Smoky Brunette Is The Coolest Spring Hair Trend

Popular hair colors rotate year by year and season by season, and this year it's all about smoky brown. "Whereas warm brunette shades look lighter and richer, ash-brown colors are usually deeper with a smoky, matte-like finish," hair colorist Nina Rubel tells Cosmopolitan. Because a smoky brunette is cool-toned, the color looks fiercer and edgier.

If you're wondering whether this trend is for you, we've gathered some stunning examples of how a smoky brunette can look. Whether you dare to go full out by dyeing your whole head or you want to just dip your toes into this trend by getting lowlights, a smoky brunette is a trend that looks incredible on any skin color or haircut.

And if any of these options inspire you to take the leap, make sure you show the photo to your hairstylist. "Find a picture that has the tone you want and a picture of the placement you like — two of each should be enough," hair colorist Stephanie Brown tells PopSugar. "I find that ashy for some people isn't the same for others, but a picture is the easiest way to show what you like and don't like."

Smoky brunette wolf cut

The trendy wolf cut is still going strong, and it looks great when combined with a smoky shade of brown. This hair color will give the haircut an even more prominent '80s punk rock vibe, especially if you finish the look off with a texturizing spray.

Smoky brunette curls

Because a smoky brown is generally very dark, it looks great on anyone who already has dark hair. However, the ashiness of it adds a lot of dimension, which is why it looks great on curly hair. If you want to take it a step further, ask your hairstylist to add a couple of pieces that are one or two shades lighter to enhance your curls even more.

Smoky brunette with blue highlights

Since a smoky brunette is a very cool-toned hair color, it looks great when combined with other cool tones. Vibrant blue is a particularly fun choice. If you have always wanted to have blue hair but were too afraid to dye your whole head, an ashy brown base will provide the perfect canvas for some blue highlights.

Smoky brunette with long layers

A smoky brown looks great with a classic long layered haircut. In particular, the ashiness is what helps the hair have that beautiful sheen in bright light. If you want to enhance it even more, a shine spray is your best friend — it will help you get the appearance of super healthy hair (even if that isn't the case).

Light smoky brunette

Those who like the cool-toned ashy look of a smoky brown but don't want their hair to be too dark can always opt for a brown that is a couple of shades lighter. However, keep in mind that the lighter you go with this color, the closer you get to gray territory.

Smoky brunette with balayage

Just because a smoky brunette is super on-trend doesn't mean you have to stick to one shade all over your hair. After all, for spring and summer, a lot of us like to go a bit lighter, which is why getting an ashy balayage on top of an ashy brown is an amazing choice for warmer days.

Smoky brunette with light brown highlights

Even though ashy tones look great with other ashy tones, sometimes rules like these are simply meant to be broken. In fact, golden brown highlights on an ashy brown base are just the right amount of contrast to make both shades stand out. This choice is particularly great for those with darker hair as the hair strands for the golden brown shade don't need to be lifted to a blond, which means less hair damage.

Smoky brunette with purple highlights

Purple is another color that will look stunning in combination with a smoky brown. When picking the purple shade, you can opt for a super cold one — always a safe choice — or add some warmth with a shade like magenta. Either way, your hair will always be in the spotlight!

Smoky brunette with waves

If you like to wear your hair wavy, rest assured that this hair color also looks great with that hair type. To help the waves have more definition, ask for a couple of cool-toned face-framing highlights. But even without those, this hair color will look magnificent on wavy styles.

Smoky brunette with baby bangs

Since a cool-toned dark brown looks moody and mysterious it pairs perfectly with an edgier short haircut. In fact, if you have this hair color and you've always wanted to try out the baby bangs trend, this would be a perfect time. Since a haircut like this emphasizes your eyebrows, we recommend coloring them in a similar cool-tone shade if they aren't like that naturally.

Smoky brunette with red money piece

An ashy brown looks perfect with other cool tones, but it also works incredibly well with a fiery red. In fact, getting a red money piece on a smoky brunette base is a great way to explore the popular Gen-Z hair trend without any blond.

Smoky brunette pixie

Those with very short hair tend to be more open to experimenting with hair colors; after all, short hair grows back super quickly. If you have a pixie haircut, an ashy brown will look amazing with it. The shade will bring out any eye color. If your eyes are green, blue, or hazel, the shade will perfectly contrast with them, and if your eyes are brown, the ashiness will enhance them!

Smoky brunette box braids

If you're looking for a color to help the intricacy of your box braids shine even more but don't want to lighten your hair much, and ashy brown is your best option. Because the cool tone has a unique sheen when the light hits it, a smoky brunette will perfectly accentuate your braids.

Smoky brunette with curtain bangs

It seems as if curtain bangs are here to stay as the trend has been a popular hair choice for a couple of years now. If you were wondering just how curtain bangs would look in an ashy brown shade, we're here to show you that the color looks stunning with the hairstyle!

Smoky brown lowlights

Going ashy brunette might be a piece of cake for those who already have darker hair, but if you are blond, giving up your light locks certainly isn't as easy. If you want to explore the ashy brown trend without saying goodbye to your light hair, ask your hairstylist to give you some ashy brown lowlights instead.