Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts demonstrate Ombré Hair 2.0 (which is way more wearable than 1.0)

Drew Barrymore Nylon party ombre hair

You know about the Ombré hair trend, right?

Alexa Chung is the poster child, and it’s all about dark roots and bleached-out blonde ends.

Alexa Chung Ombre hair Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts demonstrate Ombré Hair 2.0 (which is way more wearable than 1.0)

So yeah… it’s not for everyone. (Well, except for my friend T., who told me the other night that she asked her hairdresser to make it look like she was growing out a really bad, ’80s dye job. Only she could come out of there looking totally rad… if I tried that, there’d probably be tears. She is infinitely cooler than I am.)

Anyway! We’ll call that look Ombré 1.0.

Now it’s come to my attention that there’s a softer, more subtle Ombré in town.

It has all the budget-friendly benefits of the original Ombré (meaning: you’ll spend less time at the hair salon touching up those highlights) but the look is MUCH easier for us non-celebs to pull off.

And Drew Barrymore’s hair is maybe the best example I’ve seen lately.

Let’s look at it again:

Drew Barrymore Nylon party ombre hair Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts demonstrate Ombré Hair 2.0 (which is way more wearable than 1.0)

Do you like?

Notice how seamless it is. There’s no harsh line marking where the colour ends, and it’s all in the same colour family, too (which makes me think she’s had colour applied at the roots instead of letting her natural colour grow in… more on that below).

Now if that’s still too radical for you, check out Julia Roberts at the Eat, Pray, Love premiere:

Lancome Julia Roberts Eat Pray Love Premiere Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts demonstrate Ombré Hair 2.0 (which is way more wearable than 1.0)

Her version is even more subtle, but again, the ends are definitely lighter than the roots. It looks SO natural though—as if they were lightened by the sun, not a hairdresser’s foils. And I love that (like Drew) she kept it all in the same colour family.

How to get the new, subtle Ombré hair

Leighton Meester ombre hair Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts demonstrate Ombré Hair 2.0 (which is way more wearable than 1.0)Now. I inadvertently got a version of this hair myself the other week at the hair salon.

My colourist, in an effort to save me money (LOVE her), suggested that instead of doing highlights and colour every time, that I only do highlights every other appointment… and in between, get my roots touched up with my darker base colour. (I get the base colour all over to warm up my natural ashy hue.)

So now I have something kind of similar to what Drew is rocking—everything in the same colour family but a few inches of darker colour at the roots. I just might skip the highlights AGAIN and keep going with this look, who knows…

If you want even more of a contrast, ask your colourist to then add more highlights around the bottom sections.

Of course, you could always just leave your hair alone and let it grow out…but unless you’ve been blessed with hair that’s in the same shade range (i.e. not ASH like mine), it might look a bit… how shall I put it?… unkempt.

I’ll say it again: the key to a wearable version of this look is multiple shades of a single colour.

What do you think, guys?

Do you prefer Ombré 1.0 or Ombré 2.0?
Who do you think did it best—Drew or Julia? (Or Leighton?)
Are you an Eat, Pray, Love hater or are you totes going to see it?


Sunday, August 15/2010 at 1:59 am

Ombre 2.0 is more sophisticated and less hipster-y. I love Drew’s hair although I would probably go with Julia’s since I’m chicken about bleaching.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, August 18/2010 at 11:36 am

Me too! Can’t wait to show you the photos from the event we hosted on Monday with Clairol. One of the girls had blonde highlights and so the colourist painted in a darker colour from the top down. So it was ombre but done as a reverse balyage process.
It looked AMAZING.


Gerovital Romania
Sunday, August 15/2010 at 9:02 pm

I don’t like this trend at all. It looks like a bad hair dye or unwashed hair.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, August 18/2010 at 11:38 am

I agree in the case of Alexa Chung! Yikes!


Monday, August 16/2010 at 2:37 pm

I LOVE Drew’s hair – colour, style, everything. Taking this picture with me to my colourist….it’s like an updated version of bridget bardot :)


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, August 18/2010 at 10:49 am

You’re right, she DOES look sort of Bardot-esque. Need to brush up on the backcombing skillz…


Monday, January 3/2011 at 10:07 pm

This is disgusting…and trashy looking.


Wednesday, May 25/2011 at 1:54 am

I agree with Cathie! I have never ever ever thought root were cute! Cheap and trashy.


