Q: Concerning Balayage: Can you please explain this technique? Are "foil" strips used? What keeps them from "slipping down"
and falling out? When you "foil retouch" I know that you fold the foil in and close it around the sliced piece, but in the Balayage
method it appears that you simply let the foils just lie there. Thanks so much!
A: You are apparently confusing the balayage technique with the foil technique. Balayage, also called the “Free-Form technique” is the
method where a lightening powder, or color formula is applied directly to the hair in specific patterns and target areas. Common
balayage application would involve using a powdered bleach lightening mixture to paint thin “highlights” all along the surface of the
hair in order to create subtle highlights and draw attention to the surface of the hair.
However, since the term refers to a “free form” application method, a variety of looks can be
created. For example, imagine a hairstyle consisting of curly, layered hair where the tips of the layered curls are tinted in a dramatic
color. This could be achieved by using a color brush to paint the ends of the hair without needing any additional tools.
The use of foil in a balayage method is likely simply a matter of the stylist’s concern over
color-bleed or dripping. Traditional balayage doesn’t use foils and generally uses a tinting or lightening mixture that is thick enough to prevent the need for foil.