21 Inspiring Examples of Dark Hair with Blonde Highlights

Best dark hair with blonde highlights

Dark hair with blonde highlights is a hair color combination that has lightened pieces or ribbons of hair, adding tons of depth and dimension as a result. Lots of methods can be done with highlights – frosting, chunking, traditional highlights, and the balayage which is a hand-painting technique that results in a natural-looking dye job!

Blondes against dark hues produce an unparalleled contrast that is sought after by most gals! On the radar are Margot Robbie, Miranda Kerr, and Jessica Alba who are making us crazy over this ultra sexy hair trend!

Sun-kissed hints of blondes can transform your tresses into a fuller and livelier version, and this is very much achievable regardless of your skin color. What’s important to consider is how you want to go with the upkeep.

Going with a balayage endows you soft, seamless highlights, and makes the grow-out easy to maintain while opting for a more distinct transition of hues might need frequent touch-ups and salon visits. Hair masks and hydrating products are a must since lightening dark strands causes damage to it.

It’s a convenient way to add volume and flair to your hair without all the hassle! Get inspired to try these popular looks on dark hair with blonde highlights!

Dark Hair with Blonde Highlights and Burgundy Streaks

Dark Hair with Blonde and Burgundy Highlights
Instagram @adyalonzo07

Brunettes have fun with both light and dark accents. A reddish hue with blonde lights piece up this whole do.

Dark Brown Base with Red and Blonde Highlights

Dark Brown Base with Red and Blonde Highlights
Instagram @jessgodlove

Mahogany red for a steamy hairstyle. Make your pinkish undertones pop with these shades.

Black Hair with Blonde Highlights

Black Hair with Blonde Highlights
Instagram @its_ashley.h

Any color used as an accent from black hair almost instantly works. However, this platinum dye job was done immaculately, looking like the only choice to highlight black hair with.

Ash Blonde Highlights

Ash Blonde Highlights
Instagram @aimme_hastaelultimodetalle

With this natural look, it just looks like the sun hit your dusky hair at all the right places all the time!

Blonde and Red Highlights

Blonde and Red Highlights
Instagram @ray_of_lightsalon

Make brown hair your main mane while branding two additional colors. Talk about pushing fashion to its limits!

Peekaboo Hair Highlights

Peekaboo Hair Highlights
Instagram @meganmarie_93

Half-illusive, half-bold. Contrasting colors in this design makes people look twice for that hidden highlight surprise!

Platinum Blonde Highlights

Platinum Blonde Highlights
Instagram @alydavishair

Dual contrasting tones mimic depth and make hair appear more weighted. The waves and length add more dynamics to this design.

Dark Hair with Sun-Kissed Highlights

Dark Hair with Sun-Kissed Highlights
Instagram @kristen.lumiere

A trip to the salon getting these tanned blonde colors means getting that beach look without the fuss of harsh sunlight!

Infused with Honey Blonde Highlights

Hair infused with Honey Highlights
Instagram @dosbykay

Bronde (Brunette blonde) living in two worlds at once. The range of colors give depth to your hair and is enhanced waves.

Dark Chocolate Base Color and Highlights

Dark Chocolate Base Color with Highlights
Instagram @ashplowman

Really goes well with tanned tones so get your summer skin ready! Golden caramel looks sweet and sunny at the same time.

Pink Highlights

Pink Highlights
Instagram @hairbykotay

Multi-tones of pink, purple, lilac, and black surprisingly looks like an artwork. Add long waves for maximum punk rock vibes.

Dark Burgundy Hair

Dark Burgundy Hair
Instagram @jlucywoods

It might seem as a lot is happening here but the way the blonde and burgundy mix is truly captivating.

Purple Hair with Highlights

Purple Hair with Highlights
Instagram @katiegct

Q&A with style creator, Kate Gallagher
Hairstylist @ Essence Center For Beauty in Old Saybrook, CT

How would you describe this look?

This look is another one of my favorites to do – an asymmetrical, undercut bob. The other side of the cut not facing the camera is buzzed off as well as around the ear on the full side which allows a great deal of movement to what can otherwise be a pretty static cut.

My client Stephanie likes a little edge to her look and I like how the purple plays into that. I love using purple as a low light with blonde, as it’s such an unexpected pop of color it can really showcase someone’s personality.

Any advice for someone considering it?

This kind of look is deceptively low maintenance. The undercut allows the style to simply fall into place so as long as you have pretty straight hair all you would need is a little blow dry styler like Redken Velvet Gelatine and five minutes of wrap drying with a paddle brush. I always recommend that my clients use a color safe, sulfate free shampoo to maintain their color – especially for vivids like the purple in this look.

