17 Beautiful Balayage Inspiration For Short Hair

The notion that balayage is only for long hair is not only silly but also false! Sure, the technique is more noticeable on long and luscious locks, but short hair can absolutely rock the innovative highlighting technique. All you need are a few inches. Whether you have a sweet pixie cut, edgy short locks, bob, or lovely lob, you can wear balayage highlights however you like. Just keep in mind the overall effect you want to have with your hairstyle.

Creating A Beautiful Balayage Style

For those of you who don’t know, balayage is a free hand painting technique that helps stylists customize highlights they apply to hair. Typically, hair becomes gradually lighter towards the ends. Think grown out highlights without the dullness. Though short hair doesn’t have crazy long length, even short pixies can use balayage to their advantage. The look is great as an unfussy hairstyle that grows out beautifully. We’ve complied the best balayage styles for short hair, so let’s take a look at them all.

#1: Pixie With Long Bangs

How lovely is this pixie cut? This babe is in the process of growing out her short hair, so it makes sense to use the balayage highlighting technique to make this phase easier.

Here, the bob pixie has long sweeping bangs that are perfect for a round face shape. The balayage highlights are focused where the light naturally hits, the front of the bangs that sweep across the face.

#2: Beach Bronde Lob

Gorgeous bronde balayage is for the brunette who wants to add a bit of blonde to her life. The balayage on this short hairstyle makes it look as if her blonde has been growing out in an effortless way and will keep you out of the salon chair for longer if you want to try it.

To recreate this beach bronde balayage, ask your stylist to aim for a sun kissed glow. The lighter bronde portion of hair should be gradually focused at the tips of hair.

#3: Eggplant Balayage Bob

A balayage highlight technique is great if you want to try out a unique color like this more playful eggplant purple. If you’re intrigued by this color, it looks best on very dark brunette or black hair. For blondes, you may want to try a pastel color palette.

Ask your stylist to focus the balayage technique on the ends of hair and the front portions surrounding your face. Add as much or little dynamic color as you choose. Going with more eggplant color, a bob is great for optimal grown out appeal.

#4: Short Bob With Rooted Balayage

The trend of showing off your roots is back in full swing. Why not make the effect subtle instead of shocking? With balayage, your roots will definitely stand out, but it will give your short hairstyle some interesting dimension in a purposeful way.

With this bob, plenty of hair underneath the swooping side bangs carries the same natural root color throughout. It makes the balayage look not only natural but also intentional and stylish.

#5: Chocolate Bob With Subtle Highlights

Hair stylists and beauty fans alike love balayage because of its versatility. You can add tons of interesting texture with lots of light balayage highlights or just play up your short hair in certain areas. Balayage is known for mimicking the effect of sunlight hitting your hair and this look does just that.

This gorgeous chocolate bob is instantly brightened by subtle lighter toned highlights. Ask your stylist to go light and add a smidge of color framing your face, at the top of the head, and on the outer edges of the sides of your hair.

#6: Icy Balayage Pixie

Why not go icy cool with your balayage hue? This short pixie makes blue hair sexy instead of surprising. If you’re into a bold look like this one, get creative with where your hair is darkest.

Here, the light gray blue color is concentrated on the right side of the head. The balayage highlights grow subtly out of this section into frosty, side swept bangs that truly shine. We love the way this color makes her blue eyes pop!

#7: Blonde Balayage Bob

This hairstyle may just be the perfect way to wear blonde balayage on your short hairstyle. Monochrome color is cool, but balayage adds such beautiful texture to flat coloring.

Your stylist should use this photo as inspiration for creating rich colorful dimension on your hair. Go for a deeper blonde that is closer to your natural root color. Notice how this color gradually fades into the sunny blonde throughout the rest of the length. We love this balayage in a bob, but even short pixies can rock this color.

#8: Long Pixie With Balayage

The contrast in this short hair balayage is a little more dramatic than most on this list. It totally works, however, because the stylist has used more than one tone within the same family. The effect is cohesive yet highly individual.

For a longer pixie cut, this look is fantastic. Lots of length is helpful, but this relaxed choppy style on top of the head helps play up the look.

#9: Ash Toned Balayage

Ash toned balayage is the perfect style for winter months. If you prefer to color your hair on the cooler side, then consider this ashy blonde hair with root growth. Instead of feeling bright, this look is more subdued.

This balayage style is so beautiful in a choppy bob. We especially love this effortless hair painting on fine hair types, but it can work on even the thickest of hair.

#10: Balayage Pixie With Shaved Detail

Even edgy babes can sport balayage highlights! What better way to show the contrast of your highlights than through a pixie with a shaved detail? To create a cohesive balayage look for your short hair, maintain the same root color all throughout the head.

The shaved portion should reach to the very top of the head. This will create gorgeous contrast between darker root colors and the lighter balayage highlights on top.

#11: Textured Pixie

While balayage uses color to show texture, why not style your short hair with body to match? The overall effect is totally lux and easy to maintain.

Beautifully textured waves like the ones on this long pixie reveal the contrast between the darker notes and lighter highlights of this balayage look.

#12: Sandy Blonde Bob

This look is all about layered dimension. If you want your short hair to read blonde but maintain some grounding depth, ask your stylist for several varying shades when painting your locks.

More than one shade can be busy on super short hair, but it looks well defined and classy on bob length hair. Give hair a few bends with your curling wand and you’re good to go.

#13: Warm Brown and Red Tones

Looking to brighten your basic red locks? This bob is full of colorful dimension to rival the natural body of this thick hairstyle.

To achieve this balayage look, ask your stylist to color your roots a lovely auburn. As you move throughout the length of hair, colors should brighten. Think light copper with a hint of blonde.

#14: Blonde Babylights Pixie

Feeling a little subtle when it comes to coloring your funky pixie? Not all balayage need to be drastic. This sexy style utilizes babylights for a seamless yet undeniably balayage color combo.

With this style, the root color is actually lighter than the length. It works especially well on ultra short styles and especially lighter blondes. Part your pixie to the side, swoop bangs over your forehead and you’re ready to face the world!

#15: Ash Blonde Spiky Pixie

Balayage highlights don’t have to be subtle, though that is a typical characteristic of the technique. In reality, if you’re stylist is doing some artful painting to help two different tones blend, then you’re creating balayge on your short hairstyle.

A short spiky pixie provides the perfect opportunity to play with strong contrasting highlights. For a refreshed version of the 90’s style, have your stylist lighten the tips of hair an ashy blonde while the roots remain dirty blonde.

#16: Straight Brunette Lob

If it’s done right, balayage can be glorious on pin straight hair. No curls or texture to obscure any issues here! When done right, the darker, chocolate colored highlights should blend with the lighter cocoa outer layers perfectly.

This technique also gives the illusion of thick hair on thin hair types. A lovely inverted bob keeps the entire look modern and chic.

#17: Caramel Blonde Pixie

This warm blonde balayage hair color is too pretty to pass up. If you’re looking for some unique highlights for your new pixie cut or want to take your naturally blonde locks to the next level, consider trying out caramel highlights.

Swooping bangs provide a perfect opportunity to show off balayage highlights on short hair. With a deep side part, you can see where the balayage works best to show off sun-kissed dimension.

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