Dark Hair with Highlights Ideas

People with dark hair can immediately change the appearance dramatically by applying highlights. However, the natural dark color of the hair must be first removed in order to obtain maximum results. In this case, you may use the help from professionals. Some of the best color combinations for dark hair with highlights are listed below.

1. Auburn Highlights

Auburn slightly has the appearance of red, but it is still distinguishable from pink or dark red. Most people who have dark hair simply choose this color combination because it can be good alternative to blonde highlights.

In general, it lights up the natural dark tone of the hair, but it does not go too bright. Therefore, it still maintains the dark color yet it emerges a distinguishable feature from the auburn dye. Please remember that subtle shade of auburn looks better compared to the bold one.

dark brown hair with auburn highlights

2. Caramel Highlights

Another popular color choice for dark hair with highlights is caramel. Similar to Auburn, people with dark hair use this type of highlight as alternative to blonde. Classic appearance of caramel highlight is that the color is applied evenly throughout the hair.

Picture of Caramel highlights

To create a modern accent, you should vary the thickness. Caramel highlights are widely used during summer because it appears natural as if the hair is naturally brightened up by the rays of the sun.

3. Blonde Highlights

You can actually have dark hair with blonde highlights by applying high color intensity of caramel. Another good option is platinum blonde. This hair color combination is one of the most preferred styles among all colors possibly applied to dark hair.

cute blonde highlights

Sometimes, hair growth brings a problem to blonde highlights. As a solution, you can have the blonde color applied under layers of black/dark. Regardless of how fast your hair grows, the highlights will remain visible for a long period. This style is commonly called peek-a-boo highlight.

If your hair is dark brown instead of black, dark blonde highlights can be excellent choice. Light or medium shade of blonde is probably too overwhelming to your natural dark hair tone, so it is wise to go for dark ash or dark golden. Natural hair color is not the only aspect affecting the overall results of blonde highlights. Your skin tone also plays major role in determining the final result.

Based on this consideration, people with cool skin tone may also use pale blonde highlights to combine with their dark hair colors.

4. Red Highlights

Black hair makes perfect combination with red color. Bold red coloration can enhance the style of haircut and create an easily noticeable contrast. As mentioned earlier, auburn color is a thin red that will only add slight red coloration to the hair. If you intend to go for dramatic transformation, you should use fire red. Another option is copper highlights, which will bring vibrant red.

dark hair with red highlights

You can also combine red with another color to create a real distinguishable hairstyle. A common type of color to combine is rich brown. The combination may create subtle and soft appearance yet it brightens your look.

Compared to blonde, red is a more popular color to use for dark hair with highlights. Red looks more natural when combined with dark color. Moreover, the entire procedures to create red highlights are usually gentler than those of blonde highlights.

5. Golden Highlights

golden highlights

Dark hair with golden highlights is mostly seen on teenagers, but women of any age can actually wear the same hairstyle as well. The most common type of golden highlights is the one that frames the face. People usually use this to draw attentions to facial features and eye colors.

6. Burgundy Highlights

The latest hairstyle trend seems to suggest that burgundy is the new form of black. Burgundy is dark red, which is not to be confused vibrant red and copper. Some people also suggest that burgundy is the best color to combine with black or dark.

burgundy highlights

At some points, burgundy tone appears to have two different colors including red and purple. Once applied to black hair, the fusion of color emerges beautifully. Burgundy is indeed one of the best choices of highlights for dark hair, but it is difficult to apply the color properly. You should consult a professional before applying the color.


There are various color choices and combinations to create a distinguishable look for dark hair with highlights. You can have subtle, soft, or simply go for bold color transformation. Please put in mind that black or dark color is fairly difficult to remove, so you will probably need a professional’s assistance to perform the entire processes for maximum results.