60 Hairstyles Featuring Dark Brown Hair with Highlights

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#30: Subtle Shine

Subtle Shine

Instagram / @richiemiao

You can make highlights as heavy or light as you want. While most people use them to change the overall color, they can also work as subtle accents. A few slithers of color will define curly styles and really show through with movement.

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Single-tone locks don’t surprise anyone today. Highlights, ombre and color blocks are another story. They refresh and update your hair color and add depth and texture to your hairstyle, endowing your dark brown hair with a sexy, glamorous flair. Playing with hair hues is fun if you trust the job to a professional. However, when you come to a beauty salon, a stylist is going to ask what you’d actually like. This article will help you decide!

How to Highlight Your Dark Brown Hair?

First of all, you need to decide which effect you’d like to achieve. Some ladies opt for subtle ombre or highlights which add radiant glints to the basic hair color, looking very natural. Others prefer more distinct transitions of color or separate color sections, making any haircut edgier and more prominent.

Dark hair can benefit from color accents of contrasting hues, such as platinum blonde, deep red, copper, purple or lighter nuances, like caramel, walnut, bronze, toffee, etc. It’s also very important to choose the hues that will be in harmony with your skin tone. Bronze, copper and rich reds will make darker skin tones bloom and glow. Medium-toned skin will benefit from intense browns, coppers and toffee. Fair-skinned beauties can use blondes, platinum, ash tones and lighter caramel hues.

View the photos below. We have tried to collect very versatile looks, featuring various 2023 dye trends.

#1: Light Brown Balayage for Brunette Hair

Dark Brown Lob With Caramel Highlights

Instagram / @thechemicalqueen

A light brown balayage for dark hair gives off a beautiful gradient effect. Highlights are applied in such a way that makes your dark locks look authentically kissed by the sun. As well as being subtle and understated, the balayage is easy to maintain compared to other highlighting techniques.

#2: Brown Balayage for Black Hair

If you have long black hair, think about adding some highlights to give it lots of texture and emphasize your beautiful layered mane. Also, for a glossier and more glamorous look, you can use a conical iron to create those beautiful curls.

#3: Black Hair with Bronze Highlights

A layered haircut will add dimension to your waves, and if you also choose some delicate highlights for dark brown hair, you’ll end up with a sophisticated hairstyle, gorgeous whether your hair is up or down. I mean look at it! It has texture, body, and perfectly blended colors. A layered haircut with choppy ends is also a good thing if you want this look.

Choppy Layered Dark Brown Hair With Highlights

Instagram / @sadieface

#4: Steel Grey Highlights

It’s not just for your grandparents anymore! Dying your hair gray has become a popular trend – especially among younger demographics – but to test the waters, soft gray or light blue chunky highlights are a great way to try a new hair color without truly committing to a different shade.

#5: Chocolate Hair with Golden Brown Highlights

That beautiful golden shade in your dark brown hair will make you look like you are spending your whole day at the beach without a care in the world.

Long Dark Brown Hair With Golden Balayage

Instagram / @hairbykimtran

#6: Sun-Kissed Balayage for Brunettes

Blonde highlights can totally transform your hair. Go from a simple dull appearance to glamorous hair that won’t go without a compliment. The balayage effect is irreplaceable if you want that precious summer shine in your hair.

Blonde Balayage Highlights For Brunettes

Instagram / @jennabessihair

#7: Chocolate and Caramel Balayage

Brown hair with highlights is like a blessing for a girl who wants to draw attention to the rich beauty of her brunette hair. The balayage technique is not easy to create but it’s worth the price and effort.

#8: Delicate Ash Brown Highlights for Brunette Hair

If you just want a touch of glamour, subtle highlights are a must try, regardless of the season. They will add a beautiful glaze to your hairstyle, and you’ll love it.

Brunette Hair With Subtle Highlights

Instagram / @erinl.lambert

#9: Cool-Toned Brown Balayage

Keep your roots natural and mix them with a dark bronde balayage. Your brunette hair will be brightened in a sophisticated way.

