There’s nothing like that feeling of walking out of the salon with a new hair color. You literally feel like a new woman as you try to drive home while checking yourself out in the rearview mirror. Fortunately, it looks like that feeling is going to get even better this year. With new options and better colors, get ready to strut your stuff.
It’s 2017, and we are no longer limited to one-size-fits-all highlights. Your stylist can now give you a totally unique color based on your hair type and complexion. This year, we’ll be seeing multidimensional colors with textured cuts to show off the different tones.
I had the chance to speak with some seriously impressive celebrity colorists about what trends they’re most excited for this year. I mean, if your clients include Janet Jackson and Miley Cyrus, you probably know a thing or two about what is trending.
Brondes have more fun
Natalie Salvo, colorist at George the Salon Chicago, says in 2017 ombre is out and bronde is in. “The biggest hair color trend I am seeing for 2017 is many women are into being lighter than their natural hair color at the root and the ends gradually getting lighter, still having depth and dimension,” she told me. “This trend is being called ‘bronde’ [and] making the ombré on its way out, but [it’s] still achieving the grown in look or being ‘rooty.'” So don’t worry, showing your roots will still be cool.
Because the bronde look is sexy and carefree, it needs an equally cool cut. “The cuts and styles that best flatter the ‘bronde’ is wearing your natural hair texture,” says Salvo. “Natural gives it that carefree, undone look.”
Try out Balayage this year
If you haven’t heard of balayage hair color yet, then you haven’t been to the salon lately. The stylists and colorists are loving it, and if you try it, you’ll see why. Balayage is a technique of painting highlights onto your hair to give a natural, graduated effect.
I just tried it for the first time last month and am hooked. The color is very natural-looking, and looks even better as my roots grow in. Win-win! Co-owner & creative director of Love Lane Salon Kristina Maccaro told me, “I love to balayage my clients because it allows me to contour their color to their cut, their features, and their natural tones.”
Balayage looks so natural because it embraces darker roots. “In 2017 we’ll see a lot more ‘rooted’ or ‘smudged’ bases with natural, face framing pops of color,” says New York colorist Jenna Mast. “In the last few weeks I have been putting so much warmth back into my clients’ hair.”
Break out the Easter egg dye
In 2016, we started seeing pretty pastels like lavender and rose gold taking over hair color. These styles seemed to suit the cool college girls, but they’re going to become more mainstream in 2017. Cosmetic chemist and owner of The Original Ombre Company Shea Stamper even foresees pastel hair in the workplace this year. Salon AKS stylist Samantha Garrone’s favorite color trend right now is rose gold. “It’s a beautiful transition for spring, as well as pastels such as lilac, light blue, and baby blue,” she said. “If you don’t want to go full-on color, tint just the hair tips for a gradual transformation.”
If you’re ready to rock some Easter egg hues this spring, be sure to load up on the dry shampoo. Washing too much can dry out your color. “Pastels are notoriously hard to maintain,” said Stamper. “Washing with cold water and sulfate-free products will become norm, and girls will wash their hair even less — and that means more dry shampoo. It will become more norm to apply refresher color at home.” Another consequence of going this light? You’ll probably need to chop your hair. It’s too hard to maintain consistent color on long locks.
Diana Green, VP of sales for KERATAGE, is also loving bolder jewel tones in the hair like pinks and greens. “To keep these rich tones vibrant throughout the season, protect your color using a sulfate free shampoo and conditioner,” she told me. “Also, look at the ingredient list; you’d want to see organic formulations, rich in ingredients chosen for their unique, natural benefits.”
Low maintenance color is in
This year, women are embracing their natural hair colors more and more. This is excellent news for anyone who would like to save a little cash at the salon. Sticking close to your natural hue means fewer trips to touch up your color. “Unlike previous years, in 2017 I am noticing that color has become more individualistic,” says Bar Roi Alan, hair stylist and colorist at Tease Color & Style. Be sure to talk with your stylist about how to play up your natural color with subtle highlights.
One reason that the natural look is in is because it’s so easy. “As a colorist in NYC, I promise that the one thing women have less and less time for is hours in the salon,” says Jenna Mast. “My approach to hair color has gone from beachy, painted blondes to ultra low maintenance color.” Mast strives to make every woman look like the best version of herself, so that requires an easy cut and style.
Kristina Maccaro is expecting to see darker golden tones this year. “Women are going to be wearing color that is similar to their natural color, but richened with strategically placed pops of color, more for tonal dimension than bold highlights.”
The perfect cut to show off your color
Now that you have the perfect blend of golden tones, you want to make sure everyone else notices. The right haircut can feature your new color. Think lots of layers and full bangs. “2017 hair trends are going to move in the direction of dimensional hair color paired with a textured cut and shaggy bangs,” Kristina Maccaro told me. “Think Goldie Hawn, Bridget Bardot, and Alexa Chung.”
Looking for a simpler cut? Shea Stamper is already seeing clients going for all one length. “One new thing we will seeing is super long, healthy-looking shiny locks a la Kim K that are all one length,” she said. “Being all one length means no layered, choppy, piece-y extensions of years past. It also means it will cost a LOT of money to achieve. Quality, shiny, virgin hair that’s waist length is hard to come by without breaking the bank.”
Bottom line? You can go for layers or one length — either way you’ll be in style!
How to protect that gorgeous color
Now that you’ve nailed the perfect hair color, the last thing you want to see is all that beautiful (expensive) color go down the drain. And let’s be honest. Have you ever spent loads of money at the salon, only to treat your new color with the cheap drugstore shampoo and conditioner? Yep, I’m raising my hand right now. “The very best way to protect your color is to take care of your hair,” says Jenna Mast. “We spend tons of money on our skin and then use crappy drugstore products on our hair.”
Another way to protect your color is keeping it out of the sun. “The best way to protect your hair color is wear a hat in the sun and tie up your hair if it’s long,” says Vanessa Taylor, hair colorist at San Francisco salon Joli Bijou. “Tuck it under your hat and keep it out of the sun’s harmful bleaching rays.” A wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses is a chic look that will protect your color.
Next, make sure you’re not over shampooing. Taylor recommends just using a good conditioner instead of shampoo every other wash. Overwashing your hair can dry it out. “Keeping the hair moisturized is key,” says Natalie Salvo. “A good trick of mine is keeping a towel by the shower and towel drying the hair before you apply the conditioner and combing it through with a wet brush or wide tooth comb.”
Make your own trend
No matter what trends are hot this year, make sure they work for you, your hair type, and your face shape before diving in. Also remember to think about how much time you want to spend styling and updating your cut and color. Celebrity colorist Kelly Cardenas always focuses on his clients and their lifestyles when choosing the perfect color. “I think that 2017 is going to be more about your individual style based off lifestyle, hair texture, and desire,” he says. “This year will be about hairdressers educating their guests on what is right for them as opposed to just saying yes to everything that is asked for. As hairdressers we have a responsibility to make decisions with long-term implications in mind. This will create long-lasting relationships that will out last any trend.” Before your next appointment, think about how much time you’d like to spend on your style and go from there. Your stylist can then find the right color combo for you.