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Ask a Hairstylist: The Best Hairstyles and Colours for Wavy, Brown Hair

Easy ways to update your look.
Hairstyles for wavy brown hair

Q: Hi Bill! I have fine, somewhat wavy hair that I've been dyeing various darker shades of brown for the past three years or so. 

I've been trying to grow it out for a while, so I have about two inches of my natural hair colour, but the rest is getting very brassy. 

Jen's hair is dyed darker brown, but turning brassy.

I decided to switch to a professional to get my colour done, but I'm not sure what would look best on me. All I know is that I want something fairly low-maintenance. 

I'm also open to changes in the cut, as I've always just had it long with layers. I appreciate your help! — Jen

A: Jen, thank you for your consultation request. I agree that your hair has some brassy tones right now that aren't ideal with your skin tone. 

I think you should move toward slightly lighter, neutral to golden browns. I like this lighter brown shade for you.

Natalie Portman No Strings Attached Los Angeles premiere 2011

Natalie Portman at the 2011 Los Angeles premiere of 'No Strings Attached.'

If you stay close to your natural tone, it will be a lot more low-maintenance.

If your colourist is very skilled, add some tone on tone golden highlights using a balayage technique:

Minka Kelly Salvatore Ferragamo Fashion Show 2011

Minka Kelly at a 2011 Salvatore Ferragamo fashion show.

They should frame your face and be concentrated more at your ends, for a naturally sun-kissed effect. Again, very low-maintenance as it grows out.

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In terms of your cut, I like this narrow fringe with the lighter colour for you:

Keira Knightley King Arthur London premiere 2004

Keira Knightley at the 2004 London premiere of 'King Arthur.'

Keep the layers long for tendrils when you put it up.

With a little help from an iron, you can add more movement and still keep it low-maintenance. First, air-dry your waves in place with a light setting lotion (like EVOLVh Ultimate Styling Lotion).

EVOLVh Ultimate Styling Lotion

EVOLVh Ultimate Styling Lotion

Once dry, use a wand or curling iron to add polish for this style:

Crystal Reed Teen Wolf Los Angeles premiere 2011

Crystal Reed at the 2011 Los Angeles premiere of 'Teen Wolf.'

These bangs can disappear quickly into your hair by pushing them to one side or the other. 

For a bigger shift in style, consider taking up the length to your collarbone:

Lily James Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Los Angeles premiere 2016

Lily James at the 2016 Los Angeles premiere of 'Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.'

Or this even shorter length, which would make your hair feel thicker:

Rebecca Hall Iron Man 3 Los Angeles premiere 2013

Rebecca Hall at the 2013 Los Angeles premiere of 'Iron Man 3.'

With either sun-kissed ends or an all-over colour, you can't go wrong.


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