Highlights add a quality of excitement to otherwise dull and dreary hairdos. They can perk up a listless color, serving as a quick fix when more time is not available. Choose to highlight darker hair and the converse; you can introduce lowlights to lighter tones. They are more realistic if they are subtle with crimson tones throughout brunette hair or bleached streaks on strawberry blondes. Restricting the look by converting only selected strands adds that degree of elegance which from a distance gives the appearance without clamoring for attention.

Whether you have opted for shocking pinks or a touch of blue, the highlights can be much easier to maintain throughout the phase. An overall single process color can develop incorrect areas, such as the roots that defeat the purpose of the project. But highlights have their own look that can change regularly, requiring at most a restorative maintenance every 2-4 months. It is easier on the budget and more generous with your time.


By deepening and darkening hair color, using lowlights, the salons will use a multi-tonal color, which generates a more natural gradation of the hues than to just streak your hair with a single color. The latter is the technique of high school students working at home who often settle for a less natural appearance.

Some higher end salons will employ more sophisticated technology, creating ultraviolet color effects with four dramatic highlighting tones. For the average woman on the moderate budget who is not anticipating a stroll along a red carpet any time in the near future, the process is relatively simple. Section the hair, add color starting from the roots all the way along the strands. Most stylists will use foils, folding the strands to be treated to prevent the color from feathering to the untreated areas. The process must be timed, depending on the natural hair color and the chosen colors, then the strands are given ample time to absorb the new tones. There are products available for the home experimenter, but be sure to read the directions carefully, otherwise you may be following up with a visit to a stylist to correct errors.

After the color has set, rinse it out, then towel-dry the hair, and proceed with the next illumination tone. Continue until all steps have been completed, monitoring each phase with care, to make certain that you are achieving the desired result. If you are a first time user, it may be better to have a professional stylist advise and perform the conversion so that you will have a chance to witness the event and have all of your questions answered.

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