40 Purple Highlight Ideas For Every Hair Color | Hair.com

Hair Color Ideas and Inspiration

40 Photos That Will Make You Want Purple Highlights Now

07 June 2018
close up photo of purple highlights in hair
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Emily Arata

Senior Editor, Hair.com

As an employee of L’Oréal, Emily works with celebrity stylists to make finding the right cut, color, or style easier than ever before. She's previously written for Allure, Elite Daily, and First We Feast.

It’s 2018 and every hair color in the rainbow is possible. Of all the shades, we’re hot for purple highlights. Get inspired to try this dramatic color with these purple highlight ideas.

Brown Hair

Brunette ladies often feel left out of bright or whimsical color trends, but that doesn’t have to be the case with purple. Whether you prefer a pastel lavender or goth-inspired eggplant, your accent color will play nicely with that chocolate brown base. Talk to your colorist about a hair care system to maintain your newly applied shade.

Black Hair

We adore a statement hair color and few make more of an entrance than black hair paired with vampy plum highlights. For winter or fall, this look packs a punch and doesn’t require getting rid of your naturally dark mane. Onyx and purple are best in short cuts, so pair this color duo with your pixie cut or bob.

Peekaboo

If you’re trying out purple hair for the first time, you might be a little shocked by the striking color change. One of our favorite ways to ease through that transition period is by starting out with peekaboo highlights that sit beneath the top layer of the hair. As their name suggests, these gorgeous jewel-like strands poke out of updos and blowouts, adding a touch of violet to any look.

Light Hair

Have you taken the plunge and given pastels a shot? These bright, spring-like shades add a touch of whimsy to any hair shade, whether you’re dealing with dark blonde or light brown locks. The look is youthful and punchy, just like you are.

Streaks

Polite, subtle highlights have had their time. Now, we’re interested in color that’s as splashy as possible. Get inspired by this dramatic purple transformation.

Afro

Who says only girls with straight hair can pull off purple? Deeper versions of the shade look gorgeous against dark skin, so give it a try on textured hair.

Lowlights

Purple can’t be tamed, so don’t limit yourself by restraining it to highlights or ombre. Instead, give purple a chance to shine as a lowlight color on chocolate or medium brown strands. If you’re feeling particularly bold, it’s also an option for blonde hair—you’ll just need to be super careful about purple bleeding into the rest of your mane.

Short Hair

If your vibe is more sweet than edgy, try faded purple on a bob or lob.

Long Hair

If you believe in going big when you make changes, try purple on very long hair. A purple high ponytail is killer.

Balayage

Balayage plays well with purple because it blends the edges into the rest of your hair color. For a fantastical treat, combine it with pastel pink and magenta.

Ombre

Don’t be shy about trying purple. Paint a few choice streaks into your mid lengths and ends for a dynamic, modern final result.

Gray

Paired with a vibrant purple, gray hair is a total fantasy. If you’re more interested in looking like some otherworldly superhero than a 9-to-5 weekend warrior, talk to your stylist about the best way to put this color combo to work.

Burgundy

Burgundy is a true, deep red shade, which stands out dramatically. If you’re feeling a little vampy, this hue is an excellent idea.

Silver

Gray hair is all the rage right now. From Instagram to the runways, dozens of influencers and models are wearing the color. To tone down your jet-black mane, finely blended silver highlights are a gorgeous pick.

Blue

When it comes to hair, there’s never a reason not to go big. We love the blend of purple and dark hair that’s taken over Instagram. The blend is electric, which makes it perfect for the summer season.

Plum

While shades like cherry cola might incorporate notes of red, plum is a true purple shade that adds vibrancy to black strands. On cropped hair, plum is a punchy style statement.

Shoulder Length

Purple doesn’t have to be the center of attention—you can also wear it as a subtle watercolor fade that complements any base color you choose.

Magenta

For ladies working with cool complexions, magenta highlights are about to be a game changer. The raspberry-hued shade walks the thin line between purple and pink in the very best way. Over the top of medium or dark brown hair, you’ll be pleased with how subtle the shade can be. This is a win-win situation.

Light Brown

For a fiery change to your hair color, choose purple highlights mixed with red and pink over a light brown base. It’s a perfect transition into your first fantasy hair color.

Aqua

Get a mermaid vibe going with an aqua-purple color combination. We can’t guarantee you the effortless waves they have, but your color will be on point.

Reddish

Whereas many highlights for redheads focus on gold and blonde notes, this purple-red creates dazzling, multifaceted color that’s summer appropriate and unique. Looking to step out of your comfort zone? This is the way.

