It’s been years since we went into the salon and asked for anything other than balayage , but 2020 could be the year that all changes, with stylists going back to their roots (quite literally), creating lightened hair that cascades from the top down.
“Classic highlights are making a welcome return to the salon service offering,” says Craig Clark, associate colour director of London salon Linnaean . “Over the last few years this classic colour service all but disappeared from salon life, falling to the demand of both balayage and neon and pastel colours, however it’s back this year, with a modern twist in the form of baylights.”
What are baylights?
A hybrid of balayage and highlights (hence the name), baylights is a colour combination which uses the classic highlight technique to bring brightness around the face, whilst deeper tones are used to create boldness and depth through the rest of the hairl; ideal if you're looking for more light around the face without the major upkeep of a full blonde colour.
Victoria's Secret model Romee Strijd has the perfect example of baylights, and we spent longer than we care to admit admiring her hair on Instagram.
“The baylights technique has roots back in a classic nineties colour technique commonly known as slices and a semi,” explains Craig, “Refined and more elegant than its predecessor, baylights sheds light around the face whilst retaining a slightly deeper hue throughout the rest of the hair.”
Who do baylights suit?
The good news is, the style can be tailored to lots of different shades of hair.
“Hair colours that work with baylights range from mousey blonde up to mid brown," says Crain. "Every client needs a slightly or sometimes wildly different sectioning pattern. This is key to incorporating light in the right places around the face to enhance skin tone and facial contours.”
Can brunettes have baylights?
“For a slightly different tonal result the baylights technique can be adapted to darker hair colour," Craig says. "This would still mean the placement of bleach in a halo pattern around the face but the colour choice would be along the lines of toffee or golden sugar.”
Which hair type works best with baylights?
“Baylights is a multi-person, multi-dimensional colour service which is suitable for all hair lengths," Craig tells us. "However, it is more effective on straighter or slightly wavy hair in order to fully appreciate the halo of light softly contrasting to the deeper hue from the rest of the hair.”
How much upkeep is required with baylights?
One of the reasons we all fell so hard for balayage was that fact it didn't require constant retouching at the roots. We were pleased to know that baylights are relatively low maintenance too.
"A top up every four months would be recommended," says Craig. "However, it’s worth noting that this is a colour technique which will not require you to dash back to your hairdresser on a regular basis so, for those people who are either time / cash conscious this is an ideal choice when looking to add colour to their hair style."
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