Both of these styles are super trendy and very popular. They're both low maintenance and can give your hair a little extra pop. The thing that were constantly being asked is what's the difference?
Well lets break it down for you so you can pick the best technique for you.
Ombre- is the French-termed word for "shadow" so the hair trends to feature darker, more natural tones at the root area gradually fading into lighter tones on the ends. This technique can be anything from very dark at root area fading into very light dramatic look or a soft one. Ombre is great for the more daring girl. It's definitely more noticeable and can be a little more maintenance. Ombre is kind of like color blocking, there are no dark pieces left on the bottom to help keep it natural.
Balayage- Another French word meaning “to sweep”. When applying the color for a balayage, you sweep the color through small triangle sections of the hair onto a foil (sometimes a board), giving it the natural transition down into the lighter color. The big difference between the two is that with Balayage there are dark pieces left on the bottom to create more dimension and give a little more of a natural look. Think more sun-kissed. This look will be a little less maintenance since when the hair grows out it'll grow out a little more natural.
The first two photos on the slide are of Ombre the last two are of Balayage. (click to scroll through)
So all in all Ombre is more of the style where Balayage is more of the technique.