Get the scoop on the hot new shade sweeping Instagram—plus, tips from a stylist on how to rock the look yourself.
From pastel "unicorn" locks to bronde goddess waves, hair color trends are constantly changing. As we enter peak winter season and find ourselves snuggling up in front of the fireplace sipping warm drinks, a new trend has started popping up in salons and on social media: mulled wine hair.
Much like the drink it's named after, mulled wine hair is spicy and sweet. It's a deep shade of red with undertones that appear more merlot than rosé without looking too Little Mermaid. The ultra-cozy color is both chic and festive, and it's taking over Instagram.
Michelle Gonzalez, a hairstylist who specializes in color and hair painting at Mimi’s Salon in Belmar, New Jersey, encourages her clients to think of this hot hue as the winterized version of rose gold. "Rose gold hair was super popular this summer, and I think this deeper shade is unique because it's so different than the typical ashy-silver tones that were popular for winter in the past," she tells Health. "Warm colors are really in."
Gonzalez has had clients ask for wine-inspired red hair ever since the temperatures dropped, and she's become a pro at creating the statement-making shade. Part of its appeal, she tells us, is that unlike an icy gray or brighter color, mulled wine is vibrant but still wearable for women of all ages and with all hair types. Plus, it doesn't require lots of trips to the salon to achieve.
"For an average client, I would say it's fairly easy [to get the look]," says Gonzalez. "The hair most likely needs to be pre-lightened in order to receive these tones, especially if they really want the shade to pop, so it’s usually a two-step process where I lighten the hair and then apply the color."
Gonzalez notes that at-home maintenance is important for keeping your mulled wine shade intact. "For maintaining a color like this, I would recommend washing hair with cooler water and using either a professional line of color safe shampoo or Viral Extreme Red Colorwash ($22, amazon.com) which keeps the red vibrant." She also recommends using a repairing treatment like the Olaplex No. 3 ($28, amazon.com) and cutting down on the use of hot tools.
This season, posing with a festive drink on Instagram might not cut it—we recommend embracing the mulled wine hair color trend for the ultimate holiday look, or at the very least taking a moment to ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ over these gorgeous Instagram posts from real women who are rocking the hot new color.