The Fall Hair Trend You’ll Want: Partial Balayage

Over the years my hair has undergone quite the transformation. From dark brown to black, red, bright blonde streaks (during my me phase…I was a real gem in high school) and most recently ombre. While I was in love with the ombre trend, after 4 years I felt I needed a change. My hair is naturally dark brown, so I liked how the blonde ombre lightened up the look. As the ombre trend began to fade (get it?!) balayage began to grow in popularity. While ombre is the transition of a dark shade to light, balayage is a more graduated, natural looking highlighting technique. Once I arrived at the salon, my hairdresser suggested I go with a partial balayage. I had never heard of such a thing, but let her work her magic anyways. It turned out to me my favorite haircolor thus far – and I wanted to share it with you all!

What is a partial balayage?

Much like a balayage, a partial balayage is a freehand colouring technique where highlights are added to your hair. While a traditional balayage consists of applying highlights throughout your full head of hair, a partial balayage only includes highlights on your top layer of hair.

Who should get a partial balayage?

Anyone can get a partial balayage, however I’d highly recommend those with virgin hair (never bleached) to go for a partial balayage, instead of a traditional balayage. It’s a fun way to spice up your hairstyle, without committing to a full transformation. It will look more natural, and be less damaging on your hair.

Who should do my partial balayage?

Make sure to do your research and find a hairdresser well-experienced in balayage. A great way to see if a hairdresser can give you the look you want is looking through their portfolio.  Don’t assume any hairdresser can give you a partial balayage. Call around and ask who has experience and feels comfortable doing a partial balayage – then ask if they have an online portfolio (Instagram accounts can also work!).

How do I care for my partial balayage?

While a partial balayage is less damaging to your hair than a partial balayage, bleach is still being applied to your hair. As a result, it needs extra care and moisture. There are several ways to care for your partial balayage. First: use heat on your hair sparingly. If you’re like me and like your hair constantly styled, I’d invest in a blowdryer that dries your hair fast and doesn’t use too much direct heat. I’ve been using this hairdryer for a year and a half and my hair is in the best condition of it’s life. I can see a noticeable difference in my hair right after I’ve dried it. It is shiny and feels smooth to the touch. Next, if you like to rock waves, I’d suggest using a curling wand that creates curls you don’t have to touch up. I use this curling wand and have perfect curls for three days. Unlike other curling wands, I don’t have to touch up my hair, exposing it to extra heat (and further damaging it). This is the best curling wand I’ve ever used, and it also comes in a set with three different sized barrels (I used the 1″ straight barrel in these photos). Next up: make sure to use a brush that doesn’t tug at your hair, creating breakages. I swear by this brush – it’s only $12 and comes in multiple colors. It’s the only brush I’ve ever used that doesn’t tug on my tangles (and I get a LOT post shower). It’s a must have for all!

What hair products should I use?

Anyone who has bleached hair should be using a shampoo and conditioner made for damaged, dull and color treated hair. While I jump around products, this is my absolute favorite shampoo and conditioner. I promise they are absolutely worth the money. A leave in conditioner is also a must. I jump around brands, however this is my all time favorite (and smells like HEAVEN!). I apply a dime size amount to the highlighted portions of my hair and my ends. Finally, a purple shampoo works wonders on highlighted hair. Bleached hair tends to become brassy over time. To reverse this brassy look and brighten your highlights I’d suggest using a purple shampoo once or twice a week. I use this shampoo every other wash and keep it in my hair 2-3 minutes before rinsing. I’ve also heard great things about this purple shampoo and intend on trying it out ASAP! Finally, I’d suggest getting a silk pillowcase to reduce hair tangle and pull throughout the night – damaging your hair. It is also crafted to reduce friction, which aids in reducing stretching and tugging on your skin. It’s a win-win!


There you have it! If you’re on the fence whether or not you want a partial balayage – I think you should do it! As long as you find an experienced hairstylist and commit to spending extra time and care on your hair – you’re golden (get it?!). If you have any more questions on partial balayage feel free to leave them in the comments below or email me at I’d love to see your balayage – tag me on Instagram (mash.elle) or Twitter (Mash__Elle) to show me your beautiful locks!

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