Auburn Hair: Subtle, Stylish and Dazzling!

Woman with shoulder length auburn hair

Auburn refers to the family of natural looking shades where red meets brunette or dark blonde – if your hair appears brown until you stand under a light source and reveal a halo of shimmering red or strawberry highlights, then chances are you’re already an auburn kinda gal.

Auburn is a great choice for anyone who wants to revamp their look in a classy and subtle fashion, particularly if you are a natural brunette or your hair is a darker shade of blonde.

If you are lucky enough to have natural red highlights then an auburn hair dye can really add shine and lustre to your locks, be prepared to dazzle!

How to achieve an Auburn hair color

Woman with red and auburn hair

The great thing about auburn as a shade is that’s possible to try it out using temporary tints and dyes so you can make absolutely sure you like the tone.

Lets be honest, there is a limit to how much temporary dyes can do (for example they won’t lighten your hair) but the auburn tones are where they really come into their own. Also, there is a great selection of natural hair dyes, including henna, in auburn shades so you can change the color of your hair without damaging your locks.

Another great way to achieve an auburn effect is in the form of lowlights, meaning that you have just a few bits of red throughout your hair to catch the light. This is a great way to build up to a full head of red if you’re a little too afraid to take the plunge in all one – you can gradually add more and more lowlights, getting a deeper overall color as you go.

This is also a fantastic way to get multi-tonal color. If you like the sound of lowlights its probably best to visit a professional salon as it can be a difficult technique to get right at home.

Girl with auburn fringe

There are a whole range of permanent home dye kits in auburn tones, and in fact auburn is one of the shades that the big brands produce really well, as it’s such a natural and universal color it is relatively easy to carry off.

Check out the hair color charts to see the huge range of formulas and shades available in auburn tones – as long as you stick to a shade that is no more than three shades away from your natural color you can’t really go wrong.

For the best effects, avoid going lighter or darker and instead look for a shade that is the same ‘level’ as your natural color, but further towards the red end of the color spectrum. Do make sure you are happy with the tone you have chosen as red hair will stick around for a very long time even if you dye over it – particularly if you have gray strands or lighter highlights.

Once you have done the deed you need to take care of your hair with shampoos and conditioners specially formulated for red-heads, as these will help to look after your hair whilst also adding further tones and highlights to the hair to keep it looking shiny, healthy and lustrous.

Auburn hair: the color working it’s way through Hollywood!

Rose McGowan with curly auburn hair

Auburn hair has massively increased in popularity over the last five years or so, as many celebrities are embracing their natural auburn locks while others enhance their natural color with red dyes.

However, as little as five years ago, red was really not a popular hair color and many natural auburn-haired beauties were dying over their natural locks and going blonde or brown instead.

Nowadays, natural blondes and natural brunettes are taking a walk on the wild side, and it may surprise you to know that there are an awful lot of celebrities out there who we think are natural redheads who are most definitely not – Debra Messing, Sophia Loren and Rose McGowan to name a few.

There’s no doubt about it, auburn hair is certainly back on the fashion radar and here at Hair Color Code, we absolutely love the sophisticated effect of red-hued locks!

Auburn Hair: Subtle, Stylish and Dazzling!, 3.6 out of 5 based on 11 ratings


  1. Deborah Kenna says

    The color I am striving for id deep burgundy with lighter highlites. Do you think violet would be goood?

    I like the exotic burdundy base but lighter highlites, not to thick.

    D you have any suggestions. I don’t want the purple to stand out like splat but enough to wear you can see the contrast.

    How about deep violet and purple highlites? My hair is eggplant now, fading, and I like it but I need a good highlites that will show highlites but also blend.


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