Balayage vs Highlight? Foilyage? What’s the difference? Omaha Salon Explains.

Balayage is one of the new hot hair terms frequenting our Omaha salon. Pintrest, Intstagram, Facebook, you name it, the pics are rolling in, inspiration photos are flying. We love inspiration, but what exactly is balayage? What is the difference between a balayage and  highlight? Foilyage? How do we transition? Which one is best? Our experienced Omaha stylists are here to help.

Balayage vs Highlight?

Natasha Fehlhaber, stylist/owner at  Omaha’s Reveal Salon and Spa  explains that, ” Balayage is a usually a softer, more graduated look, getting progressively lighter at the ends, while highlights are lightened from scalp to ends.”

With balayage the grow out is generally less obvious and you can go longer in between touch-ups. Balayage also is more freestyle vs. patterned like highlights. This will also depend on if you have had roots darkened by your favorite Omaha stylist. Balayage is traditionally considered to be a technique done without foils, but depending on your desired end result, our Omaha Salon uses either option.


Which brings us to foilyage. When using foil and balayage it will allow the hair to get lighter than a traditional balayage. We are seeing so many clients coming in and wanting the more ashy, platinum or neutral tones, and to acheive this it takes lightening the hair more than just where balayage can go. Sometimes it may even require more than one time or session of lightening to achieve the desired results, depending on how dark the hair was, or if it was previously colored.

Why would you choose one method over the other? What is the end result of each? 

Heidi of Reveal Salon and Spa in Omaha tells us, “The result of a full foil is a more patterned and evenly consistent look, while a balayage or foilyage  will give a look that is more free flowing and organic. If you’re more into an all over blonde look or all over highlight, I would go for the foils, because balayage, a lot of the time won’t go as blonde as foils. It will keep a deeper or golden tone”

Now that you have an idea of the differences between the two techniques, how do you know which one is the best option for you?

If you’re an effortless beauty or slightly edgy girl,  balayage may be your best option, having your ends popping brighter. If you are a classically traditional girl, foils may be the way to go, giving you an all over light look. So many of us fall right in between or are ready to try something new, foilyage may be for you. 

The method our Omaha stylists choose also depends on the client’s hair. If the hair is virgin, then I feel that balayage is a great option. A lot of times clients are looking to  get rid of the brass since their hair has been processed so many times, to remove this, the foilyage technique is better for achieving the ‘it-look.’ And as Always…Conditioning Treatments are a Must!