How to use honey to highlight hair

Updated February 21, 2017

Highlights are a great way to update your hairstyle by adding dimension to a dark hair colour. However, most highlighting systems require the use of strong, smelly chemicals to achieve results. Honey is a versatile beauty product that can lighten your hair without chemicals, nourish and rejuvenate the skin, and even prevent pimples. Honey naturally attracts moisture, which adds to its appeal as a hair highlighter because it provides essential moisture, rather than stripping hair of moisture like most chemical highlighters.

In a medium bowl, combine the distilled water and uncooked raw honey. Mix well.

Slowly add extra virgin olive oil, cardamom oil or cinnamon oil to the honey and water mixture. Stir well until all ingredients are incorporated.

Pour the mixture into a spray bottle for easy application to your hair. If you prefer, you can apply this solution to your hair with a brush. Start with the roots and work your way to the tips, ensuring that all sections are completely saturated with the honey concoction.

Let the hair set for 30 minutes (longer for lighter results), and then rinse your hair thoroughly with warm water. Follow up with a conditioner if desired, but the honey should add a lot of moisture to your hair with the highlighting application. Do not wash the hair with shampoo for 24 hours.


If you have really long hair, you'll need to double the recipe to ensure proper coverage of all areas.


As with any hair dye, you may wish to do a strand test to see results before you apply mixture to your entire head. Choose a 1.25 cm (1/2 inch) strand at the back of your head that can be hidden easily if you don't like the result.

Things You'll Need

  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) uncooked raw honey
  • 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) distilled water
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) cardamom oil or
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) cinnamon oil
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About the Author

A former cake decorator and competitive horticulturist, Amelia Allonsy is most at home in the kitchen or with her hands in the dirt. She received her Bachelor's degree from West Virginia University. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle and on other websites.