Best Hair Color for Dark Skin – Blonde, Dark or Reds

The wrong hair color can be disastrous. If you do not end up looking washed out, then it will add several years to your face and draw attention to your features and not in the most flattering of ways. If you have a really, really bad dye job, you could end up with the lethal combination of all three and regret for months.

The right hair color, on the other hand, can do all sorts of great things for your complexion, giving you a natural glow and bringing out the best on other features like the color of your eyes.

The difference between a botched one you will hate for months and that envy-inducing, perfect result, hair color is in knowing to choose what works for you, as an individual. A color that complements your skins unique tone is important.

Which hair colors will flatter your dark skin
Which hair colors will flatter your dark skin?

There are definitely enough suitable ways you can color your hair for darker skin tones to go around. You do not need to gamble with a color that people with lighter complexions are using, or really the first dye color that catches your fancy.

Read on to find out which are the best hair colors for dark skin, the red one that is always a win for this skin tones and what to expect if you choose to wear auburn on your darker skin.

Best hair colors for dark skin

It is important to note that dark skin as a grouping is also diverse in itself. There isn’t one shade that we can all call dark. In fact most times, your skin is as dark as whoever is making the conclusion and most likely who you are sitting next to.

You may have noticed certain people call a certain celebrity dark skinned only for others to roundly disagree. Though people of certain ethnicities say   Afro Caribbean and Indians tend to have more people with it, it can be found on the board. There are  Latinas who have this skin, Asians, and people of mixed parentage.

In this context, it mostly refers to skin that has more melanin in it naturally. The varying amount of melanin which is determined by genetics is what makes some people have a darker complexion than others.

Let us go into exploring hair color ideas for this complexion.

Your complexion may rule out some colors, but this doesn’t mean you cannot have fun exploring. You can find the perfect hue to complement your complexion both on the light shades color range and the dark shades. Find some more helpful guidelines below.

Light hair colors to give a try

Is light hair color on dark skin a look that can work? Yes most definitely. People with this skin color most times naturally have darker hair in the brown to black range. I suppose this contributes to the notion that coloring their hair lighter is a long shot for these people.

If we have learned anything from our celebrities, however, (the dark-skinned ones) though, it is that such women can pull off light hair colors as well as anyone, if it is the right light shade.  As a general rule, the lighter your complexion is, the lighter hair you are able to pull off without looking too unnatural. This still applies here. Even under the grouping of having dark skin, individuals will still have varying complexions. This is how Beyoncé may be able to go a lighter blonde than Gabrielle Union.

Another general rule of hair color is that for it to come out looking like you were born with it, you cannot go more than two or three shades of your original hair color. Now, most dark skin people have black to dark brown hair which pretty much limits them from going to the really light blondes. No worries though because the platinum shades and white blondes do not exactly suit dark skin tones.

Besthaircolourdye says “trying out orange-based tones might make you look a little washed out. The same goes for ash blonde dyes.” Whatever you do, stay clear of hair colors with these hues.

Dark hair colors

You may think because these shades are closer to your natural hair looks, you can pretty much knock yourself out. But apparently not. There are still some factors to consider if you want to end up with the best possible hair color choice for your complexion.

Dying it black and dark browns are good for this skin complexions, but you may need to consider highlights with lighter shades to give darker colors some depth and your overall look some drama.

Here is a good suggestion from Beautyclue for wearing dark hair colors for African American women and men. “Besides having black natural hair, you can make it shinier to look attractive. Black skin women have either brown-black hair or blue-black natural hair. To make it look thick and shiny, give it a blue-black gloss. A jet black dye can give your dark hair a shiny glow.” This will suit you going for color but not willing to try a totally new color just yet. When your hair has a healthy sheen, albeit, from a bottle, your complexion will look brighter, fresher.

If you choose to go for brown, try to go for shades that give some contrast to your skin. Something that is too similar to your skin tone will leave you looking drab. Remember the goal is for the hair color to complement your skin tone not match it.

“For a vibrant dark skin go for black-brown hues like honey brown,” Beautyclue says.

Besthaircolourdye says “Caramel browns will also look great on women and men of African American origin.” They also recommend an ashy bronze and espresso as good.

The hairstyle has a couple more shades of brown, in case the ones already mentioned do not inspire you yet. “Mocha, auburn browns, golden browns, ash browns and dark or light browns.

Blonde ones

You can dye your hair blonde when you have a dark complexion and look great. That we already settled. Just how blonde can you go through?

Teen Vogue thinks that you should not wander too far from the natural color of your hair, or get too daring.

“Girls with fair skin and light eyes will look more natural with lighter shades of blonde,” he explains. “Ladies with dark skin and eyes work better with darker shades.”

Blonde will make light brown eyes on this skin complexion pop in ways that black or brown cannot. Shades of blonde will also play nicely with warm skin tones. Many dark-skinned people tend to be medium toned and warm toned. But there are some who fit in the cool tones category.

According to “A mixture of dirty blonde with brown hair forms nice streaks to accent your face.”  You can consider this a good option if you have brown eyes.

You can also give ombre a chance if you have long hair. That way, the lightest parts of your hair will not be the ones immediately framing your face. Ombre is a hot trend right now. Rich chocolate brown with caramel ends is one of the ways you can do blonde ombre that will suit your dark complexion.

Besthaircolourdye says “The best ideas here would be to go for dark blonde dyes, then work them out with golden highlights. You can also try on caramel highlights for a more appealing look.”

It important to entrust coloring your hair blonde to a stylist who has is known for doing a good job. This is because most people with this skin tend to have dark hair and lightening this involves first processing it to lift the dark pigment, before applying the desired color. It can backfire if you do not know what you are doing, leaving you with patchy results and or severely damaged hair.

“Warm blondes often described as caramel, toffee or honey inspired are the choices to opt for,” according to thehairstyler.

Red ones

We are going to go right ahead and put ombre out there. This trend hit 2015 in a big way and by the looks of is still on for 2016.

It is definitely an interesting way to wear red if you are not too keen on going, full redhead.

Burgundy is a great look you can try. It easily qualifies as one of the best for this skin complexion. says to “think about cinnamon, auburn, burgundy, and gold,” if you are looking for red colors to suit a dark complexion.

Harpers Bazaar recommends “On darker tones, try deep mahogany or rich marsala.”

Wine and plum shades also good hair dye. Red is a tricky color to maintain as red dyes tend to fade with washes. You may need frequent touch-ups if you do not want a washed out fading color job.

Consider highlights as a way of introducing red hair color to your look without committing to the high maintenance.

Hair color for dark-skinned men

Why let the girls have all the fun changing up their hair colors? Males can also explore hair dyes and look great doing it too. The best color jobs should complement your skin tone first.

Men with this skin complexion men tend to have darker hair shades like brown and black. This should not be a problem though if you want to try lighter ones if you use a great colorist.

According to, “The most flattering coloring options for men with darker skin tones are golden highlights, golden with red highlights, golden brown, honey brown, chestnut, copper, auburn, mahogany, and warm tones of gray and white.”


Auburn is a fantastic option for this skin complexion according to besthaircolourdye. “Naturally, a dark skin tone as you already know looks gorgeous with chestnut brown to medium auburn shades.” The subtler the better too. gives us one more reason to love Auburn. It treats a dark skin tone just right compared to some shades of red whose blue overtones may make you look green. In case you are not sure how auburn will look on your complexion, here is confirmation. “Darker skin tones look gorgeous with a medium auburn to chestnut brown shade.


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