Peek-A-Boo Hair Color Is Summer’s Hottest Version


Early 2000s-inspired peek-a-boo hair has become one of this summer’s hottest beauty trends, especially after Miley Cyrus debuted the look a few months ago. In fact, Google searches for “two-tone hair” increased by 733% in the week Cyrus was spotted with the style, while queries for “Miley Cyrus’ hair” simultaneously increased by 393% , according to data from the LOOKFANTASTIC beauty platform.

The Peek-a-boo hair color features the lower section of the locks dyed a second shade, making it a more understated yet still eye-catching way to rock different hues. While Cyrus started the color craze, the singer’s look is actually a nod to countless musicians who rocked her before her: Madonna and Debbie Harry are often credited with popularizing the style in the 1980s, although two-tone hair returned as a cultural phenomenon. 20 years later.

In the early 2000s, countless A-listers rocked the two-tone aesthetic, including Christina Aguilera (who could forget her signature blonde-on-black hair in her “Beautiful” video?), Avril Lavigne, Shakira, Nicole Richie, and Moreover. . Today, a number of celebrities have brought it back to the mainstream. “Miley has a version of this trend, but I’ve also seen it on Dua Lipa, Doja Cat, Ashnikko, Billie Eilish and Sia’s half-black half-blonde bob,” said Jose Rojas, colorist at Hair Cuttery. Hustle. He considers the look to be part of the e-girl aesthetic. “It’s like emo and scene fashion combined with K-pop fashion and streetwear that we see in Japan,” he explains.

Want to try out the stunning style yourself? Read on to learn all about peek-a-boo hair color.

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What is the Peek-A-Boo hair color trend?

According to Chase Kusero, hair colorist and co-founder of IGK Hair Care, the peek-a-boo look consists of a strategically placed section of color that pops out when the hair moves. “It’s tucked under a larger section of hair so you can choose to show it off or keep it hidden,” he told Bustle.

Richy Kandasamy, hair colorist and member of the R+Co collective, explains that the most common look is to wear your natural color juxtaposed with a very bright placement. This way, the second color acts as an accessory that can be seen when the hair is up or styled in a specific way – although there’s no wrong way to rock the two-tone look. “This trend can be realized in so many different ways and extremes,” says Kandasamy. “It’s about adding pops of high contrast to your existing base color, whether it’s playful hues or literal black and white tones.”

Christina Aguilera popularized a particularly daring approach to the look in the early 2000s.Steve Azzara/Corbis Entertainment/Getty Images

As for why he’s making such a comeback now? George Papanikolas, celebrity hairstylist and Matrix brand ambassador, thinks it gives you the best of both worlds. “It has an edgy punk vibe, but can be hidden,” he says — kind of like a low-key tattoo, but with hair color. “Wearing your hair up to show it off is awesome, and using a bright color makes it modern and unexpected,” he adds.

Plus, while the bold nature of the peek-a-boo trend can make it look like it requires extensive upkeep, it’s surprisingly low-maintenance. “It’s a very easy look to maintain because no one will see your roots grow out with the peek-a-boo,” says Ghanima Abdullah, hair expert and cosmetologist at “If you choose a darker color at the bottom, you won’t even need to bleach that part, so you can continue with your same skincare routine without different products.” Sold.

What to ask at the salon

Hair experts universally advise consulting a color specialist for this dye job. “Consult a professional because placement is key to the end result,” Kandasamy told Bustle. He says to specifically ask for “high contrast color panels” and consider having a consultation beforehand. “It’s important to have a thorough conversation with your colorist so that you not only consider the right color choice, but also how the placement works with your haircut,” he says.

Rihanna rocked her own peek-a-boo ‘do in 2009.Jason Merritt/TERM/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Other ways to describe the look include “block color” and “halo sections,” Rojas adds. Experts also recommend telling your colorist which specific section of your hair you want to dye, as well as whether or not you want it masked. And, of course, it’s always wise to bring along a reference photo (or a few), as this helps paint a picture of where to place the pigment.

Be sure to keep in mind that any shade darker than your natural color may need to be bleached or lightened first. “If you want something lighter or more lively [for your peek-a-boo color], you’ll need to pre-lighten first,” says Papanikolas. “Going darker is much easier, but be careful – very dark or black tones can be very difficult to remove in the future.” If you bleach, tone and/or color, Kandasamy and Papanikolas reiterate the importance of using hair protection and color preservation products in your routine.

How to DIY the look

If you’re going to DIY your peek-a-boo dye job, experts encourage using semi-permanent or temporary colors. Once you have that, start by dividing the section you want to dye. “Pick where you want to see the most color first — right, left, or behind,” says Kusero, who prefers to choose a triangle-shaped section just above and slightly behind the ear. Once you’ve decided, section and cut the rest of your hair up and sideways. “Once sectioned, use a temporary color mask and fully [dye] the section of hair where you want to see the color,” Kusero continues. Pro tip: “Don’t be afraid to mix and match and blend colors together to create a dimensional effect,” adds Kusero. “That’s the beauty of temporary color!”

How to Style the Peek-A-Boo

90s Blast

It’s hard to find a color trend that doesn’t go well with a glam ’90s-inspired blowout, and peek-a-boo is no exception. To achieve the look, Rojas suggests prepping hair with heat protectant and mousse, followed by hair oil from the middle of the strands to the ends. Blow dry your hair until about 80% dry, then run through and buff, wrapping the ends around the brush to style.

half bun

Another option that will really show off your dye job? Rojas suggests pinning or parting your hair in a half-up, as it’s simple, heat-free, and exposes your peek-a-boo color (the best part).

Beach waves

“Simple beachy waves rolled away from the face will pull the peek-a-boo forward to create dimensional ribbons of color,” Kusero told Bustle. You can achieve the beach wave aesthetic via a hot tool or by sleeping in braids, according to Rojas. For this last technique, he recommends doing two braids parted in the middle on slightly damp hair, applying some volumizing mousse and sleeping with it overnight.


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