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Last updated: April 28, 2022

Use These 5 Tips When Adding Depth To Brunettes

5 Ways To Add Visible Depth To Brunettes

With expensive brunette taking over, we had Alfaparf Milano National Artistic Director Cassie Siskovic (@cassiskovic) and Caitlin Dugan (@coloredbycaitlin) show us how to achieve the look with balayage and foils! Keep scrolling to grab their tips for adding depth back into any texture, plus why you need to add watercolor balayage to your repertoire when working with porous hair. 


Watch the video above for the full 50-minute tutorial. Don’t forget to check out the finished looks and the formulas below! 



1. Avoid Muddy Ends With Water

Use this trick to keep prelightened ends bright when lowlighting! Dilute the formula with water to avoid muddy tones—this is called “watercolor balayage.” Here’s why it works: Water is an oxidizing agent and works as a buffer when adding color to highly porous hair, so you achieve a soft and even finish.


Pro Tip: When breaking up harsh lines of demarcation, Cassie will use this technique on the entire section for a seamless blend.


Check Out Cassie’s Finished Look & Tap The Beaker For The Formula!

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  • Formula A (Balayage)

    Alfaparf Milano Evolution of the Color Crystal Brown 7 + 10-volume developer (1:1.5)


2. Depth Always Goes Behind Any Brightness

It’s easy to get lost on where you should place depth in the hair. Caitlin advises to always keep the depth placement away from the face, behind the highlights and away from the ends so they stay bright. 


3. Fill & Deposit In One Step To Prevent Murky Color

When adding depth, some levels will need a fill color so the formula doesn’t turn muddy. To skip this step and save time, use a color line that fills the hair as it processes, like Alfaparf Milano Color Wear. Color Wear fills up to three levels, so you don’t have to worry about murky shades when highlighting or lowlighting. 


Get 20% off Alfaparf Milano products with the code: APMXBTC


Check Out Caitlin’s Finished Look & Tap The Beaker For The Formulas!

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  • Formula A (Lightener)

    Alfaparf Milano BB Bleach High Lift 9 + 9-volume developer

  • Formula B (Lowlights)

    Alfaparf Milano Color Wear 4 + 5.32 + 5-volume developer


4. Balayage Can Be Used To Add Depth

Think balayage can only be used to brighten hair? Think again. Balayage doesn’t necessarily require any lightener—the technique is a French word that means to sweep, so you can use it lowlight too!


5. Weave Out Lowlights In Large Sections

The key to making your lowlights pop when adding depth to brunettes is to use larger sections than the highlights. Caitlin will weave out a moderately sized section for her highlights and an even chunkier section for her lowlights so they don’t get lost in the brightness. 

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