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Hair · April 23, 2015

Is Tortoise Shell Hair the New Ombr?

Its Ombrs Sophisticated Sister

If youre thinking this is just another version of ombr paired with the balayage technique, it isbut softer. The difference is that for tortoise shell, you first richen up your natural color by either balayaging darker lowlights or dying your natural hair color to deepen it or add tone, says Chastain. Then, highlights are added on top and placed a bit higher than ombr. Think less dip-dye, more of a multidimensional mix.

Its All About Shade Over Fade

While ombr was focused on gradually fading from dark to light, tortoise shell hair is all about the specific colors being highlightedshades like caramel, honey, chocolate, and mahogany. The tones are much warmer and more golden than what we saw with ombr, Chastain says. If you want to hop on the ecaille trend, show your colorist photos of early adopters like Rosie Huntington-Whitley and Khloe Kardashian who have the right mix of colors.

It Looks More Lazy-Girl Than It Is

While the finished look has serious I-woke-up-like-this vibes, it still takes some serious upkeep: Its actually higher maintenance than ombr because your natural hair [color] has been altered, so you will eventually see roots, says Chastain. If youre not up for frequent root touch-ups, he recommends asking your colorist to use a toner on your natural hair during the darkening process, rather than a semi-permanent or a permanent dye, so the color gradually fades as it grows out.


Maura M. Lynch

Burt's Bees addict. Watches way too much TV. Has never turned down a french fry.