"Strandlighting" Is This Summer's Coolest Hair-Lightening Technique

From bright, bold blue to understated "blooming hues," we're spoiled for choice when it comes to finding new ways to transform our hair from meh to Pinterest-worthy. Now, there's one more new technique on the block — and thanks to a steady stream of photos flooding our Instagram feeds daily, we're already sold.
Meet strandlighting. If you're a highlighting or balayage regular, you'll know that walking out of the salon without those dreaded streaky patches is no mean feat, no matter how talented your colorist. But that's not a concern with strandlighting, and as far as the actual technique behind the genius hair-lightening method, it's really all in the name.
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More intricate than highlights, or even salon-favorite balayage, which is achieved using a freehand painting technique, strandlighting involves separating and dyeing just a pinch of hair strands at a time, instead of a whole lock — and the results are so much more subtle.
The trend is perfect for those who want to lighten up a little without going whole hog; the lighter strands blend into your natural hair color much more seamlessly, allowing your base color to peek through. Just like highlights, foils are used to separate each section, but because the amount of hair taken is so minimal, you'll avoid any telltale stripes when the color grows out. For that same reason, there's less likely to be significant damage if bleach is used, too.

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So, is there a right way to do it? Well, according to the experts, it's best to take strands directly from around the hairline, as it'll lend your lengths that covetable sun-kissed effect, but it's just as simple, effective, and pretty on the mid-lengths to ends, too.

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Blonde isn't the only shade you can go, either: Both red and rose-gold strandlights have been cropping up on Instagram, as it seems we're all looking for low-key ways to add some new life to our lengths, whether blonde, brunette, or beyond.
Now, if you'll excuse us, we have a salon appointment to make...
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