The silky brilliance and depth of dark blonde hair is unmatched by any other color. If you’re looking for a hue that blends the brightness and dimension of blonde with a slightly richer tone, dark shades of blonde are the sweet spot.
See our favorite shades of the darker side of blonde, from cool dark ash blonde to creamy butterscotch blonde, in this photo color guide!
What Is Dark Blonde Hair Color?
- Shades between natural blonde and light brown or red
- Rich undertones can be golden, ash, copper, or neutral
- Creates a natural-looking color with tons of silky dimension
Bright blonde shades are classic and never go out of style, but richer shades of dark blonde have been in the spotlight recently. Dark blonde shades are the sweet “in-between” color that bridges natural blonde shades with the lightest brunette and red colors.
Deep blonde colors offer a subtle richness and depth with the signature shine and brilliance of blonde. If you want silky, natural-looking color that appears to glow from within, you’re going to love dark blonde.
Dark blonde closely resembles light brown colors with a slightly lighter overall tone. In low lighting, these shades can look like a light brunette.
In sunlight and bright lighting, you’ll really see the glittery dimension and glow come to life. You’ll find a wide variety of dark blonde shades and tones, from dark ash and dirty blonde to deep copper blonde and butterscotch blonde.
With so many shades to choose from, there’s a dark blonde color that can work for every skin tone and undertone!
Dark blonde colors are usually a level 7 or 8, depending on the undertone and shade you choose. Keep in mind that level 1 colors are the darkest (black) and level 10+ colors are the lightest (platinum blonde).
Read Next: The 10 Stages of Bleaching Your Hair in 2023
Benefits of Dark Blonde Color
As gorgeous as deep blonde tones are, there are even more benefits to rocking this subtly rich color than the uniquely beautiful appearance. Here are some of the benefits of choosing a dark blonde color for your next look.
Experiment With Blonde Without Going Too Light
Dark blonde is a great way to test the waters with blonde shades if you’re unsure about going straight to medium or light blonde shades.
You’ll get to experiment with the brilliant shine and dimension of blonde without committing to a hard-to-maintain light blonde shade that may feel a little too bright for a first-time blonde.
Lower Maintenance Than Light Blonde Shades
If you choose a dark blonde instead of a light blonde shade, you’ll have a lot less maintenance and upkeep to deal with! Since dark blonde will usually be closer to your natural color than a bright, light blonde shade, roots will be less obvious and touch-ups can be spaced further apart.
Less Damaging for Your Hair
Bleaching is a harsh process that damages strands more the longer the bleach/developer mixture is left on your hair. When you choose a dark blonde shade, you won’t need to leave bleach on as long.
This is because you’re only lifting to a level 7 or 8. Lighter blonde shades require longer processing times, resulting in more damage and increasing the odds of over-processing your hair.
Creates a More Natural, Earthy Look
Platinum blonde is gorgeous, but it’s far from a natural look. If you’re into genuine, slightly earthy tones that look naturally sun-kissed and silky, dark blonde is perfect.
Going with a dark blonde shade gives you the most natural-looking blonde that makes it look like you were born with the color. It’s also universally flattering and plays well with all skin tones and complexions.
Blends Well With Other Colors and Shades
Darker shades of blonde have the added benefit of looking great with a wide range of colors as part of a multi-toned look. Dark blondes are gorgeous on their own.
But they’re also the perfect shades to use in balayage, highlights, ombre, and dimensional multi-toned colors. These shades blend really well with light and medium brunette, red, and other blonde tones.
20 Pretty Shades of Dark Blonde We’re Obsessed With
Obsessed is a strong word, but we’re okay with admitting that these dark blonde hair colors have our full attention. From warm golden and red-toned dark blondes to cool and neutral ash and taupe shades, there are so many facets of deep blonde colors to explore.
We’re totally and unabashedly invested in these shades and you will be, too!
1. Dimensional Muted Bronde
This deep blonde shade has warm, reddish brown undertones that create a muted dark blonde with a brunette tint – bronde.
It’s a unique color that appears to shift in the light and has tons of dimension. It’s the perfect color for a first-timer blonde and can always be brightened up later with strawberry or golden blonde highlights.
