We’re with the band

The shine band is a bit like contouring in make-up – when done right it can add incredible depth to a look. When done wrong, it looks truly dreadful. We asked some of the UK’s top colourists for tips on how to master this technique…

Mark Leeson, Revlon Professional global artistic ambassador 

“Shine line bands create a beam of light within the most simplistic haircuts. Placement is really key to maximise the effect and create a focal point. If you are doing a fringe shine line, use the eyes as a guideline to create your section. The outside corner of each eye to the top of the centre head will create a triangle section for you to work within.

“For a more subtle, diffused result, do not colour the last top section of hair as this will blur the overall effect giving a softer internal line. I always use a side brushing technique when creating the shine band as this will avoid harsh lines. Always work on horizontal slices laying each section directly on top of the previous section and use this as your visual guide.”

Paul Dennison, colour director at Ken Picton Salons

“If we start with the softest (brunette curls) we can see that a subtle shine band has been created into the fringe area. This is a great area to place a band as it’s a real focal point in the haircut. This was achieved by taking a fine slice across the top section of the fringe and using a pre-lightener,  painting a one inch band across, allowing to lift, then toning to soften. This gives the effect of a bend in the hair and promotes shine.

“The second image would be the medium strength shine band, obviously this is a bolder look and was achieved by layering multiple slices in the same technique as the first. I like to use a meche or clear plastic sheet so that I can see where my under band is lying before applying the colour to the next section, then toning using a contrasting colour.

“The third image is obviously the strongest and designed to give maximum impact, leaving a line in the hair that’s almost anti-balayage. The aim here is to achieve the highest difference between colours. This look was created using a pre-made stencil pattern and a clear plastic to keep a guide.”


Steph Peckmore, colour manager, Bad Apple Hair 

“Shine bands are the perfect example of an Instagram-born trend that quickly caught on; when perfected, they look really striking in photos. Shine bands are notoriously tricky to master because colour placement needs to be incredibly accurate if you’re going to create the desired effect. Preparation is important: determine where you want your shine band to begin and end.

“I usually create a line that extends from the outside corner of the eye to the top of the head, but take into consideration the width of the shine band you want to create, the length of your client’s hair and the colour you are using when making this decision. Section the hair and, starting approximately one inch from the hairline, take a horizontal slice. Using foils and a side-brushing technique, apply formula to the mid-section of the hair only. Next, working your way up, continue to take each horizontal layer, laying each one directly on top of the previous section – this way you can use the previous section as a guide to assist you in placing the colour correctly. Repeat the process until you have reached the final top section.

“I sometimes keep the very top last section of the hair colour-free, covering it with foil to protect it during the process, as this gives a more subtle shine band that appears to come from ‘within’ the hair, rather than sitting on the surface.”




Anne Veck,  founder of Anne Veck Salons

“To get the perfect shine band, use your brush vertically to avoid harsh lines and always place it at the bevel of the head where the light would catch it naturally. It also has to be a super smooth style so that it looks like it would be realistically reflective. A classic shine band is using lighter colour which makes the band stand out, but you can also do it with a darker colour for a subtle look.”

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