Balayage hair color is a French technique that is the latest dye trend to gain international popularity. The goal is to create soft, natural-looking highlights that look more modern than traditional coloring methods. Check out our top 70 options in the gallery below.
What is Balayage?
As opposed to standard highlighting methods that use foil or a cap, balayage is strictly freehand where the color is painted on. You can amplify the hue to vary from a soft wash to bright and bold depending on your personal preference. Outside of very short cropped hair, it can work on a variety of hair lengths, textures and colors, making it truly universal and flattering for all women. Most are drawn towards it because the maintenance level is relatively low; many are able to go four months between color treatments.
#1: Multi-Tonal Wavy Brown Bob
Balayage hair color options within brown palette are endless. You can go into reddish (caramel and auburn) tones of brown or try golden shades varying from browns to blondes. In case you would like a more neutral solution, it looks like this: dark brown for the under layer, medium browns washed to the lightest ash hues towards the ends and very light thin ribbons of brown blonde throughout the length here and there.
#2: Dramatic Brunette Balayage for Layered Hair
If you want to wear your hair down, a medium-length layered haircut is the best choice. If it’s bold and choppy, support its spirit with a dramatic balayage job. Graze the ends of the layers with a shade much lighter than your base color. Light caramel brown on black is a pretty good idea.
#3: Brown, Caramel and Blonde Color Mix
Reddish tones of brown are also a very popular solution in balayage. You may start with chocolate brown or dark burgundy as the darkest base color and then pair it with chunky caramel highlights which of course need a sprinkling of blonde to set off the used colors.
#4: Brown Ombre Highlights for Black Hair
This look blends two hair coloring techniques – ombre and balayage to achieve an effect of gorgeous dimensional waves effortlessly cascading down through their natural curves and bends.
#5: Dark Brown Mixed Balayage Color
This mix of browns looks adorable on the shaggy waves. It’s truly an art to compose a blend that is so natural-looking and, at the same time, sophisticated and exquisite. A woman who doesn’t want to reveal the efforts she puts into looking this gorgeous will love the idea.
#6: Delicate Balayage for Medium Length Hair
Most examples of balayage on the Internet feature long hair. But shoulder-length locks also look very beautiful with ombre and with balayage. Brunettes who want to lighten up their hair significantly may go this cute idea with a light brown tone around the face, dark blonde at the ends and a sprinkling of the lightest blonde throughout the length.
#7: Chocolate and Dark Brown Hair Color
It’s not the common streaking. The major benefit of this dye technique is creating dimension in the hair. If you enjoy being a brunette, opt for medium-toned brown balayage hair, remaining on your natural dark brown base. This color will look beautiful on medium length layered haircuts for wavy hair.
#8: Caramel-Toned Layers for Brunettes
Brunette balayage can be also performed with some delicious caramel tones involved. This hair color choice will be particularly flattering for women with warm complexions. The long luscious waves flow like real caramel. This mane is made to drive someone crazy!
#9: Subtle Balayage Highlights for Dark Brown Hair
A modern textured bob worn effortlessly in loose tousled waves always wins from subtle touches of color called to enhance the texture and dimension of your medium length hair when you wear it undone.
#10: Shaggy Blonde Balayage Bob
In the times when solid colors reigned in hair color trends, brunettes had to do frequent root touch ups. Blonde balayage highlights have become a salvation in this relation. Being a blonde and rocking your natural dark underlayer is not a beauty crime anymore.
#11: Face-Framing Balayage Highlights
Sometimes you don’t want additional colors to distract from the beauty of your healthy flowing locks. In this case subtle balayage highlights, a little bit more intense for the face-framing strands, are exactly what is needed. An exquisite compliment, but not an overshadowing attraction.
#12: Long Layered Brown Blonde Hair
Every other girl is crazy about having brown blonde hair these days. Even a new word emerged to name it – “bronde”. The easiest way to achieve a quality brown blonde hair color is with the balayage technique. You locks will shine and flow like a fairy-tale river!
