Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Though blond is a dynamite color for highlights, it’s not your only color option. Highlights lighten the hair in streaks — whether they’re punky and chunky or subtly blended. Because stylists use permanent color or peroxide to create highlights, it’s no wonder they’re usually associated with blondness. But if you’re sporting a mane of red, brown or black tresses, guess what? Your highlights can be any shade, as long as they’re lighter than your base color.
When They’re Not Highlights
Lowlights, the opposite of highlights, darken sections of your hair with permanent, demi- or semi-permanent color (there’s barely any peroxide in nonpermanent dyes, so if you’re looking for a ‘do that’s gentler to your hair, opt for lowlights). Lowlights are perfect for covering up your hair when you’ve over-highlighted it, but they’re also a great way to change your hair color subtly without going too dark. You’ll need a root touchup every three months to keep your lowlights looking natural and blended.
Highlights for Redheads
If your hair’s a light shade of ginger, you’ll look best in honey blond or golden blond highlights. However, ladies with auburn or burgundy hair don’t need to take the blond route to lighten things up. Instead, ask for red highlights that are just a shade or two lighter than their base color. This will add some dimension to your red tresses without taking away that glorious shade that makes you so unique.
Highlights for Brunettes
Check out your skin: If it has a golden tint to it, you probably have warm skin tones. Brown-eyed brunettes are also typically warm-toned. If your skin is reddish or bluish, on the other hand, you have cool skin tones. For warm-skinned brunettes, warm highlights in shades of copper and caramel will flatter your skin. For cool skin (we’re looking at you, blue-eyed and green-eyed ladies) try cinnamon red, cool ash or other shades with red or blue undertones.
Highlights for Black Hair
If you have dark skin to match your dark hair, chances are you’ll look best with warm-colored highlights. Try golden brown, warm chocolate or other shades that connote yellow and gold tones. If you have very pale skin, odds are you’re cool-toned, so avoid highlights containing orange and opt for ashier shades of blue and vibrant red. Feeling like a trendsetter? Try a wild shade to add some dimension to dull, black hair. For warm skin, sport streaks in tangerine or yellow-green; for cool skin, try rose red, electric blue or violet.