Summer has arrived, so you know what that means: It’s time to break out your breezy outfits, sip on some crisp rosé, and pencil in ample hours for the beach or pool. The seasonal shift may also inspire you to research the hottest summer hair color ideas to commemorate everyone’s favorite solstice.
To help you narrow down some contenders, we’re showcasing some of the trendiest and most flattering summer hair colors for 2023. From the perfect summer hair colors for brunettes and blondies to must-have fashion hues like pink, we’re confident you’ll find a winner while perusing this carefully curated list of fun summer hair colors.
How to Care for Your Summer Hair Color
Let's cover some hair care basics before diving into fresh summer hair color ideas. We tapped Min Kim, L'Oréal Professionnel global brand ambassador, for everything you need to know about keeping your new ‘do healthy and vibrant.
Don’t skip sun protection.
Kim doesn't take the matter lightly when it comes to preserving summer hair colors. “Sun is hair color's mortal enemy,” she says. There is no need to skip the beach or pool, but do prioritize sun protection to keep the sun’s powerful UV rays at bay.
We’re fans of the Kérastase Soleil products, including the Kérastase Soleil Multi-Protection Beautifying Cream—a leave-in that nixes humidity and frizz while shielding your strands from sun exposure—and the Kérastase Soleil Huile Sirene Hair Oil Mist, a texturizing spray that delivers touchable beach waves and protects from the sun.
There are also scalp sunscreens you can apply directly to your hairline and part line to protect the exposed skin, and hats and sun umbrellas are your best friends, too.
Protect your strands when swimming.
When cannon-balling headfirst into the pool or lake this summer, keep in mind how chlorine and salt can damage your hair—especially if you’re a salon blonde.
Chlorine is notoriously drying and can turn lighter locks green, while salt and water create a saline solution that can make hair feel rough and brittle long after leaving the beach. Try rinsing your hair with fresh water as soon as possible to help mitigate the damage after swimming, and rely on moisturizing shampoos, conditioners, and masks during the summer months. You can also protect your hair prior to taking a dip.
“Always wet your hair with fresh water before exposure to chlorine [and salt water],” Kim advises. This step allows your hair to absorb more of the regular water, leaving less room for chlorine or salt-infused water to infiltrate your strands.
Use products for color-treated hair.
Another way to preserve your summer hair color is to use products formulated specifically for color-treated hair. These will work overtime for you to maintain the vibrancy and health of your hair.
Start by swapping your regular shampoo and conditioner for a system like Pureology’s Hydrate Shampoo + Conditioner Duo, a deeply hydrating pair that boasts the brand's powerful AntiFade Complex. Kérastase Soleil Bain Après Soleil Shampoo and Masque Après Soleil Hair Mask are another option. Each is formulated with anti-oxidizing elements that help balance the harsh effects of summer elements.
Give your strands some TLC.
Using a hair mask after you’ve played in the pool or splashed in the sea can also nourish your summer hair color.
“Adding a mask treatment afterward is even better,” Kim says. “These nourishing balms work to soothe and restore sun-exposed strands and are truly a luxurious treat after a sun-filled day. As an added bonus, a mask is easy to take with you on your next holiday!”
Try Redken All Soft Heavy Cream Hair Mask, an indulgent treat for your hair that nixes dullness, dryness, and damage.
Following these expert tips, you can count on healthy summer hair colors with long-lasting vibrancy all season long.
Should hair be lighter or darker for summer?
We often associate lighter hair colors for summer, largely because more time spent outside in the sunshine naturally lightens our strands. That said, any hue you choose for these warmer months will look stunning. What’s most important is that you’re wearing a color that complements your complexion and tastes and excites you to walk out the door!
What hair color is in for summer 2023?
We’re not much for following hard and fast rules, so opt for a summer hair color that’s speaking to you right now. That said, if you’re looking for some guidance, summer is a great time to experiment with going a bit lighter.
For example, you could take your blonde a bit brighter or add lightness to dark strands via highlights or balayage. Another cute summer hair color idea is to try a money piece, skunk stripe, or color-depositing conditioners for a low-commitment change.
Since summer is arguably one of the more “playful” seasons, it’s also a great time to experiment with fashion colors, like red, pink, teal, or yellow. Another quick way to add some pizzazz to your mane is via some cute summer hair accessories. Have fun with it!
From various summer blonde hair colors to summer ombre hair color ideas to summer hair colors for dark skin, pale complexions, and everything in between, we’ve got you covered. Without further ado, here are 65 summer 2023 hair color trends to shape your next salon visit.
