mahogany brown tresses to get this color.
#17: Auburn Highlights for Dark Brown Locks
The auburn highlights for dark brown locks. They will work great on naturally dark brown tresses or for black hair. The auburn highlights will give a warm dimension to your dark brown base.
#18: Light Chocolate Highlights
Light chocolate highlights look best on women with a naturally dark base since they contrast the highlights. Ask your colorist for subtle chocolate highlights against your dark base to get this color.
#19: Dark Blonde Highlights on Brunette Hair
Dark blonde highlights on brunette hair will look spectacular if the technique is done right. To create a blended yet even more dramatic look, have your hairstylist foil a few highlights closer to the root and around the face for money pieces and foil a few pieces on the ends as well.
#20: Balayage Dark Brown Highlights
This deep brunette hair with balayage highlights is perfectly polished with soft waves. The result is indeed balayage perfection! You should consider getting your dark hair with highlights if you have a lighter skin complexion.
#21: Face-Framing Walnut Brown Highlights
With just a few dark brown balayaged pieces, you could have an adorable change in your look. These face-framing highlights on dark brown locks add a brightening effect without you needing to cut your hair for traditional layers.
#22: Gold Highlights
If you don’t like spending too much time on your dark brown hair, these golden highlights with an effortless hairstyle plus the chest-length cut are a great choice. These highlights give a lighter shade to dark brown roots and add dimension and texture to your hair.
#23: Cinnamon Highlights
The perfect combination of warm highlights and lowlights on dark brunette locks can achieve gorgeous dimensional hair. This warm brown hair balayage will lift your dark chocolate base and gives depth to your hair.
#24: Honey Blonde Highlights
Add some flair to your wavy brunette strands with these honey highlights that give amazing contrast and brightness to your dark hair. This lived-in dark brown hair with highlights is one of the best hair colors to get a natural look and will have a natural fade out. The color will fade into a rich buttery blonde. If you have time to maintain this cut and color, then it’s also a fun look to change up every 6-10 weeks.
#25: Dark Chocolate Highlights
These dark chocolate highlights on a darker brown mane will contrast your base hair color. There are lighter tones that can accentuate your facial features. The highlights can be gently blended into your dark hair so that they grow out easily. This chocolate brown hair with highlights doesn’t require much maintenance.
#26: Dark Brown Hair with Vivid Red Highlights
The vivid red highlights for dark brown hair in this picture were created using a foil highlight and balayage. The hair left out of the foil gives those ends vibrancy. With vibrant highlights, you need to keep in mind at-home care. These colors fade, and some fade fast! If you use a sulfate-free shampoo like Redken’s Color Extend Magnetics, your color will have more life because its pH is balanced, not to harm the color directly.
#27: Rose Brown Highlights
Having dark brown hair with highlights is a great way to work with old highlights while maintaining the integrity of your hair. This is a stunning combination of rich, dimensional rose-toned brown hues. To maintain the reddish-brown hue, I suggest visiting the salon every 5-6 weeks for a retouch and glaze for the lengths.
#28: Champagne Highlights on Brown Bob
Champagne highlights on short hair are a magnificent low-maintenance color. They can even blend well if your hair is naturally gray. The colors are great as they complement each other by being warmer. The base color gives you a nice depth, and the foils create enough lightness throughout your hair without overpowering the base. Consider getting a cut that’s slightly concave bob with heavy texturizing throughout the layers to create a messy feathered look.
#29: Rose Gold Highlights
Adding rose gold highlights to dark brown hair creates an amazing dimensional look. If you have naturally curly or extremely thick long hair, consider doing a blow dry and flat iron to have one of the more trendy straight hairstyles.
#30: Chestnut Highlights
Chestnut highlights help naturally dark-haired women achieve a lovely low-maintenance look. You can leave your roots as your natural hair color since this mixture of warm and cool highlighted tones creates more dimension and movement! During the coloring process, I recommend you talk with your colorist about using a smart bond to minimize hair damage.
#31: Bright Pink Ombre Highlights
Bright pink highlights on dark brown hair make a bold choice of hair color for women. It’s a fun color that softly blends with your natural dark brown shade. Pink is a trendy hair color right now, and having multiple tones in the hair gives a beautiful sunset appearance! Having the right products is huge for maintaining your new fashion colors. I highly recommend you use a gentle sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner like Pureology Hydrate and Redken Color Extend Magnetics. Try to wash your hair as little as possible; when you do, wash it in cold water to keep it from fading often.
#32: Ash Blonde Highlights
Ash blonde highlights on dark chocolate brown hair look incredible. These are not your traditional foil highlights but are balayaged to look sun-kissed. I recommend this dark brown hair with blonde highlights if you don’t like the upkeep of traditional foil highlights. The warm-toned highlights in brown hair work best if you have a warm skin tone or your natural color is a level 4 or darker.
#33: Mocha Highlights for Dark Hair
Adding mocha highlights to your dark brunette hair is a great way to have a flattering “I woke up like this” look. I highly suggest using a dry texture spray or wax sprays like Unite Texturiza or Sexy Hair Play Dirty. These products are a must for creating an effortless, textured look that has just enough of a playful style without looking messy.
#34: Sun-Kissed Blonde Highlights
Adding pretty sun-kissed blonde highlights on dark brown hair is best done with the balayage technique instead of the foilyage. I don’t recommend these brown and blonde hues if you’re currently box-dying their hair.
#35: Caramel Honey Highlights
The caramel honey highlights on dark brunette hair are glamorous and low-maintenance. You don’t have to go in often for touch-ups because there isn’t a line of demarcation as it grows. Caramel balayage and honey highlights are for you if you want to avoid returning to the hair salon every six weeks. You need to use R+Co Gemstone shampoo and conditioner. It’s sulfate-free, which helps maintains the color and doesn’t strip the hair color or get brassy. After shampooing, I recommend R+Co High Dive for moisture and a little R+Co Motorcycle flexible gel around the hairline to help smooth natural curls during the blowdry.
