Contemporary purple and red hair looks are for the most daring individuals who love eye-catching color. From moody jewel tones to bright and vivid neon shades, you’ll see several ways to rock this color trend creatively below!
What Is Purple and Red Hair?
- Choose from multiple color placements and techniques
- Pick purple and red hair colors that suit your undertones
- Go with light shades (requires bleach) or rich, deep shades
Purple and red hair color is one of those trends that everyone admires, but few have the guts to try out. If you’re known to be daring with your style and color, this is a color combination you shouldn’t skip.
It’s fascinating to see just how many pretty purple and red color combos there are! Maybe you’re into the dark, rich jewel tones like amethyst or plum purple smoldering next to ruby red or crimson.
You might prefer the way vivid violet or orchid purple look with stunning scarlet or raspberry red hair color. Perhaps you’re a big fan of brighter mauve or lilac color with coral, copper, or burgundy!
Whatever your purple and red hair color dreams consist of, you’ll find some great examples to inspire you below. First, let’s talk about your color options.
Purple and Red Color Placement and Technique
If you’re not going for a blended purple-red color and want to rock the two-tone color trend, think about where you want your color placed and how you want it applied.
Balayage is always a great option for purple and red hair color and gives you the freedom to place cooler purple or warmer red tones near the roots or ends. That helps your color look more flattering on you!
Traditional or off-root highlights are another way you can work red and purple into your strands. You might like the way big, chunky streaks bring these strong colors through or choose fine highlights placed close together.
Peekaboo color gives you a lot of freedom for purple and red hair color, too. If you prefer the way warm red or cool purple looks on you, you can tuck the other color away in the deeper layers of your hair to show off only when it’s intentional.
Trendy techniques like oil slick color, color blocks, and ombre hair color are other gorgeous ways you can work red and purple shades into your look.
Choose Shades That Suit Your Undertones
Choosing purple and red shades that mirror your skin’s undertones is ideal. Purple is a generally cool color since it has heavy blue undertones. Red is a generally warm color.
While there are warmer shades of purple and cooler shades of red, knowing the general undertone will help you pinpoint the shades that best suit your skin tone.
If your skin has a cool undertone (veins look bluish, silver is most flattering jewelry), purple should be your main base shade accented with warmer red.
Look for the coolest purple shades, like silvered lilac, cool violet, and rich plum to really complement your cool-toned skin. Cooler-toned reds include raspberry, burgundy, and crimson.
If your skin has a warm undertone (veins look greenish, gold is most flattering jewelry), red should be the star of the show with purple accents, highlights, or peekaboo color.
Look for the warmest red shades, like copper, scarlet, coral, or auburn to best flatter warm-toned skin. Warmer purple shades like orchid, red-violet, and mulberry are great accent colors.
Consider Your Desired Shade Depth
You’ll want to consider how deep or light you want your purple and red hair colors to be. If you’re planning on going with brighter shades of either color, you may need to bleach your hair before applying dye.
Since bleaching is a harsh chemical process that results in damage, it’s not something to take lightly. Is your infatuation with this color trend worth potentially harming your hair’s health for the next few months with a double-process color?
If you’re thinking of going with darker shades of purple and red, you may not need to bleach first and can go with a single-process color.
But your colors may not appear as vivid or true-to-tone as you’d like when applied to a very dark base color. If you’re okay with some bleach but don’t want to apply it all-over, you have options.
Consider applying a dark purple tone to your current color as an all-over base shade, then go in with bleach to create small highlights you can then dye the red shade of your choice.
10 Pretty Purple and Red Hair Examples
There’s a reason the purple and red hair trend is catching on – it’s seriously gorgeous when the right shades are paired together. Take a look at some of the best purple and red color combinations we’ve seen and get inspired for your new two-toned hue!
1. Royal Purple and Crimson Color Block
Cool-toned violet and warmer crimson color play nicely together in a color block look that marries purple and red. This chunky color features off-root crimson balayage sections spaced throughout a blue-toned purple base shade.
2. Violet and Red Oil Slick Color
Oil slick hair color features expertly-blended, gradient shades that appear almost iridescent. With rich, cool violet creeping into deep indigo tones and warm red color infused with copper, this is a luxe look that demands attention.
3. Dark Plum and Raspberry Red Root Ombre
A multicolor ombre color creates a beautiful twist on the purple and red hair trend. With cool, dark plum tones at the roots transitioning into pinkish raspberry red and warm golden blonde, you get a full range of shades that can suit any undertone.
