8 Blonde Highlight Shades That Look Amazing On Brunettes

Lighten up.

Halle Berry at the Premiere Of "Moonfall" in Hollywood, California with caramel blonde highlights on...
Steve Granitz/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Adding blonde highlights to brown hair is a quick and easy way for brunettes to try a fresh look. “Brown hair looks perfect with highlights and one can achieve results very quickly,” Tracey Cunningham, Redken celebrity colorist and author of True Color, tells Bustle. She’s given a pop of blonde to her brunette clients Lily Aldridge, Halle Berry, Jennifer Garner, and Jessica Biel.

Frédéric Fekkai, celebrity hairstylist and founder of FEKKAI, says that the balayage technique is the way to go for natural-looking blonde highlights. “I recommend the balayage technique to really personalize the color placement, focusing on the hairline and the tips of the hair,” he tells Bustle. “It’s a bespoke combination of color.”

Once your locks are lightened, upkeep is key. “When you have blonde highlights in brown hair, using products that maintain the color is key,” Fekkai says. “I’d recommend using a brightening purple shampoo or the FEKKAI Apple Cider Detox Shampoo and Apple Cider Detox Rinse to keep the highlights fresh.” Cunningham suggests a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. An in-salon treatment like the Redken Shades EQ Hair Gloss can refresh color between appointments, making strands look silky.

If you want to avoid walking away from the salon dissatisfied, it’s important to provide your colorist with visual references. “I can never stress this enough,” Cunningham shares. “Please bring in a photo when you are about to take the plunge into going blonde or any change of color. Find the color and/or tone you desire from social media or in a magazine, and bring the pic into your professional colorist. This helps immensely.”

From ash to honey, here are eight gorgeous shades of blonde highlights on stars with brown hair. Feel free to take screenshots for your next salon appointment.


Ash Blonde Highlights

For cool-toned brunettes, a smoky ash blonde is the way to go. Take a cue from Kylie Jenner and get this subtle shade.


Honey Blonde Highlights

Cunningham recently added honey blonde highlights to Priyanka Chopra’s naturally dark hair. “She looked incredible,” says Cunningham. “Going lighter, especially coming into the summer months, can be so empowering and fun.”


Golden Blonde Highlights

Daniele Venturelli/WireImage/Getty Images

Olivia Palermo’s golden highlights blend in seamlessly with her light brunette hair for a cheery combo that’s super pretty.


Platinum Blonde Highlights

Ian West - PA Images/PA Images/Getty Images

A combination of platinum blonde highlights and super dark hair make for a striking, Cruella-like contrast.

Cunningham says that going platinum blonde in one go can be harsh on hair. “For the integrity of your hair and wallet, I always recommend to do this makeover slowly, over a three-appointment journey,” she says. This will allow you to gradually get used to the change. Another tip: Do lots of conditioning treatments between salon visits.


Cool Blonde Highlights

Ricky Vigil M/GC Images/Getty Images

If you’re looking for blonde highlights with cooler undertones, take a cue from Rosie Huntington-Whitely. Muted tones work great with light brown hair.


Caramel Blonde Highlights

Steve Granitz/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Another shade of blonde highlights that looks amazing on warm brunettes: rich caramel colors. Take notes from Halle Berry, who wears her caramel blonde highlights on her face-framing strands.


Auburn Blonde Highlights

David M. Benett/WireImage/Getty Images

Opt for auburn blonde highlights if you want to incorporate a deeper red-tinged color. Here, Beyoncé has hers in a subtle ombré with long, dark brown lengths.


Bright Blonde Highlights

Miranda Kerr also got the memo when it comes to using blonde highlights to frame the face. A subtle touch of color brightens the face and complements a glowy complexion.