20 Fabulous Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights Looks to Love

Brunettes have fun, and then some. Brown hair with blonde highlights can be just as head-turning as platinum locks. Blonde streaks in dark hair add contrast and interest without the commitment. Whether you have light brown or dark chocolate brown hair, there’s a pale companion that can liven up even the richest of hues.

Brown hair has many tones and they’re certainly not alike. When you lighten your tresses your hair will go through many levels. Some will flatter you skintone, others will not. Adding blonde to brown hair is best done by a professional using a customized hair coloring technique.

Depending on your maintenance goals and desired look, there’s a brunette-to-blonde hair lightening technique that can add a little (or a lot) of sunshine to your style. Versatility is what makes bleaching brown hair fun and exciting. From heavy blonde highlights on chestnut brown hair to mahogany tresses kissed with copper, blonde can be quite ambitious.

Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights Ideas

Take a look at the following brunette hue ideas and get inspired for an enlightened look. Whoever said brown had to be boring, anyway?

#1: Balayage Blonde Ends

Ombre hair makes wearing roots an acceptable alternative to costly hair coloring appointments. When paired with a texture cut that offers lots of movement and wave, this brunette with blonde ends rocks bed head in the best way.

Balayage Blonde Ends

Instagram / @raylorojohair

#2: Caramel and Cream

Platinum blonde highlights don’t have to go around the whole head. Mix up your color with varied honey shades of blonde tips in the front paired with caramel blonde highlights in the back and you can still reap all the benefits of highlights without the allover commitment.

Caramel and Cream

Instagram / @mikaatbhc

#3: Long Espresso Curls

Get this beach-ready hair color by adding soft caramel balayage highlights mid-shaft on long hair. When painted on using the artful balayage freehand technique, these natural blonde highlights look as if they’ve been kissed by the sun.

#4: Icy Mocha Brown

Ideal for warm complexions, icy mocha and beige highlights are a neutral approach to adding hair highlights for brown hair without unflattering golden or orange tones. Ash blonde highlights flatter medium and olive complexions.

Icy Mocha Brown

Instagram / @stephanie_stylist

#5: Brown Color Melting

Not quite the same as ombre, this color melting technique adds blonde streaks at varied parts of the shaft and the result is random, artistic, and much more natural than a full head of hair highlights for brown hair. This color will grow out beautifully so you can ditch the maintenance.

Brown Color Melting

Instagram / @kellyglassbeauty

#6: Three Shades of Brown

Melting three shades of medium brown together creates warmth and visual interest and the brightness of blonde without a solitary tone. This coloring technique is perfect for anyone who wants to keep their dark brown richness while adding a multitude of hues.

#7: Coffee with Cream

Say goodbye to boring brown and lighten up your tresses with beige highlights for a universally flattering take on blonde.

Coffee with Cream

Instagram / @aaashleee

#8: Ombre Balayage Combo

The perfect answer to indecisiveness? Ombre and balayage brunettes! This hand-painted brunette works beautifully on a medium length cut and instantly adds texture and movement to any style. Bedhead has never looked better.

Ombre Balayage Combo

Instagram / @mane_ivy

#9: Balayage Beach Blonde

Get that California glow. As classic as summer blonde can get, this balayage beach blonde is the perfect way to lighten brown locks so they’ll transition into fall with ease. Hold onto that Indian Summer a little longer with this sexy and sunny style.

Balayage Beach Blonde

Instagram / @salon_58

#10: Root Smudged Locks

Blend the tones to the ends of the hair shaft and you have brunette with blonde streaks that look natural. Ideal for light brown or dark blonde, you can warm up your complexion gradually with lighter accents.

Root Smudged Locks

Instagram / @cee_squard

#11: Bangin’ Blonde Brunette

Talk about cute. Bangs and auburn brown mix eccentrically to create a trendy hair color and style that shows off blonde ends and lots of movement. Whether you rock this golden highlights hue as your beach blonde style or carry it into winter, there’s plenty of interest to make it ideal year-round.

Bangin Blonde Brunette

Instagram / @aaashleee

#12: Painted Brunette Lob

Add some blonde to your lob hairstyle and your mid-length cut will be far from basic. This painted color leaves plenty of room to grow and can be toned to flatter your complexion. Ask your colorist to richen up your brown first for maximum contrast.

Painted Brunette Lob

Instagram / @texasbalayage

#13: Varied Brown Balayage

Check out those roots. Clearly the darkest of all the hues, this color works best if you have the length to play with varied colors. Usually applied freehand, an ombre application is a great way to try out blonde without lightening your crown.

Varied Brown Balayage

Instagram / @aaashleee

#14: Edgy Brunette Blonde

Amp up your haircut with a blonde hue that’s equally chic. These golden highlights are painted on using the artsy balayage technique. Hair painting can define lines of a haircut so be sure to ask your stylist to make your cut pop with unique placement.

#15: Beautiful Babylights

The placement of these highlights keep the contrast minimal and natural. Babylights are finely sectioned so the color result is blended and soft. If you want blonde without looking stark, weave in small highlights for the best effect.

#16: Three Dimensional Cool

Starting with brown roots, this stylish color transitions to golden and pale neutral blonde and the result is stunning and well-blended. Although any hair type can wear highlights, a blended hue like this works best on straight or wavy hair where you’ll see the dimension.

Three Dimensional Cool

Instagram / @cristen_smith

#17: Caramel Vanilla Cream

Can blonde highlights get any sweeter than this? Take your naturally light brown hair to new levels with this dimensional color that perfectly combines warm and cool hues for a natural and wearable tone that will flatter most complexions.

Caramel Vanilla Cream

Instagram / @texasbalayage

#18: Sultry Rich Brunette

This is how pretty long brown hair can get. Add some variation to your cool brunette hue with soft cool highlights at the ends. Ideal for pairing with jumbo waves where you’ll see the varied hues throughout sexy curls.

Sultry Rich Brunette

Instagram / @styledbycarolyn

#19: Dark Beachy Waves

Keep your chocolate brown rich at the top and opt for blonde ends instead. These baby fine balayage applied highlights add lots of impact with little commitment. Come fall you can richen your color all over and say goodbye to your highlights if desired.

Dark Beachy Waves

Instagram / @kristen.lumiere

#20: Pretty Brunette Balayage

Add some lowlights to your brown hair and pair them with baby highlights for a head turning color combination. These sexy waves have the best of both worlds. When in doubt, caramel blonde highlights are a safe bet for all brunettes.

Pretty Brunette Balayage

Instagram / @sadieface

Want to try trendy colors risk-free? Use our Haircolor Changer App before visiting your stylist.