How Long Do Highlights Take (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 2 To 4 Hours

Appearances can be changed easily, and to alter the looks, there are many ways. Some people do something with their face permanently using plastic and cosmetic surgeries, other people choose the more temporary approach of makeup. Many men and women take care of their skin by following different types of skincare routines and there is nothing better than taking care of the skin in a natural way.

Some people use make-up and cosmetics to change the way they appear, while some people use these products to express themselves more and give their entire look a pop, despite what they wear. Some people get tattoos, some take care of their skin and nails, and some people, make changes with their hair.

Different types and textures of hair are observed all over the world, and people choose their hairstyles based on multiple criteria. Some people set their hair every morning based on where they work or what they do, and many others don’t exactly care what their appearances implement.

How Long Do Highlights Take

How Long Do Highlights Take?

All about highlightsTime
To complete a basic highlight, it normally takes about2 hours
The minimum duration required to complete complex highlights3 hours
The maximum duration required to complete complex highlights4 to 5 hours

Every style can be different, and some changes in the hair can be subtle, while sometimes it might be very bright and eye-catching.

When someone wants to change their hair, they always choose either cutting it, dyeing it completely, or sometimes adding a few highlights that stand out. Before getting highlights, people should know what they are getting into, how long highlights last, and how long it takes to complete them.

Usually, people who get highlights for the first time think that it just takes a few minutes since it covers very less amount of space in the head, but actually, it takes a while to get the highlights done. It all depends on what kind of highlights and how many they are getting.

The color of highlights has nothing to do with this, but sectioning of hair does. There are different kinds of highlights, like partial highlights, full highlights, and streaks.

Full highlights mean the person is getting a head full of highlights, but in partial highlights, the hair is sectioned based on what the person wants and sometimes based on how the stylist works with the hair.

Why Do Highlights Last That Long?

Some choose to add highlights to some sections, from the top of the head and hairline till the end, while some customers choose to add streaks from mid-length. Some people add highlights on the top of their head, some add in the sides.

It takes less time to complete partial highlights than a full head highlight. The other factors that determine how long it takes to get highlights done can depend on how long the hair is, and also how thick it is.

First, foils are filled with bleach or hair color and folded around sections of hair and some of these foils are pinned and stacked with no space in between, but sometimes for some types of streaks and partial highlights, about 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches of space will be left. When there is no space and less amount of space between the highlights, it means that there is more number of highlights and the process is going to take up more time.

The main three different types of highlights include balayage, ombre, foliage, and also the traditional one. The type of highlight a person wants can also determine how long the application process is going to take.


Hairstylists can use materials like saran wrap, styrofoam, or cotton to separate the highlight sections if the person is getting a partial highlight.

Some stylists include the consultation time, the time taken to mix the formula, blow-drying the hair, and adding the final touches to the amount of time taken to add highlights to the customer’s hair. It takes about an average of two hours to complete a basic highlight. More complex types of highlights can take a minimum of three hours and a maximum of 4 to 5 hours without a doubt.


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