At Home Highlights Kits HeroSource: Christine Persaud / Android Central

Best At-Home Highlights Kits Android Central 2020

Way back in the day, I used to do my own highlights at home with a friend or family member pulling my strands of hair through a cap, adding the color, then removing the cap to reveal a fresh, newly highlighted head of hair. There are lots of kits you can use at home, but the L'Oreal Paris Frost and Design Cap Hair Highlights is a great one that will suit both long and short hair and provide professional-looking highlights.

Best Overall: L'Oreal Paris Frost and Design Cap Hair Highlights

While this kit is designed for long hair that goes beyond your shoulders, it also means that with an additional cap, you would have enough color to add highlights to multiple short-haired persons, making it a full family affair or a fun day at home with the roommates.

The no-mess application includes the non-drip formula, mixing tray, gloves, and cap. Available in champagne or caramel color, it includes a toning rinse to finish off the job and keep your newly highlighted hair looking shiny versus brassy, infusing it with extra shine.

The hi-precision pull-through cap is placed over your head. Then, you use one of the two hook options to pull the hair through, depending on it you want bold or more subtle highlights that provide a simple sun-kissed glow. Get your hair highlighted in as little as 20 minutes and save time and money by not going to a salon.

Pros:

  • Has everything you need
  • Includes two hooks for customized highlights
  • No-mess application

Cons:

  • More than you need for short hair
  • Suitable for lighter hair colors only

Best Overall

L'Oreal Paris Frost and Design Cap Hair Highlights

Has everything you need

Get salon-quality highlights with no mess, a customized look, and a shimmering finish at the end.

Best for Customizing: Revlon Colorsilk Color Effects Frost and Glow Highlights

Thanks to the Light Zones cap and dual-ended Revlon Create-A-Look hook, you can get customized highlights that are either subtle or dramatic in style. The cap separates pull-through holes into different zones so you can do just the front of your hair to frame your face, the middle for adding more dimension to your hair, or the back for an all-over look. Meanwhile, the Create-A-Look hook lets you do subtle or dramatic highlights, based on the impression you want to make.

The color is ammonia-free so it's safe to use on natural, color-treated, or even permed hair, and permanent, so you'll have a new look for the new season. Your hair, says Revlon, will feel silky and healthy once you're done thanks to the Keratin Moisture Complex, which penetrates the hair to nourish, protect, and moisturize it.

It comes in various color options from honey for medium to dark brown hair, to blonde for blonde and light brown hair, and platinum. Our only issue with it is that the toning rinse isn't included.

Pros:

  • Lots of color options
  • Customized cap
  • Keratin adds moisture

Cons:

  • No toning rinse included
  • Cap design could be intimidating

Best for Customizing

Revlon Colorsilk Color Effects Frost and Glow Highlights

Choose your highlight style

Whether you want to add dimension, frame your face, or get all-over highlights, this kit gives you options to customize the look.

Best for Beginners: L'Oreal Paris Professional Techniques La Petite Frost

This kit, which is ideal for short hair that goes up to your shoulders (or shorter), comes in caramel or chardonnay colors to suit different hair colors and highlighting needs. Pull hair through the hi-precision cap and choose one of two included hooks to add bold or subtle highlights. It's as simple as that.

You can add face-framing, along with precise and even highlights thanks to guides on the salon-inspired cap that help you select the right placement for each highlight. This makes it easy to use for a novice who is coloring hair for themselves or others for the first time.

The kit also includes conditioning shampoo to provide a silky and shiny finish to the highlighted job. It uses a non-drip formula that is easy to mix and apply, so it won't be intimidating for those getting used to the process.

Pros:

  • Guides on cap
  • Shampoo included
  • Non-drip formula

Cons:

  • Only for short hair
  • Only two color options

Best for Beginners

L'Oreal Paris Professional Techniques La Petite Frost

Guide you along the way

Those trying highlights for the first time will appreciate this kit with a salon-inspired cap with guides and non-drip formula.

Best for a Dramatic Change: L'Oreal Paris Colorista Bleach

For getting a full head of vibrant and noticeable highlights that are very different from your natural hair color, this kit will provide everything you need. While it is designed to be used with Colorista semi-permanent color (or any other color) that you need to buy separately, it offers permanent bleach so you can first strip your hair of its color before adding a totally new one. Maybe you want some blonde streaks within your black hair, or to add a light caramel to dark brown.

