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 Highlighting - special effect hair colors

Methods, tips & tricks.            | also available bleaching | coloring - dying | Color rinsing - color enhancing |


Highlights can be achieved by using different techniques, like for example using a comb, foil (also called colorbourd technique), cap or painting or "balliage." This technique paints bleaches paint onto sections of hair to create noticable layers and lines of lighter color. Generally it is not applied to the roots, so no regular touch-ups every four to six weeks!

Highlights must complement your natural hair colour - the highlighted hair should "highlight" your natural hair colour. As a general rule it is better to only go two or three shades away from your natural hair colour to look natural.

At the moment it is trendy to highlight blonde hair with three block colors (ash blond, beige blond an a decent golden-brown shade) to create a more natural blonde effect.

Comb Highlights

Nowadays this technique isn't used often. Highlights are set with the help of a comb.This method is to be recommended if you want to have a strong colour contrast in the hair and if you have a short hair style.

Price: Relatively cheap.
Advantages: You only need a comb, quick procedure.
Disadvantages: It takes some experience. Often block colour highlights.


Cap Highlights

For years this method has been used. The hair is covered with a cap (simular to a bathing cap) with holes in it. Through this little holes the hair is pulled out through the cap and the locks are dyed. This method is only suitable for curly hair as long hair tangles when it is pulled through the cap.

Highlights which have been made by using a special cap can become darker after a while. The reason is that during the bleaching process the locks are binded and for a week they hold on to locks.After every hair wash and hair styling the hairs mix more and more with the remaining hair, so it seems the hair looks darker. So it is not the locks themselves which become darker, but the separate hairs mixing with the other hairs.
If you make larger locks then the beautiful, yellow blond will be kept longer.

Price: Cheaper than the foil method and quick.
Advantages: Your scalp is protected from the dye as the product doesn't has no contact with your scalp. If you have a sensitive scalp it is to be adviced.
Disadvantages: It will take some time. Only one colour at the time can be used. It can be painful as a hook is used to pull strands of hair through the cap.


Foil Highlights/ Colorbourd Technique

This method dyes the strands before they are covered up with foil.

Price: Expensive.
Advantages: Painless, the hairdresser can use many different colours. It is also possible to have highlights or block colors.
Disadvantages: It will take some time. The hairdresser needs to be experienced. If not, you can obtain shocking results.



This is a new kind of  "free style" highlighting technique. It has been used quite a while in America and in France. In America it is called "Balayage" and in France it is known as "Balliage".

Not many hairsalons offer this way of dying hair. This method doesn't use a comb, cap or a foil. Instead they use a pencil. The color paste that is put on has been mixed with a special powder so the paste will become more thick. In this way it is better to apply to the hair using a pencil. Depending on the amount paste new colour nuances appear. Using this method will prevent having big colour differences. Instead, the result is a natural hair colour with harmonically, softened shade of colours, without the well known color blocks.

Price: About the same price as the foil method. Price is based on the amount of colour shades you will need.
Advantages: It is quicker than foil highlights and they willl last about three months. It is also possible to combine highlights and lowlights at one time.
Disadvantages: Few hairdressers offer this service.

Difference between "Highlights" and "Lowlights"

Highlights are strands of lighter/ brighter colours in your hair. Low lights are strand of darker colours in your hair.


If you don't know which highlight colors to choose get some advice from your hairdresser - colorist. You might ask him to test a couple of highlights in your hair (on the back of your neck).