There are a multitude of different blonde hair color shades from which to choose; they run the gamut from the palest platinum to dark blonde highlights over a dark brown base. Each shade of blonde can even have a variety of sub-shades. Confusing? Perhaps. But here are a few rules of thumb to help:
- Generally, it’s best to stay within two levels of your natural hair color when dying your hair blonde.
- Consider your skin tone. Are you fair, medium or dark skinned? Your complexion will affect how your hair looks when you go blonde.
- Eye color matters when selecting the best blonde hair color for you. Some shades of blonde are best with blue, green or hazel eyes, while other blonde hues look best with big brown or black eyes.
- What kind of image are you after? Do you want a natural, sun-kissed look? Or do you want in-your-face blonde style?
That said, when going blonde, there are all kinds of ways to break the rules. Regardless of what you’re looking for, remember that the most important thing to do when dying your hair blonde is to seek the help of your stylist. A good colorist knows how to dye any color of hair blonde, and can save you the grief of a bad outcome.
Here are the three basic blonde color categories that provide hair coloring ideas you can take with you to the salon, and tips on how to select your custom color.
Platinum Blonde Hair Color
- Platinum blonde hair color is the lightest of all the blonde shades, and is best on fair skin tones or medium skin tones with a yellowish tint. But this palest of blonde hues looks fabulous with any eye color, and is particularly striking with bright blue or brown eyes. The popularity of platinum hair shades has been around a long time – can you say “Marilyn”? –but the trend has taken on an edgier look in more recent years, often with all-over platinum color.
Light Ash Blonde Hair Color
- Light ash blonde hair color is a whiter shade of blonde that has an ashy, or gray, tint. It could be described as cool platinum, and looks best on lighter complexions with lighter eye colors. Lady Gaga has sported this hue, which can be achieved on lighter natural hair colors through balayage, or all-over color on those with darker natural hair colors.
Natural Blonde Hair Color
- Natural blonde hair color is as it sounds: blonde hair that looks like you were born with it. This baby blonde color is multidimensional, having several similar blonde shades within the same family of color. This looks great on any skin tone, as long as the shades mimic skin color: i.e., for lighter skin, keep the color shades lighter, and for darker skin, darken up the shades to keep it natural-looking.
Strawberry Blonde Hair Color
4. Strawberry blonde hair color is a warm reddish-blonde hue that can have all the colors of a sunset in it. This shade is best on fair skin and lighter eye colors, and is simplest to achieve if hair is a lighter color to begin with. Balayage over a lighter base is one way to create strawberry blonde hair color.
Buttery Blonde Hair Color
5. Buttery blonde hair color is a warm hue with splashes of honey-yellow. This sunny color is best with pearly complexions that are light to medium in tone, and look stunning with any eye color. Britney Spears sported this shade beautifully on a recent beach vacation.
Beige Blonde Hair Color
6. Beige blonde hair color is a darker base with lighter, cooler highlights. This is best on medium skin tones; just be sure to maintain some warmer tones to match your skin if necessary. Ashy or orange-ish tones could make you look washed out. This is a terrific option for those with darker natural hair color and darker eye colors.
Silver Blonde Hair Color
7. Silver blonde hair color is a cool, ashy shade that moves blonde hair into a sterling hue. Best on lighter complexions and light eye colors such as blue or green, this shade is a fabulous option for naturally graying hair. For darker complexions or eye colors, add some warm honey tones to avoid looking washed out.
Summer Blonde Hair Color
8. Summer blonde hair color is a flaxen hue that can be achieved with a sandy base and sunny highlights. This combination can be lightened up for paler complexions or darkened up for medium complexions. Madonna captured this look recently, adding signature ombrè pink tips to customize the look.
Creamy Blonde Hair Color
9. Creamy blonde hair color is a cool, whiter shade of blonde that looks best on medium to dark skin tones with darker eye colors such as brown or black. To achieve this color, ask your stylist for cream and butter balayage highlights over your darker roots. This is a perfect blonde hair color for dark hair.
Dirty Blonde Hair Color
- Dirty blonde hair color is a medium-hued blonde with tones of wheat, or, well, “dirt” color strewn throughout. Consider this shade if you have green or brown eyes and a medium-toned skin. This look can be achieved through balayage or ombrè-style highlighting.
