What is the difference between balayage, highlights, lowlights, babylights, ombre and dip-dye?

Asset Joanne van Hoeflaken
Joanne van Hoeflaken

Global Education Manager

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Keune Hair Cosmetics
Keune Hair Cosmetics

You have probably heard all these terms, but many people do not know what the difference is between balayage, highlights, lowlights, babylights, ombre, and dip dye. Our Keune hair experts will therefore explain to you when which technique is applied and what effect it has on your hair.

What is balayage?

“Balayage” comes from the French language and literally means “to sweep”. This technique is also characterized by the light sweeps with which the hairdresser applies a balayage to the hair surface. With a balayage, different color shades are being used that blend into each other. A balayage often gives a sunkissed effect which looks very natural. The advantage of a balayage is that the outgrowth is less visible.

What are highlights?

Highlights often refer to the blond sections that are placed in the hair from the scalp with foils or foam foils. Highlights light up the hair, creating more depth. By working with light and dark colors, the hair appears optically fuller.

What is the difference between a balayage and highlights?

The way of application and the effect of the coloring is what makes these two techniques so different. A balayage is applied freehand into the hair and usually only starts a few inches from the scalp. The color transition of a balayage therefore gives a natural effect.

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What are low lights?

Lowlights are the opposite of highlights. The difference between highlights and lowlights is that highlights are light sections and lowlights are dark sections. Highlights reflect the light and provide a lot of volume. Lowlights absorb the light and provide more depth. By combining these together you get a lot of dimension in the hair which ensures beautiful results.

What are baby lights?

Babylights are subtle highlights that are usually placed around the contour line. Babylights are therefore more subtle than highlights and can be placed a lot tighter in your hair. This ensures that it flows very nicely through your own hair color, which gives a summery and natural look.

What is an ombre?

Ombre is actually an inverted balayage. The difference between ombre and balayage is that a balayage has a natural overflow in the coloring while an ombre is characterized by a dark color at the top and light color at the bottom. With an ombre, you can see the difference between dark and light much more clearly. You can also say that an ombre is in between a balayage and dip-dye.

What is dip-dye?

A dip-dye is a coloring technique where it looks like the ends of the hair have been dipped in a pot of paint. You often come across a dip-dye with pronounced colors such as pink or green. The color difference in the hair is also very clearly visible.

About this collaborator

Asset Joanne van Hoeflaken
Joanne van Hoeflaken

Global Education Manager

At the helm of Keune's education program is Joanne. With the Education team, she trains and guides Keune hairstylists worldwide.

The international Education team knows all the ins and outs of cutting and coloring techniques, hair styling, and the latest hair trends.

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