Get Big-Body Hair With Little Effort
Short to Shoulder-Length Hair
Good news: You have the easiest hair type for this style, says Anthony Cristiano, a Chicago- based runway stylist. Just air-dry or blow-dry, tousle, and go.
- If your hair is very fine, use a light volumizing spray on wet strands. For slightly longer lengths, spritz a lifting spray on damp roots.
- Set your dryer on a warm or medium heat setting and lightly blow your hair upward. The key: Go against the direction of growth, to build body.
- Gently lift hair with your fingers. And skip setting the style with heavy products. If you have fine hair that falls flat fast, however, mist on a light hair spray, like L’Oréal Paris Elnett Satin Hairspray ($15 at drugstores), a favorite of runway pros.
Long, Curly Hair
The trick with this hair type is to start moisturizing it well in the shower, so it looks soft and not overly styled. “You want to work with your natural texture but enhance it,” says Luigi Murenu, a creative consultant for John Frieda based in New York City.
- To relax ringlets into looser waves, comb a rich conditioner through your hair in the shower, allowing the steam to help seal in the moisturizers.
- Apply a styling cream to damp hair post-shower to help prevent frizz.
- Let hair air-dry, or blow-dry it with a diffuser. Don’t apply direct heat to your hair, says Cristiano. “Too much warm air opens up the cuticles and creates fuzziness. With a diffuser, you get a smooth, natural look.” Use your fingers to twist and stretch curls into a relaxed shape.
Long, Straight Hair
Give long, skinny strands a billowy look with these simple drying tricks from Cristiano.
- Apply a volumizing product to damp hair, part it as you normally do, then twist it into a low, loose bun.
- Let hair air-dry. Or, if time is an issue, gently blow it dry with a diffuser, directing warm air to the bun.
- Undo the bun and loosen the waves with your fingers. For extra thickness, Murenu suggests spraying on a dry shampoo (he likes Rene Furterer Naturia Dry Shampoo; $24, amazon.com). It helps dry up oils on the scalp that weigh down hair, and it also adds texture.
- For more body around the crown, back-comb hair. Work with small sections, starting two inches from the roots. Push a comb or a brush down to the scalp.
Can I Get a Lift?
To give hair volume and fullness, use one or two boosting products, like those recommended here.
For Lift at the Crown
Use John Frieda Luxurious Volume Lavish Lift Root Booster on hair near the scalp, then blow-dry the area while picking up hair with your fingers.
To buy: $6.50 at drugstores.
For Oily or Limp Hair
Pumping up the volume starts in the shower, so avoid rich products that overload hair with emollients. Redken Body Full Shampoo cleanses and adds texture without weight.
To buy: $13, redken.com for salons.
For Fine Hair
Packed with wheat amino acids and aloe to plump up sparse strands, Aveda Volumizing Tonic works from roots to ends and is weightless. It also deposits a subtle shine.
To buy: $16, aveda.com.
Coax tight curls into relaxed waves by using L’Oréal Paris EverStrong Deep Replenishing Masque, a rich in-shower treatment.
To buy: $9 at drugstores.
For Normal, Dry, or Coarse Hair
Rub a dollop of Living Proof Full Thickening Cream between your hands and apply it from mid-shaft to the ends. The key ingredient, Poly Beta Amino Ester-1, makes hair feel soft, not crunchy.
To buy: $26, livingproof.com.
For Adding Texture to Any Hair Type
David Babaii for WildAid Bohemian Beach Spray uses sea salt to enhance hair. For straight lengths, focus it mostly at the roots. On curls, spray it all over, then use your fingers to stretch and style ringlets into softer waves.
To buy: $12, stylebell.com.