Whatever your taste and base colour, there’s a balayage look out there for you.
What you’ll need
There’s no question about it: balayage is still the most popular highlighting technique used today. And with more and more celebs, style icons and the beauty bloggeratti sporting ultra cool variations of balayage hair, finding inspiration to help you decide how you’d like yours done has never been easier.
Of course, one of the first places we looked was Instagram, where we found a plethora of stunning balayage hair examples that gave us major hair envy. So if you’re still having trouble deciding on the results you want, we suggest you have a flick through our gallery to see a selection of some of our favourite balayage hair looks.
10 Ways you can rock balayage hair
Dramatic dark balayage
This look is all about working in some bold contrasts and throwing a bit of ombre into the mix, as well. The ends should be coloured a lot lighter than the base colour of your hair – think light caramel tones on black or very dark brown.
If you really want to earn some style points, try mixing in another of this season top hair trends, such as the long bob. And don’t forget to work in soft, undulating waves as this will really help the contrasting colours stand out, as well as providing extra depth and definition. Credit: @balayagesbytyler
Caramel and chocolate balayage
And the real beauty of this colouring technique? With fewer harsh lines, you won’t have noticeable roots to contend with as your hair grows out again! This means it requires less maintenance and fewer appointments with your colourist – saving you money and time. Credit: @chrisgreenehair
If you’re the non-conformist type and like your hair bright, bold and playful, then fear not – balayage hair can also work well with more vibrant, eye-catching hues. If you have naturally dark hair, try working in a some darker shades (such as deep red or purple) at the top, near the roots, then allow it to transition into lighter orange or even blonde tones towards the tip. Credit: @jesss_sz
Blonde without the upkeep
If you want to go blonder but can’t be bothered with the hassle of regular root touch-ups, then blonde balayage offers the perfect solution, plus it’s kinder on your hair, too!
Carefully placing bright blonde tones though your hair creates a lived-in effect that will look just as good after a few month’s of growth as it does when you first step out of the salon. Who said maintaining your hair colour had to be hard work? Credit: @carlymartone
If you don’t feel ready to add really light, golden tones into your dark hair, then working subtle, yet delicious cinnamon swirls through your tresses could be the ideal solution. Remember: even the subtlest injections of colour can make a big impact! Credit: @km_stylist
Mermaid balayage hair
Balayage is also a great way to work this season’s exotic mermaid look. Whether you want a more subtle violet to turquoise graduation, or a playful mix of rainbow shades, this handpainted highlighting technique is the one to use when it comes to this summer’s most magical hair look. Credit: @aj_techniques
Sunkissed blonde balayage
Sunkissed beach waves are the perfect look for summer, and balayage highlights are a great way to achieve this hot weather-perfect hairstyle without even setting foot on the sand. Credit: @catherinelovescolor
Tip: To get that casually tousled finish on your waves, simply add a spritz of texturising spray, like the Toni&Guy Casual Sea Salt Texturising Spray (£7.49*), to your hair to really amp up the textures and volume.
Grey ombre balayage? Yes, please! The only thing we love more than one hot hair trend is a 2-in-1 look. Stick with natural roots, and a range of strategically-placed silvery grey highlights and the end result will be an ultra cool, grungy look that’s sure to wow. Credit: @krismac01
Sunkissed brown balayage
Another look that’s ideal for anyone looking to achieve an au naturel finish to their coloured hair. Subtle balayage highlights will give brunette hair a delicate sunkissed glow in an instant. Credit: @hairbykimtran
Tip: Try adding in some loose, casual waves to this look to really accentuate the highlights. To do this, follow the expert tips of a TIGI stylist on how to get loose waves, here!
Edgy blonde balayage
This cool and contemporary balayage look sees light blonde highlights worked mainly through the mid-lengths of the hair, creating an amazing contrast with a darker base. Easy to wear and maintain, this balayage technique is the perfect go-to for anyone who’s not quite sure which look to go for, as well as those who want a super low-maintenance hair colour.
Remember: When you dye your hair, it’s best to swap your regular wash and care system for one that has been designed specifically for coloured hair. We suggest trying the TRESemmé Colour Revitalise Vibrance Protection Shampoo and Conditioner (£4.99 each *) to help maintain colour vibrancy for up to 40 washes!**
*RRPs are Unilever suggested retail prices only, it is at the discretion of the individual retailers to set the actual price.
**Based on TRESemmé Colour Revitalise Vibrance Protection Shampoo and Conditioner vs. non-conditioning shampoo.