Lighten and brighten with ‘ring lighting’

Searching for a way to brighten clients’ strands during the winter? Dylan Brittain, owner of Rainbow Room International George Square, shares all about the ‘ring lighting’ technique

Inspired by the natural glow and golden light of summer, ‘ring lighting’ is a hair colour technique created to add depth and dimension to a client’s strands, while adding a gorgeous glow and warmth during the winter months. “As we no longer have as much natural sunlight and the nights get darker earlier, this technique is a great way to replicate light falling on the hair by brightening the complexion and framing the face,” explains Dylan.

Face-framing copper hair colour

Brunette hair with waves using ring lighting technique

Best created freehand, Dylan suggests following a halo-like shape to brighten key areas and frame the client’s features. Alternatively, the highlighting technique can also be used more subtly at the sides of the head, and towards the back and nape of the neck. This gives a natural finish and has maximum impact when the hair is tied up. “The key to both approaches is ensuring that the highlights are heavily focussed around the face. This technique is similar to balayage, but with more considered colour placement at the front of the head, giving a sun-kissed glow,” adds Dylan.

As well as being a must-have technique for brunettes and blondes, ‘ring lighting’ can also be incorporated into colour services for copper hair, as well as vivids and pastels. It’s also ideal for clients looking to go bright and bold with their colour choices, or try out a few brighter sections.

Red wavy hair with a pink face-frame


Pink hair colour with white blonde face-framing pieces

When it comes to maintenance, Dylan says: “It does require greater upkeep, as roots can look a lot more obvious on the lighter areas around the face. Traditional balayage can be left for a few months if looked after properly, but with this take on the trend clients will need to be back in the salon every one or two months to keep the colour looking its best.”

In between colour appointments, Dylan advises encouraging clients to use a hair conditioning mask regularly in order to keep the lighter pieces of the hair as strong and healthy as possible. It’s also good to encourage the use of a purple or violet shampoo once a week, as this will keep the blonde sections looking bright and free from brassiness.

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