Caramel hair is simply a warm-toned light brown hair colour (similar to caramel syrup), and its the perfect colour to transition your hair from dark to light, or vice versa. You can get all-over caramel hair done, or just opt for caramel highlights, which are one of the most sought-out hair colours ever, mostly because it is universally flattering.
Want to try this look for yourself, but feeling a little indecisive about which hue to go for? Well, luckily for you, the versatility of caramel tones are endless; ranging from all-over colour to ombre, highlights and balayage.
Ahead, our favourite examples.
1. All-over caramel
If you’re still wondering what true caramel hair looks like, just take a look above to see how Eva Mendes pulls off this illuminating shade.
2. Subtle caramel highlights
Editor’s tip: Remember to use a wash and care system specifically formulated for dyed hair. We’re currently fawning over the TRESemmé Colour Shineplex Shampoo and Conditioner, as it helps hair look frizz-free, all while helping maintain your hue’s vibrancy.
3. Golden caramel blonde
This is what happens when you take a classic caramel up a few notches! Keeping her base caramel, Josie Redmond moves her natural light brown hair closer to blonde with the addition of dazzling golden tones.
4. Honey brown with caramel blend
Want glowing skin? Take a cue from Karruenche Tran and keep your roots dark, then introduce a gorgeous blend of light and dark blonde caramel tones through your mid-lengths and ends.
Psst…Copying this tousled hairstyle will allow you to show off your new hue, in the best way possible.
5. Caramel melt
The boldest way to upgrade natural brown hair is with a caramel colour melt, like Jennifer Lopez‘. This eye-catching method makes your base colour looks like it is ‘melting’ into the other tones in your hair.
6. Shiny caramel brown hair
So, you want to go lighter without going full-on caramel blonde? Consider getting this rich caramel brown hair colour.
This lovely shade is full of shimmering tones that will boost your brown hair and make it feel new again.
7. Face-framing caramel highlights
Gisele Bündchen’s strategically placed ashy caramel highlights run down the sides of her supermodel waves, perfectly framing her face and drawing attention to her facial features. If you want the same effect, you know what to do…
8. Toffee brown with caramel ribbons
9. ’90s caramel hair
Iconic ’90s supermodels like Cindy Crawford and Laetitia Casta made caramel highlights part of their signature look, so it’s no surprise that modern-day models are doing the same.
Take Behati Prinsloo for example, she gives her dark brown hair a ’90s makeover with these soft, sun-kissed caramel highlights.
10. Milk chocolate caramel hair
11. Multi-toned caramel hair
To warm up your curls, ask your stylist to work with your natural brown, incorporating light and dark caramel brown shades to add brightness and dimension.
12. Sandy caramel hair
Jessica Biel’s soft, sandy hue is a great hue to layer over a medium brown base.
13. Lived-in caramel
The best thing about caramel highlights? They grow out gracefully, and Jessica Alba’s lived-in mane is a serious case in point.
14. Caramel streaks
15. Summer caramel
On the topic of summer, this beauty proves that caramel hair is the secret to beach babe-worthy hair. Whether you’re hitting the beach or not, you’ll need a good sea salt spray to mimic these tousled waves. Credit: @camilamonrrone
16. Dark caramel balayage
We like this hair colour like we like our coffee: simple, dark and sweetened up some caramel syrup. Who else is pinning this look? Credit: @brittsully
17. Gold rush
This warmed-up golden mane is more about bringing a stylish dimension to chocolate tresses. By copying this highlight pattern, you won’t need to worry about the colour being too high maintenance. Credit: @chrisgreenehair
18. Caramel ponytail
As if we need another reason to love this colour combo. Whether it’s a half-up, half-down updo or a ponytail with hair slides, your caramel hair colour will make any hairstyle look interesting. Credit: @sincerelyjules
19. Caramel babylights
Looking for a simple way to give your mane an uplifting change? Then hand-painted caramel babylights are a great way to switch up your hair while maintaining your base colour. These fine caramel highlights add warmth and depth to darker tones and look really natural. Credit: @hairartistrybm
20. Face-framing highlights
The placement of highlights can have more of an effect than you might think. If you have a long face, add highlights around your hairline to frame and accentuate your facial features, just like this lovely lady.
Editor’s tip: Keep your hair in its best condition by using a deep conditioning hair mask at least once a week. Tackling dryness as well as helping your colour stay bright and fresh, we suggest using the Love Beauty And Planet Blooming Strength & Shine 2 Minute Magic Masque.
With Amazonian Muru Muru Butter and rose absolute, this miracle masque will help moisturise your coloured hair and also leave it with a healthy-looking gleam.
21. Warm caramel ribbons
Wondering if a caramel hair colour will suit your skin tone? Getting ribbons of warm caramel highlights done throughout your mane is an ideal way for those with mid-tan complexions to try this flattering shade. Credit: @prissyhippiebeautyshop
22. Fresh highlights and balayage
Balayage hair is just like traditional highlights, except they start further down from the roots and are less uniform than classic highlights. Instead, your stylist will place the colour from approximately a quarter or mid-way down the hair shaft, depending on your desired finish.
This colour technique helps to achieve brown hair with caramel highlights in a more low-maintenance way, as regrowth is less of an issue. Credit: @trichologybyma
23. Subtle undertones
New to colouring your hair or just prefer a more understated style? With caramel brown hair at the tips, this soft and subtle colour shows that sometimes you don’t need to go wild with the colour to make a big difference.
24. Subtle dip-dye on curly hair
How fantastic does this light dip-dye look on curly hair? Pretty amazing we think. This warm brown hue has only slightly been lightened at the very tips, giving a naturally sun-kissed effect that seriously freshens up this curly ‘do. Credit: @emmachenartistry
25. Caramel ombre
If you want to make your curls really stand out, try to keep your roots a dark caramel and go for a blonde ombre dye job at the ends, like this. Yep, we can’t stop staring, either. Credit: @golden_barbie
26. Straight caramel hair
Looking for a way to add a little more pizzazz to straight hair? Caramel highlights will do just the trick, taking your colour from flat to fab without you even needing to style it. Credit: @remakemxl
Editor’s tip: Give your coloured tresses a major dose of TLC with the TRESemmé Colour Shineplex Serum, which is designed to provide frizz control and leave your mane feeling soft and looking super shiny.
27. Red to caramel colour melt
The shier sister of ombre, colour melting is a softer take on the graduated colour look. Cutting out any harsh lines so that one colour flows seamlessly into the other, it gives the hair a “melted” effect. Credit: @loco1805
28. Light ash caramel
29. Rich highlights
This rich hue is great for the brunette who loves their colour but wants to give it a new lease of life. As you can see here, curling your hair will really help to bring out the different tones running through the lengths. Credit: @beautyfied_by_josie
30. Autumn blends
Thinking of going a bit darker as we head into A/W? This blend of rust and golden caramel highlights creates an earthy, autumnal feel that’s perfect for transitioning through the seasons in style. Credit: @pk_hair
31. Caramel bob
You’ve got the blunt cut bob everyone’s talking about, but now what? If you still want a way to fake volume, try getting piece-y caramel highlights done throughout your hair, like this.Credit: @salsalhair