We’re loving our newest hair extension colors, and we’re loving the before and afters that you lovely Babes are making with them! Today, we’re compiling some of the best application tips we’ve seen for blending red hair extensions to perfection. Enjoy!
Take a cue from the skin color.
Pheomelanin, the pigment that determines the level of redness in a person’s skin and hair, is typically consistent between the skin and hair, meaning that a person with a ruddy complexion is more likely to have red-tinted hair, and vice versa. Hence the belief that the undertone of a person’s hair should complement the undertone of their skin, so as to produce the most natural-looking result. If you’re ever in doubt about which shade of red to use in a client’s hair (or which highlight and lowlight colors to apply), refer to their skin tone. Golden skin will match a copper hairdo well, whereas pink skin will look better with a more strawberry color.
Dimension is key.
Red hair spans a wide range of shades, from the lightest of strawberry blondes to the darkest of auburns. This variety makes red hair particularly suited to highly dimensional color jobs, so go all-in with the highlights and lowlights to produce a look that truly captures the light. Our rule of thumb is to select a color two steps lighter than the base color, a color two steps darker than the base color, and the base color itself—though you can absolutely incorporate more of the colors within those limits, too.
Throw in some brown or blonde.
If you look very closely, you’ll find that many natural redheads carry strands of brown or blonde within their hair alongside the more vivid red—especially around the face and near the ends of their hair. Feel free to incorporate some of these colors into your blending job, applying a couple of brown lowlights to darker reds and a smattering of blonde highlights to lighter reds. This will produce a beautifully natural-looking effect, while enabling you to modify the overall brightness or dullness of the client’s hair.
Don’t shy away from purple.
Sometimes red hair veers straight into the territory of so-called “fashion colors”, with a tuft of pink or a wave of fuschia buried within the otherwise natural-looking strands. Don’t be afraid to include some of these naturally occurring colors in your extension job! Though a lock of Dark Purple (Whitney) might seem like it would stick out like a sore thumb, when dispersed throughout the hair, it can actually blend right in, leaving only a gentle touch of color in its wake.