2. Dark Honey Blonde Balayage
Honey blonde tones look beautiful in deeper shades, where they take on a caramel-like warmth and richness. Using dark honey blonde as a highlight color with a light golden brown root/base gives you glowing results that look naturally sun-kissed.
3. Deep Strawberry Blonde With Champagne Highlights
Strawberry blonde straddles the line between red and blonde gorgeously, especially in a deep shade like this. This dark coppery blonde envelopes strands in a vivacious, lively color that is brightened up with a few light champagne blonde highlights around the face.
4. Bronzed Dark Blonde With Milk Chocolate Base
The warm, coppery undertones in bronze brown add richness and depth to a warm golden dark blonde shade. The perfect base color when using this shade as a highlight or balayage tone is milk chocolate brown. Place the highlights around the face and through the ends and midshaft for an instant lift.
5. Dark Ash Blonde With Platinum Babylights
Cool ash tones give a silvery glint to dark blonde shades and are just perfect for women with cool undertones. If this color isn’t rich and dimensional enough on its own, adding fine babylights in a bright platinum shade will brighten it up.
6. Deep Golden Honey Blonde With Soft Highlights
Dark honey tones have a rich, golden undertone that is decidedly warm and perfect for women with warm undertones. Pair finely-woven highlights that are placed to softly skim the edges of layers around the face for a perfectly brightened look that retains a lot of depth and richness.
7. Dark Taupe Blonde
Taupe blonde is a muted blonde shade that is pretty neutral – it suits warm and cool undertones equally well, and is a great match for neutral undertones, too. This dimensional dark blonde hair color transforms under bright lights to look lighter and takes on a brown color in dimmer lighting.
8. Deep Ash Blonde and Silver Ombre
Ash blonde has silvery undertones that make it a cool-toned color. It makes sense that combining a dark ash blonde base color at the roots makes a beautiful ombre color with a pure, violet-toned silver color at the ends! This is a great option for women with cool undertones.
9. Dirty Dark Auburn Blonde
Dirty blonde has such a natural, universally flattering look. It’s pretty neutral in tone, but with auburn undertones, you can warm the color up a bit and make it suitable for skin with warm undertones. Go all-over with this shade or use it as a pretty base for light blonde balayage or highlights!
10. Deep Caramel Blonde
Rich caramel blonde is a warm shade of dark blonde that blends golden brown with blonde tones. It makes a beautiful all-over shade with tons of dimension and depth. Where the hair bends, this color creates shadows that look brown and where it curves out, you see shimmering blonde.
11. Dark to Pale Golden Blonde Ombre
We told you dark blonde makes a gorgeous base shade for tons of colors, and pale golden blonde is no exception. Here, a medium brown root smudge gradually lightens to dark blonde, then light golden blonde at the ends. The overall tone is warm and perfect for women with warm undertones.
12. Neutral Copper Ash Dark Blonde
Blending warm (copper) and cool (ash) undertones in a dark blonde creates a gorgeous neutral shade that suits warm, cool, and neutral undertones well. This universally-flattering shade has the vibrance and warmth of copper muted a bit with silvery ash tones and a little depth.
13. Dark Strawberry Blonde With Smudged Roots
Dark blonde shades with red undertones are so fun and vibrant! Try a deep strawberry blonde color all-over with a slightly darker smudged root to help blend it in and look natural. A root smudge also makes the color even lower-maintenance if you have naturally dark hair.
14. Dark Dirty Blonde with Red Undertones
This rich dirty blonde shade is a darker level 7 ash blonde with hints of auburn red tweaking the color for a slightly warmer tone. Pairing the warm and cool tones together creates a neutral overall tone that can work for women with warm, cool, or neutral undertones.
15. Pearly Dark Ash Blonde
This creative dark ash shade has a pearly, silver sheen that separates it from ash brown shades. Wavy and curly styles really show off the shadowy depth of the color, while brighter champagne blonde money piece highlights around the face add a little lift.
16. Dark Butterscotch Blonde With Chocolate Root Melt
Warm, honey-toned butterscotch blonde in a dark shade is one of our favorite dark blonde colors for women with warm undertones. This rich color pairs well with a darker color at the roots for contrast, like the medium chocolate brown root melt shown here.
