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Strandlighting: Everything You Need To Know About The Latest Hair Color Trend

photo of hair using strandlighting technique
Being the mane addicts that we are, we take pride in staying in the know about all things hair color-related. With the amount of color techniques trending in 2019, however, even we can admit that remembering all of them can be tricky.

If you’re all caught up on foilayage, money piece, and teasylights, we have another trending color technique to fill you in on: strandlighting. The up-and-coming highlighting technique is taking over Instagram, with tons of women opting for the natural-looking highlighting technique. Whether you have dark brown hair or ash blonde locks, this might be the subtle color change of your dreams.

photo of hair using strandlighting technique

What is the strandlighting technique?

If you’ve ever worn a full head of chunky highlights, the streaky grow-out that happens when you’re overdue for a touch-up might sound familiar. If you love the look of highlights, but don't have time to head back to the salon every six weeks, strandlighting may be the perfect technique for you. Strandlighting is the new and improved way to add subtle, low-maintenance dimension and brightness to any hair color.

At first glance, the strandlighting technique is very similar to traditional highlights. Your colorist will use foils to lighten and brighten individual sections of hair to create pops of color throughout your mane. This is where the strandlighting technique comes into play. Instead of applying foils to large sections of your hair, your colorist will apply foils to baby fine segments of hair. The end result? Thin, natural-looking highlights that create a seamlessly blended glow and subtly transform your mane.

Concerned about the damaging effects of bleach? The technique allows your colorist to work with smaller sections of hair, which means less hair may be damaged in the process of creating your strandlighted look.


photo of hair using strandlighting technique

How do you maintain strandlights?

Looking to give your strands a low-maintenance glow just in time for spring? The good news: Because of the placement and density of strandlights, the technique allows you to wait about two to three months between touch-up appointments. Between appointments, however, you’ll want to invest in color-protecting products to maintain that gorgeous new hue.

First thing’s first: You’ll need to swap your regular shampoo and conditioner for a system formulated for color-treated hair. We love the Biolage ColorLast Shampoo and Conditioner. The shampoo nourishes and protects to help maintain the depth, tone, and shine of color-treated hair. The conditioner moisturizes to prolong color’s vibrant bloom while leaving hair soft and detangled.

Even with your colorist using minimal amounts of bleach, your strands might still need a bit of TLC. We recommend incorporating a weekly hair treatment like the Redken All Soft Heavy Cream Super Treatment into your hair care routine. This anti-frizz, moisturizing hair mask for dry and brittle hair helps your mane regain strength and softness, delivers intense moisture, and helps control frizz.

photo of hair using strandlighting technique


Who do strandlights work best for?

The best part about strandlighting is that the technique looks stunning when applied to any hair color. If you’re a blonde, ask your colorist for strandlights to give your natural hue a sunkissed glow. On darker hair colors, your colorist can apply strandlights a shade or two lighter than your all over color for subtle dimension.

Ready to try strandlights for yourself? We’d love to see your final look! Use the hashtag #HairDotCom to share your photos with us.

Interested in trying strandlights for yourself? Use our salon locator to book an appointment at a salon near you.

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