#13: Wavy Cinnamon Style
You don’t always have to accent your brunette hair with light golden tones; sometimes a medium brown hue is just as effective. The upside is that you can filter thicker strips of color throughout your strands and it still won’t overpower your look.
#14: Brown Blonde Balayage Ombre
When you like the idea of lighter ends, but want to wrap it into the most popular today coloring approach, go for balayage ombre. In this particular look the beach waves seem to melt towards the ends – the most relaxed look ever!
#15: Caramel Ribbons in Chocolate Waves
Caramel balayage always looks twice appealing because it’s not only pleasing to the eye, it evokes your gastronomic senses. Caramel and chocolate is the sweetest couple, as is well known. Applying this combo in hair coloring or clothes is definitely a success.
#16: Ash Brown Balayage
This hair color solution suggests washing the color out to the ends with dark brown base peeking through the adorable ash brown waves. It’s a good idea for medium length hair, when you want to go a few tones lighter, but keep the root color.
#17: Caramel Highlights for Brown Hair
Brunette balayage can have as many varieties as you can imagine. If you prefer a natural look of sun-faded locks, caramel and blonde tones are a worthy choice. Those shades can breathe new life into your common choppy bob haircut.
#18: Chocolate Brown with Caramel Highlights
Dark brown hair and balayage highlights complement each other beautifully, as evidenced by this gorgeous hair color choice. With the chocolate brown base diluted with caramel highlights, this is absolutely a fuss-free and flattering look. The undone waves placed throughout also keep this look modern and fresh.
#19: Coffee-Brown Ombre Hair
Compared to caramel, auburn might be a less popular hair color choice for brown balayage, but it’s no less beautiful. If you do not want a hair color that yells: “Look at me!”, but still would like some colorful diversity and interest within your locks, consider this option.
#20: Light Brown Balayage on Dark Hair
With long dark brown hair it’s usually flattering to lighten up the face-framing pieces. These can be either rather thin streaks or relatively large sections with blurred edges like in this example. This solution offers an unobtrusive diversity for the hair you generally like.
#21: Blonde Highlights for Brunettes
Healthy long brown locks are inherently bright and beautiful, but a solid dark color may look a bit monotonous. Balayage hair is the best modern coloristic idea to upgrade your natural hair color with minimal risks of hair damage and low maintenance in mind.
#22: Sweet Caramel Balayage
Tanned skin and tousled waves with sun-kissed highlights are the two main attributes of a sexy surfer look. If it flatters you, wear it regardless of season, experimenting with caramel highlights which pair perfectly with medium chocolate hue.
#23: Beach Blonde Balayage
It’s no secret that blonde hair is always destined to garner a host of attention from admirers all over. This beautiful beach blonde balayage features a perfect mix of medium and light tones that come together to provide the hair with dimension. And still it wouldn’t be considered a true beach blonde look if some nice, flowy waves weren’t placed throughout to create a soft and effortless style.
#24: Light Brown Feathers for Espresso Brown Hair
Using color to define the layers within your new haircut is another popular trick you may use to upgrade your look. In this case you can go for a much lighter shade if you want the result to be distinctly visible. Though subtle touches of a darker shade would work here too.
#25: Brown Blonde Shoulder-Length Balayage
When you combine the colors of brown and blonde, you get a beautiful caramel balayage like the solution seen here. Shoulder-length hair is lightly layered and styled with a chic center part and soft face-framing waves. The final result is modern with just a hint of edge.
#26: Dimensional Hair Color for Brunettes
A balayge hair idea that gives you maximum dimension is often the most requested one. In this case the more pronounced variety of shades is concentated around the face. The blonde highlights disappear towards the ears, and that can be a more interesting solution than the same color pattern all over.
#27: Sun-Kissed Brunette Balayage
Some girls prefer to interfere as less as possible into their natural beauty. If you are a sultry brunette, chances are you love your natural hair color and do not want to change it drastically. Very subtle balayage highlights will only give your locks some added glow. Nobody would ever guess you visited a colorist.
