Learning About Spa Experiences

Balayage Vs. Highlights: Understanding The Differences And Which Is Right For You

If you're looking to switch up your hair color, you may have come across the terms "balayage" and "highlights." While both techniques are used to add dimension and depth to your hair, they differ in application and overall effect. Discover the nuances between balayage and traditional highlights in this comprehensive blog post. 


Balayage is a captivating hair coloring technique that entails skillfully hand-painting each strand, resulting in a stunning, sun-kissed appearance. The word "balayage" is derived from the French term meaning "sweeping" or "painting." Unlike traditional highlights, which typically use foils to separate the hair sections, balayage is applied in a freehand manner, allowing for a more customized and natural result.

The effects of balayage can vary depending on your desired outcome. It can range from subtle and sun-kissed to bold and dimensional, depending on the colorist's technique and the contrast between your natural hair color and the chosen highlights. Balayage has emerged as a preferred option for individuals seeking to infuse their hair with dimension and texture, all the while preserving a flawlessly natural and effortless appearance.


Traditional highlights, on the other hand, involve sectioning small strands of hair and applying hair dye or bleach to those specific sections. The highlights are then typically wrapped in foils to allow the color to develop and penetrate the hair shaft. This technique offers more control over the placement and intensity of the highlights compared to balayage.

Highlights can be customized to create various effects, such as adding brightness and contrast to your hair or completely transforming your overall hair color. They can range from soft and understated to bold and dramatic, depending on your preference and the desired outcome.

One of the advantages of highlights is their versatility, as they can be applied to any hair type and length. Whether you have short, long, straight, or curly hair, highlights can be tailored to suit your desired style and enhance your natural features.

Choosing the Right Option

When deciding between balayage and highlights, there are several factors to consider. If you're looking for a low-maintenance style with a more natural and gradual regrowth process, balayage may be the right choice for you. However, if you prefer a more defined and controlled color placement or a more dramatic transformation, traditional highlights might be the better option.

Ultimately, the choice between balayage and highlights comes down to personal preference, your desired hair color outcome, and consultation with a professional colorist. 

Contact a professional to learn more about hair color services