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Who says brown hair has to be boing? Contrary to what you might think, blondes and redheads aren’t the only ones who a variety of shades to play with when it comes to coloring their hair. From warm chestnut to a dark chocolate and everything in between, there are a ton of shades you can choose from for gorgeous brown hair that’s anything but blah. Whether you’re thinking of dyeing your hair brown or looking for a way to revamp your already brunette strands, here are the best shades of brown you need to try.
Who says brown hair has to look mousey? If you never want to hear the phrase “Plain Jane” again, warm chestnut is the hue for you. This shade of brown has a nice earthy tone that can add warmth to your face. Chestnut has red and gold undertones and is perfect for those looking to add a golden shimmer to their locks.
Dark chocolate is delicious, and we have to admit that it looks stunning on hair! If you’re thinking of taking the plunge and going for a deep brown color, then why not give this dark hue a try? Dark chocolate looks great on those with light eye colors because it creates a stunning contrast between the two.
Take a little bit of inspiration from things around you—in this case, your coffee. There’s nothing better than a warm cup of java on a cold winter day. Let your mocha latte be your guide and choosing a hair color that matches your favorite warm beverage. This rich brown shade has reddish undertones that suit all skin tones.
Burgundy is one of the best ways to make a striking statement with your hair color. It has a sort of purple tinge to it and is a fun way to make your brown hair pop in the light. If your hair is naturally brown, adding a burgundy tint is an easy way to spice things up.
When it comes to highlights, ombré is always a good idea for brunettes. It gives your hair a ton of contrast from the root to tip (as much as seven shades) and it works with any color. You can go for the traditional look—adding light brown or blonde highlights—or opt for a fun, bright color like teal or pink. Since you’re not dyeing your roots, this look is super low-maintenance and easy to take care of.
Looking for a softer ombré? Go for sombré highlights! This all-over lightening technique is perfect for those who want to avoid the stark contrast that ombré highlights typically produce. If you want sombré highlights, choose a color that is a few shades lighter than your current hair hue. You can go as light as you want—but keep in mind that you’re going for a natural look, so the transition should be gradual.
For the best of both blonde and brown hair, opt for bronde highlights. This is another highlighting technique that requires little to no maintenance—and it also adds a lot of texture to your hair. Your natural brown color peeks out beneath the subtle highlights that are woven into your hair. These highlights are one to two shades lighter than your hair color and are usually placed around your face and other areas that would be naturally lightened by the sun.
Balayage is a highlighting technique that was developed by French hair colorists in the ‘70s. These highlights are created with freehand streaking (i.e. no foils!). Compared to the other brunette highlights, balayage is a little lighter than bronde and it focuses on a more natural progression. The idea behind the technique is for your hair to look like you’ve spent hours in the sun. The highlights are chunkier than bronde and look natural as your hair starts to grow out. From your root to the tip, there should be a color variation of at least two to three different shades.
Depending on the color or technique you choose, you may want to consider visiting a colorist at a salon—especially if the look is a bit more complicated (like balayage or sombré). If you’d prefer to dye your hair a single color (like mocha or chestnut), you may be able to more easily get the look at home. Consider using the L’Oréal Paris Superior Preference, L’Oréal Paris Féria, or L’Oréal Paris Excellence Creme, all of which come in a variety of pretty brown hues.