Brunette Hair With Bronde Balayage

Instagram / @createdbyami

#10: Honey Blonde Highlights on Dark Hair

If you want to go lighter, consider making over your dark brown hair with blonde highlights. It produces a stylish and brilliant contrast, no matter what your skin tone is. Ask your colorist to choose the right shade to emphasize your appearance and make it catchier!

Dark Brown Hair with Golden Highlights

Instagram / @kainandecanine

#11: Dark Brown Mane with Caramel Balayage

Dark brown hair with highlights is undeniably striking in the form of caramel balayage. Here, the changeover is natural, but still appears seriously stylish. Dark pieces have also been left on the bottom for enhanced dimension.

Caramel Highlights For Brown Hair

Instagram / @sadieface

#12: Caramel Highlights for Dark Brown Strands

Caramel balayage on brunette hair looks stunning! To achieve this look, you need to create a smooth transition from dark brown to soft caramel highlights. Add soft waves to your hairdo to make this look more elegant and sophisticated.

Cute Face-Framing Brown Highlights

Instagram / @linsonhair

#13: Dimensional Golden Brown Highlights

One of the greatest ideas for revamping brown hair at any time of the year is embracing dimensional golden brown highlights. Lightening the ends of layers creates a fun and warm aesthetic that dazzles whether you wear your mane straight or wavy.

#14: Curly Locks with Golden Highlights

Golden highlights will look gorgeous on any hair color, from caramel brown to dark brunette. Ask your hairstylist to lighten strands here and there and create beautiful loose waves for this incredible change!

Almond Brown Balayage Hair

Instagram / @hairbyoguz

#15: Dark Chocolate Bob with Babylights

If you love your dark brown hair and just want to jazz it up a bit, create some cool curls with a straightening iron and add a sprinkling of babylights. These brown hair highlights can certainly redefine your look.

Brown Hair Highlights For Long Bob

Instagram / @jillainhair_mua

#16: Dark Brown Hair with Babylights

If you want to freshen your look without covering up your brown hair too much, try some gorgeous caramel babylights. These subtle highlights will add a bit of warmth, lightness, and dimension to your dark chocolate base.

#17: Silky and Smooth Dark Brown Hair

Minimalistic light brown highlights are a great way to frame your face. These are perfect if you have a round or heart-shaped face, and also if you’d prefer copper or honey-colored highlights. A contrasting color will overpower this style, so keep it simple for a chic look.

Silky and Smooth Dark Brown Hair

Instagram / @laurakay.hair

#18: Black Lob with Thin Caramel Highlights

Highlights on dark hair can transform any dull strands into an elegant cool diva girl look. Your locks will have shine and gloss and you’ll feel amazing! After all, isn’t that what we all want after a look transformation?

Caramel Highlights On Dark Hair

Instagram / @hair2dyeforu

#19: Subtle and Soft Highlights

Not all highlights have to be bright! For a beginner’s experience, those with dark brown or black hair can go for a softer, less edgy look by picking a shade that is slightly lighter than their natural color. This is best if you’re looking to try highlights for the first time and are nervous about how they will turn out.

Subtle Brown Balayage Hair

Instagram / @styledbycarolyn

#20: Chocolate Copper Balayage for Black Hair

Copper hair highlights on black hair always create a stunning visual due to the energy and richness of both hues. If you want the copper color to stand out and do the talking, request that your hairdresser takes the highlights up to your roots.

Black Hair With Chocolate Highlights

Instagram / @mbiaggi

#21: Warm Brown Balayage

Your deep natural hair hue will sparkle with a new life if it’s accentuated with highlights one or two tones lighter than your natural hair color. This style will ideally work for ladies with warm skin tones.

#22: Shaggy Dark Bob with Subtle Partial Highlights

You don’t always need dramatic colors or wide highlights. This is one of those cases when simple is best. You can get that look with light brown highlights done in a subtle way.

Brunette Lob With Light Brown Highlights

Instagram / @erin_mckay

#23: Dark Brown Highlighted Layers

Layered brown hair looks voluminous on its own. But if you want to bring even more dimension to your mane, add face-framing highlights that are a few shades lighter than your natural hue. This is a perfect match for girls and women with fine hair.

