Whenever I encounter a new TikTok microtrend, I feel slightly deranged (have you heard of the tomato girl yet?). Although their outlandish names can make me feel like I’m losing my mind, it does make sense—they’re just word clouds to explain something that’s trending. The latest hair trend to hit my FYP is the “Scandi hairline,” and despite the silly name, it’s the perfect way to add a touch of lightness this summer. Ahead, everything you need to know about the trend and how to get it yourself.
The Scandi hairline is short for “Scandinavian hairline” since it mimics the bright hairline and baby hairs that many natural blondes get in the summer months. In short, it’s a freehand hair processing technique that lightens just the perimeter of the hair, bringing brightness to your complexion.
During a traditional highlighting process, colorists weave through the hair and leave out the base color to build depth and dimension throughout the strands. While highlights look great on the mids and ends of the hair, this technique can leave gaps of alternating bright and dark hair strands in the hairline, which is especially prominent when you pull your hair up—but that’s where this technique can come into play.
“A Scandi hairline is a technique that achieves a sun-kissed effect by lightening/shifting the hair around the face using a combination of seamless highlights and freehand painting to create an effortless glow,” creative director at Rob Peetoom Salon and L’Oréal Professionnel Artist, Nina Rubel, tells Byrdie. “By combining a freehand lightening technique at the shampoo bowl after the foils or balayage is removed, you’re able to address and shift all of the baby hairs and depth around the hairline creating brightness around the perimeter.”
How to Get the Look
No, you don’t have to be Scandinavian to get in on the trend—and you don’t even have to be blonde, for that matter. “[This] can be achieved on any hair color,” says Rubel. “It’s applied by freehand painting lightener directly onto the hairline, including the finer baby hairs around the face that were not highlighted.” Rubel explains that the process occurs at the shampoo bowl after your colorist has highlighted the rest of your hair. “Usually done with lightener—my favorite is L’Oréal Professionnel Blond Studio Clay 7—in a small 1/2 inch section and processing for three to five minutes, depending on the hair. The goal is to shift those hairs ever so slightly to create softness and brightness around the face.”
Rubel shares that when working with a darker base color, the key things to keep in mind are timing, product choice, and amount of lift. “When lightening darker levels, we are dealing with warmer underlying pigments in the hair, so it is important to choose a gentle product that will slightly shift the hair without over-lightening or exposing too much-unwanted warmth,” explains Rubel. To avoid creating too much contrast that may look unnatural, she says that lightening a dark hairline by one or two levels should do the trick.
Although you may think the end results would be high-maintenance, upkeep is actually pretty minimal. Rubel explains that when done correctly, you can expect to visit the salon every three months for touch-ups. “However, it can absolutely be stretched out further,” she adds. “If going longer than three months for your next appointment, a gloss service is recommended between services.” Just make sure to implement a wash routine and treatment that will maintain your color—Rubel recommends the L’Oréal Professionnel Metal Detox Shampoo ($35), L’Oréal Professionnel Metal Detox Mask ($48), and the K18 Leave-In Molecular Repair Hair Mask ($75) to keep your halo bright.