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We all want our hair to stand out. The hair industry itself is vast, encompassing everything from different products to expensive hairstyles to intense dye jobs.
If you are looking for a change, sometimes it can be overwhelming trying to figure out what avenue is best in connection to your personal style.
If you are looking for a way to shake up your hairstyle without changing your cut, highlights are the perfect way to go.
Highlights can add emphasis and depth to different aspects of your hair, no matter your cut or hair texture. There are many different options when it comes to highlights, whether you are using a more subtle color that compliments your hair or bright tones that stand out. Some even use pink and purple hues rather than natural colors. Whatever your choice, highlights are a fun addition to your look.
In particular, blonde highlights make a bold statement. No matter your hair color, blonde highlights have a strong impact and lift your hairstyle to new levels.
Even those who are already blonde can find a striking style that uses blonde highlights. Chunky or blended, bold or subtle, bright or golden, there is a blonde highlight style for everyone.
We have gathered the best highlight inspirations for all hair colors and types. Whatever your personal taste, you will find your ideal look among these styles.
Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
Brown and Blonde Hair Ombre Style
This highlight style plays on the ombre trend, working from a darker brown color at the root to a golden highlight near the ends. The blonde in this look is not as intense, but adds depth. The light catches the brighter color, giving the illusion of extra shine and volume. In this instance, the length of the hair also adds to the overall effectiveness of the highlights.
Chunky Highlights on Darker Hair
If you are looking to put blonde highlights on dark hair, this is a great option. There are different shades of blonde in this look, from the brighter blonde interspersed through the hair to the deeper, almost light brown highlights that are more consistent.
Using different colors in this way gives the hair the appearance of thickness and body, something that many strive to achieve.
Especially if your hair is thinner, highlights can use light to obtain a fuller look.
Dark Hair with Blonde Highlights
For those with darker hair, you might be a bit nervous about getting blonde highlights. Perhaps you are haunted by a horrible image of tiger stripes from the nineties. If that describes you, a blonde highlight look like this would better fit your style. The blonde in this instance is much deeper, and compliments dark hair rather than overpowering it.
Red Hair Highlights
Red hair and blonde highlights are a classic combination, as many redheads naturally have some blonde throughout their hair.
Blonde highlights bring out the best in red hair and make the color seem more vibrant. You might also consider a new trend of rose gold highlights, which plays more on the red tones.
Soft Ombre Brown and Blonde Hair
A perfect example of a softer ombre look, this style shows that the gradation from brown to blonde can be seamless. Some criticize the ombre trend for looking too much like growing out roots, but in this instance the change from the darker to the lighter hair is subtle enough to imply that it might be natural.
Dramatic Blonde Highlights
If you are more daring with your hair, this funky look is just what you are looking for in a hairstyle. Using multiple lighter tones, this style shows that blonde highlights on dark hair can be fun and edgy. There are even some platinum notes in the highlights which are a stark contrast to the much darker roots.
Brunette with Blonde Highlights
Another cool look, this is a more common ombre style with a more obvious shift in the shade of color from root to ends. Especially for someone with long hair, a highlight style like this is effective at making a statement. If you wanted an even more striking look, you could pump the blonde up to platinum for a bigger contrast.
Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
A good example of a subtle look, this style incorporates a strike of blonde with darker highlights for a fun pop of color while still looking natural. This is great if you are just beginning to experiment with dyeing your hair or if you want to play around with your hair but still seem professional. If you are a mom with a teen who is dying for highlights, this would also be a safe option over something more extravagant.
Light Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
Blonde highlights aren’t just for those with darker hair. While blonde highlights on dark hair can look dramatic, you can make just as much of an impact if you have lighter hair. In this case, the highlights give an appearance of being blonde without having to go for a full dye job. The entire style is brightened and lifted up for half the cost.
More Blonde than Not
Another good look for light brown hair, this look goes more blonde than brown. If you are concerned about a clash of a new color with your skin tone, this would be a great way to go. You still have the darker color close to your forehead and face, but the majority of your style is now blonde. A perfect way to try out a new color while minimizing the risks.
Classic Blonde Highlights
When people think of getting a full set of highlights, most likely this image comes to mind. Brown and blonde hair blend together nicely to create a smooth, even look. This style would be easy for any hair salon to replicate.
Before and After Highlights: Dark Hair
On the left, you can see how dark hair can come off as a bit flat. While the hair is clearly healthy and has good body, there is a lack of depth with the sameness of the color.
