Who says ombre is only for blondes? This season, we love ombre hair looks that are darkest-black at the roots, and gradually fade into playful, pigmented shades like red-brown, strawberry blonde, and purple. Here are some of our five favorite black ombre hair looks, which we hope will inspire your next hair makeover.

Natural-looking black ombre

Believe it or not, black ombres can look super natural. But combining black with shades of deep caramel, sandy blonde, and soft brown, the natural black ombre looks on our list achieve a style that’s eye-catching and bold, but also sophisticated and grown-up.

Black to caramel ombre

This ombre look fades into a soft caramel hue, a warm color that’s perfect for autumn, and that looks amazing in loose, beachy waves. It’s an uniquely natural-looking ombre that doesn’t scream out for attention, but that’s still totally eye-catching.

Black to sandy blonde

The black-to-sand fade in this ombre hairstyle is a gorgeous experiment in contrast. The trick to getting this one right is to keep most of the lighter blonde shades at the outer edges of the hair, while the center strands change more gradually from dark to light, reaching the lightest shade of blonde only at their very edges.

Black to fawn brown

This black-to-brown ombre is super subtle, elegant, and sophisticated. It’s a youthful and unique take on black hair, with light brown highlights that dapple the very edges of the hairstyle. This look would look great with any hair texture, and is a great low-maintenance glam style for everyday wear.

Dramatic black ombres

We also love more dramatic, playful black ombres that combine black with bright shades like purple and deep red. These looks might not be right for every lifestyle, and they’ll definitely require a high degree of maintenance, as bright, dramatic colors have a tendency to fade quickly.

Black to electric purple

This playful ombre starts at black, and changes to an eye-grabbing blue-purple. We love how the purple weaves through the black without dominating this look, making it just bright and edgy enough, but still easy to wear in everyday life.

Black to raspberry red

This dramatic ombre look quickly drops from black to raspberry red, incorporating subtle raspberry notes near the crown of the head to make the transition a little softer and more gradual. It looks gorgeous in defined curls, but it would also look great with straight or wavy hair.

No matter which ombre look you choose, we recommend that you care for your color with a natural shampoo and conditioner that are formulated specifically for color-treated hair. We recommend Shea Moisture’s Strengthen & Restore products, and Evolvh’s UltraShine Moisture Shampoo. For color-treated hair, the right hair serum and/or leave-in conditioner can also go a long way toward protecting your color and making it last for longer. And if the idea of investing in yet another hair product makes you cringe, you could whip up a DIY moisturizing hair mask using castor oil, banana, egg, and lavender essential oil. Just mash up two eggs with one banana, and then add one tablespoon of castor oil and 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil. Apply to dry hair and leave to sink in for up to one hour, then wash away with shampoo and follow up with conditioner.