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Balayage, Ombre, Foilayage ...HELP!

Updated: May 15, 2018

With Balayage still being a strong trend for 2018, I wanted to explain some of the terminology that gets used.


The technique for highlighting hair. The colour is painted on in such a way as to create a graduated, natural-looking effect.

Balayage originated from the f

rench language and it means ' To sweep'.

Balayage is purely the technique, so you can apply this in various different ways.

It can be used in a very soft, and natural manner to create a sun kissed effect, it can be applied heavily to sections of the hair for a bolder, blonder effect.

It can be painted from root to tip or it can be painted through the mid lengths and ends, you decide!

If Balayage is the technique, what is Foilayage and Ombre?


Foilayage is adapted from Balayage, we use foil to cover the painting so it keeps the heat in if we require maximum levels of lift. Balayage is traditionally an open air process, which means we let the product develop without any cover, however some hair types need the extra covering to receive the desired result!


Ombre is the style, and finish you achieve from Balayage. Darker roots merging into lighter ends. Again, this is something that can be bespoke depending on the intensity of the desired result.

TOP TIP - When you go to your appointment, have images to hand to help describe the look you want to achieve. Think about two things when you look at the colour:

The Colour & its Tone

The Placement of Colour

This will help your colourist to understand your hair vision.


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