Soft Money Pieces for Brunettes

Instagram / @linsonhair

#24: Rich Chocolate Hair with Copper Highlights

Cooper is a marvelous color that totally transforms your hair when mixed with a darker base shade. Some loose curls can help you better define your highlights, and why not do that when they look so pretty and glamorous?

Dark Hair With Copper Highlights

Instagram / @cristenkelso

#25: Luminescent Highlights

Let there be light in your hair! This mix of colors is radiant and it shines as if it was glitter in the hair. You certainly need this hairstyle if you have long brown hair. And if you want your locks to be eye-popping with caramel highlights.

Long Brown Hair With Caramel Highlights

Instagram / @hair_by_bailey_

#26: Roasted Almond Highlights

The brown hair with highlights resembling the color of almonds creates a differentiated and appealing aesthetic. The other way around, almond hair with brown lowlights, is just as unique and alluring. Whichever combo you prefer, take the contrasting color right up to the roots to develop a cute balayage effect as your hair grows longer.

#27: Partial Matte Copper Balayage

If you want to add interest to your mane while keeping it low-key, you can opt for partial highlights. This is where highlights are only applied to specific sections of your hair. Here, streaks have been painted on around the face for a brightening effect, and also to frame it. The result is a matte, minimalistic look.

#28: Subtle Golden Brown Highlights for Black Hair

If you love your dark hair and want to keep it natural, you may add some highlights just at the bottom. Make some curls for the highlighted area, and you’ll look like you have been selected for a shampoo commercial. One of the best things that happen when you choose a hairstyle like this is that darker colors reflect light, and your hair looks its best all the time.

Long Dark Hair With Brown Highlights

Instagram / @thehairstandard

#29: Chocolate Brown Hair with Highlights

These chocolate wavy locks look extremely voluminous, thanks to light chocolate highlights concentrated towards the front. This style will look particularly stunning on women with warm-toned dark brown hair and warm skin tones.

Brown Hair with Soft Blended Highlights

Instagram / @jhonyveiga

#30: Subtle Shine

You can make highlights as heavy or light as you want. While most people use them to change the overall color, they can also work as subtle accents. A few slithers of color will define curly styles and really show through with movement.

Subtle Shine

Instagram / @richiemiao

#31: Chestnut Highlights on Dark Brunette Hair

Natural dark brown hair color looks amazing, but if you experiment with shades a bit and add some highlights to your style, it may look even more eye-catching! Curl your locks using a volumizing product and a curling iron or a wand.

Matte Midshaft Highlights and Lowlights

Instagram / @hairbyedwin

#32: Subtle Shine-Boosting Brunette Highlights

If you need to make your hair look more outstanding, some subtle highlights can help you get what you want. Also, loose ringlets are every girl’s best friend when it comes to adding texture.

Subtle Highlights For Long Brunette Hair

Instagram / @styledbycarolyn

#33: Ash Brown Balayage with Dark Roots

Soft brown highlights are meant for all those brunettes out there who want to look effortlessly chic. Some curls will always come in handy but they’re not a must as long as your balayage is perfect.

#34: Barely There Brown Highlights

Some highlights are so delicate that when you see them, you think they’re natural. If you want to try highlights but are worried about how they will come out, make them subtle and place those lighter streaks sporadically. The look is really simple, but it seems effortless and optimal for a natural fashionista.

Almost Black Hair with Subtle Highlights

Instagram / @hailtothehair

#35: Babylights and Partial Highlights for Dark Hair

Dip into coloring your locks by trying out both partial highlights and babylights. If you incorporate them throughout your whole mane, they will easily brighten up your natural hair color, as well as accentuate your facial features.

Caramel Balayage With Black Roots

Instagram / @aaashleee

#36: Delicious Chocolate Brown Highlights

Medium-length chocolate hair can be given an instant style update with light brown highlights. This color combination looks great at any length, but wear it wavy to obtain the full effect.

#37: Very Dark Hair with Feathery Highlights

This extra long dark brown hair with highlights is dreamy! Split your hair in the middle, add some flowy waves, and you’ll walk like you have no cares in the world. You will never get enough of this mesmerizing look. All eyes will be on you!