#28: Complex Medium Brown Hair Color
The medium brown blend with smears of dark honey, streaks of flaxen blonde and occasional chocolate ribbons in between provides the complexity of the color that won’t be so easy to duplicate. You are likely to get something similar, but not exactly the same. This balayage solution is particularly flattering for tanned skin.
#29: Brown, Ash Blonde and Platinum Blend
This pretty hair color solution is dazzling, as it reaches the brightest platinum notes at certain points. Brown and blonde blend can give the feeling of warmth or coolness. This is the coolest combination possible.
#30: Delicious Mix of Browns and Blondes
Balayage highlights can be much lighter than your natural hair color and still look very sophisticated thanks to the seamless trasitions of hair hues from dark brown through light chocolate to caramel blonde – the sweetest blend ever.
#31: Warm and Cool Toned Balayage
Pairing warm and cool toned highlights won’t work for everyone, but it’s a beautiful look if you have a neutral skin tone. This concept is perfect when mixing red and ash blonde together because it can cut down on the brightness of that bold combination.
#32: Painted Blonde Highlights
Highlights for dark hair can look great when muted (like a soft brown) or when bright and noticeable (like this blonde version). The trick is to perfectly blend the colors together. These caramel blonde shades create the perfect transition from black hair to light blonde ends.
#33: Gorgeous Caramel Brown Layers
Cinnamon makes for a stunning addition to black hair. The beautiful balayage pieces really help the layers stand out, creating an effortless, feminine style that is modern without appearing too fake. Ask your stylist for highlights that start from the temple and angle backwards to the nape level.
#34: Subtle Waves and Cinnamon Highlights
This pretty, warm shade is gorgeous on dark brown hair. The balayage technique is achieved by strategically painting color on pieces of hair, so it’s no wonder that this coloring method typically results in an artful appearance. This chic, creative look does not disappoint! Cute twists and waves complete the style.
#35: Champagne and Gold Balayage
Balayage hair is the number one trend for highlights. Remember when everyone used to have highlights that were thick at the root? That old-school technique creates noticeable roots and can easily look fake. By gradually incorporating highlights and blending the colors, you’ll achieve a more youthful, natural style.
#36: Thin Balayage Highlights
While balayage highlights do tend to be fairly thick, the coloring also looks great when applied with a lighter hand—especially when the accent color is only a shade or two different from the base color. When the difference in shade levels is big, a subtle balayage technique comes across as dirty (not chic!).
#37: Blonde and Brown Curls
When you’re adding blond to a dark brown base, you have to go for it! This look is not for the faint of heart, because it looks best when the blonde pieces are bright and noticeable. By combining ash blonde, golden, and caramel shades, this version pulls the blend off perfectly.
#38: Subtle Highlights for Dark Brown Hair
For barely-there balayage color, ask your stylist for thin, bendable highlights in a shade or two lighter than your natural color. If you have straight hair, subtle highlights work really well—no need to add curls to make them stand out. Of course, you can always style with waves or curls just for fun!
#39: Caramel Balayage on Medium Length Hair
This soft caramel shade makes for perfect brunette highlights. Worked into the bottom layers of deep espresso hair, the color creates some pretty glints of light. If you want to try blonde balayage (but don’t want anything too crazy) then ask for hidden highlights like these.
#40: Red Base Color with Blonde Balayage
Red and blonde, is that you? We’ve never seen you look quite so glamorous! No joke though—red and blonde is not easy to pull off, but this balayage version is killing it all over the place. If you know you look good with red hair and are feeling daring, this one’s for you.
#41: Modern Wavy Bob
This cool-toned brunette balayage is everything we love about modern hair-coloring techniques. It’s got that right mix of subtle and noticeable. If you have dark hair, this will be a great way to try a brand new hair color with guaranteed-to-be-flattering results.
#42: Espresso with Caramel Blonde Highlights
So pretty! For a trendy balayage look, ask your stylist for thin highlights above the midshaft and thick highlights below. These honey and caramel tones blend so perfectly together—and help tie the dark root and blonde end. To recreate these curls, try a clipless barrel curling iron.
