Blue black hair looks richer, livelier, and more mysterious than basic black. Black shades toned with blue are in high demand right now and can suit a variety of skin tones and undertones. We’re unraveling the enigma and looking at the best blue black shades to try in this guide!
What Is Blue Black Hair?
- Mixed black and blue dye pigments create blue black hair color
- Add a blue toner to a black base for a subtle tint
- Weave blue highlights into black hair for a twist on the trend
Blue black hair (sometimes called raven black, midnight blue, or perugia black) is a rich, iridescent black color with a blue tint much like a raven’s feathers. Blue black shades range from bold and blue-heavy to inky black with the slightest hint of blue that’s only obvious in certain lighting.
Blue black hair color has an enigmatic, mysterious quality that draws people in unlike any other color. Is it black with blue tones? Is it blue with black tones? Or is it a very dark navy, deep sapphire, or midnight blue?
Maybe it’s because this inky, jewel-like color reminds us of the unknown expanse of outer space. It could be the similarity to the color of the mysterious depths of the ocean.
Whatever the allure of blue-toned black hair is, one thing is certain: It’s extremely desirable. Blue black hair color sometimes occurs naturally, especially in people hailing from Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and Latin America.
But if you’re not lucky enough to possess this color-shifting hue naturally, don’t worry! There are a few ways you can achieve the perfect black shade with blue tones.
Keep reading to learn the different color techniques you can use to achieve iridescent blue black shades and see some of our favorite examples of this mystifying color. We’ll also share some helpful tips and considerations to choosing your perfect blue black shade and getting gorgeous, highly pigmented results!
3 Ways to Get Gorgeous Blue Black Hair
There are a few color techniques and methods you can use to achieve a beautiful blue black color. The method you should choose depends on the type of result you want. Are you looking for an inky, jet black shade that looks bluish in the light?
Do you want bold blue tones woven throughout a black base? Or are you dreaming of an ultra-dark blue color that looks almost black? Take a look at the different types of results you’ll get from each blue-black color method below.
Black With Subtle Blue Tone
You can achieve a very subtle blue-toned black shade by applying a blue semi-permanent toner over a black base color. This will give your black color the slightest blue tint that only becomes noticeable when the light hits it.
Try Wella Color Charm Paints in Blue or KISS Tintation in Blue Moonlight for subtle blue tones over a black base color.
Black Base Color With Blue-Black Highlights
Another way to get beautiful blue-black strands is with all-over highlights. A black base color is the foundation for this look, then fine to chunky foil highlights are added to complete the look. There are 2 ways you can do this method.
- Blue-black with subtle dark blue highlights: Dye your hair black all over, then highlight select strands by lifting to a light blonde. Finish by toning with a blue semi-permanent dye all over, turning your blonde highlights a steely blue tone and adding a blue sheen to your black base.
- Black with bold blue-black highlights: Dye your hair black all over, then highlight strands by lifting to a light blonde. Finish by toning only the highlights with a blue-black dye like Manic Panic After Midnight to add rich midnight blue color to the highlights.
Blue-Black All Over Dye
For the most uniform results and a bolder blue-black color, you can use pre-mixed dye with blue and black pigments or mix up your own blue-black color. There are tons of blue black colors you can buy at beauty supply stores!
Just look for names like midnight blue, black sapphire, and blue black when you browse the available colors. We really like L’Oreal Paris in Black Sapphire (it has conditioners and shine serum in the mix) and Revlon ColorSilk in Natural Blue Black (it offers 100% gray coverage).
14 Enigmatic Blue Black Hair Color Shades
We’ve looked at the many facets of blue black hair color and the different color methods you can use to achieve your perfect version of black sapphire shades. Let’s take a look at more of these alluring inky blue colors and the different shades you can try!
1. Lapis Lazuli Black
Like a darker version of the lapis lazuli gemstone, this enchanting blue-black color exudes rarity and intense color. This shade leans a little more blue than black, so it’s perfect for fairer skin tones who shy away from inky black color that may look too harsh.
