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Color block hair is ideal for anyone craving fantasy hair but can’t yet commit to a complete hue overhaul. Here’s what an expert wants you to know about the trending look, plus 10 of our favorite styles.

Try the Trend: Color Blocking is the Fantasy Hair Trend That Gives a Nod to the ‘90s

Color block hair is ideal for anyone craving fantasy hair but can’t yet commit to a complete hue overhaul. Here’s what an expert wants you to know about the trending look, plus 10 of our favorite styles.

It’s officially Gemini season, and if there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that two are often better than one—especially when it comes to pretty . If you want to experiment with a fantasy shade like but can’t imagine fully parting ways with your bottled , we have a feeling you’ll want to keep the color block hair trend (interchangeably referred to as block color hair) on your radar.

“Color blocking is a fun way to freshen up your look and try different colors without giving up your natural base if you don't want to,” says Redken artist Sarah Bramham. “It's also super striking in .”

This chunky hair coloring method is like 2023’s way of giving a subtle nod to the thick streaks we saw in the late 90s and 2000s. Here’s what the stylist wants you to know about color blocking hair, her favorite color combinations, and some upkeep advice. Then, keep scrolling to peep our ten most coveted looks, and be prepared to block out an appointment with your stylist.

What is color blocking in hair?

Like the fashion trend, color blocking hair pairs chunks of opposing shades together to create the ultimate standout look.

“Color blocking is a bold placement technique when sections or panels of hair are colored in contrasting colors,” explains Bramham. “You can use any color for color blocking, but contrast is key. While vivid colors are often [preferred], this technique can be done with natural hair colors, too. For example, copper with looks lovely together.”

If you’ve ever thrown on a yellow top with purple pants only to be pleasantly surprised at how well they just go together, the same could be said for color blocking hair. Certain combinations may catch you off guard, so be sure to gather some visual inspo to help steer you in the right direction (we can help with that below!).

Color block hair is ideal for anyone craving fantasy hair but can’t yet commit to a complete hue overhaul. Here’s what an expert wants you to know about the trending look, plus 10 of our favorite styles.

Good hair day by @constancerobbins

How do you part your hair for a color block?

One of the most exciting things about color block hair color is that getting creative with your parting guarantees a unique final look and produces the most dramatic transformation. You can have your stylist apply color diagonally on each side of your part, add a thick streak or two by your temples, or paint equal-sized chunks on both sides of the head.

“Color blocking can be subtle to head-turning,” says Bramham. “If you want to dabble or give it a try without a huge commitment, try color blocking half of the fringe area with either a lighter or darker shade than your natural or regular hue.”

Do you prefer for your color block to be less obvious? It’s totally possible.

“You could even do a few panels underneath your hair or the sides for some interest,” notes the Redken pro. We adore peekaboo hair color because when you pick up your hair to throw it into a or a you’ll reveal the fun pop of color hiding beneath.

Regarding styling, Bramham says that color block hair can be worn straight or with texture. What matters most is that the color placement is added where you normally style and part your hair for a neat and even result.

Good hair day by @heartandsoulhairartistry

What is the difference between color block and Gemini hair?

Block color hair and Gemini hair are often confused, but Bramham stresses that there’s a key difference.

“Color blocking can have just one or many panels of varying colors, and Gemini hair is strictly two colors—one on one each half of the head.” Peep the above photo for a Gemini hair visual.

Good hair day by

How much upkeep does color blocking entail?

Bramham says keeping up with color blocking is quite simple and requires your usual four-to-six-week touch-up and refresh. One caveat is that the actual application of color may take longer than other coloring techniques since each section or panel must be followed precisely to maintain that chunky, block-like appearance.

Color block hair is ideal for anyone craving fantasy hair but can’t yet commit to a complete hue overhaul. Here’s what an expert wants you to know about the trending look, plus 10 of our favorite styles.

How do you care for color block hair at home?

“As with any color, you want to use salon-quality haircare to protect and support the longevity of your color,” Bramham says. “I love Redken Color Extend Magnetics Shampoo because it is .”

The formula features a multi-targeted delivery system with key ingredients to prevent hair color fading and promote health. It’s also , which helps to balance the pH levels of the hair and care for the tone and vibrancy of professional color in between salon services. Follow it up with the line’s Color Extend Magnetics Conditioner for easy detangling, nourishment from root to tip, and shiny, vibrant hair color.

If you opt for color blocking, your colorist will likely use to lift your current hue before applying your new color. It’s worth noting that bleach will always cause some , but your technician will do their best to maintain the health and integrity of your strands during your appointment. Regardless, we recommend adding a weekly deep conditioning mask, such as Pureology’s Hydrate Superfood Treatment for Dry Hair, to your routine. The formula moisturizes dry hair with essential nutrients and protects color from the brand’s patented AntiFade Complex.

Ready for some major #hairgoals? Here are our top ten favorite color block styles to keep on your radar.

The 10 Best Color Block Hair Ideas to Bring to the Salon

Bloody Mary

Craving a cocktail? are the perfect beverage to pull color block hair inspiration from! Somewhere between and , bloody mary hair also weaves in asymmetrical chunks of to emulate the salt on the rim of the delicious brunch sip.

Good hair day by @jasminejun

Platinum Bob with Brown Face-Frame

A platinum with brunette color block highlights takes this ‘do to the next level and is reminiscent of the popular . Keep your blonde bright and protected with a -neutralizing serum like Shu Uemura Art of Hair’s YūBi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Heat Protecting Hair Serum.

Good hair day by @hairbysamanthaj_

Salt-and-Pepper Color Block

Do you have grays that constantly crop up near your hairline? This salt-and-pepper block color hair idea is a modern way to while maintaining your rich base.

Good hair day by @utopiarezosalon

Gray Color Block

Here’s another way to embrace —or at the very least, subtly experiment with it. Add a chunk of gray on one side of the hair, or do both if you already have clusters of silvers near your temples.

Good hair day by @mo__beautii

Magenta Ringlets

Livening up your brunette locks is as easy as a small splash of . A curl spray like L'Oreal Professionnel’s Serie Expert Curl Expression Curls Reviver Spray can help revive your pattern without a full wash day, which can otherwise prematurely dull your punchy pink hue.

Good hair day by

Diagonally-Placed Turquoise

We love the geometric element of these diagonal turquoise panels. If you’re into the , this block color hair idea will be a surefire stunner.

Good hair day by @baileyslayshair

Black and White

There’s no arguing that black and white is a classic.

“[The color blocking technique] can be used on any age, but extreme color combinations of white-blonde and black wear better on the younger,” says Bramham. “This is only because very dramatic colors can enhance features we may want to minimize as we age.”

Good hair day by @hairbymakennatracy

Caramel Brown Color Block

One streak of is all its takes to lighten up and add a touch of brightness to your complexion.

Good hair day by @looksbyjem

Bubblegum Pink

Inspired by sugary packs of chewing gum, bubblegum pink is a sweet shade that never goes out of style. If you’ve spent years in blonde territory, pink block color hair may be just what you need to switch it up—you really can have the best of both worlds.

Good hair day by @sophiayasminhair

Half-and-Half Blonde Fringe

are here to stay; luckily, they pair exceptionally well with bold color placements. Ask your stylist to dye half of your fringe blonde and lighten up a few tendrils around the temples for a new twist on the trend. Tousle your strands with a few Redken Beach Spray spritzes for an effortlessly textured look, and you’re ready to go!

Discover more hair color trends on and use our to book a color block hair appointment with a stylist near you!

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