33 Ash Blonde Hair Color Ideas and Cool Tone Inspiration for 2020

ash blonde hairstyles

@abigailkim

With so many shades of blonde to choose from, it’s hard to commit to just one. But good news! You don’t have to! Yay! If you’ve tried every blonde shade under the sun but haven’t veered from those warm, golden-blonde shades, it’s time that you add ash-blonde to the top of your list of hair-color trends to try ASAP. Before you resort back to the same ol’, same ol’ again, scroll through the below for all the insight and inspo you need to get acquainted with the new hair color you’re about to be obsessed with. But first…

What is the difference between blonde and ash blonde?

Blonde is a very broad category that includes a ton of different shades. Ash blonde is one of said blonde shades, and it’s easily spotted by its blue and violet hues that emulate a silvery or gray cool tone, as explained by Kim Bonondona, hair colorist and owner of Mane Champagne Studio in NYC. But there’s not just one shade of ash blonde! Ash blondes can vary from a darker silver-gray to white blonde with pearly tones and everything in between. It’s a cooler (literally, it’s a cool-tone color) iteration on a classic hair color that looks good on virtually every skin tone, as long as you get the right combination of undertones. To help you find the right ash-blonde hair for you, we rounded up the 33 coolest (heh) ideas, below, that’ll convince you to make the switch.

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1

White Ash Blonde

Golden blondes contain a lot of yellow and a lot of warmth, but do you see any of that here? Nope! That’s because this white-ish platinum blonde has all the cool tones and none of the brass.

2

Ash Blonde With Roots

Ever so slightly warmer than the slide before this one, this ash-blonde color still has all the coolness you love about ash blonde but with all the right undertones to compliment a deeper skin tone.

3

Vanilla Blonde

As cool as ash blonde hair looks (I mean, is this the cutest pixie cut ever?!), it’s not exactly the easiest to maintain. Bonondona says because it’s one of the lightest shades, it fades out quicker—but it looks good while it lasts.

4

Cool-Toned Blonde

If you *despise* brassy hair color, aim for the opposite side of the spectrum and use silver shampoos for a tinge of blue, silver, or purple to keep the tones in check.

5

Natural Ash Blonde

As cool as as extreme ash-blonde shades are, metallics doesn’t exactly look natural. Try this ashy, rooty blonde look if you want something that could pass as your real hair color.

6

Platinum Ash Blonde

In addition to loading up on the purple shampoos, visit your salon in-between your color appointments for just a toner to refresh the color and cancel out any yellowness that appears as it fades.

7

Silvery Blonde

Can’t decide between a gray hair color or blonde? Do both! Let your stylist know your predicament, and they’ll create a combination of toners to give you the exact shade you want.

8

Icy Blonde

The bleaching process tends to cause a lot of dryness to the hair, so keeping your strands hydrated is non-negotiable, k?! Use a hot oil treatment once a week to restore your hair’s shine, and thank us later.

9

Medium Ash Blonde

Head’s up: To get ash blonde, your colorist has to lift the hair as light as possible in order to eliminate the hair’s warm tones. Since hair can only be lifted to a certain amount of levels in one session, Bonondona says it could take more than one session to get the desired ashy color for someone with a darker root.

10

Cool Ash-Blonde Hair Color

It’ll likely take a handful of sessions to achieve a color like this, which means more money, time, and patience, so brace yourself and your wallet. Bonondona says you’ll typically need to see your colorist every 2 months for a touch up or four to six weeks for a bleach-out.

11

Dark Ash-Blonde

This ashy blonde balayage on dark brown hair is the perfect way to try the trend without totally making the switch from brunette to blonde.

13

Shadow Roots

Not about the upkeep that comes along with a color as high maintenance as ash blonde? Ask your colorist about shadow roots to make the grow-out process a little less painful.

14

Ashy Bleach Blonde

While you should never bleach your hair at home, it’s tempting after looking at this inspo photo, right?! But bleached color like this with a hint of ash and absolutely no yellow is hard to achieve if your hair isn’t naturally light, so it’s worth the wait to see a pro colorist.

15

Creamy, Ashy Blonde

“Every client, no matter what natural level hair color they possess, has warm underlying pigments,” Bonondona explains. “When you put the ash toner on, it will neutralize the yellow and create a cool-toned blonde.” Cool, right? But when the temporary toner starts to rinse out, the hair will start to fade yellow, and that’s where purple shampoo comes in to return your strands back to icy blonde.

16

Rooty Blonde

There’s something super-edgy and cool about ash-blonde hair with darker roots. Case in point, this inspo photo. Even when your hair is styled in a classy bun hairstyle, it still looks badass.

18

Ice Blonde

You’ve been warned: Maintaining a cool-toned blonde with no roots, like this shaved hairstyle, requires lots of work and time at the salon, but that’s a fair price to pay for perfectly color like this.

19

Dimensional Blonde

If you’re afraid of looking washed-out with your new ashy shade, try asking your colorist for a mix of warm highlights and cool lowlights to balance out your complexion.

20

Warm Ash-Blonde Hair

For those who want to take a baby step into the ash trend, try this slightly warmer version—an easy commitment if you want to tweak your current blonde without going full-on gray.

21

Light Ash-Blonde Hair

If you’re afraid of a color as cool as ash blonde washing you out, tell your colorist you’d like to keep enough depth to prevent that from happening.

22

Blonde Balayage

These ashy roots blend and fade so flawlessly into the highlights that you almost think this blonde balayage with ashy roots was natural (and that’s the point).

23

Bright and Beige

Want something that leans a little more beige than gray? Try the look shown here. “If my client prefers to stay bright, I will add a natural with a little bit of ash into the toner,” Bononda explains. “The natural will dilute the ash and keep the hair bright.”

24

Baby Blonde

Because it can be a pretty tricky process and color to achieve, medium brown, light brown, or dirty blonde are the best natural levels to have if you’re seeking to go ash blonde as easily as possible, Bonondona notes.

25

Ash-Blonde Money Pieces

This year’s hair trends were allll about the two-tone color and face-framing pieces, so incorporate both of those trends with ash-blonde money pieces like these.

26

Bright Platinum Blonde

For shiny, bright, platinum blonde like this, Bonondona says to avoid anything that can cause your hair to turn yellow, like smoke, sun, and even the minerals in your water (yup, now’s the time to invest in a shower water filter).

27

Smoky Gray Balayage

If you’re v familiar with balayage but not so much with ash-blonde color, keep in mind that a shade like this requires more time at the salon than a warmer blonde balayage, which can last four to six months.

28

Ashy Gradient

With this look, you get the warm, golden blonde highlights on the ends, with all the cool-tone ashy blonde at the roots. It’s the best of both worlds.

29

Lived-In Ash Blonde

Bonondona says ash blonde works particularly well on those with light or medium skin tones with pink-y or blush undertones. Fairer complexions will appreciate how ash blonde helps balance and neutralize any pink.

30

Silvery Blonde

Mix one part silver with one part blonde, and you get this gorgeously shiny hue that gives off all the hints of ash without the dark vibes of winter.

31

Rosy, Ashy Blonde

Two trends in one: Combine pastels and ash for a soft blonde shade that looks elevated, not cutesy. To keep the color vivid and your strands healthy, try using a keratin repairer, like the cult-favorite Olaplex, once a week to help strengthen weakened follicles post-bleach.

33

Pure-Gray Ash Blonde

Ash blonde isn’t one size fits all, and a veil of monotone gray makes this shade feel both edgy and Pinterest-worthy, all at the same time.

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