Seattle stylists agree: The ombre is on its way out. Its replacement, according to Jason and Robert Townsend of Essensuals London on Capitol Hill: the color melt, a luminous, dimensional look that combines several highlighting techniques of expertly applied color to appear natural and blended (i.e., melted together).
The twin brothers started experimenting with the process as Seattleites came in proclaiming that they were over the dark-to-light fades of their ombres or the painted-on highlights of their balayage but were unsure of the next step. “People here are generally very forward looking,” says Robert, “and that often translates to hair color. We’re bringing next year’s trending style to Seattle first.”
Luckily for the ombred among us, a color melt easily hides the former style and blends in with minimal damage to the hair. Low-maintenance locals will also be happy to hear that a good color melt will last as long as 10 to 12 weeks before requiring a touchup. To preserve your color, the Townsends advise washing with warm water, using a professional product line, and—especially in the sunny months—topping hair off with a thermal protectant. Because you wouldn’t want it to, uh, melt away prematurely.
Film Lou Daprile
Music Restless Dream by Kalur
Hair styling Robert and Jason Townsend
Voice Robert Townsend
On Location at Essensuals London Seattle