Once the blonde highlights are added however, the whole style completely changes. The blonde catches the light and increases the complexity of the overall color. The hair even has the illusion of extra shine because of the light reflections. Without even a change in cut or style, the highlights make all the difference in this look.
Dull Brown to Bright Blonde
If you have light brown hair, sometimes it can seem dull or boring, even labeled awful dirty blonde. Light brown hair with blonde highlights, however, can look much brighter. In this case, choosing to go with a white-blonde highlight achieves that goal.
Brunette with Blonde Highlights
A more subtle take on blonde highlights, adding a darker, golden blonde makes the brown have a more chestnut appearance. This highlight style is perfect if you are someone who loves your brown hair and does not want to move to far away from brunette. The blonde in this case makes the brown seem richer and fuller
Brown Hair with Blonde Highlights
Absolutely stunning, this highlight style using different shades of blonde and brown to replicate a natural highlight look. Especially if you have light brown hair, adding highlights in this way lifts your natural color without moving to far away from it. A natural style is also ideal if you want to make a change but need to maintain a professional look.
White Blonde Highlights on Brown Hair
For someone who already has brown hair with blonde highlights, this style would work well. Using the white blonde instead of a more subtle shade makes for a more noticeable change. Especially if you want people to notice the different in your look, white blonde is the perfect way to push the boundaries of your hairstyle.
Before and After Highlights: Light Brown Hair
This is a perfect example of someone who already has brown hair with blonde highlights taking their style to the next level. With the addition of just a few brighter highlights, the whole look of the hair is completely different. Now the hair is overall lighter, brighter, and sophisticated.
Platinum Blonde Highlights
Are you looking to make a statement with your highlight look? Then platinum blonde is the style for you. Going this bright can be a big change, but if done right will give you a dramatic and glamorous look that’s perfect for risk-takers.
Add Shine with Blonde
The blonde highlights in this instance help to add shine and life to the hair. As the light reflects off all the different shades of blonde, the overall style gets a stunning lift. This style is versatile, perfect for a more laid back style as pictured or glamorous up do for a night out.
No Gray Shaming
Gray tones are a hot trend in hair color. If you aren’t quite ready to make the full leap into gray, using white blonde blended highlights can give you the flavor of that style without making the full commitment. If you are afraid of going gray, this would also be a subtle way to cover your gray.
Brown and Blonde Hair
This style shows a blended versus chunky highlight look that is perfect if you want to make a change, but not too big of one. Highlights like these can give the appearance that your hair color is a full shade lighter without the need for a complete color change. A sophisticated style that translates well from daytime at the office to nighttime on the town.
Dark Hair with Blonde Highlights: Short Addition
Blonde highlights make a bold statement in this fabulous short cut. Moving in a wave back from the forehead, the gradation of blonde works well with the texture of the cut. Particularly when dealing with short hair, it’s important that the highlight style isn’t too extreme or it will become overwhelming.
Blonde on Blonde
Brunettes aren’t the only ones who can get a cool blonde highlight look. Plenty of people with blonde hair look to add depth to their hair by adding in different shades of blonde than their own. In this case, a lighter blonde adds brightness and style to the look.
Dark Hair, Subtle Lowlights
Much like highlights, lowlights change the depth of hair color and add interest to your overall look. A darker color rather than a bright blonde is perfect for this style, allowing you to still achieve a fun change without doing anything overly drastic. Perfect for someone just beginning to experiment with changing their hair color or looking to make a small change.
Curls for Days
One of the coolest parts about highlights in curly hair is that individual curls can take on specific colors. Especially with this particular curl texture, some of the curls are completely blonde while others maintain their darker hue. This stark contrast is something that isn’t necessarily easy to replicate with straighter hair. The whole effect combines for a fun and funky look.
Brown Hair and Blonde Tips
No, not the frosted tips of the nineties, these blonde ends blend well with the base of light brown hair in this mid-length style. This look is almost a “miniature ombre” style, limited by the length of the hair but still accomplishing a cool contrast in color. Especially if long, flowing tresses is just not your thing, this is an option if you are a fan of the faded trend.
Elegance, Thy Name is Blonde
Truly, there is no better way to describe this look other than elegant. From the length of the cut to the different layers of the highlights, this brown and blonde hair is the perfect style. While the highlights near the crown of the head are a bit chunky, there is nothing tiger-esque about them. The fade into full blonde near the ends looks completely natural. Overall, the ideal style that screams sophistication.