As with any vivid, I would expect the purple to start to fade out after a few weeks but the dark to blonde ombré effect will stay fresh for a while. I usually see this client every 6 to 8 weeks for touch ups and besides from the purple fading out she is in pretty good shape when she comes back in.

I would recommend this look to any client with a little bit of an edgy style, a dark natural hair color, and straight hair texture for optimal results and wearability. I would also recommend laying in some color protective shampoo like the Moroccanoil Color Complete and for the best color retention shampoo sparingly with cool water.

Dark Red Hair

Q&A with style creator, Meeghan Truss
Hairstylist & Makeup Artist @ Jillian and Company in Southington, CT


How would you describe this look?

This look is a sleek angled bob with bold highlights and color. I love doing this client’s hair because she is always open to trying something fun and different.

My favorite part of this look is how the cut and color frame her face. The deep red accentuates her eyes and skin while the chunky blonde adds some fun and dimension. It’s short enough that it’s easy to style but long enough that it can be pulled up as well.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Unless you are committed to blowdrying and smoothing this look I would recommend this cut for straight hair, otherwise, you’ll need style daily to obtain the sleekness. If you have straight or even slightly wavy hair this can be a wash and go style with just a little serum.

If you have very thick hair this cut can easily be thinned to remove weight and works very nicely. This cut can work for most face shapes since it frames the face so nicely. The color also looks great on most skin tones. I think everyone should be red at least once in their life. You definitely walk with a little extra confidence when you’re a redhead!

The blonde highlights add a level of fun and creativity. This look could work for someone with a creative lifestyle like an artist or designer but still can work for a more conservative lifestyle or job.

Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights

Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
Instagram @hairby_terr

Q&A with style creator, Terri Dintzner
Stylist @ Tres Lounge in Westfield, MA


How would you describe this look?

This is a layered, texturized inverted lob. I highlighted the hair throughout to create shine and add brightness while low lighting to create that darker dimension. Whether wearing this hairstyle straight and sleek or adding wave to create the body, you will always get that perfect contrast of light and dark.

Any advice for someone considering it?

This is an easy everyday hairstyle with low maintenance and works well with most hair types – whether if your hair is fine and you want to create a body with this cut or if you had thick coarse hair and you wanted to maintain a more sleek look. It’s easy to do especially with the right tools and product. Therefore, this would definitely be a recommended look. Regardless of the desired outcome of the look, I would always recommend a volumizing or moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, especially for color treated hair.

Styling straight and sleek is a perfectly polished look for the workday which can be obtained by using a heat protectant to prevent breakage along with your flat iron. Finish off this fabulous look with smoothing serum to create all day sleek and shiny hair.

Using a texturizing spray would be a perfect product to use to give a quick spray and scrunch to the hair to create body and bounce. Super simple yet super fun look.

All in all, my favorite thing about this cut and color is the overall versatility of the look and that it can be styled in many ways. Are you an everyday professional looking for the sleek, straight, yet still modernized look? Are you looking for sexy, fun yet a super simple way of creating this? Do you also want the versatility of being able to create body and bounce? If yes, this is the look for you!

Thin Highlights

Q&A with style creator, Jaime Layne
Cosmetologist @ Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy in Keller, TX


How would you describe this look?

I was originally inspired by a sunflower field next to where I grew up in California. Every time the weather gets beautiful in Texas I get homesick so I attempted to create a design based on a sunflower. Thus, we have the Sunflower Half Updo.

The loveliest thing about this is the dimension her balayage brought to the table. It created depth to the center of the braid and highlighted the outer braid to appear as a sunflower as opposed to a rose.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Depending on the texture of your hair, you may need texturizing spray. I recommend “Redken Triple Dry 15” it is a dry texture finishing spray. It makes the hair more moveable and easier to manipulate so it is not slippery.

To achieve this look, first, you can create small waves in the hair using a flat iron or curling iron, spray your texturizing spray lightly over the hair, and then pick through the waves with a rat tail comb. Next, using your rat tail comb, part a circular shape next to the side part and dutch braid at the base, and continue using the 3-strand technique halfway down the braid. Wrap in a circle and secure with bobby pins.

This look is very versatile and can be worn by all face shapes and hair shades, but dark hair with honey lights helped achieve the illusion I was looking for. In addition, a medium length cut is more aesthetically pleasing to the eye with the size of her flower braid. However, with longer hair, a similar style can be achieved by creating a bigger flower braid to help balance the look.

