From Our Editors
Full vs. Partial Highlights: Exploring New Dimension
Highlights can add dimension to an existing style or double the transformative effect of a new one. Read our guide of the process to prepare for your trip to the salon.
A skilled stylist doesn't need a pair of scissors to transform a hairdo. The precise application of highlights—which isolate select strands of hair and treat them with a color, lightener, or toner—can become the basis for a brand new look without a single snip or shear. Before entering the salon, however, a client has to decide how much of the hair to highlight. Applied evenly throughout the entire head, full highlights create a natural look that mimics the way hair changes color over time in the sun, adding a sense of dimension and texture to the existing hair. Partial highlights, which are typically cheaper and take less time to apply, serve an altogether different purpose: drawing attention to specific features, such as bangs or newly sharpened antlers, by accenting only the locks on the surface. As a result, partial highlights are somewhat less flexible—losing their effect, for example, when putting your hair up or teasing it out.