How to blend roots with highlights? Step by step tutorial

hair with light highlights

  • To blend your roots and highlights, all you need to do is dye your roots the same color as the highlights. It’s that simple.
  • This creates a more even color in the two sections of your hair.
  • To create this look, try the “comb in” dye technique, which uses a comb to move the dye down the length of your hair. We’re going to explain this technique step-by-step later in this article.


 Grow out can be a real headache for anyone with dyed hair, no matter if you have highlights or one even color. 

No matter how often you retouch your highlights, you can’t forget that your hair will continue to grow, and the new growth will, of course, be another color.

Which is exactly what happened to my younger sister, Mariana.


She had light brown hair since she was younger, but since it darkened a bit as she got older, she decided to get some highlights.

She used to have plenty of free time to visit me in the salon and maintain her roots and the highlights.

Which meant they always looked beautiful.

But later, with work, kids, and the hustle and bustle of daily life, she didn’t have time to come into the salon as often and asked me if there was another way.


 And the most practical solution I could think of to blend the color of her roots with the highlights, so she wouldn’t have to worry so much about maintenance, or come into the salon as often. 

If you’re in the same situation as Mariana, keep reading, because in this article we are going to discuss:

  • How to find the perfect color to blend your roots with your highlights.
  • How to use the balayage technique to dye your roots


After today, I promise you'll never again have to walk around with visible grow out and a sloppy dye job.


How to choose the perfect color for blending in your highlights

color kits for home use

For the best results, make sure to choose the right color for your roots.

Ideally, you should  use a dye that's the same color as your highlights to perfectly blend your old highlights with the new growth. 

But what would happen if you choose a different color, a bit lighter or darker?


A disaster, that's what. This would create a noticeable difference in color, and not the blending effect you're looking for.

For the best results, you should choose a color that's the same as your current highlights.

  • For example, if your highlights are a level 8 blond, that’s the color you should choose for your roots.
  • Whereas if they’re a level 6 light brown, you should use a level 6 light brown dye.

You should choose the same color, and what's more, there's not much margin of error.


  I recommend carefully checking the images on the box of dye while you're still at the store 

To find the right color, just place a strand of your highlighted hair over the image on the box. If it's a match, you've found the right color.

Once you have the right color, all that's left is to apply the dye, which is what we discuss next.


How to apply the dye to blend your highlights and roots

straighten curly hairs

The dye is very easy to apply and doesn't require special skills or precision, but there's one important item: a pintail comb. You'll soon see why.


Once you've found the ideal color to blend your roots and highlights, all you need are a few items, such as:

  • A box of hair dye
  • Pintail comb
  • Gloves, which are generally included in the box.


This technique, which is called "combing in" the hair dye, doesn't require special hairstyling skills.

If you can comb your hair, you can use this technique.


All you need to do use the comb to apply the dye to the first 1.5-2 inches of your hair to perfectly blend the two colors.

This technique is very similar to what colorists do to create a sombre,  and is used to create natural-looking changes in color, such as an ombre or balayage.

Simple apply the dye to the roots of your hair, and use the comb to drag it down one and a half to two inches.

Let's go over that, step by step.


Step 1

Comb your hair to make sure its completely knot and tangle-free, as tangled can make it more difficult to dye your hair.

I recommend combing your hair, and parting down the middle to make sure you can see the difference between your roots and highlights.


Step 2

Mix the dye and developer, making sure to use gloves. Both the developer and dye will be in the hair dye kit.

Mix the dye and developer very well in a plastic container until you've created a homogeneous mixture.


Step 3

Next, just apply the dye to your roots, and use the comb to drag the dye an inch or two down your hair.

Then separate another portion of your hair and do the same thing, applying dye to the roots and combing, until you're covered all your roots.


 Remember to comb the dye to slightly different lengths in different strands to blend your roots and highlights.  

Just be careful to dye every section of your roots.


If you don't have a pintail comb, you can also use a brush, and brush the dye into your hair, using vertical strokes of varying lengths.

This way, you can also blend the dye with the highlights already in your hair.

After applying the dye, all that's left is to let it process for 40 minutes.


Step 4

After the processing time, rinse your hair with plenty of warm water until it runs clean.


 But before you run to the store, make sure your hair’s ready for a color treatment. 

First of all, don't wash your hair for at least 48 hours before applying the dye, so the natural oils in your hair can protect your scalp and hair fiber while you dye your hair.


And, after you've blended your roots with the rest of your hair, make sure to give it some TLC.


How to care for your hair after applying the dye

  • It’s important to use the right shampoo on color-treated hair, as dying can leaved it damaged and dull.
  • Choose products designed to repair your hair and rebuild the protective barrier it lost during the dying process. All of this helps your hair feel softer and shine brighter.
  • Lastly, use a sulfate-free shampoo that’s designed for color-treated hair, and apply a conditioning mask to your hair at least once a week.

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