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Highlights Arn’t Just Blonde

Highlighting hair is lightening sections beyond the base color. You may associate highlights with blonde, but highlights can be any color if they are lighter in contrast to the surrounding hair. You can have warm black hair with subtle dimensional highlights only one shade lighter.

Lowlights Are Darker Than Your Base

Lowlights and highlights go hand and hand. Lowlights produce extra depth and can bring back dimension lost during highlighting. Sometimes they can lighten your overall color too much and lack depth. Lowlights can restore contrast.

Full Vs Partial

Full ones include lightened sections all over from the top of your head to the nape of your neck. This method can produce heavy and dramatic highlights or soft and subtle looks too.

There Are Also Partial Highlights

Whereas full are your full head, partial highlights are half your head, typically applied to the top half and sometimes sides. Partial ones are less expensive and time intensive. Often, partial highlights are used to create sunkissed-highlights and frame your face.

What are lowlights?

“Lowlights are when you are adding depth into the hair using a darker hair color shade,” says Lee. Lee recommends lowlights for anyone looking to make their hair darker. While the endgame of highlights is to make hair look lighter overall, lowlights darken your hair color’s overall appearance while adding texture and depth to your hair color shade.

Much like highlights, lowlights can also be applied at home once you settle on the highlight color that complements your current hair color and your desired intended hair highlight effect.

What Color Highlights Should I Get?

Since your natural hair color will peek through no matter which highlight style you choose, it’s important to choose the right highlight color. According to Lee, there are no specific pros or cons for each style — it’s simply a matter of choosing the right technique for the look you’d like to achieve. “You should be versed on these terms to help determine the exact look you’re going for,” she says. “If you would like to go lighter, the recommendation is to do highlighting or babylights. If you are thinking about going darker, you want to build dimension in the hair by going with lowlights.”

When it comes to choosing a highlight color, Lee’s strategy starts with the eyes. She recommends you match your highlight color to the tone of your eye color. If you have cool eyes, choose a cool toned highlight shade that will complement your hair naturally. “I have blue eyes, so platinum highlights work well on my hair,” says Lee. If your eyes are gray, green, or even brown with lighter flecks of color, blonde highlights are a good choice for you. Dark brown or intense green eyes may hint that brown highlights will look more flattering.


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