12 Hottest Red Highlights To Add Heat To Your Look

Color Ideas

The Hottest Red Highlights To Add Some Heat To Your Look

28 August 2017
orange hair dye
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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.

Everybody who knows anything about hair secretly has a desire to become a redhead. It’s not as much of a secret as you might think, either. Who doesn’t want to live a spicier, more passionate life?

If you’re not ready to totally trade in your current hair color, you should seriously think about trying out red highlights. It’s all the fun without any overwhelming commitments. Instead of having to change your makeup routine and wardrobe to reflect your new coloring, you’ll be able to carry on without changing anything but the way you carry yourself. (New hair is a real ego boost.)

Are you seeing red yet? Don’t worry, you will be soon. Once you’ve tried red highlights, there’s no going back to the land of blonde and brunette.

Ginger

When you think of red hair, you probably jump to the most orange option first. Thanks to decades of TV and movie redheads, pure ginger is stuck in our collective mind.

This shade works well on dark brown and black hair, providing a peppery finish that’s intriguing to the eye. Couldn’t everyone’s life (and hair) use a little more spice?

Copper

If you like the look of ginger but can’t quite get behind a shade that’s so orange, give copper highlights a try. This hue is all about the perfect intersection of bright red and orange. It’s chic and often seen on red carpets.

We like the way copper highlights look on women with dark red, chestnut, or medium brown hair. They’ll add visual interest to your mane, and mimic the look of natural, sun-kissed highlights.

Orange-Red

Here’s one for the bold and brave: orangey highlights. This neon shade may be cartoon character-worthy, but that doesn’t mean you should overlook it. If you love ostentatious beauty and can’t stand pastels, give orange-red a try.

Like all vibrant hues, this look will require a little extra love and care. Talk to your hair stylist about maintenance before you ever sit down in the salon chair.

Blood Orange

Do you like orange, but aren’t so into the neon craze? In that case, let us direct you to blood orange. This shade can best be described as a smoky orange, one that includes notes of caramel and dark red. 

This is a sexy, laidback shade that’s a far cry from orange-red. We like to see it paired with dark red or brown hair, providing a fiery element without going overboard. That’s a statement hair color, girl.

Strawberry 

Are you a blonde who can’t commit to the redhead lifestyle just yet? Or, perhaps you’re a redhead who’s tired of a one-note look? Strawberry highlights are the thing missing in your life. The red-blonde shade complements warm blonde and red hair, adding a beach babe aspect to an otherwise traditional shade

On waves, this color is bombshell-worthy.

Rose Gold

For the woman who never wanted to be a redhead at all, rose gold is the perfect highlight color. It’s a new version of last year’s pastel pink trend, one that incorporates buttery notes alongside the rosy shades. 

Honey, caramel, and platinum hair all benefit from rose gold highlights. The same goes for much darker shades like light brown and chestnut. If you’re curious about the idea of red highlights but not sold completely, give rose gold a shot.

Plum

Oh, plum. This shade holds a special place in our hearts. Plum is elegant and muted, fitting in perfectly with brown and black hair. Instead of a raging neon shade, you’ll be left with a purple-tinted ‘do that’s playful without overwhelming your face.

We love the look of plum highlights on ladies with cool-toned skin. In short haircuts, this color is surprisingly stylish.

Dark Red

When it comes to subtle hair colors, dark red is one of our favorites. On espresso hair or its very dark cousins, dark red hair highlights are corporate office appropriate while still feeling fun. We like to see them in long hair, dispersed throughout the mid-lengths and ends.

If you have medium or dark skin, this shade is your best choice when it comes to trying out a shade of red. Really love the shade? Go ahead and try a whole mane of it.

Cherry

We love a red-purple shade, and cherry is no exception. The hunt for the perfect highlight on dark brown hair is over, thanks to this hue. On dark brown, red, and black hair, cherry highlights will bring life and dimension to your mane.

If you’re looking to add extra panache, pair cherry highlights with a more brilliant red. On dark skin tones, this look is dynamite.

Raspberry

Like cherry-colored highlights, raspberry highlights are a bold, vampy move. They look stunning against medium and dark skin. However, this shade falls closer to true purple than cherry. It’s splashy and vivid, a little wilder than your average hair color. 

Making a mane statement is easy when you have hair that stands out. Looking for dynamic, beautiful color? Raspberry is the right choice for you.

Blood Red

Here is a hair color that’s not messing around. Unlike the subtler members of this color family, blood red packs a punch. This blazing shade works best as part of a punk look, especially against very dark hair.

To make the most of your blood red strands, make sure you’re maintaining their vibrancy. Ask your hairstylist to recommend a color safe shampoo and conditioner, and don’t wash too often.

Wine

Wine is one of our favorite things, so it only makes sense we’re also in love with it as a highlight color. This grape-inspired shade is a deep red, one that hints at notes of purple without going into full eggplant territory. 

Because this shade is so rich, we recommend it as a way to freshen up very dark hair during fall or winter. On dark chocolate locks, wine highlights add visual interest and texture. If you fall in love with the color, we’d even recommend trying it as a dip dye on very long hair.

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