Balayage vs Lowlights vs Highlights

Changing up your hair through dyeing is cool, but there are so many kinds of hair color and highlights techniques out there which use a fraction of the amount of dye typically used, and the results are just as amazing. Here is everything you need to know about Balayage, lowlights, and highlights.


The Technique

Balayage, at first glance, might seem strikingly similar to highlights, but it is an entirely different process. Balayage is not done with foils, rather it’s a random hand painting of streaks all throughout your hair. This gives the hair a more subtle and natural look and it looks beautiful in almost all hair colors and textures.

Balayage is a fairly modern way of bringing color to your hair and making it look like highlights, but better. The colorist will usually bleach your hair first if you’re going for a lighter-colored Balayage on darker hair. Then, the streaks are applied to the hair and the color is allowed to develop. In the end, a toner can also be used to neutralize the brassy tones in your hair, because bleach can definitely make your hair look orange.

On the flip side, a Balayage can also damage your hair, since there is the use of bleach involved. This is why you need to take care of your hair, post-Balayage, and use products that will nourish your hair and condition it from the inside out.

Who Should Go For Balayage?

Balayage is a very versatile hair dyeing technique and it is perfect for people with all kinds of hair colors. There are a lot of options for people who have light, medium, and dark-colored hair. A Balayage is also perfect for women who want to change the way their hair looks, but don’t want anything too drastic.

A Balayage is a great way to dip your toes in the water and get used to your hair being color treated. It is a very subtle way of putting blended highlights in your hair, which doesn’t look dramatic or obvious at all and it’s going to give your hair a natural look, with that bit of change you’re looking for.

Balayage is very forgiving when it comes to what color you want to be the highlight color. You can choose a shade that is a tad bit lighter or darker than your existing hair color and have a beautiful Balayage with it. The more the shades vary, between the highlight and natural color, the more dramatic and prominent the Balayage will look, so you can definitely play around to find the perfect balance for you. Balayage is also long-lasting and you don’t need to maintain it a lot either, which is perfect, especially if you’re just starting out with dyeing your hair.


How Lowlights Are Done?

Lowlights are the exact opposite of highlights, in the sense that the strand color, which is selected, is a few shades darker than your base hair color. Think of lowlights as a reverse of highlights where the colors of the strands and base are swapped and the result is a cascade of dark strands peeking out from your lighter hair.

The technique of lowlights is pretty much the same as highlights. Different sections of your hair are selected and the hair dye is applied directly on the strands then, the strands are secured in foil until the number of lowlights is achieved. The only difference here is that the process of lowlights is much faster than highlights. That’s because there is no use of bleach. Since the base hair color is already light, there is no need to cut down the color with bleach.

The hair dye is applied directly on the hair and foiled up. If the process of highlights takes 2 to 3 hours, then you can be done with lowlights in almost half the time, about an hour or 2 hours max. The illusion lowlights give is thicker and voluminous hair, which is always a good thing. Lowlights tend to add depth to your hair, so it’s a perfect choice for you if your hair tends to look flat most of the time.

Candidates For Lowlights

Lowlights are mostly preferred by women who have naturally lighter and thin hair. Light or blonde hair can look boring at times and you can add dimension and structure to your flat locks, by opting for lowlights. Usually, the color of the section being dyed needs to be 2 to 3 shades darker than your natural hair color.

This is what’s going to make all of the difference and you will see that your hair will stand out more in certain lights and the overall look of your mane will be quite deep and rich. Lowlights are a great way to experiment with different darker hair colors, if you don’t want to commit to getting your entire hair color changed. Lowlights treatment is provided by all hair salons specializing in color Rockville.

Over time, as the lowlights get blended in your hair, the overall appearance of your hair will be a beautiful transition from a light and flat color to something which is rich and has some character to it. Lowlights aren’t just for all the blondes out there. Women with light and medium brown hair can also get darker lowlights in their hair, which looks extremely subtle but beautiful.


Highlights And Their Technique

Last but not least, hair highlights can be achieved on dark and light hair, alike. The main technique behind highlights is the fact that you want to make these strands pop out. This is why the highlight color is usually lighter than your natural hair color. Highlights are meant to make your hair stand out by bringing out the lighter-colored strands.

Highlights also make the hair look less harsh and more softened and give a blurring effect to your overall mane. Once the shade is selected, keeping in mind that it should be 3 to 4 shades lighter than your hair color, it can be applied to sectioned-out strands, which have been bleached beforehand to cut down the color, and then tucked in foil.

In highlights, bleaching your hair is a mandatory step, otherwise, the lighter color won’t show as prominently. This can be damaging to the hair, which is why a lot of people tend to stay away from getting highlights done.

Bring Back The 90s Flair

Highlights were made popular during the 90s, because there was just something about the way the hair looked when the light and dark-colored strands mixed together. Highlights are edgy but they can be made subtle as well.

You can get the chunky and thick highlights, which is routinely sported by Jennifer Aniston, or you can get the muted version of highlights, where the strands are barely there, but still have enough drama in them to make your hair look amazing. It all boils down to your preference and existing hair color.


There you have it! Balayage, lowlights, and highlights may look pretty similar, but the technique and the results are completely different. Now that you know exactly what each of these is, you can decide which one you want to go for before heading to a balayage hair salon Rockville.

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