If you are a fan of the sun kissed, slightly grown out, gradient look then the new Balayage technique sweeping our salons might be for you. If you are a bit confused between Ombre, Sombre and Balayage don’t worry, so were we so here is all you need to be armed with for your next salon visit.

So Balayage is the French technique meaning ‘to sweep’ where soft colour is applied freehand just to the surface sections feathering it at the root. It gives you beautiful blends of really natural colour retaining a mix of light and dark tones at the base giving a stunning sun kissed look. It works for golden blondes, cool blondes, reds, brunettes – in fact whatever your hair colour you can get creative. We love it because a little Balayage goes a long way, you should only need to visit the salon every 12-14 weeks as the highlights will grow out naturally.

The Ombre style, which you may be familiar with, comes from the French word ‘Shadow’. It is the transition from a darker shade to a lighter shade at the tips. It’s kind of like colour blocking – there are no dark pieces left on the bottom, just a nice transition of colour.  It traditionally works better on brunettes as it gives a more stark dark colour at the root and gradually gets lighter at the ends. There are a myriad of Ombre options from caramel, coppers reds, auburn and blondes. It works best mid to long length hair to get the full affect. It’s the ‘grown-out’ look that Drew Barrymore, SJP and Jessica Alba are the queens of.

And just when you’ve wrapped your hair around Balayage and Ombre there’s super subtle Sombre to consider. According to our insiders Sombre hair is the new subtle grown-up sister to Ombre. The main difference is Sombre has more subtle and softer transitions from light to dark that melt together seamlessly. The colour blend usually starts closer to the root than Ombre. The good news is because of such gradual colour transition it means less upkeep and less salon visits.

If this is a style for you call your salon to check if they have an expert on hand. But do make sure you do it professionally as a Hombre (home made Ombre) is not a good look!!