ombre vs. balayage

What Is The Difference Between Ombre & Balayage?

As summer approaches, we often want to try something new or reinvent our hair. Here is your complete guide to determining if a balayage or ombre is best for your hair and the upkeep of the process. An ombre and balayage are often used interchangeably but are done with different techniques and coloring styles.


What Is An Ombre?

Ombré is the french word “to shade.” We often associate it with a dip-dyed look due to its vivid contrast between light and dark coloring. This dramatic color splits two contrasting colors to gradually blend the hues on the lower portion of your hair. If you do not have a deep root, you can also do an ombre called a reverse ombre which turns your light hue to a darker shade toward the bottom of your hair. Don’t fear the ombre due to its association with being a dip-dyed look. An ombre is when a lightener is placed horizontally and gradually blended upward using a balayage technique. If you are not ready for a dramatic change, you might enjoy a “sombre” hairstyle that adds less contrast between the two colors. Remember that in the ombre process, the ends of your hair will be transitioned into your contrasting color.


What Is A Balayage?

Like Ombre, Balayage in French means “to sweep”, which references the technique used to Balayage one’s hair. Balayage is a free-hand painting color technique where a specific strand of hair is selected to add color to. This creates more definition for the color contrast on the hair and allows the hair to grow out evenly and softly while the highlights stay on top. During the application of a balayage, the color begins two inches away from the roots and becomes gradually heavier towards the bottom. Unlike an ombre where the color has contrasted, a balayage can happen on any hair color and does not have to be bold. Light, medium, and dark colors can be used in this technique.


Which Is Best For You?

The significant difference between Ombre and Balayage is that ombre is a gradient of color while balayage is a technique while applying the color. Balayage is used while creating ombre hair to diffuse the line of contrasting color. Balayage is also more subtle and can be used with all types and colors of hair. Ombre depends more on a dark natural hue or a blonde shade for a reverse ombre. The good news is that both hairstyles are easy to maintain because the colors are not applied to the root. A Balayage has a more natural look when it begins to grow out because it is applied to specific strands during the application. An ombre is more defiant due to the total saturation of the hair with color.


How Can I Make It Last

Making your new look last isn’t always the first thing we think about, considering we just got our hair done. However, it is vital to achieve and maintain your new color. We can prepare our hair before dying it by using a protein treatment or using more hair masks throughout the month to strengthen and moisturize our strands before coloring it. Once you have been glammed and have your new color, ask our specialists which shampoo and conditioner they recommend for your new color. We also recommend washing your hair less because it has been chemically treated. However, finish your hair off with cool water to close those hair cuticles on hair wash days! Although we used hair masks before our treatment, it is essential to continue using them to hydrate and keep your hair healthy!


Contact Us

If you want to change your style, we are located in Arlington, MA, and look forward to making your vision come true. You can contact our highly trained and passionate team at Marchelle Salone by calling us at (781) 641-1910 to schedule an appointment.