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Root Smudges – Keep Your Highlights & Cover Your Regrowth!

If you love your lighter lengths but you’re not so keen on some of nature’s silver highlights in your regrowth, then you’ll need a colouring approach which lets you keep your highlights, and which covers new growth.

A quick, easy root smudge can help with a common colouring dilemma – your roots need touching up, but you are happy with the colour in your lengths.

You will need to touch-up your base colour regrowth more often than your highlights. If you have fast-growing greys that you want to cover then you may need to touch-up your roots every 2-4 weeks.


Root smudges are easy to apply and let you cover greys quickly and easily while keeping your highlights.

Using your tint brush lets you apply colour right at your roots where you need it. You can use a comb to feather the colour down an inch or so if you wish, or otherwise keep the colour closer to your scalp only.

To stay on top of greys, apply your base colour to your roots only. Keep the colour close to the roots, just where you need it. Use a dry comb to feather the colour down so that it blends softly with your lighter lengths.

Root Smudge Colour Selection:

It is important to select a base colour which works well with your highlights – neutrals or cool based colours are usually best, as they play well with tones typically seen in highlights.

Bear in mind that if you are lightening your roots even by just one colour level, it is best to add cool tones to your root colour. Lightening always reveals natural warmth and to achieve a neutral tonal outcome, then you need to add cool tones whenever you lighten your colour.

Keep your base colour within 1-3 levels of your natural colour, for low maintenance touch-ups. This way you can easily touch-up your roots, without requiring a seperate roots-only lightening process.

A colour between your natural colour level and your highlights colour, which leaves a little bit of natural looking depth and dimension at your roots, can be a great choice.

Boosting Colour And Tone In Your Lengths

You can refresh the tone of your highlights with a toner or semi-permanent colour whenever you want to boost tone, colour and shine in your lengths.

You can use our Highlights Kit to add or touch-up your highlights any time.

You can boost the tone of your highlights by applying a toner once a month, or whenever you need to boost the tone and shine in your lengths.

Toners will keep your highlights tonally balanced, bright and shiny and their gentle non-lift formula won’t dry or damage your hair.

Using a permanent colour at your roots only and boosting colour and shine in your lengths with a toner or semi is the best way to maintain your hair’s condition. Each section of hair is exposed to one permanent colour process only. This approach will help avoid colour build-up which leads to darker and duller colour results. It will also preserve the condition, hydration and strength of your hair. This is exactly how most of our team colour their own hair, and it could just be your best colouring approach too. We call it Colour Perfection.

Our colourists are available 7 days a week to help you achieve your colour goals – talk to them today!

The kit was excellent! Amazing value for money. I followed the tips for applying colour to the roots so I didn’t lose my blonde highlights and it blended perfectly. It’s worked out really well!

Pamela Gonzalez

I recently performed a Root Smudge using Sicily Medium Blonde. I was happy with the results so plan to continue doing root smudges as my hair grows out with highlights.

C Rowlands

3 replies on “Root Smudges – Keep Your Highlights & Cover Your Regrowth!”

  • Hi and thanks for getting in touch! That could be a possibility, but we would want to discuss that in further detail as there are some implications eg. as the hair grows out you will progessively have darker coloured hair. Please get in touch with our colourists and we are happy to discuss that option, or perhaps another option which could work well for you. Thank you!

    • Hi! Thanks for getting in touch. The root smudge is a colour application technique. You use a Colour Kit and you can apply the colour to your roots only. Use a comb to extend the colour down 1-2 inches, as needed to blend with your lengths. You can use one regular colour kit for two root smudge applications.
      I hope that helps.
      Thank you!

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