During summer, there’s nothing better than visiting the beach and leaving with gorgeous, beachy waves in your hair. There’s something about that combination of heat, salt, and sand that, when combined, produces the most incredible results. Fortunately, we know just how to replicate authentic, beach hair at home — even during the heart of winter.
Achieving beachy waves can vary depending on your hair length, texture, and health. But there are a few basic steps every woman should follow. First, separate your slept-on hair into sections using clips or scrunchies (tight hair-ties will leave noticeable kinks). Those with longer or thicker hair may need to create up to four sections, whereas someone with a lob (long bob) will only need to separate the top and bottom half of their hair.
Once your hair is pulled back into sections, spray a sea salt like the Bumble and Bumble Surf Infusion all over your hair. Be careful when choosing a salt spray, as some can be quite drying. The best options have a bit of oil in their formulas to keep things smooth. Once you’ve spritzed your hair, use your fingers to gently scrunch (not too tightly!) and tousle it.
The next product you need is a heat-protectant. The appeal of beachy waves is the appearance of natural health and time spent in the ocean, but you’re not going to convey that if your hair looks severely damaged and on the verge of breaking. Adding a heat-protectant spray, leave-in mousse, or oil to your roots before starting will provide a much healthier look.
Now, you have some creative liberty when it comes to selecting which styling tool to use. We highly recommend a styling wand, but if you prefer a classic clamped curler, or even a flat iron, the choice is entirely yours. Simply wrap one- to two-inch sections of hair around the tool (which should be pointed downward) working away from your face. Hold your hair against the hot tool for ten seconds, then release. Continue to do this throughout all the sections of your hair. For a more natural look, feel free to mix up the size of the strands you use. When it comes to beach hair, the more irregular your waves, the better!
Once you’ve curled your entire head, flip your hair upside-down and run your fingers through it to loosen the tight curls. Don’t bother combing through it with your hair brush; simply tousle your hair with your hands, then flip it back to normal. Use a lightweight hair spray to prevent the waves from falling limp throughout the day. You can also backcomb (i.e. tease) your hair at the roots for an even more authentic look.
The finished result will be voluminous ocean waves that you’ve achieved without visiting the beach at all. No matter what time of year it is, you’ll look like you’ve just spent the afternoon by the sand and sea.