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My favorite foil trick ever

Here is another lesson in how to foil your own hair. I will thank the friendly and fashion forward crew at the Redken Exchange Manhattan for passing me this gem of knowledge that I use constantly. I foil 90% of my clients hair using this same pattern. Is all about sectioning. That is the key to good hair if you ask me. Reagan of Hdofblog says “teasing is practically the high heels of hair” and I say “Then sectioning has got to be the arch support” 🙂

This foil sectioning pattern is fool proof. It is maximum effect, minimum effort, and it looks perfect every time.You can DIY it. It would be perfect to try on a friend or yourself however keep in mind that the back is a bit hard to do on yourself, so ask for help if you need it. Maybe you and your sister or friend should try it on each other.I also do have a video of a DIY face framing foil which is an easier and quicker version of this technique. 

I tried to make this one as simple as possible to understand but do email me if you have any questions.

You can use any combinations of color, however I generally use 2.

Here is a breakdown. Start by watching with this video to practice your technique.

Then, grab a friend and your DIY hair color tools and pick out your color or colors of choice. On Iris, I used bleach with 10v, and a 11a with 40v (light ash blonde).

If you are home-coloring, I highly recommend using DIY hair color by Madison Reed, which Resorcinol-Free.

If you purchase a Madison Reed Radiant Color Kit, you will receive not only the colors of hair colors your choice, but also the necessary tools to apply it. The entire line is designed for the DIY hair colorer! And if you need to tone in between coloring, be sure to check out their Color Reviving Gloss to refresh and revive your hair.

Here is how to do this simple DIY foiling trick!

Section off a rectangle on the top of the head, across the front hairline, down both sides, and across just below the crown.

Slice a thin section down the side, from the right front corner of the rectangle, to the top corner of the ear. This foil is bleach. Make a subsection, then a small sliced foil just behind it, of the other color. Repeat on the other side. Then do another thin sliced foil of bleach across the front hairline.

Now, you are going to outline your rectangle in 4 sliced foils of your 2nd color.




When you are done, section off a diamond in the middle of your rectangle, from the center of each side. This is your second section.





You will use chunky woven foils to outline this section.




Section 3 goes from the center of each side of section 2, to create a small square. Outline section 3 with finely woven foils.

That’s it. !5 foils total, for maximum range and coverage. The section pattern and the range of sliced-fine woven foils makes for a gorgeous ribbon-y color effect and beautifully blended color distribution, which is just shop-talk for “super hot color job that grows out very gracefully”. Enjoy!
Are you ready to DIY your color? make sure to have the proper coloring tools like the DIY Beauty Salon Tool hair coloring Kit which has everything you need to get started DIY

coloring, as well as my favorite foiling sheets ever.
If you are curious about DIY home-hair coloring, I highly recommend using DIY hair color by Madison Reed, which Resorcinol-Free.

If you purchase a Madison Reed Radiant Color Kit, you will receive not only the colors of hair colors your choice, but also the necessary tools to apply it. The entire line is designed for the DIY hair colorer! And if you need to tone in between coloring, be sure to check out their Color Reviving Gloss to refresh and revive your hair.

Also, I recommend a shopping stop at Beauty Store Depot for all your other DIY hair cutting and coloring tools to fill your toolkit!

Screen Shot 2015-11-30 at 12.55.13 PMWhile on the subject of color, let’s talk about colored-hair care. The answer to keeping your colored hair healthy and vibrant is NOT a color-treated shampoo. Instead, opt for a cleansing cream to gently cleanse and condition the hair, without removing color. We ( along with many informed colorists) Swear by the Hairstory Studio New Wash, and their line of simple, nourishing natural hair products designed and formulated by hairstylists and colorists. Before you embark on your DIY color journey, be sure to be prepared with the tools you need to keep that hair bright and healthy. Here is a link to their shop, and if you are an independent stylist/colorist, check out how rad this line is for you and your clients. (When making your purchase, please be sure and tell them that How-to Hair Girl referred you! We love you for it, and for being here in general:)

Need a custom DIY hair color consultation to help troubleshoot your hair color at home?

ad$30 buys you a one-on-one online consultation with HTHG regarding your color and how to get it where you want it. Click here.

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  1. Megan

    Thanks so much! Foils are so expensive. Gotta love DIY!

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      I know it! glad you found me:)

  2. Ashley

    So you just leave the last square empty? Could you weave some foils in there?

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      absolutely! you can totally weave foils in that top section. I like to leave the top section natural to eliminate any roots along the part line. Totally up to you:)

  3. Kriss

    Hello we cant find your vidio ??
    And wauld love to know how to foile blond and reds together and how and when to apply red foiling ??
    Can u help xx

  4. Hilda

    Hi. I think this highlighting technique is great for experienced hair color DIYers. Your hair looks so beautiful and natural. I have a question regarding sections 2 and 3. Are you using bleach or the 2nd color on those? On section 2 you mention that you use chunky woven foils, but you don’t say if you used bleach or the 2nd color, and on section 3 you mention that you use finely woven foils and again it is not specified if you used bleach or the 2nd color. I would appreciate your help. Thank you for your time.

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      Hi there! the second formula is a light golden blonde color, 10 g, with 30 volume developer:)

      1. KriskrissyKr

        Is section 2 bleach or color? I know you are using both but are the chunky woven foils around the diamond done with color or lightener? And what about the square inside of the diamond? Is the fine weave done with color or bleach? I don’t believe you answered the question by saying the color formula…lol…like we know you did the rectangle outline slices with color, but what about the diamond? Color or lightener? And again, the square, color or lightener? You don’t specify on those. You specify on the sides and the hairline, and you specify on the rectangle but the diamond and the square are bot specified. Thank you!!! Beautiful technique, by the way!

  5. Kristan

    Is this a more ideal pattern for a middle part, if they use a side part would you base your sections around that or will it fall evenly regardless?

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      yep. you are absolutely right! adjust those partings around your part, wherever it is:)

  6. Rachel

    What color should you use for the diamond and smaller square?
    I was thinking I might do both of them like, the sections on the front not included in the pattern.
    Would that work?

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      yep that would totally work!

  7. Sarah

    If u did all foils with bleach and colored all hair outside of foils a darker color would this resemble a balayage look?

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      Kinda. I think of balayage as more of an ombre look though.

      1. Sarah

        Yes me too. Wouldn’t this kinda resemble an ombrĂ© look since u r not foiling the last bit of hair on top?
        Wouldn’t u just see the blonde peeking out thru the bottom (and front). Sorry trying to get a clear pic of how the end result will look!

        1. roxie.hunt Author

          Ah I see what you are saying. Yes. Totally. You see sweeps of hair peeking through in the mid-strand and ends like balayage:)

  8. Dawn Briand

    I am a littlle. Infused about what colours you used where. Side you alternate bleach and color, sec. 1 you use bleach on Hairline and color on rest of rectangle. In section 2 and 3 I am not sure?
    Thanks I am hoping to use this on an exam tonight.

  9. Erin

    I was wondering if my hair is already colored one solid color if I could just do 1 color with this to highlight my one solid color? Do you think this technique would work with just 1 color?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. roxie.hunt Author

      Yes Absolutely! you can use as many or as few colors as you want with this technique:)

  10. Eleanor

    Hello! I’m going to be highlighting my hair for the first time. Will this work on long hair that’s blunt cut at the ends? Also, in comments, it was said that this method is set up for middle parts. I don’t usually wear a middle part, but I’m very inconsistent about where I part my hair, will this show roots super easily on me? I’m curious about how you don’t foil the back or much of the sides too. Thank you so much for posting this tutorial.

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