There are really only a few secrets to getting the perfect waves. The first bit of advice I have is to do as little as possible to your hair after washing. The more you touch it, brush it and fuss with it, the frizzier it gets. As you mess around with your hair, you rough up the cuticle and allow the hair to start to pouffe out. The first secret to beachy waves is to keep your hair defined and separated – this is what happens if you swim in the ocean. Think about it: the salt makes your hair stick together so it dries in chunky sections, you don’t really brush your hair at the beach so you aren’t frizzing it out, and any natural wave you might have is encouraged by the lack of styling. Now, that might be a cute look for the beach, but it is actually kind of messy, and to be honest, salt water is extremely drying for your hair. Tip: cover your hair in a deep conditioning mask before going to the beach. The heat from the sun will help it sink it, and it will protect your hair somewhat from the salt.
So, you are at home, and want beachy waves. If you have long-ish hair, ideally, you should wash your hair in the evening, let it air dry, and, yes, sleep on it. Do NOT leave it in a towel for a long time, as again, you are encouraging frizz. If you have a nice big old cotton t shirt around, wrap your hair in that when you step out of the shower. You will be amazed at the difference a smooth textured wrap has on your hair vs. a rough towel. Plus, you don’t want it drying out too quickly- again, frizz.
When you take it out of your wrap, use some leave in conditioner. Either a spray in one of your choice ( I love I.C.O.N. Cure) or, and this is something I do all the time, use a small dollop of your favourite conditioner on the ends of your hair. Next you need a wide tooth comb. Gently part your hair, and comb the product through once. Then, add your styling cream. I always prefer a cream, as it keeps hair soft and touchable, is never crispy or crunchy (ew) and if it can hold the weight of my hair, it can hold nay hair. I.C.O.N. Mesh is my favourite- it smells like sweet and woodsy, and holds my hair perfectly, Using your wide tooth comb, gently pull it through to distribute the cream. Do NOT overbrush. A wide tooth comb is a must have.
I then do some twisting. I separate my hair into a bunch of small sections (bigger than the width of my thumb) and twist them away from my face. Sounds complicated but really just takes a couple of minutes. Then, I gently (again, stressing the word GENTLE to avoid frizz) “scrunch” my hair. I grab a handful, at the ends, and push it upwards and squeeze to coax out the waves. Then, leave it be until it is dry.
You can stop right here, and enjoy the soft gentle beach waves that are kind of carefree and casual. I gently comb it and add a bit more styling cream when it is dry. That is basically what I do every time I wash my hair. I think a blowdryer touches my hair 3 or 4 times a year, max. I’m simply too lazy. Refresh your waves with a few spritzes of water if you need some more waves, or, as, I did in the above photo, bust out the curling iron. I take around 5 or 6 sections on the crown and curl them with the iron. It adds some volume and polish. Beach waves alone are lovely, but can look a wee bit messy and casual. If you want to glam it up a bit, with minimal effort, take the iron, grab sections on the very top of your hair, including the bangs area, and curl them away from the face. Let them cool, then using a wide tooth comb, gently comb them out and they will blend in perfectly with your naturally coaxed waves. Ta-da!
I use the Tigi Curl Stick and love it so much, I would never go back to a regular curling iron. It seems daunting, but once you get the hang of it, its amazing. It gets super hot, and needs like 5-7 seconds per section on full heat. I did my daughter’s entire head in less than 10 minutes, and it usually takes her over 30 minutes with a regular curling iron. It is this:
The key here, if you haven’t already noticed, is doing as little as possible to the hair. Trust me when I say I am lazy, and this look is easy and quick. I seriously can do this and go days and days without doing anything except a light combing to the hair. As long as you have Batiste dry shampoo, your style will actually look even better the next day. Hair needs to be a bit “dirty” (not the ideal word but…) to look wavy and section-y, as it needs texture. If it is too silky and clean, it will just fall flat. And can we all agree flat ironed hair that is dead straight just doesn’t look good on anyone? Unless you were born with it, hair without even a hint of natural motion and wave looks dead. Stop it. Embrace your natural hair.
Thinking of doing a video tutorial on this style if there is demand. Let me know if you would like to see this!