Honey Blonde Hair Color
- Honey blonde hair color is warm and shiny and looks best on medium skin tones with darker eye colors such as brown or black. Taylor Swift has personified honey blonde hair color. If you want to go honey blonde, ask your colorist to leave your darker roots intact and add honey-hued highlighting.
Bronze Creamy Blonde Hair Color
- Bronze creamy blonde hair color is a warm, beachy-looking hue that is naturally lovely on medium, tawny complexions with light- to medium-shade eye colors such as blue, gray or light brown. Blake Lively’s wavy locks define this shade. To create the look, ask your colorist to add varying tones of honey highlights through your hair’s mid-length on top of a light brown base, keeping the ends ever-so-slightly lighter..
Golden Blonde Hair Color
13. Golden blonde hair color is a natural-looking, multidimensional mix of butter, gold and honey hues that looks beautiful paired with fair complexions and lighter eye colors such as pale blue or hazel. This natural-looking sun-kissed blonde color is best achieved with balayage highlighting.
Ash Blonde Hair Color
14. Ash blonde hair color is a darker, cooler shade of silvery blonde that is an excellent choice for those with darker natural hair, skin and eye colors. Traditional ash blonde hair color can be warmed up with buttery highlights to match skin tone if needed. This can be a great option for naturally graying hair.
Sandy Blonde Hair Color
15. Sandy blonde hair color is rich, warm and subtle. This blonde shade pairs best with fair skin tones and light eyes such as blue, hazel or violet. For a lovely sandy blonde look, ask your colorist for a dark blonde base with cool, beige--toned balayage highlights on the mid-lengths and ends.
Auburn Blonde Hair Color
16. Auburn blonde hair color is strawberry blonde with a tangerine twist. This dramatic hue can be worn with any skin tone, but looks ravishing on paler complexions with lighter eye colors such as blue, green or hazel. This is a lovely transition color from lighter summer blonde hues to darker fall shades.
Copper Blonde Hair Color
17. Copper blonde hair color is a luminous darker golden hue with amber undertones. This color goes well with darker skin tones and eye colors such as brown or black. For those with darker natural hair color, copper blonde is a striking way to go blonde without looking brassy.
Brownish Blonde (bronde) Hair Color
18. Brownish blonde, also known as “bronde” hair color is a warm, natural-looking blonde hue that looks lovely with fair and medium complexions and light to medium eye colors such as gold, light brown or blue. When dying dark hair blonde, achieve a rich, contrasting color by asking your stylist for a dark blonde base with cool-toned, buttery balayage highlights on the mid-lengths and ends.
Cherry Blonde Hair Color
19. Cherry Blonde Hair Color is a vivid fuchsia-toned berry color over a darker base that is beautiful for those with darker skin tones and darker eyes. This look is best created by dying the hair blonde, then adding cherry color over it.
Caramel Blonde Hair Color
20. Caramel blonde hair color is a light golden brown or dark iridescent blonde color that is lovely on any complexion, but most natural-looking on those with medium to dark skin tones. Reese Witherspoon wears this color well. To keep caramel blonde looking natural, start with a base of dark golden blonde tones through the mid-lengths and ends with pale highlights around the face.
Black Blonde Hair Color
21. Black blonde hair color is generally reserved for dramatic styles involving blonde hair color and black hair color worn together. Because of the contrast of very dark and light hair color on one head, any complexion or eye color can pull it off (if you’re brave enough to wear it). Ombrè is a great way to get this two-toned look, though a black base with blonde highlights over it works too.
Dark Reddish-Brown Blonde Hair Color
22. Dark reddish-brown blonde hair color is a stunning blend of blondes, browns and reds used on a dark base that can be customized to any skin tone or eye color. Rihanna is the queen of this technique, having successfully worn many different hair colors that run the spectrum on the hair color charts.
Chocolate Blonde Hair Color
23. Chocolate blonde hair color is a darker shade of caramel blonde that looks warm and stunning with golden highlights. Beyonce’s creamy mane with a dark base that balances her blonde locks is a lovely example of this color. Though this hair color looks best on darker skin tones with darker eye colors, it can be adjusted to suit lighter complexions. Avoid chocolate blonde shades with too much white, platinum or orange because they will look unnatural with darker skin tones.
Chestnut Blonde Hair Color
24. Chestnut blonde hair color is typically a mix of darker hair with golden highlights, though it can be created on golden blonde hair by adding caramel highlights. This earthy-looking hue is best on dark complexions with dark eye colors such as black or brown, but can be exotic on medium skin tones with blue eyes.
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