#36: Ash Brown Highlights
Add radiant ash brown highlights to your locks if you want a soft brown ombre. The color itself seamlessly transitions softly from a rich brown to kisses of a dark golden blonde. An ombre can be very drastic in its color graduation from dark to light or light to dark, while a sombre is just a few hues lighter from its deepest shade. I highly suggest you get a gloss treatment from Redken’s Shades EQ Gloss line six to eight weeks after color application to keep your hair color looking fresh. With rice protein and pomegranate oils, it gives your hair tons of shine while maintaining that awesome tone and strength in your hair.
#37: Warm Bronde Highlights
A magnificent rich chocolate brown hair with warm bronde highlights is done with the balayage technique. It isn’t a high-maintenance color since the contrast is at the mids and ends, blending softly into your base color. The color is great if you’re a brunette with a warm skin tone—the yellow undertones in the skin help to pull off the rich golden shades throughout your hair. If you have a cooler skin tone (with pink undertones), choose beige or cooler ashy tones throughout.
#38: Soft Sandy Blonde Highlights
These sandy blonde highlights on darker brown hair were done using the balayage ombre technique. This technique will leave a soft, natural grow-out in your hair versus highlighting to the root. These blond highlights are great to have if you have a very busy lifestyle. The color is painted off of the root. Therefore, whatever color is chosen will not clash with your skin.
#39: Glossy Mahogany Highlights
You can get mahogany highlights in many different ways over many sessions to keep it fresh and budget-friendly. To maintain this look, you must get color-safe products. Any rich color will fade without proper take-home products. All colors but grey and blonde have red in them, which means they will fade fast, and you’ll lose the rich tonal value of your hair.
#40: Rooted Pink Highlights
Pink highlights on rooted dark brown hair are a great way to get ready for summer without doing your whole head. For these highlights, you’ll need to lighten the hair beforehand. This will work for women who don’t mind day three or four hair (an amazing dry shampoo will be your best friend!) as the color will last longer the less you wash it. Spending a lot of time in the sun is more likely to fade the color as well. I suggest wearing a hat if you plan on being in the sun for a while.
#41: Mocha Highlights on Mid-Length Hair
If you’re a dark brunette, adding mocha highlights is a great option because this color will appear blended for a long time.
#42: Pink Strawberry Highlights
Getting pink strawberry highlights for dark brown hair is a great transition when you’re bored with your blonde highlights. It’s rich and trendy but can still be office appropriate. When it fades, it will turn into a beautiful pastel. I recommend you use a sulfate-free shampoo. One of my favorites is Lanza Healing Color Care shampoo and conditioner. It has plant botanicals that keep your color from fading and gives incredible softness and shine. You should use a deep conditioning treatment once or twice a month, especially if you have pre-lightened hair.
#43: Soft Caramel Highlights
A combo of soft caramel highlights and a dark brown base is a popular hair trend. It looks stylish and dimensional, especially if you add beach waves. This chocolate brown hair with caramel highlights works on any hair length and type and any skin complexion, too!
#44: Dimensional Bronze Highlights
Getting dark brown hair and bronze highlights will give you beautiful brightness without the upkeep of traditional highlights that start at the scalp. I suggest you talk to your hairdresser about adding deep “v” patterns to create a ton of dimension throughout your hair. To maintain this hue, I recommend Pureology Hydrate shampoo and conditioner. I also recommend you use a purple shampoo once a week to fight away brassy tones and Olaplex #3 to help keep your hair healthy and strong between chemical services.
#45: Subtle Caramel Brown Highlights
You can’t go wrong with a classic bob and some caramel brown highlights if you have dark brown hair. I recommend using Oribe Straight Away Smoothing Blowout Cream to create and maintain your short dark brown hair with highlights. This is one of my new favorite hair products for medium to coarse hair! It seals down your hair cuticles, leaving a beautiful sleek finish. It also reduces drying time.
#46: Rich Copper & Violet Highlights
Copper and violet highlights on layered brown hair look fantastic. The root area is more natural, and the bold ribbons of color attract the eye’s attention. The rich violet undertones with the dramatic copper highlights create a dynamic combination.
#47: Beach Golden Highlights
Adding dark brown balayage and golden highlights will showcase your hair color’s dimension. This is a great color and style if you’re seeking a low-maintenance hairstyle and color. The added beach waves are great for your hairstyle if you’re looking for a quick style that lasts from day to night. The best part about the hand-painted balayage is that it’s blended at the top, allowing it to grow beautifully and extending your time between salon visits.
#48: Dimensional Grey Highlights
These dimensional grey highlights melt from the dark to light perfectly. It’s a stunning hair color. I recommend you use a purple or silver shampoo to keep the silver color from fading as much as possible. This color will need more maintenance if you want to keep it silvery. Visit your salon for a gloss once every month.
#49: Smoky Silver Highlights
This is the shade for you if you want silver highlights that pop against your dark brown hair. You may need a lightener to help achieve your desired level and help with the hair’s health.
#50: Lighter Highlights for Long-Haired Brunettes
Experiment with a lovely bohemian, beach-waved look with a natural and subtle color made up of lighter babylights that frame your face. Like what I recommend for brunettes, you should use sulfate and paraben-free shampoo and conditioner. I recommend OI by Davines. This highly moisturizing brand will keep your hair healthy while protecting your color. I highly recommend this type of highlight for most hair types – from thick to thin and curly to straight. It works with many different textures, which is great. Consultation is key to ensuring you’re on the same page with your stylist and you end up with the best results for a dark brown hair color with highlights!