Monday, January 10/2011 at 2:36 pm

Yea this looks gross, just grow your hair out for a year and bam! you look like a nasty celebrity!
The things the make trendy due to pure laziness


Saturday, January 15/2011 at 1:56 pm

Geez, I’ve always had darker hair on top and lighter as it goes down. It’s natural! Even if I cut it off, it happens again! Naturally multi-coloured hair ftw?
This is weird. I don’t know why they’d purposely do that, though.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, January 26/2011 at 6:36 pm

I know – the salon where I had mine done (I’ve since ditched it) charges $350 for the process! All to make it look like you couldn’t be bothered to touch up your roots…


Saturday, October 22/2011 at 10:18 am

Mine does that too- hair gets lightened and bleached by everyday wear and tear, the sun, chlorine in tap water, pollutants, etc. The ends of your hair have been exposed to all that stuff for a longer time than the roots of your hair, because it came out of your scalp years ago. As your hair grows, the follicle in your scalp creates more hair attached to what was already there (almost like spinning wool into yarn). The new hair pushes out of the scalp and forces the older hair out a little, very slowly. Your hair is dead and doesn’t nurture itself- no blood flows through the hairshaft to carry nutrients to it. But eaqting well influences hair as it being produced in the follicle, the nutrients help the follicle to create stronger healthier hair. Like wise unhealthy habits can influence hair while it’s being formed, so you might get lighte rhair at the bottom because it was nutrient starved for a while.

As for the hairstyle, if someone is going to get an all-over color, they should make it a little darker on top, GRADUALLY lightening A LITTLE at the tips, to make it look more natural, as if the sun and time had slowly affected the hair for years. Drew’s hair still looks fake, cheap, and trashy, but I like Julia’s version, and it looks more natural than a single-process all-over color


Saturday, October 22/2011 at 10:20 am

I looked at the picture of Julia again, and her roots do seem a little too dark. I wish someone would figure out how to get a more natural look with it. Hers is close, but not quite right.


Friday, April 29/2011 at 6:20 pm

I’m way behind on this, but my I’m a naturally light brunette (ashy 5-6), but the ashy color just washes out my skin tone. I get it highlighted/dyed to be more of a golden light blonde, doing the highlight and color first and then recoloring the roots (popping them as my stylist likes to call it) 6 weeks later. I guess I never thought about it but it does create a soft ombre-esque pattern.


Thursday, May 12/2011 at 7:39 am

I normally have a dark brown hair, shiny- I love it. But I wnated to do my own highlights.. BIG MISTAKE. I ended up doing my entire head, and it turned out a reddish/brown- not bad, just not what I wanted. What can I do to get the Rachel Bilson look.. her roots are my natural color. And the bottom of her highlights are the color I really really really want!!!!!!!! ahhhhh… so disappointed! Please help! I also used a demi color on it.. I bleached to lift color, than demi coloring. What suggestions?


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Monday, May 23/2011 at 4:51 pm

Hi Kaitlin! There are instructions on how to do Ombre at home here: http://beautyeditor.ca/2010/09/21/why-yes-it-is-possible-to-do-your-own-ombre-hair-colour-at-home/


Sunday, May 15/2011 at 5:55 pm

I had no idea there was a name for this, I just thought it was bad hair mgmt! In the photo of Drew, she looks right out of a salon, other photos of her…not so much and with harsher lines. The fact that women PAY for this look is crazy!! The absolute worst is Lacey. The top color appears (on DWTS) as being dirty, plastered to her head, black, then the straggly burned blonde, and of course the added extensions….total Raggamuffin! Her hair has no life or movement. I don’t see the attraction on anyone!


Saturday, July 23/2011 at 7:15 pm

I totally love this Ombré 2.0 look. I think it looks natural and relaxed. Thank u for this update, i’ll take that drew pic to my saloon, praying i step out of there looking like that !!!


Thursday, August 4/2011 at 4:46 pm

I think this is gorgeous and cool. For women who think it looks trashy – I bet they look trashy with their highlights to the roots! This is way cool and forward thinking for independent and fun women. My friend is doing this for me at her Salon next week for FREE because she needs model photos of it. I can’t wait!


Friday, August 5/2011 at 3:44 pm

Right on, Megan. I like the way you think. Brave on and enjoy your new style ;)


Saturday, January 21/2012 at 1:56 pm

I love the look too! It’s so rock and roll and totally laid back. I’m gonna do mine. So jealous your friend is doing it for fee. :)


Friday, August 5/2011 at 3:40 pm

So, I got ombre 2.0 done and loved it… then (in my typical fashion) thought… ok, let’s get more of a good thing. Now, I am ombre 1.0 and am still deciding how I feel about it. I think I love it. The haters (most people, aka those FAR less adventurous) are definitely going to mock me though… because it’s pretty extreme. Whatevs. I may end up going and getting a bit more transition color done, but for now… rock on.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, August 10/2011 at 7:06 pm

No mocking here! But I definitely am less adventurous… glad you are loving it!


