How To Do Linear Color And Other Funky Color Techniques

At home hair color is a million-dollar business, but there are some services that at-home hair color cannot provide. These services include new and funky techniques used by stylists to create custom styles and looks. But if you know how to do the techniques, you can do them yourself without having to set foot in a salon. Here are just a few of the latest salon color trends and how to do them yourself:


Slicing is probably the easiest highlighting technique for you to master at home.


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The look is very trendy and is identified by a few chunky highlights around the face or in the front of the hair. To use this technique on your hair, make 1, 2, or 3 horizontal partings across the top of the head.

The partings should be ¼” to ½” thick and be spaced no less than 1” apart.

Next, work your color through the section of parted hair making sure that you saturate the hair thoroughly. Failure to do so can result in uneven or splotchy color. Process according to directions, rinse, shampoo and dry.


Tipping is a great color technique to use if you have short or heavily textured hair. All you need to do is mix up your chosen color according to the directions. Next, use your fingers to apply color to the last ½” of your hair length.

Use a comb dipped in color to add extra interest and color to selected parts of your cut. The best places to comb on color is in the bangs and top layers.



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Linear color was made famous by Christina Aguilera. While Christina’s color was wild and contrasting, this technique is also used in more subtle hues to create classic looks. To do linear color at home you will need two different hair colors with the same tonal values.

The difference in color can be as little as a shade or two or be drastic.

To start the process of linear color, you first need to create your partings. Begin at the occipital bone (the most prominent bone in the back of the skull) and start a zigzag pattern from ear to ear. The zigzags should be narrow and deep. Pin the top part of your hair up onto the crown. Next, continue the zigzag parting around the perimeter of the head.

Note: You should not have a solid line of hair parted around the front of the face and hairline. The parting should leave only a few wisps of hair here and there free.

Using your darker color, apply color to the underneath section of hair and the lower section of hair around the face. Apply the lighter color to the entire upper section.

Process according to instructions.

As with all color techniques, the partings are crucial when trying out these tricks for yourself.

So, pay extra attention to your partings. If they don’t look right, do them over before applying color.

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