Modern Day Balayage
Balayage is a hair coloring technique which is designed to create very natural-looking highlights and colors.
When doing Balayage, no foils are used. Instead of the use of foils, the hair color and/or highlight colors are skillfully placed onto the chosen hair strands using hands and sometimes a hair color brush and a wooden paddle to help the Colorist paint the colors onto the hair.
The chosen hair strands are each carefully placed as they are allowed to process. Sometimes, the hair is divided and protected using cotton strips.
The primary resulting difference with Balayage is the very natural looking results and the little to no regrowth line that appears as the Balayage coloring grows out.
This coloring technique emerged in Paris in the 1970s; the word “balayage” is French for “to sweep,” a reference to the way in which the color is applied. Balayage became extremely popular in the late 1990s. In the United States, you may see balayage spelled “balliage.”
When hair is colored with the balayage process, the highlights are painted on by hand in a sweeping motion which moves from the base to the tip of the hair. At the base, the color is applied very lightly, while at the tip, the color is very heavy. The result is a chunky highlight which looks naturally sun bleached, and as the hair grows out, the root will be concealed for the first few months by the thinner color applied to the base of the hair.
Performing balayage can be time consuming, and it requires a good eye and a very steady hand. However, many people feel that the end result is well worth the artistic effort of the Stylist applying the colors.
Traditional foiling techniques” often leave fine strands of “uniform” highlights and/or lowlights evenly and systematically placed throughout the hair. Often the foils are stacked in rows (as taught at Beauty Schools) which will not create the modern look of today’s Hair Color.
Modern Foiling techniques are no where close to the “traditional” foiling applications. But, do, within their own flexibility of technique, still do not compare with the subtleness and marbleized glow that appears from a Balayage Color Application done well.
Balayage gives the look of different hair colors moving through the hair and out to lighter ends (as desired), making the end results of the Balayage extremely natural looking.
However, just like foiling, Balayage can be done with the desired result being more chunky.
Balayage results can be extremely subtle or widely adventurous.
Balayage is not just for Blondes! Brunettes, Red heads, and heads of naturally graying hair can greatly benefit.