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Have you ever looked at your jet black hair and sighed to yourself over your inability to hop on board the highlight train? Well, believe it or not, this hair brightening technique isn’t solely reserved for sun-kissed brunettes and natural-looking blondes. That’s right—if you’ve convinced yourself you (and your hair) aren’t cut out for highlights, it’s time to revisit the idea. Whether you want to add depth or simply perk up your hair color without diving into a full-on dye job, highlights are the perfect solution to switch up your look. Ready to get in on the multi-tonal fun? Here are some gorgeous highlight hues to consider if you have black hair, along with tips for caring for color-treated hair.
Looking for natural-looking highlighted strands? Or are bright pops of color more your bag? There are a myriad of highlight options for you to choose from if you have dark hair. Keep in mind since that adding highlights to black hair can be quite a dramatic hair color change, your best is to visit a professional colorist, as this may require bleaching and multiple sessions to achieve your desired hair color.
For added spice…try red highlights. Although it’s one of the rarest natural hair colors in the world, red is easily one of the most popularly requested shades in salons everywhere. When it comes to incorporating red highlights into black hair, look for a colorist who specializes in the balayage technique to subtly brush on bright pops of color. This technique not only looks less chunky than traditional highlights but it’s super-low maintenance, too. Which shade of red will complement you best? The trick to rocking red is to find the perfect shade to match your skin tone. Typically, if you have fair skin, a bright orange-red or auburn will look the most stunning, whereas medium skin tones look best with copper and golden reds and a dark skin tones look beautiful with blue-red tones.
For an edgy look…try platinum highlights. Looking to embrace your inner grunge? Platinum blonde highlights will do the trick. Together your platinum highlights and black tresses will provide high contrast street chic style that will turn heads wherever you go.
For natural-looking hair…try chocolate brown highlights. Ever wished you could rock sun-kissed hair like your brunette BFF? Good news: You can! The trick to achieving this summery look on black tresses is to opt for chocolate tones that will most closely resemble the way the sun would naturally lighten dark hair. Of course, you can go lighter on the brown spectrum—but keep in mind that the more contrasting the color combo, the less natural it will look.
For trendy sophistication…try burgundy or navy highlights. Based on recent runway shows, it’s becoming clear that burgundy and navy are having a serious moment. As the year’s hottest colors, you better believe they look amazing when incorporated into black hair.
Whether you’ve opted to highlight your hair at home or visit a professional colorist, one thing’s for certain: It’s important to take care of your color-treated hair to help preserve the life of your color and keep your hair looking and feeling its best. So, keep the following in mind when it comes to your hair care routine!
1. Switch to products for colored hair. Use a shampoo and conditioner combo that’s sulfate-free and safe for color-treated hair, like the L’Oréal Paris Hair EverPure Moisture Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris EverPure Moisture Conditioner, which gently cleanse and replenish moisture without stripping hair. Once a week, swap out the conditioner for a hair mask, like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Intense Repair Hair Sheet Mask. Apply the hair mask after shampooing and leave it on for five minutes, then remove and rinse.
2. Shower in lukewarm water. It’s time to kiss long, hot showers goodbye! Piping hot water can strip your hair of moisture and leave it dry. Turn the temps down to keep your hair happy.
3. Prep your strands before you use a heat tool. Oftentimes, colored hair can feel dry, and using a heat tool like a blow-dryer, curling wand, or flat iron can add to that. If you’re going to heat style your strands, be sure to use a heat protectant first. Try the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle SLEEK IT Iron Straight Heatspray beforehand.
4. Air dry your hair. An alternative to heat styling is air drying. Embrace your natural texture and show off effortlessly tousled waves. Spritz a wave spray, like the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle AIR DRY IT Wave Swept Spray onto towel-dried hair, then braid your hair. Once it’s dry, undo the braid for pretty, loose waves!
Next: Highlighting 101: How to Master At-Home Hair Brightening.