We all want to rewind time back to when there was no such thing as the COVID-19 pandemic. So perhaps it’s no wonder that recent style trends keep looking back to the past, with the latest nod to nostalgia featuring chunky highlights that feel like a virtual time machine to the early to mid-2000s.
If you thought that chunky highlights went the way of the dodo when “Friends” stopped airing and Lauren Conrad left “The Hills,” you’re in for a blast from the past. Thanks to trendsetters like Dua Lipa, Kylie Jenner and Bella Thorne, we are seeing the return of bold, eye-catching pops of highlights that may come to dominate 2021 hair trends. Although this style is being repurposed under a new name (“money pieces”) the look is pretty familiar.
The best part of this trend is that it’s easy to modify to suit your own personal tastes. If you like to push the envelope and be a little edgier, you can rock the two-tone look in which you place a few highlights near the front of your face in a wildly different shade than the rest of your hair. Plenty of people go with a more traditional blond-based hue, though.
Charlie D’Amelio put colorful pink in a few pieces around her face, and the look quickly became popular on TikTok and beyond:
Members of the online subculture known as e-girls, known for having a heavy presence on platforms like Twitch and Tik Tok, have helped to popularize this trend, putting face-framing highlights in hues like pastel pink to bright orange to yellow-toned blondes. This makes for super-low upkeep and is very COVID-19 friendly, because when the roots grow out a little, it just looks intentional and purposefully casual.
Tik Tok maven Brittany Xavier proves that this look can be pulled off by teens as well as those in their 20s, 30s and beyond:
@brittany.xavierReply to @kk11998 my hair routine 💁🏻♀️ #hairtutorial #hairroutine #curtainbangs♬ Therefore I Am – Billie Eilish
Or, if you like a more mainstream look that would be workplace-appropriate, you can follow in the footsteps of celebs like Kim Kardashian. Instead of going fully bold with bright blonde pieces near her face like her little sister, Kylie, Kim opted for warm caramel highlights that perfectly complement her dark hair.
The look is trendy but totally wearable, as she keeps the chunkiest pieces near her face, and lets the rest be more muted and natural. And, again, these highlights can last for weeks without needing a return to the salon, because it’s a non-fussy style that will grow out nicely.