Have you been thinking about adding dimension to your hair but have no clue what to get? We totally get that. That’s why we’re such big fans of natural highlights. We love how they allow you to add sun-kissed accents to your hair by just adding a subtle amount of color. Read to add some natural tones to your hair? Read on to check out three different ways to achieve natural highlights on your own hair.
Natural Highlights: Adding Dimension to Your Hair
1. Standard Highlights
Do you want to get highlights without going too chunky? We totally get that. To make your standard highlights look like natural highlights, talk to your hair colorist about the effect you really want. In general, making highlights look more natural means you should only lighten the hair a few shades (as opposed to the dark hair with platinum highlights of the early 1990s). You should also ask to vary the width of the highlights since those that are too uniform in size can look dated.
2. Balayage Highlights
For some seriously natural highlights, look into balayage highlights. The balayage technique basically paints the bleach onto the hair for a more natural looking effect. Again, for this type of highlight, let your hair colorist know that you want the result to look natural. For balayage, because the placement is already natural looking, it’s more about the color. You want the bleach to lift your hair to a nice color that isn’t too brassy, but you also don’t want it to get too light compared to your base color.
Even though you won’t be going platinum blonde, you’ll still need to tone your hair to a color that will look good with your base color and your skin tone. Your stylist will do this in the salon, but you’ll also need to take proper care of your colored hair at home. Using a purple shampoo, like the Bed Head By TIGI Dumb Blonde Purple Toning Shampoo, will keep your natural highlights from turning an unnatural brassy color.
3. Bleach-Free Highlights
Did you know you can get natural highlights without bleaching your hair? Yep! It’s totally easy, all you need to do is switch out the bleach for a permanent hair dye in a color a few shades lighter than your natural hair color. The dye will need to be applied in the same way as highlights but choosing a dye instead of bleach will instantly give a much more subtle effect.
Permanent dye can lighten hair a few shades, though not as dramatically as bleach. Permanent dyes use just a bit of developer to open the outer layer of the hair to let the color penetrate the strand. This allows permanent dyes to lighten hair.
4. Caring for Highlighted Hair
When you get highlights, even natural highlights, you’ll find the lightened areas can feel drier than the rest. This is because bleaching (and dying to a lesser extent) makes the hair more porous. Porous hair isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it won’t hold moisture in the same way. Keep your hair in good condition by using a hair mask, like the Dove Nutritive Solutions Intensive Repair Deep Treatment Mask, at least once a week.
Need more information on natural highlights or highlights in general? Check out our article on perfect hair highlights.