2. Aged Denim Blue Black
Shiny black with deep denim blue tones, this rich and inky color has a mirror-like finish. It’s stunning on fair, cool-toned skin with an excellent contrast, but this is an almost universally-flattering color that can work with all skin tones and undertones.
3. Raven’s Wing Blue Black
Jet black hair can lack dimension and sparkle, but not with gorgeous, deep blue tones mixed in! Tumbling waves highlight the unique blue-toned black color and show off that healthy texture and shine.
4. Dark Sapphire Black
With a shine that mimics the dazzling nature of precious sapphires, this jewel-like blue black color is rich and cool-toned. It suits all skin tones well, but works best on cool or neutral undertones due to the pure blue tones.
5. Muted Black and Blue
If you think a stark black color will be too harsh against your skin, try a muted black and blue. The black color is muted a bit with gray/silver and luxe navy tones shake up the color. It’s a beautiful option for fair, neutral-toned skin as shown.
6. Edgy Indigo Black
Using ultra-deep violet-blue tones in black keeps the color from appearing too harsh. Instead, it looks like a very dark indigo color that perfectly suits cool and neutral undertones. Take it slightly darker with less prominent indigo tones for an even richer look.
7. Deep Azure Black
Bring deep, inky blue tones into your black color for a gem-like quality that shines and dazzles. The color shines a silvery steel blue color in the light and looks great on all skin tones with a cool or neutral undertone.
8. Iridescent Navy Black
Navy acts like a neutral color because it’s a darker shade of blue (usually cool-toned) with plenty of black in it. A navy toner gives basic black color new life and a mysterious, magical quality.
Here, the color is shown on a medium skin tone with warm undertones – proof that absolutely every skin tone and undertone combo can rock blue black hair.
9. Inky Blue Black
We really love how dark blue black colors look on coily and highly textured hair. The tight curls give the color maximum shine and opportunities to show off the different tones in the rich color. This dark shade looks black indoors, but once the light hits it, you see the sapphire-like blue tones brightening it up.
10. Dark Cerulean Black
All shades of blue make gorgeous overtones for black color. A super-dark cerulean toner transforms this flat black shade into a stunning hue with tons of dimension and depth. The addition of blue makes hair texture pop and ensures your strands won’t appear one-dimensional with a too-deep color.
11. Intense Blue Black With Azure Ribbons
Have a little fun with your blue black hair color by adding in highly-pigmented highlights that intensify the color. A rich blue-toned black color acts as the base for bold, bright-blue ribbon lights if you’re looking for a more pigmented hue.
12. Spruce Blue Black
Spruce blue has green undertones and really works well on skin tones with neutral or warm undertones. Like a very dark teal, this hue can look blue in some lighting and dark green in others.
13. Blue Black Fadeout
Blue black can be a great color to use with different color techniques. This unique look focuses the deep blue-black color in the bangs and front sides, while the back takes on a lighter silvery ash tone. This creates a cool “fadeout” look that brings your eyes front and center where all the richness and depth is.
14. Cobalt Blue Black
Pure cobalt blue tones tint and brighten black strands with an ethereal quality that makes the color appear to glow from within. This luminous blue black shade packs a ton of dimension without appearing too harsh for lighter skin tones.
Tips and Things to Consider
There are so many pretty blue tones you can blend with black to create gorgeously unique blue black shades. If you’re thinking this may be the color for you, we’ve got some helpful tips and things for you to consider while you weigh your options.
- It’s hard to get rid of black dye. Busting black box dye (if you DIY) off your strands is hard work, even for experienced colorists. Permanent black dye penetrates deep into strands and stains the hair, making it hard to go lighter if you decide blue black isn’t the color for you. You can always try a temporary black dye in a blue black shade that washes out if you’re not into long, expensive color-correction sessions.
- Find ways to “try on” the color first. You won’t really know if you’ll like the way blue black hair looks on you until you try it! Instead of hoping for the best and committing to the color, use an online tool to try on the color and see how it looks on you. Our virtual hairstyle try-on tool is 100% free and gives you tons of color and hairstyle options to see how your new color will look in real time.