The 65 Best Summer Hair Colors for 2023
Strawberry Shortcake Swirl
We can almost hear the bells of the ice cream truck coming down our childhood block when we gaze at this strawberry shortcake-inspired summer hair color.
Chocolate and Vanilla Soft Serve
Speaking of ice cream, we’d love to take a bite out of this chocolate and vanilla soft-serve swirl. Not to mention, half-and-half hair color is one of the most sought-after summer 2023 hair color trends.
It would be an injustice to summer hair color ideas everywhere if mermaid-hued hair weren’t at the top of our list. When opting for this aspirational sea fable look, we recommend investing in a hair care system that preserves the vibrancy of fast-fading hair colors, like Matrix’s Keep Me Vivid Shampoo and Conditioner.
Thanks to its wearability, many celebrities have toyed around with ginger hair color a time or two, and you can, too! Be sure to consult your stylist for this ‘do, who can expertly whip up the most flattering shade based on your skin tone.
Color Block Blonde
The ‘90s called, and they’re rather envious of 2023’s resident chunky highlighting technique: the color block. Adding thick, bright blonde streaks around the face can help break up the monotony of black hair and add a pop of brightness to your complexion for the summer.
Ladies born with naturally red hair, it’s your moment to shine. Natural-looking shades of red hair are having their time in the limelight. They’re perfect for those not ready to commit to a drastic all-over color—and Redken’s Shades EQ Bonder Inside Copper Blondes can get you that much closer to slaying your red hair goals.
Spice up your brunette base with subtle pops of chili chocolate woven through your mid-lengths to ends.
Dark roots are always a good look, but have you ever considered colorful roots instead? This high-contrast placement adds a touch of vibrancy to your summer hue in an unexpected way.
Mother Of Pearl
If you want to add summer vibes to your platinum hue, take inspiration straight from the beach via mother-of-pearl hair color. Like the pearl you find inside a clam, this vibrant shade incorporates hints of pastel blue, pink, and lavender throughout a platinum blonde base.
Whether you plan to spend hours soaking in the sun or laying under your beach umbrella, honey blonde is one blonde hair color that everyone can count on. No matter your skin tone, this stunning blend of gold, amber, and light brown shades is a no-fail choice for your summer hair color change.
Looking to brighten your brunette mane without the commitment of all-over color? Ask your colorist for honey highlights for a low-maintenance sun-kissed effect.
Teal hair is bright, bold, and electrifying—like all the best hair colors for the summer are! If you have pale skin, this blue-green hue is perfect for you this season.
Indulge in a hue inspired by your favorite childhood summer dessert. To achieve sherbet hair color, your colorist will blend shades of peach, orange, and bright pink for a dark rainbow look ideal for summertime.
Green might sound like an unexpected hair color idea for summer, but don’t count it out just yet! From pale mint green to jewel-toned emerald, celebrities love this versatile hair color in every shade. It’s all about finding the perfect one for your skin tone.
Purple With Hints of Blue
When it comes to statement-making hair colors, two are sometimes better than one! First, consider two shades that perfectly complement each other (like purple and blue), then decide how subtle or dramatic you want your contrast to be.
Despite the rising temperatures, this wintry shade sticks around for the summertime. Even though maintaining white hair can be quite demanding, every second will be worth it when you’re swimming in compliments. Be sure to use a purple shampoo like Shu Uemura Art Of Hair Yūbi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Shampoo and the brand’s Yūbi Blonde Anti-Brass Purple Heat Protecting Hair Serum to counteract brassiness for a long-lasting cool-toned blonde.
In honor of our favorite fruit and emoji, peach hair color is the delicious shade guaranteed to brighten up your summer.
Blonde Hair With Lowlights
There is no better time to test the “blondes have more fun” theory than during summer. For a dimensional twist, ask your stylist for lowlights, which will add just the right amount of dimension to your mane (minus the upkeep and damage).
Blue Ombre Hair
We’re big believers that ombre hair will never go out of style. This color technique has been going strong for almost a decade and shows no signs of slowing down this summer. We love this seamless blend of blue shades, giving us major beachy mermaid vibes.
There is a new brunette shade spamming our social media feeds every day. The latest and greatest is honey brown hair, a sultry blend of light brown and honey tones made to create a beautiful sun-kissed effect.
Amber Honey Brown
Dial up the warmth just a notch higher via amber honey brown. It has a slightly redder tone that will enhance your glowing summer skin.
Honey Brown Money Piece
If you’re not ready to take your full head of brunette to honey brown, consider a honey brown money piece. It instantly freshens up your look for that low-key, sunkissed vibe.
Ready to get in touch with your inner vixen? Red hair balayage is the perfect way to do it. With so many shades of red to choose from, you’ll never get bored experimenting with this trending style.