17. Dark Copper Blonde
This warm color is very similar to dark strawberry blonde, but with richer and more vibrant copper tones. If you love red colors but want to try a dark blonde shade, this hue is the ideal compromise and the best of both worlds!
18. Golden Brown and Dark Blonde Ombre
Dark shades of blonde are so well-suited for ombre color because they create a smooth, seamless color graduation that doesn’t look too stark against light and medium brunette shades. Here, a golden chocolate brown slips into dark blonde at the midshaft for a beautifully two-toned look.
19. Neutral Deep Ash Blonde With Golden Highlights
Ash blonde is typically a cool color, while golden blonde is warm. Pairing them together in one multi-toned look creates a neutral overall tone that suits women with warm, cool, and neutral undertones very well.
From the rich silvery ash tones at the root and midshaft to the glimmering golden blonde that weaves through with chunky highlights, this is a knockout color!
20. Deep Blonde Ribbon Balayage With Espresso Roots
Deep caramel blonde color brightens the midshaft and ends in this look, with fine ribbons of color weaving up just off the roots in a trendy ribbon balayage look.
A deep espresso brown makes a beautiful base shade with a nice contrast. This warm color is perfect for women with warm undertones and a darker natural hair color.
Tips and Things to Consider
Going dark blonde might be one of the best decisions you ever make for your mane. Before you book an appointment (or reach for the dye, if you’re a DIY girl), make a quick note of these helpful tips and considerations.
- Know the shade and tone you’re going for. Whether you’re doing your color at home or going to a professional, you need to know what blonde shade and tone you want. You can’t ask for dark blonde and get the specific results you want – you need to know what shade and undertone as well. Bring your stylist photos of the color you like for the most precise color match. If you’re planning to DIY, stick to box colors in the shade and level you want – mixing different colors can be a challenge for beginners.
- Pick a dark blonde hair color that suits your complexion. Skin with warm undertones looks best with warm dark blondes – honey, butterscotch, caramel, and golden blondes. Cool undertones look best with cool dark blondes, like ash blonde. Neutral undertones can choose almost any dark blonde, but look best with a blend of warm and cool blonde tones or neutral shades like dark taupe blonde. Find out if your undertones are cool, warm, or neutral and see your ideal color picks with our quiz: What Color Hair Looks Best On Me? Quiz | Only 5 Questions!
- Use a lower volume developer. Since you won’t need to lift your strands to the highest levels (9-10+) for light blonde shades, you can get away with using a lower developer volume to further reduce damage to your hair. Skip the harsh 40-volume and try 30- or 20-volume for the gentlest lift.
- Switch to sulfate-free shampoo to preserve the color. Once you bleach and tone your hair to the perfect dark blonde shade, you don’t want to lose it to fading or unwanted brassiness. Harsh sulfates in regular shampoo will strip your color and rough up damaged hair. Sulfate-free shampoo for colored hair is much gentler, and you can use a purple shampoo once or twice a week to maintain cool-toned dark blondes and neutralize brass.
- Use dark blonde as a foundation color. You can definitely rock dark blonde as a gorgeous all-over shade, but the sky’s the limit here! If you start to get tired of the color, work in lowlights for depth, add brighter blonde highlights for dimension, or use your dark blonde as the base for a lighter-toned balayage. This is a color that easily transforms into tons of looks.
Dark blonde hair color takes many forms – it can be a deep and creamy butterscotch blonde, a vivacious and radiant dark strawberry blonde, or a gleaming, bronzed blonde tone with hints of golden brown and copper.
There’s genuinely no limit to the shades and tones you can create with dark blonde color! It’s universally flattering, so there’s a shade and tone that will suit every skin tone and undertone.
Just make sure you’re sticking with shades that have the same color temperature (warm, cool, or neutral) as your skin’s undertone for the most flattering, natural look.
When it’s time to totally transform your strands with a lively, trendy color that brightens up your face and gives you a glow from within, you’ll be thinking about dark blonde and all the possibilities it holds for you. We think you’re going to love the way you look on the dark side of blonde!