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The Perfect Match: The Best Hair Colors for Olive Skin Tones

Choosing the right hair color for your skin tone is the key to nailing your best hairstyle. And when it comes to olive skin tones, not all colors are created equally. If you have an olive complexion and you’re looking to switch up your strands with a new hair color, you’ve come to the right place. Ahead are the most flattering hair colors for olive skin, plus tips to prevent color fading and maintain strong, healthy hair. 

Understanding Olive Skin Tones

Olive skin color generally refers to moderate or lighter tan skin, with yellow, green, or golden undertones. An undertone, as the name indicates, is the color below the surface of your skin. These undertones can be neutral, warm, or cool, and your perfect hair color depends on this. An easy way to tell what type of undertones your olive skin color has is by looking at the veins on your wrist. Cool undertones will see blue or purple colored veins. Warm undertones, as well as neutral tones, will see greenish veins, or have trouble seeing a distinct color. 

Hair Color Options for Olive Skin

If you have olive skin, not all hair colors will be the best match for you. Thanks to the yellow and green undertones, some hues can make your skin appear sallow. But that doesn’t mean you have to stick to plain shades of brown:

Warm olive skin tones hair color

Best Hair Colors for Warm Olive Skin Tones

Warm olive skin tones have yellow or green undertones that can clash with certain hair colors. These are the best hair colors for warm olive skin tones.

Blonde Hair

Those with dark and warm olive skin tones don’t have to avoid going blonde. In fact, blonde hues are incredibly flattering on this skin tone. Keep it blonde all the way to the scalp or soften the look with a darker root.

Blonde Highlights

Blonde highlights are an easy, low commitment hair color update for people with warm olive skin. Highlights complement both light or dark eyes, and look just as good with hazel eyes and brown eyes as they do with blue.

Auburn Hair

If you’re looking to go red, the undertones shouldn't be too red or orange. Warm olive skin has a tendency to look slightly green, so anything with these hues will clash. Auburn is the perfect red shade if you want to switch things up.

Golden Blonde

Pale or platinum blonde hair can make warm olive tones appear sallow. But golden blonde complements them beautifully. If you have light or medium olive skin with warm undertones, you can’t go wrong with golden blonde. 

Brown Highlights

If you’re a warm brunette looking for a hue that strikes the perfect balance between subtle and contrasting, add some medium-to-deep brown highlights. This adds dimension to your hair without altering your base color. It’s an easy update that will flatter your skin tone.

Pastel hair for olive skin tones

Best Hair Colors for Cool Olive Skin Tones

Choosing the wrong shade can leave you looking washed out or ashy, so it's important to find a hair color that complements your cool undertones and enhances your natural features. These are the best hair colors for cool olive skin tones.

Platinum Blonde

A sandy or beige platinum blonde is especially flattering on olive skin that pulls cool. This hair color is stunning and definitely a statement. Plus the platinum hair trend will always be in style.


If you’re looking to get creative, a pastel baby pink suits olive skin best. Keep the color subtle with an ombre look, and the pinkest color towards the ends of your hair. Start by experimenting with a color-depositing conditioner.

Ash Brown

If you’re looking for a hair color that provides a strong contrast against your warm olive skin, try a cool deep shade like ash brown. Cool tones like an ashy brown pop against olive skin. This shade is incredibly flattering and one of the best hair colors to make you look younger.

Red Hair

If you have cool toned skin and want to dye your hair red, try adding some shades of warm cinnamon. Adding just a few highlights will soften the color of darker hair, making your olive skin look brighter and the color of your eyes more intense.

Honey Blonde

Honey blonde is overall the best hair color for olive skin. It’s just the right amount of ashy and warm making it flattering on almost everyone. Ask a colorist for honey balayage, baby lights, or highlights.

Neutral olive skin tone hair colors

Best Hair Colors for Neutral Olive Skin Tones

Neutral olive skin tones have a balance of warm and cool undertones, which can make finding the perfect hair color a bit easier. The best hair colors for neutral skin tones are below.

Golden Brown

Shades of golden brown paired with a medium olive skin tone create a natural, beachy look. The hue is a great way to lighten up naturally dark to medium brown hair. Ask your colorist to paint on balayage highlights and tone with a warm shade for a sun-kissed look that will flatter your skin tone. 

Mocha Hair

Mocha is a balanced neutral shade of warm and cool and complements most skin tones, but especially olive. Thanks to the green undertones, deep mocha shades are beautiful on olive toned skin.

Dark Brown Hair

If you like dark hair go for a multi-dimensional dark brown. This shade can be achieved by asking your hair colorist for baby lights throughout, toned to a deep brunette. This color is a better shade to opt for than black if you want dark hair and have olive skin. The darker hair you have against your skin, the duller your complexion will appear. 

Chocolate Brown

Chocolate tones compliment an olive skin, hazel eye combination beautifully. A warm chocolate is a subtle way to illuminate an olive complexion and golden eyes. Chocolate brown has yellow undertones, which creates a beautiful sun-kissed end result when mixed throughout darker hair.

Chestnut Brown

Chestnut brown has some red undertones to it, and for the right tone of olive this can be so pretty. It’s often recommended that people with olive skin opt for warm, golden shades when it comes to hair color, but don’t be afraid of red. Chestnut brown makes a strikingly pretty contrast to an olive complexion. 

Tips for Maintaining Your Hair Color

If you use hair dye or bleach to alter your natural hair color, it’s important to follow a proper hair care routine to prevent color fading and maintain strong, healthy hair. Keeping your color rich and vibrant between salon sessions relies on the products you choose for your at-home colored hair maintenance routine. Look for products that are free from sulfates, parabens, SLES, and formaldehyde. These ingredients are notorious for stripping hair follicles of their moisture, pigment, and strength. Davines colored hair maintenance products contain naturally derived ingredients that won’t cause chemical damage to your hair. Additionally these tips will help you extend the life of your hair color while preventing breakage and split ends.

Wash your hair less often

Washing too frequently strips your hair of the moisture it needs, leading to damage. Not to mention fading your color. Wash your color-treated hair two to three times per week.

Incorporate a weekly hair mask

Hair masks are deep conditioning treatments that lock in moisture and keep your strands as hydrated as possible. A must for color-treated hair.

Air dry when possible

Heat from blow-dryers and styling tools don’t just cause damage to your hair, they also fade your color. As often as you can, air-dry your hair.

Get your hair cut frequently

One of the best ways to keep your color-treated hair looking healthy is to get regular or trims. Hair that is regularly trimmed is less likely to become damaged and develop split ends.

Final Thoughts

The most flattering hair colors for olive skin are ones that work with your skin’s tones and undertones. For advice on the best hair color for your skin tone, book an appointment with one of our professional colorists. No matter what hair color you decide on,maintain a beautiful, rich color with a hair care system formulated to intensify all hues. All of our stylist product picks are free of harmful toxins, use natural ingredients, and are made with renewable energy and packaging that minimizes the environmental impact. Protect your color-treated hair with naturally derived formulas that work with your hair’s natural properties, instead of against them.

by Jaclyn LaBadia, featured contributor

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