auburn hair

Why You Should Get Red or Auburn Hair + 13 Tips on How To Style this Hue

Not just red, not just brown—get a color, like auburn hair, that can do both.

We’re really digging auburn hair color right now, and really: What’s not to love? Bright, succulent harvest grains, spicy lattes, cozy sweaters, comfort food—they all seem to suggest all things warm and fuzzy, and truly everything takes on an earthier feel. And as far as hair trends go, reds, nutty browns, and auburn colors are probably the most evocative, as they conjure up the best colors of autumn.

If you’re looking for some new hair color inspo for this season, why not look into this beautiful, reddish hue, auburn hair? It’s a richer take on the classic copper, with just enough hints of brown to mellow it out. Scroll down to check out a few reasons why auburn hair color is one of the classiest, most versatile shades you’ll ever wear, plus scroll on to see more auburn options for a variety of skin tones.

Reasons We Love Auburn Hair Color

Ready to try the hottest shade right now? Auburn is the sweet spot between red and brown, a captivating hue to try if you can’t decide which side to lean on. Read on and find out why we love this autumnal hair color so much.


1. It’s a crisp, sophisticated brown

long auburn hair color trend
Auburn hair is a dynamic medium brown. Photo credit:

If you’re ever going for a single-process shade, auburn brown hair color is one of the best hues to choose from. Ruddy notes give this neat, medium brown more dimension than other shades. It can flatter cool and warm undertones, making it a great neutral shade to check out if you want to flirt with a brown this season.

2. Highlights come out super-gorgeous

highlights on auburn hair color
Highlighting is a cinch. Photo credit:

Because it has warm and cool tones, applying light auburn hair color tones to your hair with highlights (via a reputable stylist) is nearly foolproof. It can complement both the golds and the ashes and, as in the balayage above, can also gain more depth with a hint of copper—it brings out the red in your base and results in a deep, luscious, multi-tonal color job.

3. It wakes you up

No one wants to cake on the makeup in a polar vortex, least of all us. This is why we love how an auburn red hair shade can instantly perk up a bare face when we need it the most: It can warm up the most winter-weary of complexions and helps you look put together even with just an additional swipe of tinted lip balm or mascara (leave that rosy flush to Mother Nature). Sold!

4. It’s made to be curled

auburn hair color with waves
Waves and curls come to life in dark reddish tones.

Unlike black or dark browns, which don’t define as much texture, waves, curls, and even crimped styles take on a more sophisticated, healthy-looking shine on a dark auburn hair color, it’s light enough to showcase the nuances in your texture but dark enough to mask any dryness or damage. Our fave way to style this shade: big and full-bodied, just like a glass of good Bordeaux.

5. It sets you apart

shiny and dark auburn hair color
Not your average brown. Photo credit:

Auburn hair is a bright brown that’s like the lovechild of red and dark brown. That said, it will never get lost in a sea of regular browns and blondes and sets you apart, even when you’re rocking your winter uniform of all-black everything. It’s versatile and retains a down-to-earth vibe while still looking fashionable.

Want to see how this chic, fashionable shade can work on darker skin tones? We explain the nuances:

Auburn Brown Hair Ideas

1. Curls with Auburn Tones

auburn hair color ringlets
A rich shade of auburn can really make your darker hair ‘pop.’

Awaken your complexion by trying a trio of dark auburn hair colors on your natural hair. This multi-dimensional look is fun and great for the girl who likes to try something a little wilder and dramatically different. Try out a mix of auburn, honey brown, espresso, or toffee shades, as they blend well to create a natural look. A serum, like TRESemmé One Step Styler Curls Crème-Gel, ensures your locks are moisturized after coloring.

2. Auburn with Gray and Ash Blonde Highlights

Powerful smiling young woman with gray eyes and an ombre hair mix of stunning colors in tones of crimson red and orange, looking dazzling against green park bush foliage.; Shutterstock ID 1724671270; purchase_order:

While gray hair is super hot these days (we mean it!), some still choose to hide their gray locks. Cover up or blend away your grays by giving your strands a modern coverage with a semi-permanent or permanent dark auburn hair dye. These subtle streaks of gray and ash-blonde highlights look vibrant and give you an instant makeover. To maintain, color hair every three to four weeks or when you begin to see new gray roots.

3. Auburn Ombré Hair

Mahogany hair color ombre
A classic ombré mixed with this deep, rich mahogany color is a match made in hair heaven.

Choose dark auburn shades like deep reds or hues with brown undertones to boost your long locks. Ombré hair color with these tones looks especially vibrant against dark skin, as the colors blend well against the naturally dark brown or black hair you may have. Your long locks will be packed with definition and will especially stand out when worn with loose curls or waves. Tip: A color-safe shampoo and conditioner system, like Nexxus Color Assure Shampoo and Color Assure Conditioner, helps protect against color fade.

4. Auburn Highlights

girl with auburn wavy bob
Pair a trending hair color with a wavy bob.

This subtle coloring technique, especially around face-framing areas, improves your skin tone. Try out brownish-auburn tones on dark skin that fall on the lighter end of the spectrum. For deeper and rich, chocolatey skin, employ some copper and red auburn tones to bring out the warmth in your complexion. Go bold to end up with a strong effect, or add auburn highlights to very fine areas for a natural look.

5. Full-On Red Hair

Ginger woman in green dress poses on pink background. Red-haired curly lady in stylish velvet outfit looking into camera..; Shutterstock ID 1689022870; purchase_order:

Go for it! Take the plunge and change your entire hair color. Before you do, though, play around with swatches, a wig, or clip-ins to see which shade of auburn is best for you and your skin tone. Darker skin tends to have red undertones in its hair, so you want to use this as your guide. However, this isn’t always the case. Opt for a lighter auburn brown hair color if you have dark brown hair. On black hair, try auburn reds with burgundy undertones.

6. Red Hair with Dark Roots.

Loving the ombre look but long for something that will continue to look great as your roots grow out? Then you can try this red hair look with a dark root that fades into a light hue over time. Another great way to protect your hair overtime is with Suave Vivid Color Shampoo

7. Red Hair with Boho-Chic Waves

boho chic waves
Portrait of woman with long curly beautiful ginger hair.

Bring gorgeous beach waves to your look with these boho waves paired with red hair. Create extra texture  and volume with this look with Suave Root Lifting Volume Boosting Spray

8. Auburn Hair with Pink Highlights


Have some fun with pink highlights on red hair! We love these gorgeous dip-dyed pink ends on red hair. This is a fun look for all of summer’s hottest events, such as music festivals, picnics, and more, and is bound to look great when against dark or light clothing!

Will you be trying red hair or auburn hair soon? Share your look with us by tagging us @AllThingsHairUS. Also, for more hair color inspo,  subscribe to our newsletter below.

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