When it’s time for a new hairstyle, you may have noticed that trends in color today vary widely. Today’s coloring trends are more creative and artistic, showcasing the skill of the hair stylist in developing natural and flattering looks for each client. Whether you prefer bright, fun, and funky colors or sweeping, sun-kissed locks, ombre, sombre, and/or balayage styles may be the answer for you.
Like all up and coming trends, these names come from French words. They sound pretty, but can be confusing. If you’re still not sure what each trend means, here’s an explanation of each so that you can ask your stylist for the color treatment you prefer.
The word describes shading, and in hair color, it refers to the gradual transition from one hair color to another. Generally, the color method involves keeping a darker color at the top of the head near the roots which transitions to a lighter color along the spectrum as the color reaches the tips of the hair. In long hair, the color technique is striking and includes many different shades of color, from the darkest browns down to light platinum blond.
There is no one particular color chosen for an ombre effect, though many clients choose to stick with a color close to their natural hair at the top and work down to a lighter color near the bottom. Your stylist will help you determine the best application of the trend, which is generally hand painted in the balayage style. Some clients prefer an evenly spaced transition between colors, while others may have dark hair down to their shoulders, which then lightens up near the ends. Famous celebrities who have rocked this style include Rumer Willis, recent winner of Dancing with the Stars, Drew Barrymore, and Raven Simone among many others.
Sombre hair is very similar to the ombre trend, but relies on a softer transition of color. The transition from dark to light is subtle and natural but very striking. If you look at the length of the hair, you may not be able to tell where one shade ends and another begins, but if you hold the tips up to the roots of the hair, you will see a distinct difference in shades. The trend is great for blonds looking for a different way to highlight their color, and for anyone who isn’t quite ready for the drastic change in shade of ombre hair. The beauty of the style really stands out in layered cuts.
Referring more to a technique than a style, balayage is the freehand painting in which ombre and sombre trends are applied. Traditional highlights are applied with foils or caps, but a great balayage treatment can leave your hair looking far more natural than streaked highlights of the past. Ask for balayage highlights, lowlights, ombre, or sombre style to give your hair the extra edge in coloring that can be subtle or brilliantly striking to match your personality and hair style.
Jessical Biel, Lauren Conrad, and Rihanna have really made an impression with their choice in a sombre color like many other famous long-tressed actresses. A very low maintenance style, sombre is perfect for a small change in color. Talk to a professional hairstylist to decide which is best for you.