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Finding the Perfect Hair Color for Pale Skin: Tips and Ideas

There are no real rules when it comes to choosing a hair color, but there are some things to consider before dyeing your hair. Especially if you have fair skin, the wrong shade can drain the color from your face and make under-eye circles look darker, leaving you looking washed-out. Whether you're looking to go blonde or try something a bit darker, the most flattering hair colors for fair skin are ones that work with your skin’s tones and undertones. We’re breaking down the best hair colors for pale skin, including tips and ideas to help you pick your new shade, ahead!

Hair Colors That Compliment Pale Skin

When it comes to complimenting pale skin, there’s no shortage of flattering hair colors. You can opt for shades on both sides of the spectrum, as long as they’re flattering. But before deciding on a hue, it’s important to have a basic understanding of your undertones (more on that below). From there, there’s a shade in every color family to suit your skin. Keep reading for more on the best hair colors for fair skin.

Warm vs. Cool Tones: What Works Best for Pale Skin

To understand what works best for your pale or fair skin, you need to know whether your skin is warm or cool-toned. The best way to determine this is by looking at your veins in the sunlight. If they're blueish-purple then you're cool-toned. If they're tinged with green, you're warm-toned. People with cool tones generally look best in cool, platinum blonde, darker reds and dark chocolate. People with warm tones generally look best in warm blonde, bright reds and golden brown.

Light blonde hair for pale skin

Best Hair Colors for Pale Skin 

When it comes to good hair colors for pale skin, these are the top trending colors:

Dark Brown Hair

Dark brown is one of the best hair colors for pale skin and blue eyes. The darkest shade of brown before black, this shade is so trendy right now. Soften the look with some face framing balayage ends and finish with a gloss for an extra shiny look.

Golden Brown Hair

Adding golden brown highlights to your dark hair is a beautiful way to refresh your hair color this season. A warm golden brown makes pale skin glow. And according to stylists, this color is low maintenance, requiring touch-ups about two to three times per year.

Light Brown Hair

Light brown hair is universally flattering on all skin tones. But this hue looks especially pretty on pale or fair skin. The key to keeping this look on-trend is going a few shades darker at the roots, with a lighter golden gradual gradation. If your ends aren’t already light, add some highlighted ends and tone them with a subtle brown.

Chocolate brown hair for pale skin

Chocolate Brown Hair

Going too deep with your brunette can wash you out, but a dimensional chocolate brown with hints of red, honey, or gold looks amazing against pale skin. Add depth to this rich medium shade with soft highlights on the ends and around the face. Finish with an auburn gloss for warmth.

Platinum Blonde Hair

If you're afraid that platinum blonde hair will wash out your fair skin, you shouldn't be. Stylists say fair skin tones paired with icy platinum blonde is such a vibe this season. It's especially striking if you have hazel eyes. Keep your brows darker for a cool, ultra-modern look.

Ombré Hair

The key to a flattering ombre no matter what your skin tone, is choosing the right palette for your base and highlights. If you have cool undertones, go for light or pastel ombre highlights. For those with warm skin undertones, try a darker base with caramel ombre highlights.

Creative Hair Color Ideas for Pale Skin


Get in on the pastel hair trend by pairing your fair skin with shades that match your undertones. If you have warm, fair skin go for hues like light pink and peach. If you have fair skin with cool undertones, pair it with pastel purple and soft blue hues.

Ash Blonde

Ashy is a word that gets a bad wrap when it comes to hair color. But all the word means is that instead of edging orange, the color edges white. Ash is a neutral blonde, and it’s so flattering against fair skin. Especially if you have cool undertones, the ash compliments pale skin rather without washing it out.

Strawberry Blonde

If you have fair skin and you can’t decide between going blonde or red, why not go strawberry blonde? This hue is the perfect balance between the two shades, and stylists say it’s hot this season. And bonus — strawberry blonde is neutral enough to flatter just about any skin tone.

Golden blonde hair for pale skin

Golden Blonde

Golden blonde includes light tones of yellow, gold, and orange, which look so pretty against pale skin. If going full blonde isn’t your thing, keep your roots darker for a contrast. Either way, this shade will light up your fair skin and make you glow.

Honey Blonde

If your fair skin leans olive, honey blonde is the color for you. This hue mixes golden yellow with amber tones, and it’s all about intentional warmth. There’s a difference between unintentional and intentional warmth. Unintentional is unwanted brass with an orange tone, and intentional warmth has just a hint of gold.

Rose Gold

Whether you’re low-key fair and looking for a wearable shade or someone looking to go bold, rose gold is one of the most versatile hair colors. It’s a subtle hue that combines blonde, pink, and gold. And because it’s a blend, you can choose from an endless amount of shades on the spectrum. Your colorist will help you decide which combination best flatters your pale complexion. 

Red hair for pale skin Davines

Red Hair

Red is one of the best hair colors to make you look younger, and one of the prettiest against fair skin. Lean towards copper to bring out your skin's radiance, while warming it up a bit. Ask your colorist to add tones of browns to give your copper hair some dimension. 

Choosing the Right Shade For You

If subtle is more your jam, determine your undertones and then select a light or medium shade with the same undertones as your skin. If you’re looking to go bold, choose a shade with the opposite undertones or opt for a deeply pigmented shade. If this sounds confusing, don’t panic. Experimenting with hair color should be fun, and our colorists are here to help, so book an appointment with a professional for guidance.

Caring for Colored Hair and Maintaining Your Look

Maintaining your colored hair in between salon visits depends on the products you use at home. With the right ones, you can extend your time between cuts and color appointments even longer. Stock up on high quality hair products that are free of sulfates, parabens, SLES, and formaldehyde. All Davines colored hair maintenance products contain naturally derived ingredients that won’t damage your dyed hair. We have lots of options for blondes to enhance their color, replenish bleached strands, and make detangling a breeze. Additionally, all of our shampoos and cleansing products add moisture back into depleted strands, preventing breakage and split ends. But it’s not just blondes that need protecting. Darker hues can also benefit from a consciously crafted colored hair maintenance routine as well. Rich browns, monotone blacks, and shimmering grays and silver need nutrients, protection, and moisture to retain their health and shine. After using your favorite shampoo and conditioner for colored hair, work a serum or oil through your hair to protect it from the sun’s damaging rays. Darker shades need extra protection from fading in the sun’s powerful UV rays.

The Bottom Line

The best hair colors for pale skin are ones that brighten up your face and accentuate your features. Especially if you have fair skin, the wrong shade can wash the color from your face, leaving you looking drab. Whether you're looking to go blonde or try something a bit darker, the most flattering hair colors for your skin are ones that work with your skin’s tones and undertones. So do your research before consulting with one of our colorists and going for it. Together you can come up with the right shade and hue for your pale skin. And remember that it’s crucial to take great care of your color at-home to keep your color vibrant, healthy and shiny.

by Jaclyn LaBadia, featured contributor

Color-enhancing shampoo for cool blonde tones.

Color-enhancing conditioner for cool blonde tones.

Illuminating and regenerating mask for colored hair.

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