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1 Hair Color Vs. 1B Hair Color Vs. 2 Hair Color

Human hair color is a fascinating aspect of personal style and beauty, with its wide spectrum of shades providing unlimited possibilities for self-expression. However, have you ever wondered how hair color is categorized in the beauty industry? The key lies in a numbering system designed for standardizing hair color descriptions and ensuring a universal understanding across the globe.

Today, let's start at the most daily black hair shades: 1 hair color, 1b hair color, and 2 hair color. Recognizing the difference between these seemingly similar shades could be the secret to achieving the desired look with precision. This article will help you understand these specific color codes and guide you in choosing the most flattering shade for your style.
hair color number system

What does the number in hair color mean?

First, let's start at the very basic, which is about the hair color number system. The hair color numbering system ranges typically from 1 to 10, denoting the depth of color from darkest to lightest. Dark shades, such as blacks and browns, are categorized under the lower numbers, while the higher numbers represent the light hues, such as blondes and lightest blondes. These numbers can be further diversified with letters, such as 'B', indicating more specific tones within the base color. This comprehensive system offers a structured way to classify, match, and select the appropriate hair color, whether you are considering a subtle enhancement or a dramatic transformation.

What is 1 hair color?

The 1 hair color, often referred to as 'Jet Black', represents the darkest shade in the hair color spectrum. This color is characterized by its striking depth, providing an intense, rich, and glossy appearance. It's the purest form of black, devoid of any brown or other color undertones, resulting in a sharp and dramatic look.

When it comes to skin tones and eye colors, the jet-black hair color can serve as a stunning contrast on fair skin, making lighter eye colors such as blue, green, or light brown pop. However, it also pairs wonderfully with darker skin tones, highlighting the skin's warmth and offering an incredibly sophisticated and elegant aura.

Jet black hair has been a popular choice for many celebrity hairstyles, from Rihanna's sleek and straight bob to Dita Von Teese's vintage waves. This color can instantly add a touch of mystery and glamour to any hairstyle. It's especially effective for highlighting the texture and shape of intricate hairstyles, including layered cuts, pixie styles, and complex braided designs. Whether your goal is a timeless appearance or a contemporary, cutting-edge style, opting for 1 hair color is a definitive method to create a striking impression.
1b hair curly hair

What is 1b hair color?

1B hair color, commonly known as 'Off Black' or 'Soft Black', is another popular option in the world of dark hair shades. The 1B color is a slight variation of the 1 color, being just a touch lighter. Its distinguishing feature is the gentle presence of brown undertones, which give this color a slightly softer and warmer appearance compared to the stark intensity of jet black.

Due to its softer hue, 1B hair color is often considered more natural-looking. It flatters a wide range of skin tones, but it's particularly complimentary for those with medium to dark skin tones, where it harmonizes beautifully with the skin's warm undertones. As for eye color, 1B can add depth and drama to lighter eyes and complements darker eyes perfectly, giving a harmonious overall look.

This versatile hair color lends itself to various styles and is a favorite among celebrities such as Beyoncé and Kim Kardashian. The 1B hair color is fantastic for enhancing the volume and movement in wavy or curly hairstyles, giving a multi-dimensional, vibrant effect. Equally, it can make straight, sleek styles look effortlessly chic and sophisticated. From high ponytails to beachy waves and textured bobs, 1B is your go-to for a slightly softer, yet still strikingly dark look.
sleek straight 1b hair

What is 2 Hair Color?

2 Hair color, commonly referred to as 'Dark Brown', signifies a deep, rich brown color that's typically seen as the darkest brown on the hair color scale. The 2 hair color strikes a balance between the intense black hues and the softer browns. While not as dark as 1 or 1B, this color still carries a considerable depth, exuding a warm and luxurious feel.

Dark Brown hair is characterized by its rich and warm undertones, reflecting a blend of deep, earthy hues under the light. This offers a naturally vibrant look that can add volume and dimension to any hairstyle.

When it comes to skin tones and eye colors, dark brown hair is highly versatile. This hair color suits a variety of skin tones from fair to dark, making it a universal favorite. For individuals with fair skin, the dark brown color provides a striking contrast that highlights both their skin and eyes. Meanwhile, for those with medium or dark skin tones, this color seamlessly complements their skin, creating a harmonious look that enhances their natural features.

Dark brown hair can add an air of sophistication to various hairstyles. Celebrities such as Megan Fox and Duchess Kate Middleton often favor this color for its elegant touch and versatility. It can add depth to straight hair, highlight the texture of wavy hair, and emphasize the voluminous curls' beauty. From long, loose waves to chic, sleek bobs, 2 hair color can imbue your hairstyle with a stylish, yet natural appeal.
hair color chart

What is the difference between 1 hair color, 1b hair color, and 2 hair color?