Long Dark Brown Hair With Highlights

Instagram / @tiarachel91

#38: Sun-Kissed Dark Brown Locks

Alright, we admit – you don’t usually think of chestnut hair as being “sun-kissed,” but the bronde application makes this gorgeous hairstyle completely natural. These golden highlights are low maintenance and don’t require a lot of upkeep, making this solution perfect for a girl on the go.

Brunette Hair with Partial Blonde Highlights

Instagram / @jeffersonbolina

#39: Cinnamon Swirl for Black Hair

The “cinnamon swirl” effect is hair and dessert goals in one. It refers to tresses that have a non-blended mix of light and dark shades throughout the locks to create variance. With this version, the black base hue serves as the Danish pastry and the light brown highlights replicate the cinnamon filling. Delicious!

#40: Bright Blonde Highlights on Dark Brown Base

Check out how this dark brown hair benefits from blonde highlighting, strategically placed around the face. With such trendy, bold highlights, your natural hue will shine with new colors. Style your locks to the side to create extra volume on top.

Metallic Brightening Blonde Highlights

Instagram / @hairbyydani

#41: Brown Hair with Subtle Milk Chocolate Highlights

These highlights look completely natural! Perfect for any time of the year, milk chocolate coloring makes you look as if you haven’t set foot into a salon. Because these highlights are so understated, you can take this dye job straight from the boardroom to the after-work happy hour. It’s a look that’s as versatile as you are!

Brown Hair with Subtle Milk Chocolate Highlights

Instagram / @jhonyveiga

#42: Dark Chocolate Locks with Brown Balayage

This option has a special place among all the highlights ideas, as it helps to create a passionate and vivid look that turns heads… Another great thing about this coloring is that having your roots untouched, you get a low-maintenance style.

Mocha Hair with Strawberry Ends

Instagram / @keziasimoes

#43: Natural Striped Highlights

Though this initially looks like simple blonde highlights, a closer look shows that they are actually expertly blended with the light chocolate ribbons. This ombre effect is a boho chic look that will make you stand out from the crowd. Who doesn’t love having glimmering dark brown hair with blonde highlights?

Blonde Ombre Balayage For Dark Brown Hair

Instagram / @southmarksouth

#44: Glossy Dark Brown Hair with Ribbon Highlights

Don’t be afraid to experiment with hair dyeing techniques to personalize your style! Opt for something catchy and sassy, just like these magnificent chocolate balayage ribboning. Dilute your dark brown hair color with lighter strands to add dimension and texture to your mane.

Thick Chocolate Hair with Highlighted Ends

Instagram / @desanchez.ss

#45: Dark Brown Hair with Barely There Highlights

Dark brown hair with barely there highlights might be underemphasized, but it’s still bewitching, especially when the hair is worn down with beachy waves. Enhance the fullness of locks even more using a texture paste or gel and then wait for the complements to roll in.

Dark Brown Hair with Barely There Highlights

Instagram / @sonderhairstudio

#46: Radiant Caramel Brown Streaks

Streaks are different from highlights in the sense that the colored strands are larger and much more prominent. Even though there’s a natural finish, streaks can appear extremely intense when hair is worn straight. To create these beachy waves, scrunch your long tresses when wet and apply some volumizing mousse for a fun, mermaid look.

Long Brown Hair With Caramel Highlights

Instagram / @live_love_dohair

#47: Stretched Golden Brown Highlights for Straight Hair

Stretched highlights are the lazy girl’s version of hair coloring. It means that there’s no obvious or heavy regrowth line, even months later, as this example shows. When you wear your tresses straight, the color appears blended and natural.

Angled Bob With Partial Highlights

Instagram / @headrushdesigns

#48: Subtle Dimensional Highlights for Brown Hair

If you’re searching for brunette highlights that are soft, but still create depth, then look no further. Dimensional highlights for brown hair are thin enough to stay subtle, but numerous and noticeable for all the right reasons.

