Again, with balayage highlighting applications, wavy hair needs to be considered carefully. You must gauge how thick you want the painted lines of color to be to keep them in balance with the overall look of the
hair. If the lines are too thin, the resulting highlights will get lost in the bends and turns of the wavy hair. If the lines are too thick, you get a streaked result that isn’t flattering and looks like a retro-style.
Remembering that the goal of balayage is to create lightness where you would normally find natural highlighting, be sure to focus your efforts on creating brightness in the tops and foreground of the hair, and
keep your lines in the length thick enough to allow the waves to reflect the light to maximum effect.
Curly hair often appears less shiny and healthy, because the twists and turns of the hair strands as they curl only reflect light from the arcs that bend toward the light. Because of this, you want to be sure to
avoid using opaque colors on curly hair, which would result in a flatter color result and minimize the shine that exists in the hair. Translucent color formulas and tinted gloss are ideal for making curly hair more
vibrant and enhancing the shiny and healthy-look of the hair.
Of course, it is also important to make sure that you process curly hair carefully. Because of the way the hair grows, there are often “weaker spots” along the length of the hair shaft. When hair color is improperly
formulated or over-processed (with regard to lightening formulas) these points on the hair can become fragile and can be places more prone to breakage. Prior to coloring curly hair, it is often a good idea to apply
protein treatments or deep conditioning packs.
Highlighting – Foils
Foil highlighting on curly hair has the same considerations needed as are there with wavy hair. You must always make sure that the strands you separate in the weave process are thick enough to be in proportion to the
curl of the hair. The weave doesn’t have to be the same size as a lock of curl, but should be sufficiently large that the highlight enhances the look of the curl. Done right, the curl of the hair, and the highlights
will work together to enhance the look far better than either of the elements alone.
Just remember that if the weave is too small, the highlights will be lost in the curl, but if they are too big, the effect could appear cartoonish and very dated. In addition – just as with the all-over color –
make sure to process the color carefully, particularly with lightening processes. If you allow the color to damage the hair (because you used too-strong a developer, or over-processed bleaching formula) the hair
could potentially break at the points described above.
Highlighting – Balayage
Since the goal of balayage is to create very organic (natural-looking) highlighting effects, the technique is well-suited to use on curly hair. The thick, creamy color or lightening formula is painted onto the lock
of curl in stripes sufficient to be in balance with the size of the curl. The painted-on technique allows the stylist to apply the color/lightener where the natural reflectivity would be most prominent on the curl
and enhance the natural look of the hair.
Once again, though, be sure to use care when coloring and lightening curly hair due to the potential damage to the weaker zones along the strands. Using conditioning treatments and protein packs before
coloring/lightening the hair using balayage can help prevent damage.