The difference between highlights and streaks – and which one is better for you


It’s so important to know what you want and be able to communicate it with your hair stylist so that the look you get matches your vision. Making changes to your hair can be very stressful since you’ll be living with the changed hair until the next time you visit the stylist. One of the changes that many people make is getting highlights or streaks in their hair. It’s a subtle change, but it can make the world of difference. So the next time you feel like you want a change and you are looking at getting either highlights or streaks, it’s best to be able to tell the difference.

Highlights versus streaks

Highlights are the more common change that people make to their hair, which involves small slices of a section of hair that is separated and then lightened. Highlights are generally a couple of shades lighter than your current hair colour as they are meant to look like a natural sunkissed glow has been added to your hair. They tend to be only on the top layer of your hair and the more subtle the highlights are, the better. Streaks involve larger slices being taken out of each section of hair. They are less subtle because they are much thicker than highlights. A big difference between streaks and highlights is that streaks are not meant to look very natural. While they can complement your hair color by being a couple of shades lighter, just like highlights, they could also go the opposite way and be more eye-catching by adding colors like green, blue, orange, or pink. They are meant to contrast with the rest of the hair and are a much bigger change to the hair than highlights. Highlights are applied closer to the ends of the hair and are much more time-consuming to do. Streaks go from the root to the tip of the hair to achieve the bold look they are meant for.

The difference between highlights and streaks – and which one is better for you

Which one is better for you

The decision between highlights and streaks is ultimately up to you, but here are a few factors that difference when deciding between them. Time is a big factor in the choice between highlights and streaks. Highlights are time-consuming to get done but the upkeep is less intensive than streaks, as highlights grow out in a more natural and subtle way. They are also meant to complement your hair color so you won’t have to redye them often. Streaks take less time to do but require a lot more upkeep. This is because they can be unnatural colors that need to be dyed more often and they grow out at the roots much faster than highlights. Another factor is your daily life. Some workplaces don’t allow for unnatural hair colors. If this is the case for you, you may get away with highlights at work but not streaks. But if you are creative and work a job that is much less strict about appearance, streaks can be a better option. They are also a great way to change up your hair often without damaging it.

The difference between highlights and streaks – and which one is better for you

The best idea is to ask the hairstylist that you go to. Tell them which you are considering, but they will know which one will suit your face shape and lifestyle. It’s good to know what you want, but the best hair outcome will be a collaboration between you and your stylist.