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Does Black Hair on Light Skin Look Good? | Yes!

If you want to make a statement, black hair is one way to do it. But is black hair on light skin flattering? Don’t worry — we’ll answer this question in detail and give you things to consider before dyeing your hair below.

Does Black Hair on Light Skin Look Good?

There’s something mysterious and transformative about black hair, and darker hues can indeed look incredible on people with light skin. The reason? Most people don’t expect to see this color combination.

It’s quite eye-catching, especially when the hair is healthy and luxurious-looking. However, dying your hair black is tricky, and there’s plenty of potential for things to go wrong. In today’s article, we’re going to talk about everything you need to know.

We’ll cover things like:

  • The definition of light skin, including undertones
  • Which eye colors look good with black hair 
  • How to pull off black on light skin tones
  • Makeup tips 
  • What other colors look good on light-skinned individuals 

Keep reading to learn more.

Read Next: What Is the Most Common Hair Color in 2024?

What Is a Light Skin Tone?

Various skin tones for a piece on black hair on light skin

Elms Art/Shutterstock

It’s helpful to first define the characteristics of light skin to make sure we’re all on the same page. Skin tones range from fair (the lightest) to dark brown and black. In between those colors, we have light, medium, olive, tan, and brown. 

Light-skinned people have pale skin. Although you burn without sun protection, you can tan.

Light-skinned people are often pale in the winter and have a bit more color in the summer. It’s easy to confuse fair and light skin tones. However, in this article, we’re looking specifically at the latter. 

What Are Undertones?

Aside from skin tone, you should know what your undertones are before dying your hair black. Undertones are the colors underneath the surface tones of your skin.

Unlike skin tone, which can change due to sun exposure or makeup, undertones remain constant. Choosing the wrong shade of black for your undertones can have disastrous results. 

The three undertones are:

  • Warm. Warm undertones are golden.
  • Cool. Cool undertones have a bluish hue.
  • Neutral. Some people have neutral undertones, neither cool nor warm. 

How to Pull off Black Hair on Light Skin

Woman with black hair on light skin in a white dress holding the end of her hair


Are you ready to take the plunge and try a darker hair color? If so, here’s what you need to know. (Spoiler alert: dyed black hair requires plenty of upkeep). 

Choose the Right Shade of Black

Don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s jet-black or nothing. The success of your dye job hinges largely on choosing the right shade, and for many fair-skinned people, it’s unnecessary to choose a true black dye. 

No one knows this fact better than your favorite fair-skinned celebrities. It may seem like they all have jet-black hair, but they probably don’t.

Their stylists know to point them to medium-brown and dark-brown colors. These colors lend the same effect, and they prevent too-dark colors from washing you out.  

Gradual Is the Name of the Game

If you’re a blonde who wants to go dark, avoid a drastic change. Instead, gradually darken your hair each time you go to the salon. Making a slow change is better for your long-term hair health, and it also makes it easier to find a shade that looks amazing.  

Remember Your Color Gloss

What comes to mind when you think of natural black hair? If you’re like most people, it probably evokes images of shiny, luscious locks. Indeed, natural black hair often has a healthy, smooth, and glowing texture.

Undoubtedly this is one of the things you’re hoping to achieve with your dye job. Yet constantly color-treating your locks can leave them parched and dull.

The best way to combat this problem is by applying a color gloss twice per month. Being diligent with color gloss will help keep things vibrant–not dry and fake-looking. 

Use Cool Water

It’s always tempting to crank up the temperature in the shower, but try to refrain from doing so. Instead, wash your hair with cool water. Cool water is essential for black hair, as it won’t strip the color and helps keep it looking shiny. 

Scheduling Is King

When you dye your hair black, you have to stay on top of color treatments. Your roots are highly noticeable, especially if you’ve gone more than two shades away from your natural hair.

So get familiar with your hair colorist because you’ll be spending a lot of time with that person. You should visit the salon every four to six weeks, though every four weeks is optimal. 

