If you have been relishing your ombré or balayage look but are wondering where a stylish gradient can take you next, look no further than a shadow root.
Root shadowing (also called root shading, stretching, color melting, or just downright beautiful) is a perfect option if you want to try something new and leave traditional single-process hair color behind.
What is Root Shadowing?
Root shadowing is a low-maintenance hair color technique in which a darker shade is applied directly to the roots giving a soft, seamless contrast. It’s a great way to refresh your look and give your hair color depth and dimension. Root shadowing is often seen with balayage highlights (like blonde, highlighted hair with dark roots), but it can actually be done with any hair color.
Why You Might Want to Root Shadow
Sure, you could go for a plain old root touch up to refresh your brown hair or your light blonde highlights. Or, you could try a simpler approach with root shadowing.
Root shadowing is budget-friendly, low-maintenance hair color at its best. Since it’s a blending of dark roots into lighter hair color and the look is intentionally “lived-in,” you don’t have to touch up your roots every few weeks, saving you both money and time.
Root shadowing lets you embrace your forever-growing roots rather than rally against them, which cuts down on the amount of time spent coloring your hair. Plus, you get to avoid the stark “growing out” phase if your natural color is significantly darker than your highlights.
Hair care for shadow root hair is super simple, too. A sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner should suffice, and can help keep your shadow hair color from fading too quickly.
Can You Achieve a Root Shadow at Home?
In a word—YES. You don’t need a stylist or an expensive trip to the salon to pull off a shadow root. But, there are a few important things to keep in mind when adding dark roots to blonde ends or creating a subtle ombré effect in your brunette locks.
When choosing a shade for your shadow roots, consider your natural hair color. Opt for a dye that’s in the same tone family (warm, cool, neutral, etc.) for best results. If you’re unsure how to pick the best shadow root hair color, chat with a licensed colorist so you can color with confidence. You can even book a free virtual Video Color Consultation.