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Everything You Need To Know Before Getting Balayage

Now that summer is in full swing you're probably ready to update everything from your manicure to your wardrobe to your hair. If you're someone who gets natural highlights after sitting in the sun for one day, consider yourself lucky. For the rest of us, we rely on our very talented hairdressers for giving us those perfect, sun-kissed, highlighted locks. If you're looking to update your hair color this summer season and want something not too drastic but that will give you a natural looking highlight, balayage may be just what you're looking for.

What Exactly Is Balayage?

Balayage is a highlighting technique that differs from typical highlights because with balayage the highlights are painted on the hair by the stylist, using a freehand style. Originating in France in the 1970s, balayage translated means "to sweep". The hair stylist doesn't use traditional foils to wrap the hair after the highlights are painted on, instead, sometimes using plastic wrap to keep the highlight from drying out. Sometimes the hair is left uncovered depending on the method used by the stylist. While foils allow the entire section of the hair to be coated in color resulting in a deeper highlight, the painted on technique of balayage allows stylists to create dimension in your hair by painting the highlights where needed. You can have balayage done on hair of any length to achieve those perfect, natural looking highlights that are ideal for summer. If you want to try this new technique on your hair it's best to look for a professional who is trained to do balayage as it takes a lot of skill.

Is Balayage Right For You?

The best part about balayage is it can be done on any length of hair, and any color of hair. Because the highlights are painted on their hair by the stylists, balayage begins the highlighting technique a few inches below the roots, as opposed to at the roots which are where traditional highlights begin. Balayage is perfect for someone who wants a more natural looking highlight as the stylist is able to create more depth and movement when they use the balayage technique. The best part is balayage is very low maintenance so your upkeep schedule isn't as strict as with traditional highlights where roots are much more obvious.

What Do You Need to Know?

Just because balayage isn't the same as typical highlights doesn't mean that there isn't lightening of the hair involved. L'Oreal Paris USA advises people who would like to get balayage done that their hair will need to be bleached to be lightened, and the darker the hair naturally the more bleaching will be required, depending on how light you want to go. They warn clients that it could take multiple appointments to achieve the desired effects depending on how much highlighting is wanted.

Balayage isn't just for blondes. The highlighting technique can be done on hair of any shade, giving blondes, brunettes, and redheads a natural looking highlight to their hair not achievable by many other techniques. No matter what your hair color is, balayage will provide amazing, sun-kissed highlights.

How Long Will It Last?

Unlike traditional highlights that begin at the roots, balayage is typically painted on a few inches below the root using a freehand technique, therefore the growing out process tends to be more seamless and natural looking. "The best thing about balayage is that it's so naturally painted on the hair, it still manages to look great as it grows out," Jaxcee, the color director at Hair Rules Salon in New York City told Refinery29.  "Because the color is so far from your roots, it already looks like color that has been flawlessly grown out," adds Felicia Dosso of Nunzio Saviano.

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Freshly Painted Balayage 🌹❤

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If you're more concerned with the growing out process and how your hair looks, you can update your balayage every three months, however, the experts tell Refinery29 that once or twice a year is typical.

What To Tell Your Stylist

Even the most experienced stylists benefit when the client is able to clearly and concisely explain the look they're going for. If you want to try balayage with your stylist to achieve a certain look, you should definitely bring in a variety of pictures of what you like. Bring in hair inspiration pictures to show your stylist so they can create a look that is perfect for you. A quick search on Instagram will give you countless images of balayage done on all different hair colors and types, allowing you to find hair that most looks like your own.

Book an appointment with your stylist for a consultation before your actual balayage appointment. This way you can ensure you and your stylist are on the same page about the look you want and how you will achieve it. Being able to show your stylist the look you want not only helps both of you understand what is involved in achieving that look, but your stylist will also be able to tell you if it's reasonable or not or is something different may look better.

If you're looking to update your look this summer, balayage is the perfect solution!

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