Featured Trends

Colour Panelling: The New Viral Hair Trend

May 03, 2024

In the second installment of her exclusive new column, Suzie McGill, Artistic Director at Rainbow Room International and current British Colour Technician of the Year, discusses everything you need to know about colour panelling…

Colour panelling is one of the biggest hair colour trends right now, and it’s perfect for clients who like to be a little more adventurous and creative when it comes to their colour. This reason I love this trend in particular is because it allows the client to add a touch of vivid colour, without having to commit to a full transformation.

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This is a technique whereby the hair is sectioned into panels, which are then individually coloured to create a bold contrast to the base hair – the result should be a block-like effect that comes together to create a statement look. However, colour panelling can also be made more subtle too. For example, it can be used to achieve ‘peekaboo’-like colour effects underneath the hair. Whilst I personally find that vivid, contrasting colours usually look best with this technique, it can also be used with more natural shades too – I’ve found that pairings like chocolate with copper or creamy blonde with strawberry blonde can actually look incredible beautiful.

Also referred to as ‘colour blocking’, this is a technique that I regularly use in my creative collection work. The colour placement of the panels/blocks can be used wherever you see fit, but I particularly like to add colour panels to block fringes when the hair is cut shorter, or throughout the full length of longer hair to create a more eye-catching look.

The trend takes inspiration from the hair colouring techniques of the 90s/00s, namely the chunky highlights and colourful streaks! However, this time around, we’re seeing slight variations that give the hair a more trendy and contemporary appearance.

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When it comes to upkeep for colour blocking techniques, clients should use a shampoo and conditioner that are particularly targeted towards coloured hair. A weekly hair mask or treatment will also increase colour longevitiy and keep your clients’  looks as vibrant and shiny as possible in between salon appointments.

Growth will start to come in around 4-6 weeks, so I recommend rebooking your client in for their next appointment within this time frame if possible – particularly if the panel is focused towards the front of the hair where growth may be more visible.