Although 1 (Jet Black), 1B (Off Black), and 2 (Dark Brown) hair colors may seem quite similar to the untrained eye, subtle differences exist in their depth, undertones, and overall impact on the hairstyle. Grasping these subtle differences is essential for selecting the ideal shade that harmonizes with your skin tone, accentuates your facial attributes, and meshes well with the look you aspire to achieve.

Jet Black (1 hair color) is the darkest and most intense of the three colors. It is pure, striking, and without any undertones. It creates a strong contrast with the skin, making it a good choice for individuals looking to make a bold style statement. However, due to its intensity, it may not provide the natural, subtle look that some people prefer.

Off Black (1B hair color), while still a dark shade, is a touch lighter than jet black. It features slight brown undertones, which can give the hair a warmer and more natural appearance compared to jet black. This color can be a great choice for those seeking a softer, yet still dark and bold hair color.

Dark Brown (2 hair color) represents the warmest and lightest of these three colors. It carries the richness of brown tones, offering a blend of depth and warmth that neither jet black nor off-black possess. This color can create a beautiful balance between striking contrast and natural subtlety, making it a versatile choice for many.

The choice between these colors can significantly impact your overall look and style. Jet Black has the power to produce a vivid, commanding appearance, whereas Off Black and Dark Brown are more inclined to yield a gentler, subtly refined sophistication. These subtle differences in color can enhance different features and styles, from adding depth to straight hair to highlighting the texture of curly hair or enhancing the volume of wavy hair. The right color choice can beautifully complement your skin tone, highlight your eyes, and reflect your personal style.
1 hair color vs. 1b hair color vs. 2 hair color

1 Hair Color VS 1B Hair Color Vs. 2 Hair Color, how to choose?

Choosing between 1 (Jet Black), 1B (Off Black), and 2 (Dark Brown) hair colors might seem daunting given their close similarities. However, considering certain factors can guide you toward the perfect color for you. Here are some key factors to contemplate:

  • Natural Hair Color: If you're aiming for a more natural look or want to minimize maintenance, you might want to choose a hair color that's close to your natural shade. For instance, if you have naturally dark hair, any of these three colors can potentially work well.
  • Skin Tone: Your skin tone can play a crucial role in determining how well a hair color suits you. Generally, 1 (Jet Black) can provide a stunning contrast on fair skin, while 1B (Off Black) and 2 (Dark Brown) tend to flatter medium to dark skin tones.
  • Desired Look: Are you going for a bold and dramatic look or something subtler and more natural? If a bold and striking impression is your goal, Jet Black (1) might be your ideal choice, whereas for a softer, subtly refined allure, Off Black (1B) or Dark Brown (2) could be more fitting.
  • Maintenance Level: Darker colors can often require more maintenance as lighter roots can become more visible during regrowth. If maintenance is a concern for you, you might want to consider your natural hair growth rate and color, as well as the desired color.

It's recommended to consult with a hair professional or colorist who can provide personalized advice based on these factors and your specific needs. Keep in mind that hair color is a form of self-expression, and while these guidelines can provide a starting point, the final choice should align with your personal style and preference.


Hair color is much more than just a visual aspect of our appearance; it's a form of self-expression that can influence our overall style and aura. Understanding the differences between similar hair colors, such as 1 (Jet Black), 1B (Off Black), and 2 (Dark Brown), can help you select the ideal shade that complements your skin tone, enhances your natural features, and aligns with your personal style.

Remember, Jet Black is bold and striking, perfect for a dramatic transformation. Off Black offers a slightly softer appeal, ideal for those seeking a subtler yet still dark look. Dark Brown strikes a balance between contrast and natural subtlety, making it a versatile choice for many. The selection between these colors should consider factors like your natural hair color, skin tone, desired look, and the level of maintenance you're comfortable with.


Now that you're equipped with this knowledge, are you ready to make a choice? Ready to embrace a color that can transform your look and make a bold statement about who you are? Whether you've decided on the daring Jet Black, the soft Off Black, or the versatile Dark Brown, blonde, ginge, burgundy, or any other hair shades, Elfin Hair has just the solution for you.

We invite you to browse our extensive range of high-quality human hair wigs and human hair extensions in various colors at elfinhair.com. Choose the color that resonates with your style, and step into the world of unlimited beauty and charm. Find your perfect match today and step into a world of unmatched stylish and style! Let your hair do the talking!

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