Trim Regularly

Finally, you’ll want to take advantage of those frequent coloring sessions to trim your hair. Regular trimming is the best way to avoid split ends, which become so much more noticeable on dark hair. 

Even if you’re trying to grow out your locks, staying on top of trimming will allow you to get much more length in the long run. 

Beauty Tips for People With Black Hair and Light Skin

Woman with black hair and light skin wears a flower in her hair and sits on a tree


Aside from some added maintenance, going dark may require you to change up other aspects of your beauty routine. Here are some tips for black hair. 

Keep Makeup Light

Heavy black eyeliner and makeup may have suited you before, but when you add dark hair to the mix, the effect can become a little too gothic.

It’s best to reevaluate your makeup and tone things down. Otherwise, the combination of black hair and makeup can be too much. Try light, neutral tones instead. 

Wear Natural Hairstyles

If you love straightening your hair, it may be time to embrace a more natural curl with your dark locks. Pin-straight black hair often ends up looking too severe. Similarly, styles like pompadours or ponytails pulled back super tight may have a harsh effect. 

Avoid All-Black Ensembles

If you pair an all-black or a dark outfit with your dark hair, it can become overpowering. Take care to include some light colors in your daily outfits, which will help balance the darkness of your hair.  

What Eye Colors Look Best With Black Hair? 

Are you wondering if your eye color will work with darker hair? The good news is that every eye color looks incredible with black hair. We can look at various countries to see different combinations. 

Where it’s easiest to find people with light skin and dark hair is in Asia. The vast majority of people in Asian countries have brown eyes.

We can see that the combination of brown eyes, light skin, and dark hair looks fantastic. However, Asia is not the only place in the world where we can find black hair and light skin. Many people in Northern Europe have this look.

It’s especially common in people of Celtic heritage in Ireland, where the “Black Irish” label came from. But you can also see it in Scandinavia and Iceland. 

In these European countries, people tend to have blue and green eyes and dark hair. Both colors look fantastic but green especially so. Green eyes really contrast with the pale skin and darkness of the hair. 

What Other Colors Look Good on People With Light Skin?

Woman crossing her legs and sitting on a sunbed for a piece on how to pull off black hair on light skin

Look Studio/Shutterstock

By now, maybe you’re thinking that black is too much for your light skin. Similarly, perhaps you don’t want to deal with the upkeep that dark hair requires. So what other colors might suit you? 

The answer to this question depends on what undertones you have. Are your undertones cool? If so, brown, ashy blonde and fantasy hues should suit you well.

But if you have a warmer complexion, opt for colors like copper, caramel, and honey blonde. Not sure what your undertones are or what color is best for you? A consultation with a professional colorist can go a long way toward making the right decision. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions related to black hair on light skin. 

Does black hair make you look older?

Too-dark hair can indeed age you. It can cast unfavorable shadows on your face, highlighting fine lines and wrinkles. Not to mention the contrast of dark hair and a light scalp makes thinning hair even more apparent.

What hair color makes you look younger?

Framing the face with bright colors is the best way to appear more youthful. Some of the best tones are honey, gold, caramel, and copper.

Does black hair make you look thinner?

If done correctly, it can–especially if you use highlights. Dark colors with light tips are an excellent way to balance out a round face.

Does dark hair look thicker?

In many cases, lighter hair color does often look thinner. If you’re trying to give the impression of thicker locks, micro balayage or baby lights are two things that can help. These treatments add darker pieces into the hair to create the illusion of depth.

What colors wash out pale skin?

Jet black can certainly wash out pale skin, but so can colors that are too light. Check with your colorist to see what they recommend for your specific tone.

So, Does Black Hair on Light Skin Look Good?

Black hair on light skin can be a striking combination, as long as you pick the right shade for you and your undertones. When in doubt, a professional is the best person to help you achieve the look you want.