Dark Brown Hair with Light Overlay

Dark Brown Hair Light overlay
Instagram @the_colunga

Q&A with style creator, Manuel Colunga
Cosmetologist @ Sonrisa Day Spa in Kansas City, MO


How would you describe this look?

My client came in wanting something new and fun since she just moved to the area and wanted a change. I basically did a “foilayage” with a shadow root so she would have a smoother grow out period.

What I really love about this look was that you can see all the different dimensions in her hair with the curls and I left some of her previously highlighted hair out to add even more dimension. Always working with what I have instead of against it.

Any advice for someone considering it?

For anyone wanting to get this look, I say go for it! Spring/summer is right around the corner and these type of highlights are absolutely beautiful in the sunlight. If you see yourself getting your hair retouched quite often, go all the way to the scalp, and if not, add a shadow root for a smooth grow out.

What I also love about this look is that if you have curly or straight hair you can totally rock it! A little tip I like to do before I curl the hair is to spray the section of hair with a very light hairspray before I curl it. It makes the curls last longer which is nice for someone who is on the go and easier on the hair as well since you’re not putting heat on it every day.

Caramel Blonde Hair Color

Q&A with style creator, Morgan Preston
Hairstylist @ Neatbeat Hair Salon in Louisville, KY


How would you describe this look?

This look is a brunette to warm blonde balayage. I love the depth maintained at the base, which makes the lighter pieces pop! Even though a balayage is pretty when the hair is straightened, the 3-dimensional color created really is accentuated with a style that involves curls. Balayage is meant to create ribbons in the hair that brings movement to the hair. This is ideal for brunettes!

Any advice for someone considering it?

If you are considering this look I suggest being mindful of how you style your hair. Balayage is beautiful and seamless but is so customizable that the placement is based solely on how you wear your hair. Balayage is a technique so there are many looks that can be achieved this way.

A glaze is what really creates the tonality in this look, and is needed every 8 weeks to be maintained. At home, a color locking style system is key in maintenance. Lighter pieces tend to need more protein to remain strong so a leave-in conditioner (such as @euforainternational Elixir One) is essential for at-home care. The best part about this look is that the lighter pieces only need to be touched up every couple of months depending on how you’re feeling about the grow out. It can be a low maintenance color!

Chunky Color Blocks

Chunky Color Blocks
Instagram @bwalkerk

Q&A with style creator, Brenda Walker Kokensparger
Stylist / Owner @ Absolute Envy Salon & Spa in Jacksonville, NC


How would you describe this look?

This color is an autumn mix. The auburn slices give dimension and a nice change from summer blondes. By adding long layers, a V-shape cut and some loose curls still give that beachy look.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Loose curls are great with all hair types. It’s a 10 volume spray, It’s a 10 serum, Kenra thermal styling spray, and Kenra 25 hairspray were all used. Hair was fine to medium thickness. This style should be easy for her to achieve on a daily basis.

Light on Dark Blonde

Q&A with style creator, Holly Conger
Color Specialist @ Salon Matos in Spring, TX


How would you describe this look?

This look is a natural blonde blended with some honey tone lowlights! What I love about this look is I was able to blend her previous color by adding a honey lowlight. It’s bright but still natural looking!

Any advice for someone considering it?

This look is going to be great for traditional blondes looking for subtle depth and dimension! The cut is long layers with a subtle face frame, great for clients who want to maintain length but still have a little finesse and movement!

Caramel and Blonde Highlights

Caramel and Blonde Highlights
Instagram @emdoesmyhair

Q&A with style creator, Emily Alderson
Hairstylist / Master Colorist @ Emily Alderson Hair Design in Winnipeg, MB


How would you describe this look?

The color is dimensional. You can see pops of brightness, but the highlights don’t overtake the rich brunette base.

The cut is shaped into a point in the back. This is great for people with really thick hair who want to maintain some length but reduce some bulk. My favorite thing about this look is when it is tied back, the pointed shape will give a more tailored ponytail as opposed to the big chunky mass of hair you often get with extremely thick hair.

For styling, you can work with natural texture or use a styling wand to create some loose waves. Finish with a dry wax spray to control flyaways and add some hold.

Any advice for someone considering it?

For a dimensional color, you want to make sure not to over highlight. The dimension is created by painting lighter pieces, next to darker pieces. If your hair is already quite light, you may want to add some lowlights as well to bring back some depth.

A cut like this that is pointed in the back is best suited to longer hair that is normal to thick. For someone with finer hair, I would recommend sticking with a blunt cut for a fuller look. This style would look good on any face shape and is well suited to just about any personality – smooth and straight for a sophisticated look, or lots of texture for something a little more fun and carefree!