Chunky Braid, Chunky Highlights
There is a misconception that highlights (or any type of dye job for that matter) are a waste if your hair spends most of its life up. Clearly, this whole “do” proves those naysayers wrong. Instead, get highlights that suit your life rather than the other way around. The placement of the highlights in this case emphasize the difference between the braid and the rest of the style. If you are someone whose job requires you to wear your hair up, who says you can’t have fun with highlights too?
It’s a Double Braid!
Another good example of how highlights lift an up do, this braided style shows off different levels of the blonde and brown hair seen in this highlight look. When getting highlights, it is important to know they will look good no matter how you choose to style your hair. These braids are a great example of how effective highlights can be, whatever you do your do.
Soft Highlights on Brown Hair
A different light brown hair with blonde highlights look, this is a combination of thicker highlights mixed with more blended ones. Using both looks in one style makes the hair color lighter overall while still having obvious highlights. In this case, the larger highlight streaks are close to the face, serving as a frame and drawing attention towards the eyes. By noticing the hair, you are compelled to notice the whole person.
Blended Highlights in Short Hair
An additional light brown/dark blonde look, this shows how using blended highlights in short hair can be a great option to fully dyeing. Using a blended approach is also smart with short hair to avoid too much of a contrast between the light and dark parts of the hair. This is also ideal for someone trying to lift the hair color without going too far a dramatic direction.
Blonde Highlights on Dark Hair, a Subtle Addition
A great way to add highlights without making too drastic of a change is to do a blended style just on the top layer. This leaves the bottom layer untouched, maintaining a more natural look. If you are attached to your dark hair but want to try something new, this is the perfect highlight style for you.
Extreme Curls with Chunky Highlights
Because of the automatic texture that comes with curls, chunky highlight styles work well with tight curls. As each curl has a life of its own, this breaks up the highlights and eliminates the stripe effect. This style almost takes on the depth and appearance of a waterfall, providing a totally unique look.
A Rainbow of Blonde
For fans of the streaky highlight style, this is your look. Incorporating all different shades of blonde, this highlight look is fun, funky, and one of a kind. There is so much to draw the eye that this style will definitely cause double takes – in the best way possible.
Red Hair Blonde Streaks
A great two-toned look, this style uses a dark red base with bright blonde highlights as the focus. Red and blonde go together so well, it’s the perfect combination for a stunning highlight style. This same look could also be done with darker tones depending on your personal taste.
Simple Blonde Highlights on Dark Hair
A mature highlights style, these two-toned blonde highlights elevate the dark base hair color. If you want something new but have certain appearances to maintain, something simple like this is ideal. Just because a style is simple does not make it any less stunning, and that is obvious in this instance.
Dark Golden Highlights
If bright blonde isn’t really your thing, these golden highlights might be just the right fit. Especially with blonde highlights on dark hair, it’s important to protect your natural color if the darker look is something you want to maintain. Using a golden approach with more blonde at the ends allows you to shake up your style without completely changing your color.
Subtle Streaks, Short Hair
As we know, adding highlights to short hair requires a delicate balance since the impact is greater with less hair to work with. In this instance, using a darker blonde color works with the streaked look because the contrast between the highlight and base color isn’t too extreme. You get the funk of the streaky look, but still have a classy edge. All of this compliments the slightly angled cut, and would still work with a more drastic angling.
Making a Statement: Bright Blonde on Dark Hair
Here, the stark contrast is what we’re aiming to achieve. If you want your highlight look to stand out, putting bright blonde highlights on dark hair is the way to go. The blonde is interspersed throughout the rest of the hair, adding pops of color that catch the eye. If you aren’t allowed to have unnatural colors in your hair for some reason, this is a great look that allows you to go bold without violating that rule.
Blonde, Brunette, and Redhead
Using blonde as part of a more diversified highlight package is a great way to add depth to your hairstyle. Increasing the shades of color, when done correctly, creates an illusion of increased volume without filling your hair with products. Natural tricks of the light can accomplish the same effect. This look will also continue to look great as it grows out.
Another great dark hair look, the deeper gold highlights in this style are trendy but sophisticated. You no longer need to fear blonde highlights as a darker brunette with this option. Using the gold accents creates a gradual gradation of color from the roots to the ends without a jarring contrast between the light and dark hues. If you want highlights but want to protect your dark hair, this is the way to do it.
This is an additional great choice for someone with light brown hair who wants to take the streak approach to highlights. With a slightly longer bob, the lighter color of the highlights works and doesn’t come off quick so strong. These streaks are more delicate than some chunkier styles, which fits with the cut. Also, the decision to put the highlights primarily on the top layer of hair helps reflect the light and brighten the look without overwhelming the rest of the color.
