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Hair Makeup: What Is It, How Long It Lasts, And How To Try It

photo of stylist applying hair makeup to woman's hair
Commitment can be tough and achieving the latest and greatest trends the hair world has to offer can feel a lot like taking on a long-term relationship. Between the upkeep, cost, and potential damage of light colors, it can be hard for even the bravest of hair daredevils to take the plunge. If you’re commitment-shy but itching to switch things up from your naturally dark brown hair, you’re going to love hair makeup.

We’re breaking down what hair makeup is, how long it lasts, and the best hair makeup products on the market right now.


What is hair makeup?

Think of hair makeup like taking a car for a test drive before actually making the purchase. Hair makeup allows you to apply shades of temporary hair color to your mane. Like applying a full face of regular makeup, the color can be washed away easily—meaning the hue is commitment-free, low-risk, and requires no maintenance.


How long does hair makeup last?

The longevity of your hair makeup depends entirely on which product you choose. Most hair makeup looks disappear with one shampoo, while other formulas can hold up a bit longer before completelyfading.

Ready to make up your mane? Keep scrolling for the eight hair makeup products you need to know about.


What are the best hair makeup products to try?

hair makeup

Shu Uemura Art Of Hair Tokyo Vibes Hair Makeup

If you’re bored of the same old blonde and brunette hair colors, it’s time to think outside the box! Meet Shu Uemura’s Tokyo Vibes Hair Makeup, the first-ever professional, washable hair makeup range. The line includes shades of pink, gold, green, and purple. Whether you opt for all over color, subtle streaks, or a colorful blend of hues, be sure to pair your look with braids or curls to show off maximum dimension.

Shu Uemura Art of Hair Tokyo Vibes Hair Makeup, $35.00 MSRP

hair makeup

Clairol Color Crave Hair Makeup

Craving a fantasy hair color? The Clairol Color Crave Hair Makeup allows you to take a range of vibrant hues for a spin—no strings attached. Simply apply the product onto dry strands and apply heat with a blow dryer to lock in your faux hue for the day.

Clairol Color Crave Hair Makeup, $6.99 MSRP

hair makeup

IGK Amaro Ombre Highlight Spray

If you think you missed out on the peak of the ombre hair trend, fear not— the hair coloring technique is still going strong. Looking to try an ombre look before hitting your stylist up for the real thing? You’re going to love the IGK Amaro Ombre Highlight Spray. The product allows you to apply temporary highlights, ombre, and subtle dimension to your strands in just a few sprays.

IGK Amaro Ombre Highlight Spray, $29.00 MSRP

hair makeup

IGK Girls Club Pink Ombre Spray

In 2019, we’re loving all shades of pink. Whether you desire bubblegum, pastel, or hot pink hue, IGK Girls Club Pink Ombre Spray can make it happen. Spritz the buildable formula onto hair to create your ideal pink hair shade that washes out with one shampoo.

IGK Girls Club Pink Ombre Spray, $29.00 MSRP

hair makeup

Kristin Ess Rose Gold Temporary Tint

You’ve likely heard the buzz about rose gold hair color—stunning at first glance, but not the easiest shade to maintain. With the Kristin Ess Rose Gold Temporary Tint, you can mimic the effect of a shimmery rose gold highlighter on your strands. The best part? The product washes out with one shampoo. No salon touch-ups, no problem!

Kristin Ess Rose Gold Temporary Tint, $12.00 MSRP

hair makeup

Splat Hair Chalk

Hair chalks are an oldie but a goodie (and one of the easiest ways to apply hair makeup). Swipe the Splat Hair Chalk onto dry, freshly-washed locks to instantly achieve a pastel hair color.

Splat Hair Chalk, $5.99 MSRP

hair makeup

Dark And Lovely Go Intense Color Sprays

For ladies with dark brown hair you no longer need bleach to play with lighter colors. The Dark And Lovely Go Intense Color Sprays are formulated to give darker strands an instant pop of color. Not to mention: The temporary color spray is also formulated for textured, curly hair.

Dark And Lovely Go Intense Color Sprays, $7.99 MSRP

hair makeup

Lime Crime Unicorn Hair

If you’ll soon be braving the desert heat for festival season, you’re going to want a long-lasting formula that can withstand even the warmest of climates. Pair your festival hairstyle with a shade from Lime Crime’s Unicorn Hair line. From pastels tints to full coverage colors, there’s no better way to amp up your bohemian braids and space buns for the big event. 

Lime Crime Unicorn Hair, $16.00 MSRP

Looking for more expert hair tips? Use our salon locator to book an appointment at a salon near you.

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