Headlines the Salon Blog

So you want color? What technique you should ask for?

Nazeli Pogosyan - Monday, November 20, 2017

Ombre, sombre, balayage!

The hair world can sometimes be confusing and is full of new styles and new verbiage to go with it. So, what are these new techniques and looks? How do you know what to ask your stylist for when you are in the salon? In an ever-changing environment of fast moving fashion, color in the hair industry is more versatile than ever before and we are here to help you figure out what look is right for you!


    The first step to knowing what to ask your stylist for in color is identifying the difference between some of these new terms which are hot right now. We would like to explain some styles and techniques. Balayage, for example, is commonly mistaken as a style when it is actually technique!


Lets keep it simple:


    Balayage comes from the French root balayer or “to sweep”.  The technique of balayaging involves painting highlights onto the hair in a sweeping motion in order to create a graduated and natural effect. Though, balayage is a great method to achieve looks such as the ombre or sombre, asking your stylist for balayage is essentially only asking for soft and blended highlighting. Balayage is a great way to achieve that sun-kissed brightness that grows out seamlessly!


    Ombre and sombre; lets tackle these two together. For the most part, the ombre has become a recognized style. Lets repeat that, ombre is a style! The techniques used to create an ombre can vary from the use of balayage, foiling, a mixture of the two, or a variety of other techniques. You can identify an ombre by the contrast of tones between the roots and ends. Ombres can be a gradual shift in gradient as your eye follows the hair shaft, or a drastic shift from depth to brightness depending on what style speaks to you! This brings us into the sombre. Sombre has evolved from people asking for an ombre, but not wanting the harsh contrast between tones. Ombre became the “soft ombre” and sombre was born!


    Whew! There is the tip of the iceberg on color trends. We know hairdresser jargon can get confusing. This cheat sheet should help you find the right words to get exactly what you want from your stylist. Most importantly though, don’t be afraid to ask questions! Stay tuned for our next post to keep up with what is happening behind the chair and behind the scenes. Cheers!

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