The Magic of Balayage Chestnut: Enhancing Locks with Dimension

October 17, 2023

The change of weather can only mean one thing! It’s time to experiment with new hair tones! And what better one to help transition your hair from a lighter blonde hue to a deeper rich shade than a chestnut Balayage! Read on to discover why this trending shade is the perfect balance of light and vibrancy and how it can suit each and every skin tone.

Chestnut Balayage: A Gorgeous Hair Coloring Technique

Chestnut Balayage encompasses a spectrum of captivating shades, each designed to bring out the best in your client’s hair. From classic chestnut, which exudes warmth and sophistication, to a spiced chestnut with hints of cinnamon, or even the smoky chestnut that lends a subtle, cooler depth to the hair.


Choosing the Right Shade: Exploring Variations of Chestnut

When selecting the perfect chestnut shade for your client, consider these variations:

  1. Classic Chestnut: This timeless shade boasts a warm, medium-brown base with subtle red undertones. Ideal for clients seeking a natural autumnal look.
  2. Cinnamon Chestnut: Infused with cinnamon tones, this copper variation adds warmth to the traditional chestnut, making it perfect for clients who want a touch more vibrancy.
  3. Smoky Chestnut: For those craving depth and drama, the smoky Chestnut features cool, ashy undertones that create a sophisticated look.
  4. Chestnut Ombre: A seamless transition from darker roots to chestnut mid-lengths and ends creates a striking ombre effect, delivering a high-contrast and bold look.

Balayage Techniques: Applying Dimension and Depth to Your Hair

Chestnut Balayage is all about achieving that enviable dimension and depth that clients crave. The chestnut Balayage technique can be customized to your clients but don’t forget that the basics include an in depth consultation that will help you work your creative magic.

  1. Freehand Painting: The hallmark of Balayage, freehand painting allows for precise placement of chestnut highlights. Begin by focusing on the darkest areas first and by choosing the most appropriate pre-lightener. We recommend Magnet™ Blondes Ultimate Powder 7, which is a medium lift ammonia-free* hair lightener with up to 7 levels of lift. ​As a chestnut tone works beautifully with yellow/orange undertones, this pre-lightener would be ideal. However, if your client has exceptionally dark hair or previously colored hair that may be more challenging to lift, then the Magnet™ Blondes Ultimate Powder 9 is ideal for darker bases while providing maximum hair care.
  2. Face Framing and Contouring: For a more focus around the face, consider face framing and contouring. Focusing the majority of the Balayage on the mid lengths and ends will give the hair dimension and movement, which can range from a subtle, sun kissed effect to a bolder more fashionable look.
  3. Sectioning: Divide the hair into sections to ensure even application. Start with the darkest and thickest sections and work your way up to create a seamless gradient.
  4. Balayage Paddle: Use a Balayage paddle or opt for some extra lightness with the foilyage technique to take your chestnut Balayage a step further. Mixing these techniques will result in a variation of tones throughout the hair with the foils making the hair slightly lighter.
  5. Tease the Roots: Do this while applying color to create a soft, natural transition.
  6. Color Melt: Consider using a color melt technique to blend the chestnut highlights with the client’s natural or chosen base color hair color for a seamless finish.
  7. Toning: Finish the chestnut Balayage application with a toning step to neutralize any unwanted undertones and enhance the overall result.
  8. Customize: This is where the fun really begins. You will need to choose and apply one or several bespoke chestnut shades. We really love the luminous tones by Color Excel Gloss™. These low commitment, ammonia-free* tone on tone shimmering colors are the best toning option after lightening services. They treat and color hair gently, providing glimmers of light. The .342 Bronzite is just one of our pros favorite subtle choices for a chestnut Balayage shade along with Nutri Color™ Filters Toning Filters 642 Chestnut. However, there is a range of shades that can be applied directly or mixed to create your own customized tone.
  9. Aftercare: No matter how stunning the color is while your client is in the salon, how they maintain it at home will be the real indication of a great stylist’s work! Make sure you always recommend care and styling products that will keep the color from fading and ensure it stays in tip top condition until the next salon visit. As a starting point, we recommend RE/START™ Color Protective Micellar Shampoo then a personalized home care routine which is suited to the client’s hair type.

Celebrities Rocking Balayage Chestnut: Inspiration for Your Style

Our clients often turn to celebrities for style inspiration, and there’s no shortage of A listers flaunting chestnut Balayage.

Jennifer Aniston

Renowned for her iconic waves, Jennifer Aniston’s timeless look embodies the elegance of classic chestnut. This face framing chestnut Balayage technique focuses on the base color for the richer shade while the lighter sections add pops of brightness that highlight the face. 



Zendaya has redefined chestnut Balayage with her modern take on the trend. Her chestnut locks feature bold, contrasting highlights for a high-impact look.


Lily Collins

Lily Collins showcases the versatility of chestnut with her romantic and softly blended hair. The focus is on the mids and ends, which draws the eye to the lip and cheekbone area. The tones are cooler, which creates a more contrasting look.



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Una publicación compartida por Lily Collins (@lilyjcollins)

Jessica Alba

A master of the smoky chestnut, Jessica Alba’s hair exudes gloss and depth, providing inspiration for clients seeking a mysterious allure. This look is soft and very flattering.



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Una publicación compartida por Jessica Alba (@jessicaalba)

Understand your client’s unique skin tone, natural hair color, and style preferences. Tailoring the shade of chestnut you use to these factors ensures a result that is not only beautiful but also personalized.

For more pro tips and color trends, head to our 24/7 educational platform, Revlon Pro Always On (available for clients only, so click the link to become one). You can also visit our Revlon Pro Shop to order all of your favorite products and much more!


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