All About Ombré Hair

From celebs to runways, fashion magazines to editorial campaigns, ombré hair is everywhere. Starting as a simple trend, the past few years have proven that ombré is here to stay. Growing in popularity– especially during the sunny seasons – this gradually-fading highlight style has been spotted on nearly every starlet and pop star in the business. The look evokes a carefree, beachy feel, emulating the way hair might grow out as it’s naturally bleached by the sun.

Ombré hair styles can range from extremely subtle, as seen on quintessential California girls like Lauren Conrad and Cameron Diaz, to bolder, edgier styles with more extreme grow-out, favored by Drew Barrymore and Rachel Bilson. Those seeking the most understated look can opt for just a few pieces of brightness at the ends, the look favored by Jessica Biel.

Ombré coloring is created using balayage, free-form application or foiling techniques, with stylists focusing on the midshafts and ends of the hair. If your hair color is very light, and darkening at the roots (or grey coverage) is necessary, stylists will begin with an application of color at the roots through the first two to three inches of hair before highlighting.

The best part about this look is that it works on any hair type, from stick-straight to exceptionally curly; and color palettes include gradients from dark to brilliant blonde, brunette to rich caramel, deep red to strawberry blonde and even fun candy colors like pink and blue. Since the placement of highlights can be personalized, you and your stylist can create a look to reflect your unique style preferences.

The upkeep for ombré style is another plus, as grow-out at the top is part of the look, you can go anywhere from two to four months between touchups, which will address new growth and reposition highlight placement. The more frequently you get haircuts, the shorter the time between touchups as the ombré effect gets cut off.

If you’re thinking of getting an ombré treatment, it’s important to bring some examples of the look you’re shooting for. So create a Pinterest board, clip some magazine pics or snap a shot of a fashionable friend who’s already taken the ombré plunge. Your stylist will be able to walk you through your options and help select shades to best accentuate your natural coloring. You’ll also be able to collaborate on the placement of highlights and get advice on the best cut to accentuate your chosen style. Be a little adventurous with your style and you’re sure to leave with a look that’s all your own.