Blonde Top, Dark Bottom
Speaking of using layers, this style is perfect if you want to have dark hair with blonde highlights. Putting the blonde on a top layer while keeping the bottom darker creates the contrast that is the desired effect. Blonde splashing over the top layer in a fun and dramatic way, while the dark hues even out the effect. Notice also how the darker color is what frames the face, which means the natural color still rests against the skin. This helps to avoid any clash of hair color and skin tone.
If you want to have light brown hair with blonde highlights, using the highlights as a frame for your face is a great option. While the highlights are throughout the hair, you can see that putting the pop of color near the face draws your eyes. As fun as your hair might be, the ultimate goal is for people to notice you.
In this look, the highlight look is more elusive. A great example of how just one streak of color can change up a whole style, the chestnut color is a cute little addition. If you just want to have something small for yourself, this is a good route.
For those with a bigger curl, highlights can look more blended rather than individual. As seen here, the volumizing effect works its magic on each curl. Light catches curls differently than straight hair, and the blonde emphasizes the changes and depth in the light. Adding highlights to a curly style makes you look like you have twice the volume, increases the look of your bounce, and overall lifts your look.
Rose Gold Highlights
There are two types of rose gold highlights: a pinker highlight and a highlight with a reddish blonde hue. This style is an example of the second. Also incorporating straight blonde, the different color tones are deliberately drastic to create drama and flair. Can’t decide between blonde, brunette, or redhead? Go for all three.
Not a fan of subtlety? This blonde highlights on dark hair look is a decisively two-toned style sure to make a statement. If you want a dramatic look that will continue to keep its style as it grows out, this highlight style is perfect for you.
Before and After: Blonde Highlights on Dark Hair
This streak style is a fabulous addition to anyone with dark hair. The blonde highlights add depth and flow, almost like caramel in dark chocolate ice cream. Your eyes are drawn down through the length of the hair and through each curl. A dramatic change to be sure, but gorgeous.
Bright Blonde and Deep Gold
Using different shades of blonde makes this flirty style more interesting. The brighter blonde is closer to the face, getting darker as the highlights move back through the hair. This gives the illusion of more layers to the style, again giving the impression that you have thicker hair. Perfect if you are trying to add life to your same old cut.
Dark Roots and Blonde Edges
Ideal for this amount of wave, the blonde at the ends gives the look a point of interest without moving too far away from the dark root tones. This is a unique highlight look perfect for someone who spends a lot of time out on the town. The blonde at the ends also makes a fun contrast when in an up do, as the bun or ponytail will appear to be a different color entirely.
White Blonde Highlights on Dark Hair
Combining a conventional highlight look with the ombre style. Ideal for hair of this length, it seems like the bright highlights find their source in the roots and grow from a small spring to a flowing river of color. Increasing the number of highlighted hair versus the base color near the ends is what hints at an ombre look.
Face Frame: Chestnut Gold
Another face frame highlight style, these darker gold and chestnut tones are ideal for this skin tone. This style is the prime example of how these looks can be versatile depending on your own taste and personal look. A face frame is also good if you want to do a half highlight versus whole highlight look.
When you think of blonde highlights, this look probably comes to mind. A combination of blended and small streaks, the layers of hair stand out throughout the whole style. This type of highlights work well no matter the length or cut of your hair. If you want a classic highlight style, this is the look for you.
Light Brown Highlights Hidden Underneath
A reverse of some other styles, the highlights in this look are on the underside of the hair rather on the top layers. The advantage to this highlight placement is that the lighter color hits at the chin, which gives the appearance of length to the face. Particularly if you have a short or round face, this style gives the illusion that your face is thinner.
Fun and Flirty Highlights
This blended highlight style is an alternative to going completely blonde. The nature of these highlights lightens the overall tone of the hair while still having streaks of your natural color shine through. This is another look that works better with longer hair, as the fade would be lost in short hair.
Whether or not it’s true that blondes have more fun, you will definitely have fun picking out your next blonde highlight look. With such a wide variety of options, it would be impossible for you not to find inspiration among these looks. It doesn’t matter if you are a brunette, a redhead, or already a blonde, adding bright highlights to your look is a great way to change up your style. Be more subtle if that fits your taste, or shake it up and go bold. Whatever you choose we know you are going to look fabulous!
Which brown hair with blonde highlights style do you fancy? Tell us in the comments!