4. Silvered Lilac With Coral Red Highlights
A brighter lilac shade with cool, silvery undertones makes an unlikely match with warm coral red-orange. Use the color that best matches your skin’s undertone – cool lilac or warm coral – as the base shade. Use the other color to add dimension and neutralize the overall temperature with chunky highlights.
5. Siren Red With Peekaboo True Violet Color
A bright, very warm red shade like siren can be an incredible way to contrast with cool, peekaboo violet color in the layers underneath. Painting the red color off-root with a dark root melt gives this look a gradient, seamless vibe.
6. Electric Mauve and Raspberry Red Ombre
This purple and red hair color features two in-between shades that bring hints of pink into the mix. A bright mauve tone covers the majority of the look with pretty raspberry ombre tones creeping up through the ends.
7. Violet and Plum Burgundy Balayage
This balayage look is unique and truly stunning with a rich, dark color covering the roots through the midshaft. Dark plum and burgundy red tones mix with violet highlights to create a nice purple and red gradient that reminds us of a moody sunset.
8. Brilliant Ruby With Purple Tips
Consider rocking a strong, cooler-toned red color all-over with hints of purple color at the tips. This look is stunning on long hair so the red color has a chance to make a big impact. Mix it up with more purple color in the bottommost layers for a twist on this look!
9. Amethyst With Scarlet, Yellow, and Orange
Amethyst purple makes a gorgeous backdrop for the stars of the show: Scarlet, yellow, and orange tones giving the look tropical sunset vibes in the top layer. There are a number of ways to work these warmer tones in, but if your skin has a warm undertone, consider placing them around the face.
10. Violet, Copper, and Scarlet
This look reminds us of a dark watercolor painting, with fluid sections of violet, copper red, and vivid scarlet lighting up different areas. You can be creative with your color placement to arrange your most flattering tones near your face.
Things to Consider
You’ve seen some great color examples and learned a bit about choosing purple and red hair colors that will look great on you. What else should you know before you settle on this color combination?
Take a look below to learn more.
- DIY is tempting, but go with a stylist. You could grab all the supplies at Sally and DIY this look, but doing two or more colors at once means you can run into a lot of issues from patchy coverage to hair-destroying damage. Go to a skilled colorist to get purple and red color – you’ll be so glad you did.
- Prolong the color with the right shampoo. Even if you go with permanent hair color, you’ll find that both purple and red hair dye have fast-fading pigments that need extra care to last longer. Switch to a sulfate-free shampoo for colored hair to avoid washing out your color with each shampoo.
- Cleanse less often. Speaking of washing with the right shampoo, washing less frequently overall is another great way to help purple and red hair color last. If you’re washing daily or even every other day, you’ll fade these colors quickly. Rely on dry shampoo or co-washing with conditioner to help you extend your time between washes.
- Try styles that show off the color. Once you’re rocking pretty purple and red hair, the last thing you want is to wear it in a basic ponytail or bunned-up every day! Make sure you’re taking a little extra time to style your hair to put your purple and red tones on display. Half-up looks are great for showing off more subtle peekaboo color!
- Think about the maintenance level. It’s essential to consider how much maintenance your red and purple colors will need over time. Root touch-ups and color refreshes for faded tones are a fact of life when you’re dealing with vivid, rich tones. You might need to visit the salon every 4-6 weeks to keep your color looking great.
So, Will Purple and Red Hair Suit You?
Purple and red hair is an amazing color choice for the daring, but it’s not ideal for those who prefer a natural or subtle look. If you’re totally onboard for the color but aren’t sure it’ll look good on you, think about the following.
Are you choosing shades that suit your undertones? Warm skin tones need a very warm red and a warmer (but still cool) shade of purple. Cool skin tones need a very cool purple and a cooler (but still warm) red to balance the look.
Have you ever had red or purple hair color? How do you look in warm hair colors (like golden blonde or chocolate brown) versus cool hair colors (like platinum blonde or ash brown)?
If you have experience with either purple or red and liked the way it looked, make that color your main shade. Accent with the other color sparingly.
If you generally like the way warm colors look, make red your main color with purple accents. If you like the way you look with cool hair colors, go with mostly purple and add subtle red accents.
When you take some extra time to consider and weigh your options, you’ll end up with the most flattering purple and red hair color possible.
It’s worth doing your homework – and you’re going to love how bold and vibrant these shades look on you!