Foilyage Is Your Next Favorite Hair Color Technique

There are professional hair terms only colorists seem to understand, and foilyage is one of them. Luckily, our stylist friend Samantha Harman wrote this article with all the important details about foilyage technique. Keep reading to know how foils plus balayage can help you get the color you’ve always dreamed about.

What Is Foilyage Hair?

The technique foilyage (or foilayage) comes from combining traditional foils and balayage effect. Traditional foils are done in a pattern throughout the client’s head, resulting in a more consistent look. Balayage is hand-painted highlights, resulting in a more natural, sun-kissed look. However, a lot of times balayage won’t get as blonde as traditional foils. The foilyage method helps give clients the best of both worlds by combining the two techniques. It’s perfect for women who want those lighter blonde pieces throughout their hair while still having a natural, lived-in look.

Foilyage Hair Color Technique

Photos by Samantha Harman

Foilyage Hair Color Technique

The foilyage hair color can be done many different ways. However, there are two ways that I find myself using most in the salon.

The first way I like to foilyage is to go through and foil the entire head and then balayage the pieces that are left out in between foils. When doing this, I try to apply the lightener in a different pattern so the hair will have more of a dimensional look. Using both of these methods helps avoid any type of lines throughout the hair, creating a more natural grow out.

The second way I use the foilyage technique is by painting the lightener onto the hair like a balayage and then wrapping the hair in foils. I do this because open-air balayages can only lift so many levels. Wrapping the hair in foil will produce a more dramatic result because the heat allows the hair to process evenly. This technique is perfect for clients with really dark hair who still want the balayage effect or for someone who wants a really drastic change.

Traditional Foils vs. Foilyage

Traditional foils lighten locks from roots to ends, giving the hair more of a consistent and patterned-based look. Foilyage allows the hair to be softer at the root and lighter on the ends, resulting in a more natural grow out.

If you want an all-over blonde look, I would do foils. If you like more of an effortless look, I would definitely choose foilyage.

Benefits of Foilyage

This method helps give clients the low-maintenance, natural look that they’re wanting. In my opinion, the greatest thing about this method is that there is no foil line, creating a more lived-in look. Some may believe that the only way to create a low-maintenance look is to do a traditional balayage. However, with the foilyage hair color technique, this is no longer the case.

Also, this method is the perfect way for clients who typically get traditional highlights to change things up. Balayage may be too drastic of a change, but this is something that will create a similar look to what the client is used to. Foilyage gives the stylist freedom to customize the color on each client instead of repeating the same foiling pattern every few weeks.

Proper Home Care After Foilyage

Any type of lightening service can cause damage to your hair, so it’s important that the client is using product to ensure that their hair is as healthy as possible before, during, and after the appointment. Here are some of my tips:

Coloring techniques are always changing, and stylists should educate their clients about the differences. While the popularity for balayage has risen, the demand for foiling has decreased. However, I believe, foils are still just as important as ever. A lot of clients cannot achieve the look that they want through balayage alone. The trick is to blend the two!

Follow Samantha on Instagram (@samanthasbeautyconfessions) to read her helpful posts about coloring techniques. Get inspired and try something new when you go for your next hair makeover!