By Erin Lukas
Updated Mar 27, 2018 @ 12:00 pm
Peter White/Getty Images

Golden balayage or ombré highlights aren't the only ways to upgrade basic brown hair. If you're looking for a cooler option, ash brown is your answer.

Ash is the lovechild of brown and silver highlights, and it's a trend I'm seeing more and more of on my Instagram feed. "The ash trend has become super popular because it falls in line with the silver hair trend we were seeing with platinum blonde," says Streeters artist Holly Mills. The ash brunette trend is a way for brunettes to be a part of this trend and not destroy their hair or go for a shade that is too light for their given features."

Mills says that ash works on any shade of brunette, save ones that have a lot of orange in them. "You will want to lift any deep red or orange shades out of the hair before depositing your ash shade," she explains. "In the event that you lift ALL warm shades out of your hair—including red, orange, and yellow—this will give the maximum appearance of ash brunette."

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The color instantly adds edge to any brunette base, and the coloring technique is extremely versatile. Applying the cool tone all over, or simply adding subtle highlights, are just a few of the ways to try ash-brown hair. Keep scrolling to see a handful of my favorite takes on the trend from Instagram to get inspiration for your own ash-brown color.

That fact that ash-brown hair is relatively low maintenance is arguably the trend's most appealing quality. Mills says that unlike copper and red, cool tones last. The stylist recommends using purple shampoo and conditioner every other wash to keep the ash tones fresh.