Wednesday, August 10/2011 at 1:31 pm

Just had it done to my hair! I love it :) Check links below. We darkened my top color first, but not the ends, dried it out and then she twirled about five little pony tales of about 5 inches of hair, and put the lightener on it. We didn’t even need to do a toner. It looks great! NOTE: My hairstylist did mention this technique looks better and works better for those with natural wave in their hair. She actually said she wouldn’t recommend ombre for people with straight hair. If you don’t have that wave, the color doesn’t look as gradual.


Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, August 10/2011 at 5:33 pm

Hey – that looks amazing on you!! Your hairstylist used a different technique than the guy who did mine… he does a backcombing technique to get a true graduation of colour instead of painting it on – see here: http://beautyeditor.ca/2010/10/28/this-intrepid-reporter-just-tried-2-trends-as-seen-on-sjp-ombre-hair-and-the-new-brushed-out-curls/. That technique probably works better for straight hair – although I agree with you, I think Ombre in general just looks better on hair with a bit of a wave to it.
Thanks so much for posting your pics!


Monday, September 19/2011 at 7:20 pm

Unrelated, but I love your tattoo!


Saturday, September 10/2011 at 8:35 pm

I just got my hairstylist to do my hair ombré and it looks so good ! I’m naturally a dark wheat color but she went for a couple shades darker at my roots. My colour tends to eventually fade a bit so this is perfect. Just below my jaw the color start to lighten and by the time it reaches the ends its blond ! It looks amazing. I keep it large natural looking waves which I can do in minutes with my straight iron. It’s the kind of bold, look-at-me hair I wanted with looking freaky or weird. I am so going to keep it going for a while! And might I add… I am a cute 32 year old mother of 3 and I look hot !


Monday, September 19/2011 at 6:39 pm

Jeez, if I knew this was going to become a trend I would have kept bleaching my hair and just not worried about my roots growing out. Instead, I went back to dark all over because I couldn’t afford the upkeep anymore. It does look really bad though, except on Julia – she looks totally natural. Drew looks ok…not good, just ok. And Alexa looks like trailer trash.


Monday, January 23/2012 at 9:26 pm

But it’s super classy to call people names like “trailer trasher” ;)


Monday, October 10/2011 at 3:40 am

I prefer Leightons but I love the ombre look. I JUST did a little ombre highlighting to myself :) It didn’t come out exactly how I hoped but I still love it and will touch it up in a few weeks! :) DIY: brown base. Dark brown color for my roots. frost and glow for medium to dark brown on the tips. Works wonders! Idyed my roots first. Then washed and blow dried ( didn’t condition) then put the frost and glowin my tips layer by layer completely coating my roots. Used it all! Left on for twenty minutes. Applied more dark brown to my roots. Left both on for twenty more minutes. Leave it on for as long as possible or till you see the color changing. Apply with a professional color brush for both colors. Didn’t really dye the mid section of my hair but Blend both with the brush!


Monday, October 10/2011 at 3:51 am

Sorry I meant I put the frostand glow on my ends layer by layer completely costing the very tips.


Monday, October 10/2011 at 5:55 pm

Like. Makes me think of summer when your hair is in the sun a lot and then come winter it grows out darker.


Tuesday, October 25/2011 at 1:52 am

I finally decided to try this. I have several images and tips to share with my stylist who is already on board and agrees its the most drastic change she has done on me, she is very excited to do it.
I’ve been adding highlights and lowlights to my hair for over 15 years (sometimes just bleach blonde – not platinum). I was a natural blonde with some lowlights and I had a dark crown all my childhood and into my early 20′s. My color was beautiful until I was pregnant with my daughter and it went a blah light brown with very little blonde. My hair if fine, but there is loads of it and it has a small wave (really small). Would the look improve with my adding clip in real hair extensions?


Friday, November 18/2011 at 3:30 pm

I love the Ombre look and plan to get it…I am naturally a light auburn colour but plan to go very pale blond at the ends I think it will look very cool….I also have a very creative eye and prefer hair that has highlights or more going on than one single colour…I think a head has more dimension either through highlights or the Ombre technique…First time I saw Ombre I could not stop studying it and thought wow I love the hair theres just something about it…then I realized it got gradually lighter>>It blew me away in the mysterious department No complaints…IVe seen a few rough jobs though…


Tuesday, December 27/2011 at 11:43 pm

Crystal is a hater.


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