Dec 1, 2020

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5 simple tips to the best balayage


Text reads "5 simple steps to the best balayage" over the back of a client's wavy bronde balayage. They are wearing a green sweater and their hands are at the nape of their neck holding their hair

less is more

I’ve always been good at making things more difficult than they need to be. 

  • Need to update a photo on my website? Well, gotta redo the whole page then. 

  • Nick’s wondering what I want for dinner? Well, I guess I have to weigh all the options and reference the stars. 

  • Simple task I need to complete? Let me over-complicate it!

Honestly, a lot of it is imposter syndrome – it’s me thinking that I need to be more, have it more together, and that there’s no way I deserve the success and opportunity coming to me.

This happened to me when balayage first became popular. I wanted to be perfect at it. Despite being a beginner with the technique, I was a seasoned stylist and thought that I should be great at it the first time I tried. 

News flash: I wasn’t. 

It made me feel like a failure when my client’s hair didn’t come out the way I wanted it to. It sucked not being good at something. 

And I have a sneaking suspicion that you feel the same way about trying a new technique. 

So I’m sharing the 5 simple tips to creating beautiful balayage on anyone’s head. Yup, that’s right. Brunette, blonde, thick or fine, no matter who sits in your chair, using this technique will get you amazing results.

The 5 Simple Tips to Beautiful Balayage:

Tip 1: Apply with the natural growth of the hair. This will allow you to create soft, moveable, touchable hair.

Three questions to ask your clients at the start of the appointment:

  1. Where’s your natural parting?

  2. Which way does your hair naturally fall?

  3. Where do you want it to look the brightest?

Tip 2: Less is more. I used to over-highlight so often, thinking that my clients were paying me for the amount of highlights they were getting instead of the end result.

Remember the rule of percentages: 

  • To keep your brunette clients dark less than 50% of their hair should be highlighted

  • To take your darker clients lighter more than 50% should be highlighted

Tip 3: Start at the nape. Not only will this give your clients the best experience possible, it’ll also cover your butt for any unexpected heat reactions. (I’m telling you this from experience)

Tip 4: Triangle-inspired sections. Hair is not one size fits all. I’m not here to give you an exact grid because everyone’s hair is different. Everyone’s hair has a different density, different pattern of curls, and a different texture. By taking triangle-inspired sections you can create beautiful ribbons of color and pop. 

The salt & pepper analogy: 

a cute pink heart sits between a pepper shaker and a salt shaker, both have smiling faces on them

If you have equal parts of salt and pepper in two separate containers you can really see how the salt looks very white and the pepper looks very dark. But if you were to mix them together and shake it up, it’d kinda look like this mucky, in-between color. This is what happens when you don’t have enough density of color. 

So if you were to replace the salt with sugar cubes and mix that in equal parts with pepper you would see the sugar cubes pop because of the density. 

Tip 5: Use a brick-lay pattern and grab perpendicular sections. This allows you to lay the hair so that it doesn’t stack on top of itself. You’re always placing your highlights between the previous two. 

And those are the 5 tips to create beautiful balayage on anyone’s hair! I wanna know, does this excite you or kinda make you anxious? 

I always love hearing from you so pop into my DMs on Instagram @dawnbradleyhair and let me know how it went using this balayage technique. I can’t wait to hear all about it. 

Go on, binge the latest posts (you know you wanna)…

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I am just a small-town, Canadian gal from the prairies who teaches thousands of creatives around the globe how to earn 6-figures stress-free!

Hey, I’m Dawn!

“Rock Your Business” Course Creator, Host of “The Anxious Creative” Podcast. Named by Salon Magazine as Canada’s #1 women of influence.

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