Balayage isn't going anywhere anytime soon. While the technique has been around for some time and hit peak popularity about three years ago (when the likes of SJP and Jessica Biel started to show how hairdressers could use the painting technique to sweep colour onto hair for a natural, soft finish), it remains a colour mainstay, with more people than ever opting for balayaged portions of hair.
Here's everything you need to know before you head into the hairdresser for yours...
What is 'Balayage'?
'Balayage is a French word meaning to sweep or to paint,' says . 'It allows for a sun-kissed natural-looking hair colour, similar to what nature gives us as children. There are softer, less noticeable regrowth lines - the principal idea being less is more when creating soft, natural looks.'
adds: 'This is just one of the most natural ways to do hair - it is such a good way to make it look beachy.'
How does it differ from other colouring techniques?
Well in part, it's speedier and means less maintenance thanks to the colour not sitting quite on the root in the same way. Jack explains: 'because it's hand-painted, your colourist can choose the placement to best complement your haircut, skin tone, and features so it's totally bespoke.'
So no foils at all?
Nope. None. 'That perfectly-placed highlights look is dying out - it's such an '80s look and not something the modern woman wants. But make no mistake - classic balayage is a highlighting technique - but that neat row of light pieces doesn't have a place anymore,' says Jack.
Is balayage just for blondes?
'Not at all,' says Nicola. 'I'd use it on any colour hair - I'd just be slightly cautious on finer hair as the majority of balayage requires bleach, which means hair is likely to become a bit more brittle.'
Can I do it on myself?
'If you run around in the sun, you’ll naturally balayage your hair but I would never advise trying to actually do this at home. We hand paint the hair in sections which you just can’t do yourself,' says Jack.
Is balayage expensive?
Prices tend to start from £50 but vary greatly from salon to salon. Also, as the treatment is completely bespoke to you, only your stylist can tell you how much you will need depending on the thickness of your hair and the effect you’re after.
So where should I go for it?
Our top places to hit up for balayage are:
1. . Jack is credited with bringing balayage to the UK, and whips a buttery blonde balayaged section into hair like no other.
2. Nicola looks after some of the most famous blonde A-listers from Kate Moss and Cate Blanchett to Margot Robbie and Kate Winslet, so she's the woman to see if you're a blonde addict.
3. . If you love your hair to look bang up to date, this is the place for you. Also, get a trim while you're at it - slightly blunt ends look great with balayaged portions.
4. . This is one of London's best salons. Especially good if you need colour correction or a complete change. Jo is an expert in colour and you'll leave inspired and transformed.