#43: Golden Brown and Blonde Balayage
What makes this balayage style truly stand out? The fact that the base color is not present in the ends. If you want a brighter, lighter look, ask your stylist to color all of your ends (instead of just some). Your base color will only show at the roots and in certain places in the midshaft.
#44: Warm Toned Balayage for Dark Hair
These ribbons of golden blonde make for beautiful balayage on dark hair. Keeping your hair long (and incorporating lots of long layers) is a great way to show off the trendy color. To style waves like these, use extra large hot rollers and then shake or comb through the curls.
#45: Subtle Honey Brown Highlights
Part way between cinnamon and caramel, this hair is all fabulous. It’s a perfect shade for the woman looking to bring out her inner diva. Whether you opt for straight hair, natural curls, or heat-styled waves, it is impossible to go wrong with a color this pretty.
#46: Light Brown Hair with Gray Peekaboos
You know the gray hair trend? Well, it’s extending to peekaboos and balayage. If you want to try out the ashy, smoky look without going all-in, then choose the shade for your new pretty highlights. Together with a warm, soft brown, it makes for a modern color combination.
#47: Cool Toned Balayage Ombre
Looking for a perfect caramel balayage? These pretty caramel waves that fade to ash blonde ends will inspire hair envy everywhere you go. For super bouncy waves, use large hot rollers. Because of the way the rollers are set on the head, you get an instant volume-boost at the root. You can also gently tease your hair at the crown.
#48: Light Brown Base with Golden Ends
This bright color catches the light so prettily. To keep your hair looking this soft and silky, be sure to go in for regular trims and use products with tons of moisture and protecting ingredients. For days when you air-dry, a leave-in conditioner can help offset the damage caused by heat-styling days.
#49: Face-Framing Balayage Waves
If you love your natural hair color but are itching to try something new, then this balayage hair look was made for you. Instead of getting too aggressive with a new painted-on shade, opt for nothing more than face-framing highlights. That way, you’ll bring warmth to your skin with minimal damage and low upkeep.
#50: Cute Flipped Up Waves with Lighter Ends
These little flipped up ends are adorable, especially when paired with face-framing curls. No curling iron needed for this look! To recreate it, simply flip hair up with a medium-barrel round brush while you blow dry. Be sure to curl the brush under instead of out when you’re working on the front pieces around the face.
#51: Dark Brown Choppy Hairstyle with Highlights
Nowadays balayage hair is a must-try look for hair of any color, length and texture. You can personalize the look, picking a unique combination of hues or taking your cue from the styles you like and introducing some personal touches in the way colors are applied. It can be a mix of chunky highlights and babylights, for instance.
#52: Light Brown Babylights for Dark Hair
Some girls prefer chunky highlights, but delicate babylights, definetely, have their special charm. The three-tier color idea pictured here embraces a dark brown base, a light ash brown mid layer and a sprinkling of tiny blonde ribbons – such a cute solution, indeed.
#53: Lightly Textured Balayage Hair
It’s amazing what the right amount of light texture can do for naturally fine hair. This hairstyle is an example of the perfect marriage between fine hair, texture and color. The result is a classy and modern look.
#54: Dark and Wavy Balayage
Here, dark brown locks are left super long and the exquisite brunette balayage begins towards the lower middle section of the hair. The delicate subtle touches of the delicious hue that is only a few tones lighter than the base hue create some sort of mysterious flair that might not turn every head, but it will definitely be noticed and appreciated.
#55: Sun-Kissed Balayage for Brown Hair
Want a look of sun-faded hair? If you have a cool skin tone and blue or gray eyes, go for the cool tones of blonde in balayage. Such highlights will look amazing of medium brown to dark brunette hair.
#56: Dark and Straight Balayage Hair
When your hair color looks this amazing, you don’t need a lot of styling to make it stand out. Here, you have brown balayage that is left to be the star of the show. The only actual styling is a bit of a texturizing product rubbed into the ends for some extra definition and a shaggy feel.
