It’s undeniable that we are spending more time ‘appearing’ on screens – whether it’s work Zooms, family FaceTiming, creative TikToks or basic selfies. So what better way to shake up your on-camera appearance than with an unexpected face frame of hair color? Chunky, contrasting color panels are turning up everywhere, from certain celebrities that have makeup lines and famous sisters, to the hottest K-Pop stars.
These chunky highlights right at the front of the face can be achieved with any shades for as much – or as little – contrast as you like. Depending on the shade chosen, color framing can highlight and brighten the face, give a contouring effect, or just plain add drama to your head shot!
Better Natured™ style expert and celebrity colorist Jennifer MacDougall shares two different examples to inspire your creativity, one subtle and one high impact, achieved with Better Natured™ Liqui-Crème Hair Color. Jennifer especially likes using Better Natured™ for this technique because the formula is highly effective and, at the same time, extremely nourishing.
“The hair that frames our faces tends to be fragile because it’s often the most manipulated – from heat styling, brushing and being pulled back for ponytails and up-dos,” she explains. “Better Natured’s color is fortified with naturally-derived*, super-hydrating ingredients like coconut oil and three different plant milks that are gentle and leave the hair soft and full of shine.”
Many Colors, One Technique
How To Do Face Framing Highlights
For a more subtle, chic face frame effect for medium brunettes around a level 5 or 6N, Jennifer recommends using a level 7WB (warm beige) for contrast. The WB shades “give warmth and shimmery dimension without adding darkness,” she says, and are “perfect for a freshening up your look for Fall.”
But for those who don’t want to play it safe, Jennifer suggests using a bold fashion color to stand out. “For someone whose base color is a bit darker, like a level 4 or 5N, I love adding an intense red framing color like 5RR.” This fiery, vibrant red will be a strong accent for fair skin, but the mix of warm and cool tones will complement a wide range of complexions. As Jennifer says, “Red highlights have so much pop – they make you unforgettable.”
Follow Jennifer’s step-by-step technique here to achieve a beautiful face frame (and be sure to do a patch test first).
- Using a comb, separate out 1-inch panel sections in front. Pull remaining hair back with clips so it does not interfere with the highlight color application.
- You will be working with 2 shades: your base shade and your lighter, framing shade. Mix each, have them in separate bowls, with separate brushes, and put on your gloves.
- Apply barrier cream around hairline and ears.
- Apply lighter shade to the front panels from root and all the way through mid-lengths and ends. If your hair is thick you can use your gloved hands to smoosh in the color so everything is coated.
- If you prefer a subtler effect at the root, you can do a root shadow instead to blur the line between the two shades. In this case, start with the darker shade and apply a 1-inch root shadow at the top of the face frame. Then apply the lighter shade from the midlengths through the ends. Wipe your gloves clean and using your fingers, smudge gently to blend the 2 colors only where they meet.
- Wipe gloves clean again, and then continue applying the darker shade over your remaining hair as usual.
- Process for 35-45 minutes.
- When finished, hop into the shower and carefully rinse out the back or your hair first. Then tilting your head further back and closing your eyes, rinse out the highlighted section in front.
- Shampoo and condition with Better Natured™ Color Care Shampoo and Conditioning Balm to protect your new hues! When used together regularly they protect color vibrancy for up to 9 weeks.
- Before you blow-dry apply Better Natured™ Heat Styling Lotion for added heat protection, softness, and shine.
Voila. You are ready for your close up!
*Better Natured™ Liqui-Creme Hair Color shades range between 87% - 92% naturally-derived depending on the shade. We use the Global ISO Standard 16128 which defines naturally-derived as a plant or mineral derived material and water which is found in nature and has undergone limited processing.