19 Prettiest Hair Highlights for Brown, Red and Blonde Hair

Adding highlights to your hair is one of the simplest things you can do to really change up your look. Below, I’ve put together some photos of this year’s most popular highlights for your inspiration. Whether your base hair is brown, red, black or blodne, you’ll find a gorgeous look for you!

Ash Blonde

Ash blonde highlights
Instagram @xcellentbeautysalon

One of the many versatile looks a blonde can have is this ash gray ombre on lengthy waves! The gorgeous subtle highlights also create a dynamic look to the hair.

Subtle Ashy Blonde

Subtle ashy blonde highlights
Instagram @donebyvonne

This high maintenance ultra cool girl look is ideal for those who wanna be edgy and classy at the same time. Looks best on people with fair skin tones and blue, gray, or green eyes!

Peek a Boo

Peek-a-boo highlights
Instagram @stubbsdreads21

For the adventurous who wants to add a little creativity to their look! This combination of a warm red and a cool deep blue matches awesomely with this sassy shoulder-length cut.

Light Brown

Light brown highlights
Instagram @vanaglory

A multidimensional highlighted lob that anyone can rock! Keep your natural hair color while adding dimension to your straight hair with this ash brown highlight technique.

Dip Dye

Dip dye highlights
Instagram @xmandyleex

One of the biggest trends of this decade is the dip dye which amazingly adds fun and edge to anyone who tries it! Reveal your playful side with this subtle yellow dye while looking super modern with a grey hair!


Burgundy highlights on short hair
Instagram @trishelerenee_dollhouse

Brighten up your natural black hair with this deep rich red highlights. Start from the roots if you have a short hair like hers for that added dimension.

Strawberry Blonde

Strawberry blonde highlights
Instagram @doris.vukoja

Try this awesome beach waves with a blunt end cut colored with this sweet shade of blonde. If you have a tan skin then this hue will work best for you!


Ombre highlights on straight shoulder length hair
Instagram @ms_bui

It’s a challenge to create an ombre with straight hair, but this grey shade proves how it can be easily and beautifully done. A plus when your natural color is black as it blends in without effort when it grows out.

Golden Blonde

Golden blonde highlights on long hair and tan skin
Instagram @lj.sharman

These smooth highlights are ideal for sprucing warm colored hair. They provide dimension and texture especially when the light hits those long golden waves.

Honey Blonde

Honey blonde highlights
Instagram @samihairmagic

A sweet blend of honey and chocolate done on any hair type and length looks perfect on warm complexions. Place those light honey highlights at the bottom and add in some pretty huge waves to give depth and volume to your hair.


Sun-kissed highlights
Instagram @nataliedmakeuphair

These trendy and sassy highlights can absolutely do a lot for anyone’s hair of any length and type. When done in a subtle ombre, they can add the dimension and texture that you’re wanting.

Rose Gold

Pretty rose gold highlights
Instagram @frankieglitz

Undeniably one of the most sought after looks this season is this super pretty dusty rose color that works perfect for fair tones and light brown eyes like hers. Wear it with jaw-length beach waves and end up feeling light and flirty and ready to turn heads wherever you go!


Platinum highlights
Instagram @hairbyshellee

Q&A with style creator, Shellee Hughes
Master Stylist @ Syrra Salon in Charleston, WV

How would you describe this look?

This cut is a textured pixie with a longer side bang!

Any advice for someone considering it?

It’s easy to style using a texture paste or spray wax or whatever you have at the time!

The side bang softens the look. The color is gorgeous! I smudged her root and pulled down matching baby lowlights into her heavy highlighted summer blonde hair.

This particular client is very active. She needed an easy style that could go from day to night in just a few minutes.


Cinnamon highlights
Instagram @paolaprojects

Q&A with style creator, Liz Paola
Hair Painter & Owner @ Paolaprojects in Pawtucket, RI

How would you describe this look?

This is warmth with a twist.

This is a warm cinnamon tone I created to complement and soften the underlying faded vivid tones that were already in her hair and also to enhance her curls. I think it has a modern, wearable look to it.

I used balayage technique to her specific curl pattern which created an overall glow instead of looking streaky. She’s got big bright eyes and a big beautiful smile, so I carved her curls to showcase and enhance how defined they naturally are and to draw more attention to her face.

I love the warmth and the glow of it all. It is youthful yet classy. I styled with gel and oil to again bring out her curl definition and shine.

Any advice for someone considering it?

When trying to achieve this look it’s important to understand moisture balance. The outcome and longevity of the color and curl pattern depend on it.

I recommend monthly treatments before and after any service where lightening is going to happen.

Make sure you are comfortable with warm tones. These tones will fade over time, so pick a hue that will complement your skin tone as that process happens. This hue works well with anyone who tans instead of burns – more of an olive skin tone.

In terms of styling I will say, the more defined the curls are, the more defined the color will appear.

For this look, you will want to use a shiny gel with a good hold and style with definition. Use a diffuser and dry until it’s 100% dry.

This whole look is great for all hair types and anyone who likes seeing a variety of tones and who is not afraid to do up and flaunt their curls!

Caramel Streaks

Caramel highlights on dark hair
Instagram @dmariehairnyc

Spice up those long wavy layers with some luscious honey streaks so you can look sexy and flirty by just simply letting that lovely hair down!