- Be realistic about maintenance. Black color is known for lasting for a long time and being pretty resistant to fading (when you choose permanent color). You’ll still need root touch-ups every 4-6 weeks, so plan ahead and make sure you’re down to schedule regular touch-up appointments or hit your roots with a little dye at home this often. If you’re using a blue toner to achieve your blue black color, it will typically wash out within 6-12 shampoos before you have to tone it again.
- Opt for blue-black all-over dye for less damage. While we love the way black base color looks with blue black highlights, it’s a lot more damaging for your hair since it involves bleaching sections to a light blonde level. To take things easy on your strands, opt for a blue black dye all over and keep the damage to a minimum with a single process color.
- Plan to prevent fading from the start. Blue black dye can fade to a silvery, grayish blue color over time. That fading will be accelerated if you don’t take prevention steps from the day you dye your hair. Switch to a sulfate-free shampoo for colored hair, avoid damage from excessive heat styling, chemicals, and UV rays, and wash your hair less often to prolong your color and stave off fading.
Will Blue Black Hair Look Good on You?
Blue black hair color is definitely a gorgeous, trendy hue, but will it look good on you? You don’t have to get it done and hope for the best. You can ensure you pick a flattering shade of blue black by paying attention to your skin color and undertones!
Fair/light skin may be the most challenging to pair with a flattering blue black that isn’t too harsh. The key with lighter skin is choosing a flattering shade of blue black that plays well with your undertone. Blue is a cool color and looks best on skin with cool undertones, according to color wheel hair theory.
Natural blue black is a softer shade of black that borders on dark gray or silver. This is the best choice for fairer skin tones that want to avoid a stark contrast between the skin and hair color.
- Fair with cool undertones: Look for a natural black shade with a true blue, steely blue, or blue-violet undertone.
- Fair with warm undertones: Look for a natural black shade with a dark blue or blue-green undertone.
- Fair with neutral undertones: Look for a natural black shade with any blue undertone, especially steely blue.
Medium skin tones look great with blue black color of any depth. From soft, natural black to inky jet black, medium skin colors can rock them all! Like fair skin, the key to getting a flattering blue black color for medium skin is choosing one that suits your undertones.
- Medium with cool undertones: Look for a glossy black as dark or light as you want with true blue, steely blue, or blue-violet undertone.
- Medium with warm undertones: Look for any shade of blue black with a deep blue or dark blue-green undertone.
- Medium with neutral undertones: Look for any shade of black with blue undertones, warm or cool. Steely blue with silver undertones looks great on neutral undertones.
Deep skin tones pair well with blue black colors. Inky, jet black colors are especially flattering on deeper skin tones as they create a nice contrast. Look for deep, velvety blue black shades that won’t appear grayish against your deep skin tone.
- Deep with cool undertones: Look for jet black with vibrant true blue or blue-violet undertones.
- Deep with warm undertones: Look for inky black shades with dark navy or blue-green undertones.
- Deep with neutral undertones: Look for jet black colors with bold blue undertones, warm or cool.
See? Absolutely every skin tone and undertone combination can successfully rock blue black hair – it just needs to be the right depth of black and shade of blue!
In general, fairer skin tones should steer toward softer, dark-gray blue black colors (often called natural blue black). Medium skin tones can choose any shade of blue black, and deep skin tones look best with inky, rich blue black shades in the darkest tones.
From there, you can look at the shade of the blue undertones in the different colors to see which ones will be a good fit with your undertones. Cool undertones should look for cool blue undertones in their blue black shade.
Warm undertones need warmer (though they’re still considered ‘cool colors’) shades of blue, like blue-green and navy tones. Neutral undertones can take their pick since both warm and cool colors can suit them!
Blue black hair really can look great on anyone. But it’s so important to make sure this is the color you want since it can be difficult to switch up your color if you decide blue black just isn’t right for you.
Take some time to sit with it, check out lots of photos to see the different shade possibilities, and make sure to use our virtual hairstyle try-on tool. It’s worth it to wait a bit before you commit to a bold color like this – and once you do take the leap, you’ll be so much happier with your much-awaited results!