Sometimes it feels like you need a vibrant shade to stand out from the crowd, but we’re here to tell you that dark chocolate hair can be just as striking as any bright hue. To keep your color from looking flat, ask your stylist for a hair gloss to ensure your strands always look shiny and alluring.
Trying to balance hair that is easy to maintain and statement hair colors for the summer can be difficult. We understand wanting to try something that’s out of the box but not wanting to spend all your money on maintenance. Say hello to mauve hair color; the perfect purple meets pink hue that’s flattering on everyone.
If there’s one hair color that works for every season, it’s rose gold. We can’t say we’re surprised because this color is utterly dreamy and romantic.
There are so many shades of blonde out there, and this variation lies smack in the middle. The greige blonde trend blends warm and cool blonde tones, creating a neutral, best-of-both-worlds hue. The best part about this summer hair color for blondes is that you can take it as dark or light as you want.
So long to the days when the sight of dark roots on your blonde hair made you cringe. This summer, we’re embracing hair growth and calling it “shadow roots.” Book an appointment with your colorist to blend your roots into your all-over color seamlessly. You (and your wallet) will thank us later.
A monochromatic black hair color looks flawless year-round. Make sure you're hydrating to keep your raven hair looking glossy and rich. We love the Mizani Moisture Fusion Intense Moisturizing Hair Mask, a hair conditioning treatment infused with cupuaçu butter, argan oil, and honey. If your hair isn’t naturally jet black and you want this hue, head into the salon for a professional dye job.
Instead of opting for a light shade to brighten your hair color, consider copper highlights. Adding a bold color to your mane redefines how we talk about dimension. Ask your stylist to add copper highlights to your dark brown hair for a dazzling and bright look.
There is no shade more suited to complement your glowing sun-kissed skin than golden brunette hair. A color-toning system like Matrix Brass Off Shampoo and Conditioner can keep your golden hue brass-free all season long.
Vivid colors are super on-trend this summer season, so expect to see electric hues everywhere you go. We recommend trying a bright orange, an invigorating color that flatters women of all different skin tones. For the ultimate low-maintenance summer styling routine, cut your locks into a trendy bixie.
Pastel Money Piece
For a fun twist on a money piece, consider something on the pastel spectrum. Pink is always a good option since it flatters so many skin tones, but have fun with it!
Dark Pastel Swirl
If you’re not keen on light and airy pastels, make a statement with a mixture of dark pastel hues. This is a great way for naturally darker hair colors to lean into the pastel trend without going ham on bleach, too. To protect the vibrancy, use a color-protecting shampoo and conditioner system, such as Biolage Professional Color Last Shampoo and Conditioner.
If you’re planning on sitting beachside all season long, try a hue that’s going to enhance your summer glow. Caramel brown complements women of all different skin tones and hair types. You can’t go wrong with a color that turns you into an ethereal summer queen.
Inspired by one of our favorite healthy snacks, strawberry blonde hair is the warm-toned hue that makes our mouths water. This red-leaning blonde shade is so rich and lush that we see no flaws.
Remember when “chunky” highlights were streaky blonde strips arbitrarily placed on your mane? We’re happy to say we've come a long way since then because chunky highlights have taken on a whole new meaning. To achieve this look, ask your stylist to use the hair ribboning technique to give you purposefully placed highlights that are effortlessly blended.
One of our favorite summer hair colors ever has to be bronde hair—and it’s not just because it reminds us of a blondie dessert. While both are sweetly satisfying, bronde hair is a popular blend of brown and blonde shades suitable for women of all different skin tones.
Chocolate Milkshake Hair
Chocolate milkshake hair color epitomizes the phrase “treat yourself.” Summertime is the perfect time to indulge in all your favorite things, so treat yourself to a well-deserved salon day.
We’ve all heard about dirty blonde hair, but what about dirty brunette? It’s a color that gives you all the dimension and warmth we love from dirty blonde without the upkeep. That’s definitely a win-win in our book.
Cool off this summer with a platinum hair color. This cool-toned shade of blonde is the refreshing glass of cold water you need in 90-degree weather. It’s light and fresh, making it the perfect summer look. Keep your platinum strands in tip-top shape with Redken Acidic Bonding Concentrate, an intense hair care system that strengthens and repairs damage. Discover the line on Ulta.com.
What we adore most about this summer hair color is its versatility. Mix some copper tones into your dark brown hair for a look that doesn’t stray too far from your comfort zone, or go full-on vixen with a bright reddish-copper shade all over your hair. Whatever you decide, you’ll surely shine brighter than a new penny everywhere you go. And FYI: This hair color is super complimentary for those with pale skin.
