Pick Your Perfect Summer Highlights

Summer is here and Pinterest has been flooded with cute ways to update your summer style. Pastel hair color has been all the rage lately. However, for many ladies, unnatural tones aren’t a look they can rock in their daily lives for professional or personal reasons.


If you’re looking to update your ‘do in a way that won’t get you sent home from work, highlights can be the perfect way to change your look up.


A ton of new techniques have burst onto the scene, just in time for summer. We collected our favorite summer highlights, researched them, wrote about them, and alphabetized them to help you pick your perfect summer highlights!



Most people have seen a kid with natural gorgeous, face-framing highlights. Babylights are meant to mimic those natural summer highlights that many children receive from the sun. Typically focused around the face, babylights are very thin highlights that brighten up your face. Babylights are the perfect summer highlights for someone who wants a brighter look that appears natural. Babylights can also be done throughout the whole head, but only as accents. The idea is to keep your hair color as close to natural as possible, simply brightened up a bit. Although babylights are intented to be extremely subtle and natural, their presence around the face can require more upkeep than other summer highlights.



Also known as hair painting, a balayage look is achieved when a hair colorist paints highlights onto your hair where the sun would create natural highlights. By painting directly onto the hair, the hair artist can place color more precisely than other methods of highlighting. Balayage highlights are the perfect summer highlights for someone who wants a natural sunkissed look. Since the color is painted on with the intention of creating an extremely soft gradient, bayalage doesn’t have harsh lines where the color has grown out. This allows you to go a bit longer between touch-ups.



Chunky highlights are not for the faint of heart! To achieve this summer highlight look, thick, chunky highlights are placed throughout the hair. For a more dimensional look, some colorists will apply different tones to prevent the hair from looking too striped. While they can be fun and funky, chunky highlights require a large amount of upkeep. The thick chunks will clearly show where the highlights end and the regrowth begins.



Foilyage highlights are the perfect summer highlights for someone who wants an extremely natural look without lots of upkeep. Foilyage combines the sunkissed bayalage look with the low maintenance of ombre. Color is painted onto the hair, but then the ends are wrapped in foil to achieve a brighter tip. The end result is gorgeous, sun-kissed hair that looks natural and requires very little upkeep.



Part highlights, part full-head coloring, ombre highlights are the perfect summer highlights for someone who wants minimal upkeep and maintenance. An ombre look is created by having a darker color at the roots and gradually transitioning to a lighter color, the lightest point being the tips of the strands. For those ladies loving the ombre look, but not wanting the gradient to be so obvious, sombre (subtle ombre) is an understated ombre look created by having less of a gradient. If you’re not sure if your perfect summer highlights are ombre or sombre, we have an example to help you visualize the difference. Ombre is a big difference in color. Think dark brown roots transitioning to blonde tips. On the other hand, sombre is more like light brown transitioning to blonde. One of the main benefits of ombre or sombre is the upkeep…or lack thereof. If you keep your natural color at the roots, there will be no discernable regrowth, the gradient will just grow out as your hair grows. However, if you choose to darken your roots, there will be lots of maintenance to avoid an obvious line.



Like the name suggests, slicing highlights are thin highlights applied throughout the hair. Unlike styles such as balayage, slicing highlights do not offer the same all-over natural, sun-kissed look. However, they do add dimension and depth to the hair in any style from loose, beachy waves to a structured up-do. Slicing highlights tend to be more obvious at the roots, while blending with the rest of the hair towards the tips. While they are the perfect summer highlights for someone wanting a very dimensional look, they do require lots of upkeep to avoid obvious lines when the hair grows.


What technique would you use to get your perfect summer highlights?


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