The term lowlight describes hair dye, darker than the body of your hair, used to create depth. According to Deb Rangl, author of "Milady's Standard Hair Coloring Manual and Activities Book," lowlights work well to add a voluminous illusion to short hair. However, lowlights on short hair will appear very unnatural if done incorrectly. Applying lowlights to short hair requires patience and precision to create a natural appearance.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Hydrating shampoo
- Hydrating conditioner
- Latex gloves
- Old towels
- Rubbing alcohol
- Cotton balls
Wash your hair with hydrating shampoo and conditioner two days before you intend to apply lowlights. According to Patricia Spencer, author of "Hair Coloring: A Hands-on Approach," the oils that will build up over a couple of days help the dye set into your hair.
Put on the latex gloves and mix the lowlight solution according to the package directions. Prepare your work area by cleaning it and having everything you'll need in close range, such as combs and old towels. Select a lowlight, two to three shades darker than the colour of your hair.
Separate a 1/4-inch thick section of hair and apply the lowlight dye from the roots to the tips. Be careful not to get the dye on surrounding hair and roots.
Continue separating 1/4-inch thick sections of hair throughout your entire head to apply the lowlights. According to David Adams and Jacki Wadeson, authors of "The Art of Hair Colouring," for natural-looking lowlights in short hair, you should space each section about an inch from the last.
Allow the dye to set for the time specified by the manufacturer before rinsing and washing with hydrating shampoo and conditioner.
Tips and warnings
- Applying vaseline or shampoo around the hairline can keep the dye from staining your face.
- Should the dye stain your skin, wipe the area with a rubbing alcohol-soaked cotton ball to remove the discolouration.
- Always do a strand test before you dye your hair to test for colour and any allergic reactions to the product.
- Put on old clothes beforehand that you don't mind getting stained while you dye your hair.
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