#57: Blonde Balayage for Brunettes
Incorporating blonde balayage highlights for brunettes has never been so easy, smart and beautiful. Well, easy for someone who is experienced, because you’ll need to blend the lightest shades of blonde through muted golden brown strands. Use the lightest shades for face-framing.
#58: Brown to Caramel Ombre with Blonde Balayage
A fade to caramel tones for brunettes is gorgeous but nothing new nowadays. How can you personalize the look you like so much? Go for blonde highlights here and there to frame your mane. It’s going to look particularly amazing if your wear a long V-haircut.
#59: Delicate Blonde Balayage Hair
Medium ash browns and soft flaxen blondes are ideal when you have a long length to stretch the hues for a very delicate and sophisticated hair color solution. Doesn’t it look like your dream hair?
#60: Tousled Tortoiseshell Style
Ecaille, or tortoiseshell hair, is a beautiful mix of golden brown, chestnut tones and honey blonde for a blended brunette balayage. The combination of tones is meant to add warmth to your look. Added bonus: this is the go-to look of Gisele Bundchen, which means it’s great for those looking to tap into their inner Victoria Secret model.
#61: Flaxen Blonde Fade
Long, thick, healthy hair is an excellent base for non-trivial hair color solutions. If you want a fairly natural-looking yet not subtle hair color, you may go for a gorgeous flaxen blonde fade with balayage highlights like in the photo. The darker your natural color is, the more dramatic the final result will be (in case you choose to preserve your natural hue at the roots, of course.)
#62: Natural Chocolate Waves
If you are a conservative woman who wants to add some spice to dull, dark straight hair, this is an ideal style. With just enough color to add depth and dimension, you can slightly enhance your chocolate mane.
#63: Thick and Curly Balayage Locks
If you have thick, curly hair there is a variety of hairstyles and hair color ideas that flatter your tresses flawlessly. This mid-length hair style features a soft balayage application throughout, while the actual styling is understated with a nice amount of undisturbed curls.
#64: Messy Silver to Blonde Hair
Perfect for a girl who likes a messy hair look and enjoys experimenting with hair color ideas, this messy blonde balayage offers the best of both worlds. Featuring a dark blonde on the top gradually transitioning to a light blonde on the ends, this look is completed with super cute shaggy waves.
#65: Auburn and Golden Blonde Balayage
Versatility is one of the strongest advantages of balayage hair color technique. Whatever base color you have or choose, you’ll always be able to pick up a flattering hue to compliment it. The auburn and golden blonde remind us of the last sunny days of Indian summer.
#66: Wavy Brown and Honey Blonde Balayage
Here is a vivid answer to why balayage highlights are so incredibly popular. They offer you a unique multi-tonal effect. Mix the sweetest and the most delicious hues of milk chocolate and honey to come up with your perfect color combo.
#67: Touches of Blonde
With dark hair, balayage works wonders giving the color a nice added boost. The blonde balayage highlights here blend nicely with the deconstructed waves that are pulled apart and finger-combed to create a messy, undone look.
#68: Subtle Balayage for Brown Hair
One of the best ways to test out balayage is to do it in a more subtle manner to determine if you truly like it enough to try a more pronounced effect. This style features an easy way to try out the popular hair color technique. The final look is sleek and polished with just a hint of highlight throughout.
#69: Light Caramel Balayage
There’s a certain tendency to make long hair rather natural-looking and express more drama through shorter hair. That’s not a rule, just a well-grounded solution, in our opinion. This angled bob needed the maximum definition to enhance the texture and show off the layers, and it succeeded thanks to the highly-contrasting two-tone color.
#70: Chocolate Covered Cherries Color Inspiration
Red violet balayage will always be popular with brunettes, because it looks harmonious on dark brown hair and reminds of the loved by many cherry blossom candies. The strokes of color are bold yet light, as if they were created spontaneously in a second.
Balayage hair color can range from white blond to jet black, with varying intensity depending on your preference. With minimal maintenance and maximum impact, this is an ideal coloring technique for any woman.