Types of Hair Colouring Techniques: What Are The Differences?

For as long as the methods to colour hair have existed, people have been transforming their looks with hundreds of different shades and styles on their tresses.

From the dramatic, vibrant colours of the punk movement to the chunky highlights of the early noughties, hair colour has come a long way – and there are more diverse options for natural hair colouring than ever before.

If you’re considering colouring your hair, knowing the differences between types of hair colouring techniques is an excellent place to start.

Want to pick hair colouring that suits your complexion and ‘wow’s everyone that sees your brand-new hairdo? Having a good understanding of the different types of hair colouring techniques can help make beautiful hair colour even easier to achieve.

6 Types of Hair Colouring Techniques

If you’re wondering about the best hair colouring for grey hair, you’re contemplating colouring hair when pregnant, or you have any other queries about hair colouring, you’ve come to the right place.

We’ve covered all you need to know about the latest new hair colouring techniques on offer in salons, giving you a good idea of the language to use at your upcoming hair appointment.

Read on how to find out more about the wide range of hair colouring techniques on the market that might be the perfect match for your locks:

1. Highlights

Highlights may be a classic in the world of hair colour, but that doesn’t mean this understated method doesn’t provide plenty of impact.

Highlights typically involve lighter shades installed in subtle strips throughout the hair and can be a single colour or multiple colours to add dimensional.

The ideal choice for anyone with darker-toned hair looking to lighten their complexion, highlights can be as dramatic or subtle as you want them to be.

For a sun-kissed, instantly brighter appearance without going full-on blonde, highlights are an excellent option – and just as relevant today as when they first appeared in salons.

2. Lowlights

Lowlights & Highlights Hair Colouring technique examples

The opposite end of the colour spectrum to highlights, lowlights are as the name suggests – your hairdresser takes strands of hair and applies darker colour, providing dimensionality and more of a 3D effect to the hair.

Think adding dark blonde to light blonde hair, or deeper browns to pale brunettes.

Lowlights are a great technique for anyone that feels their hair is falling a bit on the flat side – which can typically happen to one-tone colour or box colour.

Lowlights bring life back into the hair, making the colour look more natural without going too far into lightening territory for a more natural finish.

3. Ombré

Ombre hair colouring technique example

Named for the French word for shadow or shade, ombré hair was a huge trend just a few years ago and is still a massively popular hair colour choice today.

Creating a pulled-down shadow root by lightning the mid-section and ends of the hair, ombré provides a dramatic and less natural finish than your typical natural colour job.

Ombré comes in all shapes, sizes, and colours, but most frequently is used to blend a darker root into lighter ends.

If you want to go dramatic, this colour technique is also an effective way to add vibrant colours to the ends of the hair without worrying about regrowth bands in the process.

4. Ombré Highlights

Ombré highlights refer to any forms of this technique that involve lightening the ends of hair to achieve that beautiful, contrasting result.

Ombré highlights may also include foils to graduate lighter colours further up into the hair, resulting in a more natural and even more graduated finish in the process.


If you happen to have a darker natural colour, ombré highlights offer a perfect way to lighten and brighten your hair, without fear of unsightly bands of colour are your hair grows.

If you’d like to go light, but you’re not 100% committed to very regular salon maintenance, ombré highlights might work for you.

5. Balayage

Another French term, balayage means ‘to paint’ or ‘to sweep’, and is so-named for its artistic blending of multiple colours to create a beautiful, gradient effect.

With greater intricacy than your average ombré, balayage produces a beautiful, seamless melt of colours packed full of highlights for plenty of dimension.

Balayage is best suited for those with darker roots but is similarly a powerful technique for anyone wanting to try out vibrant colours for the first time.

From pinks to purples to incredible sunsets, balayage is an incredibly effective technique for brights and natural tones alike.

6. Babylights

babylights hair colouring technique

As delicate and angelic as the name suggests, babylights are a technique used to add dimension and natural glow to light-blonde hair.

Using whites, blue-toned blonde and ash colours, babylights are a specific highlight that works best on bleached and toned locks.

Specifically designed for the lightest of blondes, babylights add a bit more of a natural finish and look to bleached hair. If you’re a fan of the icy look, this technique offers the dimension and subtle, natural finish that brings bleached hair back to life.

Choosing The Right Hair Colouring Techniques for Your Hair

So, now we’ve covered all of the major trends in hair colouring for 2021, which is the right technique for you?

There are hundreds of subtle, natural hair colouring styles that would perfectly suit you from pinwheel hair colouring to classic balayage.

The best place to start is to speak to a salon professional, who has the expertise and years of experience to know exactly what will work best for you.

Want to transform your hair with incredible colour?

Get in touch with our team at Lux Hair Lounge today to book a colour consultation. Our expert team of specialists are the ideal choice to transform your hair with the latest techniques. Call Us Today.