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A technique of coloring hair in which the stylist applies the color by hand to create natural-looking, graduated layers of highlights with a less apparent regrowth line than in traditional highlighting.
[French, a sweeping, balayage, from balayer, to sweep, from Middle French, from Old French balaier, from balai, besom, alteration (influenced by baloi-, stem of baloier, to move about agitatedly, from Late Latin ballāre, to dance; see ball2) of earlier Old French balain, either from Breton balazn, besom, or from Gaulish *balatno-, the broom plant (Cytisus scoparius), both Breton and Gaulish from earlier Celtic *banatlo-; see bhā in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Hairdressing & Grooming)
a. a technique for highlighting hair in which bleach or dye is painted onto sections of the hair with a brush
b. (as modifier): the balayage technique; the balayage look.
(Hairdressing & Grooming) to highlight hair by painting bleach or dye onto sections with a brush
[C20: from French, from balayer to sweep]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014