Dark Copper Balayage
If you’re not quite ready to go full-blown copper, consider adding dark copper balayage to your existing color. To maintain that richness, pick up a salon-quality shampoo for color-treated hair.
Despite us focusing on warmer hues, pastel violet is the trending cool-toned shade that’s making some serious headway in 2023. It’s certainly not for the faint of heart and involves a lot of maintenance, but it’s definitely a color worth putting on your summer bucket list.
Whether you’ve got dark brown hair or medium blonde, taking your hair to “dirty blonde” is a great way to lighten up your color for summer. Ask your stylist for a root smudge or to create shadow roots for an extra low-maintenance look.
Cool Dirty Blonde
We love a good dirty blonde hair color, and this cooler version feels ultra-hip for 2023. Pair it with your favorite scrunchy or hair accessory for a non-fussy, cool girl look (pun intended).
Did someone say lemonade? This splashy hue is perfect for summer and will definitely stand out in a crowd. To get there, you’ll want to ask your stylist to bring you down to an icy blonde and then add the perfect amount of sunshine yellow. This one of the best hair colors for the summer for dark to medium skin.
Pour us a glass, please! We’re calling it here: pink is always a good idea. Not only is it a fun hue, but it’s a pretty shade on so many skin tones. This sparkling version is especially apropos for summer.
Bringing in some golden blonde pieces via balayage is another way to transition your hair into summer territory easily.
Chocolate Brown With Babylights
If you’re looking for even less maintenance than the above options, babylights are the way to go! They add just enough warmth and sparkle to elevate your ‘do for summer splashing.
Instead of infusing your dark tresses with warmth, consider going cooler this summer via an ash bronde. Make sure to use a neutralizing purple or blue product to keep your locks perfectly bright and cool. Pureology Color Fanatic Top Coat + Tone Blue is a high-gloss blue topcoat that helps restore shine while neutralizing brassy tones.
Take your cue from one of summer’s prettiest flowers! Lavender hair is an unexpected summer hair color that flatters a broad range of skin tones. We particularly love the peekaboo color method. It involves applying a pop of color (read: lavender) on the lower layers of the hair for a vivid surprise when you run your hands through it.
Want to go even more muted with lavender hair color? Have your colorist sweep a super light streak around your face to satisfy your purple craving—a trick that pairs especially well with platinum or icy blonde hair.
Add warmth to your blonde hair for summer via classic butter blonde. This medium blonde shade leans on warm, buttery tones but infuses just enough cool blonde for a touch of brightness.
Dark Golden Blonde Hair
This darker take on butter blonde makes for an excellent summer refresh. Ask your colorist about Redken Shades EQ Bonder Inside Golden Level 10s to live out your golden blonde dreams.
Spun Golden Blonde
No matter your hair type or curl pattern, a silky, spun-gold blonde is a summer hair no-brainer. This brighter and lighter variation of dark golden blonde definitely screams, "I just got back from summer vacation!"
The perfect blend of cool and warm, natural brown is a gorgeous, flattering hair color that reigns all summer long. You can ask your stylist to add a gloss for extra shine.
This color is an excellent in-between for those wanting to go either lighter or darker. It’s a mixture of cool and warm and allows you to transition more slowly from blonde to brown (or vice versa).
Speaking of ash, we’re all in for ash blonde summer hair. It's a great option if you want to lighten up your existing hair color without going the platinum, butter, or honey route. Keep your blonde striking and healthy with the Matrix Unbreak My Blonde Shampoo and Conditioner, which helps reinforce weakened bonds to keep hair shiny, soft, and strong.
We’re digging the smoky hair trend for 2023, and there are so many ways to partake. One of our faves is smoky copper, which seamlessly combines the warmth of red tones with the coolness of ash brown.
Craving a rich summer hair color idea? Cinnamon balayage is the way to go. It's spicy in all the right ways and will be a knockout at the beach, pool, or wherever you're venturing this season.
The utter richness of this summer hair color is enough to make our hearts pitter-patter! It's the ideal combination of sultry brunette and sun-kissed blonde and will dazzle everywhere you walk.
Speaking of rich and dark strands for summer, one of our favorite summer hair color ideas is dark cherry. This look infuses bright crimson red into your existing dark tresses for a look that truly wows.
Tangerine on Magenta
We’re all about monochromatic moments for summer 2023, but this tangerine money piece paired with ultra-bright magenta is nothing short of gorgeous.
Pop the bubbly and bring on the champagne blonde. Our cup and heart overfloweth with this scintillating hair color for summer 2023. To keep your tresses sparkling, spritz a bit of Redken Shine Flash Hair Spray as the final step in your hair styling routine.