When you think of classic summer hair, chances are you picture bright, blonde, sun-kissed strands. And when it comes to the biggest summer 2019 blonde hair color trends, that’s actually still the case... to an extent. According to top industry experts, the season ahead is all about blonde. Seeing as there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all shade, though, colorists are calling out six distinctly different ways to get the look — from seashell blonde to warm honey blonde to just a touch beyond blonde.
Surprisingly, there’s not a high maintenance platinum in the bunch. Most hairstylists’ top color recommendations involve effortless lowlights, root shadowing, or ombré effects, instead. “These looks are low maintenance, so they are perfect for summer — you can get it done at the beginning of the season, and you don’t need to get it done again for a few months,” Stephanie Brown, a Master Colorist at IGK Salon in New York City who regularly works with Kate McKinnon, tells The Zoe Report. In other words: Low-key lowlights give you the space to relax and enjoy summer, rather than waste peak pool hours in a salon chair.
Ahead, the six shades of blonde experts say are set to take over summer 2019.
Warm Honey Blonde
“This summer, shades of blonde with hints of honey will be a huge color trend, because it’s bright and light,” Sharon Dorram, the Master Colorist at Sharon Dorram Color at Sally Hershberger Salon, tells TZR. “For a good celebrity example, think Nicole Kidman" — one of Dorram's clients, of course.
“Seashell blonde is a sandy or dirty blonde with a root-i-er look,” Brown says. Even better than the catchy name? This trend works on pretty much everyone. “It’s a neutral shade that’s great for all skin tones, since it’s neither cool nor warm,” the colorist explains. “The higher ombré, off-the-root type of highlights add brightness around the face.”
“For summer, blondes are adding more dimension — still bright and light, but with more of a darker tone mixed in,” Maddison Cave, a New York City-based colorist who works with actress Carey Mulligan, tells The Zoe Report. “It seems counterintuitive for summer, but it actually makes your blonde pop brighter and gives more of a beach vibe.” Cave recently gave the dark-to-light look to Dianna Agron.
Thinking of going from brunette to blonde? Let Emma Roberts’ recent transition guide the way. “Emma needed to go light again for an upcoming project she’s working on,” Roberts' colorist Nikki Lee, of Los Angeles' Nine Zero One salon, explains in a press email. “We wanted to add our own twist to it and create a color she’s never been before.” Instead of the actress' classic bright blonde, the two decided on “something that felt a bit more undone and effortless, Lee says, which she's dubbed Boho Sunrise Blonde. Think dark roots, dark brows, and dirty blonde highlights.
"The big summer hair color trend is the ‘root shadow,’” Connor Wells, a Senior Colorist at Oscar Blandi Salon, tells The Zoe Report. “A root shadow is when you have a gloss or demi-permanent color close to your own natural shade applied to the root of your hair. This softens fresh highlights to prevent the look of streaks.” It kind of sounds like you’re paying a colorist to give you roots, but Wells says that isn’t necessarily the cast. “This is a seamless look that you can’t get naturally,” he says. “Another perk to this is minimal maintenance. By softening the root area, it makes the grow out less severe, which allows you to stretch your salon visits.”
Golden Sunrise Blonde
“What can I say except the blonde trend is not letting up,” Caitlin Richardson, owner of Los Angeles’ Blonde / Blond Salon (and colorist to Paris Jackson) tells The Zoe Report. “In London and New York City, they have let the pastels and shocking ash blondes fall away, as a neutral blonde with a golden undertone has taken their places.” She predicts the look will soon sweep the West Coast, too. “It’s a classic, natural blonde that allows for roots, or can clean up nicely for a shiny, sleek, effortless vibe.”