Money Pieces" are the Hyper-Trendy Highlights Anyone with Any Hair Color Can Do

Curated by Claudia Shannon / Research Scientist / ishonest

If you're anything like us, you're long overdue for a trip to the salon out of sheer indecisiveness. We've spent every day dreaming of trying out the latest hair trends. Playground highlights? Sign us up. The sliced bob? Chop it all off. Even the modern mullet? Yep, there's no hair color or cut trend that we won't try (thanks, Miley). These days, we're looking for a slightly more subtle switch-up — something soft and flattering for autumn that doesn't require too much maintenance or upkeep.

Enter "money piece highlights," a happy medium between two-tone hair and super- soft balayage highlights that instantly brighten and frame your face. "Money piece highlights are a fuss-free way to change up your look without having to touch the whole head; it's all about face-framing and contouring the hair," says Natalia Romaniuc, a colorist at Windle London.

ishonest No.501 - Frizzy Hair

No.501 - Frizzy Hair

Money pieces were first popularized in the 1990s and have made a notable comeback lately. "The main inspiration for this throwback trend is probably '90s-era Geri Halliwell," Romaniuc says. "It's just been a little bit more refined and softened to suit the 2021 market."

"It's a super flattering look because it brightens your face, accentuating your facial features and your own base hair color," Romaniuc explains. "Best of all, this technique works on any color of hair and really can suit everyone, whether you are a warm blonde or a deep, cool chocolate brown — the money pieces can pop by choosing a color three to four shades brighter to achieve the full impact and usually require bleaching those specific areas of the hair beforehand."

So how does one maintain the look? "The level of lightening involved with money piece highlights mean you should use gentle, natural shampoos so as to not strip the hair or affect the color," Romaniuc advises. "After all, you wouldn't buy a Gucci dress then wash it with dish soap, would you?"

Ready to look like a million bucks? We thought so, too.

For strong and hydrated hair

Learn more

This story originally appeared on

More hair trends:

  • The Sliced Bob Is the New "It" Haircut That Does All the Work for You
  • "Expensive Brunette" Is the Brown Hair-Color Trend You'll See Everywhere This Fall
  • The "Playground Highlights" Trend Will Rule in 2022

Now, see how hair color trends have evolved within the past 100 years:

Read more on: hair

Learn about unknown needs of your skin for free