Available in ombre, it offers highlights all over for those looking to make a statement with their home highlight job. To use it, first lighten the strands of hair you want to color and then use the color of your choice.

It comes with four clearly labeled bottles for each step of the process. First, use the developer cream, then the bleaching powder, followed by lightening cream. Finish it off using the conditioning shampoo that helps hydrate your hair. Application is handled using the included DIY brush.

Pros:

  • Easy four-step process
  • No cap needed
  • Good for dramatic, contrasting highlights

Cons:

  • Need to buy color separately
  • Brush might not be as accurate as a cap
  • Bleaches your hair

Best for a Dramatic Change

L'Oreal Paris Colorista Bleach

Bold, new look

Bleach strands of your hair first then add a dramatic new color for a bold and exciting new look.

Best for Using Your Own Color: Ewinever Professional Reusable Hair Coloring Highlighting Cap and Hook

What about if you have your own favorite color at home and don't want to buy something new? This reusable cap is a great option for those who already have a hair color they want to use and want to try it out in the form of highlights. It's also great for those who like to change things up often and add new highlights or touch up highlights frequently.

The cap is made of high-grade silicone and is shaped for a comfortable fit on all head shapes and sizes. It's flexible, durable, and reusable once washed after a job. The kit also comes with a needle you need to use to poke holes in the cap using the ready-made perforations, which will add some time to the process. Also included is a rounded metal hook for pulling your hair through the cap.

Add your highlights using your desired color, pull off the cap, wash it, and store it away for the next time you get inspired and want to change your color.

Pros:

  • Reusable, thick cap
  • Use your own color
  • Great price

Cons:

  • Need to poke holes in cap first
  • Too big for small heads
  • Hard to remove with long hair

Best for Your Own Color

Ewinever Professional Reusable Hair Coloring Highlighting Cap and Hook

Use your own color

Use this cap with your favorite hair color again and again thanks to its thick, durable, and reusable design.

Best for Avoiding a Cap: Colora 250 Highlight Strips

Let's face it: anyone who has done home highlights before knows that the method with the cap and hook can be painful if you have a sensitive scalp. If the person doing it doesn't know what they're doing, they could poke and pull uncomfortably. What's more, pulling the cap off your wet hair once the color has been sitting for long enough can be a chore, depending on the type of cap, your hair type, and how long your hair is.

This kit solves that issue for those who want highlights but loathe using a cap. Instead, this method uses strips like you'd find at a salon. It includes a six-pack of easy-to-grab 4-by-7-inch individual sheets that can be used for tinting, frosting, hair painting, and even multi-level hair coloring for those who want to get adventurous.

There's no foil or film roll tangles — just solid white papers with a wax coating on one side. You need to know what you're doing, of course, with a kit like this. However, for those with some experience or who are willing to watch a YouTube tutorial or two to learn, it gives you the option to get highlights without having to do them the old-fashioned way.

Pros:

  • No cap needed
  • Use for tinting and multi-level hair coloring as well
  • Easy-to-grab sheets

Cons:

  • Need to know what you're doing
  • Priced for professionals
  • Can't do it yourself

Best for Avoiding a Cap

Colora 250 Highlight Strips

No cap or hook needed

If you fear using a cap and hook for highlights, this kit costs more and requires some learning but solves the problem.

Bottom line

It has been many years since I highlighted my hair (or even colored it, for that matter). When I did it at home though with friends, it was a great bonding experience. We'd chat while my friend was pulling strands of my hair through a cap, deciding how long we'd leave the color in to determine how light I wanted it to be. We then had fun checking out the end result.

The L'Oreal Paris Frost and Design Cap Hair Highlights is a good kit that has everything you need to get some basic highlights at home in a nice caramel color for those with brown hair or champagne for those with lighter hair. The no-mess application means there's minimal clean-up when you're done, and the two hook options let you play with ideas and decide between a slightly sun-kissed look or something bolder.

Because there's enough color to handle long hair, you can use the kit (with an additional cap) to color two heads of short hair if desired, getting more bang for your buck. Plus, the included toning rinse finishes off the job nicely so you'll be ready to impress during your next video chat or meeting.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Christine Persaud resides in Toronto, Ontario Canada with her husband and 8-year-old son. While her primary focus is writing about consumer technology, she has also written on a wide breadth of other topics, including personal care. In her spare time, she loves to bake, cook, drink wine, and spend time with her family and friends.

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