Light Blue

If you don’t think light blue and purple play well together, you’ve never seen cotton candy hair. The blend of pastels is positively delicious.

White

If you’ve done all the work to achieve (and maintain!) white blonde hair, it makes sense that you’ll start to become a little exhausted by the shade. Breathe life back into your ‘do with a purple-kissed shade.

Platinum

For a surprising take on platinum blonde hair, ask your stylist about adding subtle purple influences to the roots or ends.

Rose Gold

What isn’t rose gold at this point? If you’re looking for added dimension in your rose gold ‘do, give pale purple highlights a try.

Auburn Hair

Auburn and light purple are an unconventional color combination, but one that makes us smile every time.

Caramel

Ever caught yourself wishing that your hair had a little more shimmer and life to it? If so, we’d recommend you try caramel with purple highlights. The shimmery shade is beloved by celebrity colorists for its versatility.

Silver Hair

Silver and purple are a color match made in heaven. Although this ethereal combo is rather high maintenance, a practiced blonde should have no problem with the maintenance schedule.

Chunky Highlights

It may no longer be the early ‘00s, but we’re planning to maintain our teenage ways. This year, the razor cut has come back into fashion in a big way. That opens the door for statement highlights around the face and throughout the mid-lengths, particularly on bobs and lobs. Live life like you’re always attending a pop-punk music festival, is what we say.

Lavender

If you’ve already spent time deciding where to put your purple highlights, you still have one more step before you’re ready for your appointment: Choosing a shade. The most obvious choice is lavender, which is one of several pastel shades to take over the hair world within the last few years. Want to be on-trend? This is the way to go.

Lilac

Lilac flies a little more under the radar than lavender does, but it’s our favorite faded color to try out. If you’re starting with a dirty blonde or golden base, a watercolor wash of lilac is a beautiful and flattering addition to your ‘do. Even better? The more this pink-purple shade shampoos out, the better it looks. Faded is the new neon, babes.

Violet

Like lilac, violet is a shade from the purple family that we just don’t see frequently enough. Our favorite part about this pure purple hue is the way it plays alongside other colors. Want to give a fantasy technique like sunset hair (red, orange, and purple) or phoenix hair (yellow, orange, violet) a shot? Violet is your new best friend.

Purple, Pink, And Teal

While we’re talking statement colors, there’s no rule that purple highlights mean only purple highlights. The only thing better than one dreamy shade is three. With that in mind, it’s time to talk about the seriously stylish combination of purple, pink, and teal. These colors complement each other while creating a flashy, gorgeous ‘do that’s truly one of a kind.

Geode

For those of you who only feel comfortable dying your hair multiple colors if said combination has a special name and Instagram hashtag, we present geode hair. This trend surfaced last year but hasn’t lessened in popularity just yet, which is excellent for all brunettes working their natural hair color. This blend of glittery greens, purples, and blues is a true showstopper.

Purple And Navy

Geode hair isn’t the only accessible way to add gem-like tones to your mane. Instead of spending time and money trying to keep neon or pastel highlights vibrant, choose shades that are closer to your naturally dark base color. We’d suggest deep purple and navy, a winning combination that never seems to go out of style. You’ll have to deal with less maintenance and fewer trips to the salon, which is a cause we can readily get behind.

Maroon

Redheads, this one’s for you. Maroon is a sneaky shade of purple that’s itching to be burgundy, combining deep plum notes with hints of red. It’s ideal if you like changing up your hair seasonally (in which case, it’s an excellent fall-to-winter power move). On long waves, maroon lowlights are the way to go.

Dark Red

Working with a corporate dress code or just hoping for hair color that makes your face the focal point? Dark reddish purple highlights are subtle, classic take on purple that won’t totally overwhelm you or that stylish outfit you spent 40 minutes putting together. Better yet, there’s no age range that won’t work for this color. Chic grandmothers out there? We see you. This is basically calling your name.

Electric Blue

On very pale skin, statement blues and purples make a serious impression. It only makes sense that you’d blend them into your black base color, enjoying two dramatic colors at the very same time.

Turquoise Blue

Then again, you might want to make a serious statement with your style. Turquoise with purple highlights looks striking in contrast to black hair, so consider it instead of pastels or blonde. Just be aware you may be in for multiple trips to the salon.

Metallic

If you can’t have fun with your hair, what can you have fun with? We love the reflective light of this purple ‘do.

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