Brown Lob With Subtle Highlights

Instagram / @beth_at_thebhc

#49: Glossy Bronze Highlights for Brunettes

The light bronze hue of these highlights on brunette hair has been applied to look effortless and seamless in transition. Curling your tresses with a curling iron showcases the balayage coloring the best, and you can finish off your hairdo with a spritz of shine spray for added gloss.

Dark Brown Hair With Chunky Golden Highlights

Instagram / @paintedandstyled

#50: Ash Brown Balayage Ombre

Ombre hair is just as popular as balayage, so why not incorporate a two-in-one style through balayage ombre highlights. In this example, there is the same gradient effect that you get with both techniques, but there are blocks of color going from dark to light and no dark pieces left underneath. Balayage ombre is best shown if you wear your tresses mussed up or with a natural tousle.

Ash Brown Balayage Ombre

Instagram / @judy.mai.hair

#51: Caramel and Burgundy Balayage

Be bold and create a mesmerizing color by blending caramel and burgundy shades. Come out of the box and be yourself! If blue or green is your eye color, this hairstyle is a total MUST.

Caramel And Burgundy Hair Color

Instagram / @sarahzstylz

#52: Delicate Chestnut Balayage

If you’re new to highlighting your tresses and want to give it a try, consider refreshing your dark brown hair with light brown highlights. This chestnut balayage is ideal for beginners thanks to its soft-looking and delicate nature.

Subtle Caramel Highlights For Dark Hair

Instagram / @coloredbycaitlin

#53: Extra Long Hair with Toffee Highlights

A vibrant brown hair color with highlights, the dark brown and toffee combination, will undoubtedly look fabulous all year round. If your hair is extra long, you can request that your hairdresser implements an increased number of highlights to give off a bold, modern impression.

#54: Golden Brown Balayage

If your hair is really dark, it’s best to lighten your strands over a course of several appointments. The reality is, even with bleach, it will take a while for the desired color to be achieved because deep hair tends to lift to an unflattering brassy shade. You will need to tone or cover it with an ash dye after.

Black Hair With Caramel Highlights

Instagram / @constancerobbins

#55: High Contrast Caramel Blonde Balayage

The caramel blonde hue in this balayage example is a stark contrast to the model’s natural dark hair color. The gradual transition from the roots to the end is subtle enough that it doesn’t look too harsh or overpowering, but it still makes the maximum amount of impact.

High Contrast Caramel Blonde Balayage

Instagram / @jenghair

#56: Dark and White Chocolate

If you do not shy away from bold solutions, a high degree of contrast in hair hues, like these dark brown highlights, can look very fresh and eye-catching.

dark brown hair with blond highlights

Instagram / @american_salon

#57: Gorgeous Milk Chocolate and Copper Balayage

A coloring that suits every complexion, milk chocolate tresses with glimpses of copper and dark roots is an elegant and classy combination all year round. Simply curl your hair with a curling iron and run your fingers through it with a smoothing balm for a polished, glamorous appearance.

Long Caramel Balayage Hair

Instagram / @hairbyparris

#58: Medium Layered Cut

Brown is not the typical shade of choice as highlights for black hair, because it may not show up. It is not a bright color, but it will provide sun-kissed vibrancy and dimension in deeply saturated strands. This style is ideal for women who want a low-key hairdo that is stylish enough to transition into a variety of different settings.

Mid-Length Layered Haircut For Thick Hair

Instagram / @mina_huynhchi

#59: Subtle Blonde Highlights and Money Pieces

If you’ve decided to go for a style change with a low-maintenance approach, we suggest choosing something like these money piece highlights. While focusing around the face, you can be sure you picked the style that has maximum impact.

Brunette Hair with Matte Blonde Highlights

Instagram / @jeffersonbolina

#60: Soft Warm Brown Balayage for Black Hair

You can instantly add warmth and intrigue to dark hair with highlights. Dyeing your black hair is ideal whenever you fancy a change, but don’t want to commit long-term. The result is a soft, matte color that looks dreamy and distinctive.

Light Brown Balayage

Instagram / @hairbykacie1

All celebrities are actively using highlights and ombre to present their breathtaking hairstyles on the red carpet and big events. Follow their best examples, borrowing the ideas you like and creating your own individual style.