Q&A with style creator, Danielle Golburgh
Colorist @ Vidov Salon in New York, NY

How would you describe this look?

Hair like this reminds me of a supermodel’s hair – that’s the best way I can describe it. Walking down the street, everybody turning their heads kinda hair. That perfect blend of drama and effortlessness that a lot of woman are looking for today.

My absolute favorite thing about this color is that, using the bayalage technique, we were able to achieve these bright caramel and honey pops that give so much drama and movement without taking away from the beautiful, natural rich brown base color. This is what balayage does for brunettes.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Balayage is really for someone who wants to have that wow factor without all the maintenance of standard highlights. It’s perfect for brunettes wanting to dip into the fabulous world of blonde but still want to feel like a brunette.

Understand that every shade of brown is different, every skin tone is different, and every texture is different. Bring some pics of looks that inspire you to your color appointment, but trust your colorist’s eye, and be flexible in your vision.

Learn how to style your hair with a wave to really highlight the dimension that you get with this type of color (wands are my favorite and the easiest to use). There are so many tutorials out there along with advice on easy cheats to help you achieve that effortless beachy look.

Auburn Red

Give texture to your deep red lob by adding highlights and waves to it for a voluminous effect. This shade of auburn is ideal for those with medium warm skin tones.

Q&A with style creator, Erin Shellabarger
Hairstylist / Make-up Artist @ The Young American Salon in Tustin, CA

How would you describe this look?

It’s a vibrant multidimensional red with violet undertones. It is a layered lob with lots of texture. I always love to have multiple colors in a style. It makes your hair look thicker and reflects more light.

Everyone wants thick shiny hair!  And all the different tones make it so much fun to style. You can change the look with curling it or wearing it straight and changing the part. It has so many different options.

Any advice for someone considering it?

Have fun! Use a colored conditioner to keep the red vibrant. I used Alter Ego’s Passion Mask in Red (Amarena). This is a necessity. Reds are a little more maintenance, but this will ensure you look great until you see your stylist again.

This cut will work for all hair types, and I love styling it with Alter Ego Volume Primer first because it gives weightless airy volume. Second, I use Alter Ego’s Hedged, which is a texturizing creme, to give all the separation and definition to the style.

This color and cut are bold but classic. It follows the trend of vivid hair colors but is not out of the natural reds, just kicked up a little. I love to keep the current color, but not everyone can have pink hair. So the bold color will definitely help you stand out but in a gorgeous way.

Cherry Red

This delicious blend of rose red and rich dark brown is ideal for any cut or style – wavy or straight, long or short. If you have a medium cool skin undertones, this will absolutely look perfect on you!

Q&A with style creator, Kate Breedlove
Independent Stylist @ Meece & Co. in Avon, IN

How would you describe this look?

This is a ruby red balayage/ombré. My favorite thing about this look is the flowing layers that add so much texture and really makes the color pop.

Although this was styled smooth and sleek, the layers definitely provide the perfect tousled beach wave look, which seems to be all the rage this year!

Any advice for someone considering it?

For anyone possibly considering this look I would say go for it! The textured beach wave look that the layers achieve is one of the hottest trends out there right now.

The color technique is also great for those who can’t make it into the salon all the time.

This look can allow for up to four to six months grow out time, and you will never see the line of demarcation (where your roots grow in) like you will with highlights.

For all who like to have their roots done, they can still continue to do so with root touch-ups while the balayage continues to grow out!

Silver Strands

Silver highlights
Instagram @_hairbyclaire_

Silver is without a doubt the new blonde color everyone wants these days. Don’t be afraid to blend it with your natural brown roots by adding some highlights for a smooth transition.

Q&A with style creator, Claire Henderson
Hairstylist @ Alchemy Salon in Orlando, FL

How would you describe this look?

This look is a balayage with silvery tones on the ends which I definitely love!

Any advice for someone considering it?

Silver tones can be achieved on anyone. It just requires patience and possibly several visits to the salon. The darker the hair, the longer it will take to get there. And it definitely requires maintenance.

If you can’t get your hair touched up every 6-8 weeks, but you’re wanting to keep the silver tone, maybe this isn’t the look for you.


Bronze highlights on bob haircut
Instagram @glambynadya

Putting on highlights allow you to keep your natural hair color. Keep it from being boring by breaking up the solid hue with these bronze streaks.

Q&A with style creator, Nadya Khamisi
Colorist & Master Designer @ Ulta Beauty in Wheaton, IL

How would you describe this look?

It’s a tossed wavy bob with high contrast of copper balayage.

Choppy hairstyles are a breeze with a quality layered haircut and a good texturizer. If you also add a dimensional hair color like this multi-tonal brown copper, you’ll have a trendy look at your fingertips with minimum effort.

Any advice for someone considering it?

A little wave provides a lot of bodies, not to mention structure, shape, and texture. Whether your waves are subtle or pronounced, a wavy bob is easy to create, and it makes a welcoming change, especially for second or third-day hair.

Here is a list of the take-home products to maintain and recreate this beautiful look at home – Hot Tools 1″ curling iron, AG color savior shampoo and conditioner, Kendra blow dry spray (which smells like heaven), and AG tousled texture to finish and also refresh the style on second or third-day hair.