There are plenty of ways to add a playful hint of red to your color. But move over blondes, because strawberry brunettes are stealing the spotlight. You can save those coppers and auburns for the crisp, cool fall and winter months and make some room to welcome in this trending berry blend before summer is in full swing. We tapped L.A.'s expert colorist Cherin Choi to get the full scoop on this color trend. Below are 15 shades of strawberry brunette inspo to show to your colorist, plus expert tips on maintaining your color.
Strawberry Brunette Hair Color
Choosing a Shade: This look will add a lot of warmth, says Choi: "I recommend trying it if you like warmer tones and are not super red in your skin undertone."
Maintenance Level: High. Red can be tricky to get out of the hair, according to Choi.
Goes Great With: Beach waves and natural curls
Price: Creative color jobs can start at $300 and up, but Choi notes it all depends on if you have preexisting highlights, etc.
This rosie tinted balayage makes for a most effortless strawberry brunette. If you're worried that strawberry isn't going to blend together well against your naturally dark base color, consider requesting a highlighting method like balayage that always leaves the hair with a kiss of natural brightness.
This candy-coated strawberry brunette is practically giving us a sweet tooth. Without going full-on with a cotton candy pink all over, this strawberry tone gets evenly blended into her natural brunette coloring for seamless definition.
Your strawberry scoops won't be the only things melting this summer. Here we see a gradient strawberry brunette with a richer strawberry tint near those natural brunette roots fading into something brighter as it melts down to those ends. As with any good highlight, keeping the ends and face-framing pieces brighter will always emulate a natural feel.
For those of you with a lighter brunette base, consider a softer, subdued strawberry tone to blend in to your natural brown with ease. Keeping your colors at the same level will have them blending together seamlessly (your colorist will know what you're talking about).
"What makes the red pigment is the smallest, tiniest molecule," says Choi, "and it slips in and out of the hair easily, but it also gets trapped and can seem like it’s there for a long time." Keeping your roots their natural tone and your strawberry hues on the ends could lower your maintenance level, leaving room for versatility and another color change sooner rather than later.
Just a Pinch
Some of us have hair color commitment issues, and that's okay. It's a real thing, and we totally get it. Before you head too deep into those brighter strawberry hues, try adding in just a pinch of those reddish pink tints into your next round of lightening. Choi reminds us all, "You can always change hair color! That’s the beauty of it. It’s more fun to see and adjust than to wonder and never try. It could end up being THE color!"
If you're looking for something a little warmer to pair with your coloring, this peachy strawberry blend will pass with flying colors. It still gleams some of those highlighted yellows but has just enough strawberry in there to make your mouth water.
Skunk Meets Strawberry
Skunk hair is the latest color trend on the rise thanks to celebs like Dua Lipa and Bella Hadid, and we're loving this strawberry brunette iteration.
Strawberry brunette doesn't have to be worn with a major pop of contrast. If you have a lot of natural red tones in your hair already, glazing over slightly lighter ends with a subtle strawberry tint is going to be just enough of a pleasant surprise, showing itself pridefully in every new light. "Davines, MrSmith, and OverTone all make great color conditioners for at-home maintenance," mentions Choi.
Wearing braids is one of our favorite ways to weave in a new color without doing any serious damage to the hair. This method will keep the bleach at bay and give your strands a break from heat styling. All in all, this style is a good-looking win.
Okay, okay, we know this is about strawberry color, and we're not trying to switch up our fruit on you. But seriously, this deeper color pairing screams chocolate raspberry to us and we're not mad about it. For rich, flavorful dimension, this may just be the perfect strawberry brunette inspo image to show to your colorist. "While the color stays in the hair longer, the richness can fade faster," says Choi, who recommends getting a good conditioning treatment to uphold your color between visits.
Gloss It Over
Having preexisting highlights is a great start if you're interested in a semi-permanent strawberry brunette. Asking your stylist to use a toner or gloss to mute out those beachy blonde streaks will give you something sweeter with a shorter lifespan. After a few rounds of washing, that berry punch will dilute itself away and leave you with those highlights you had before.
Riding the Waves
We love to see the strawberry brunettes in all different styles and textures. This color plus these perfectly tousled waves has us gushing and ready for summer.
As if a full head of curls wasn't cute enough on its own, this berry-infused color has us swooning.
Blonde highlights isn't the only way to go when it comes to adding some warmth to your natural brown base. Swap out those golden streaks for a surprising strawberry hue without compromising your desired brightness. "Strawberry brunette hair can add a lot of warmth on the skin," says Choi. "It’s a fun one to try for any natural hair color."