If you ask anyone who has great hair what their secret is, 99% of the time, they’ll profess to never using heat on it. And it makes sense – heat causes massive amounts of damage to your hair and using it every day is a sure-fire route to frizz, dryness and dullness. Air-drying seems to be the way forward.
But air-drying hair isn’t as simple as just leaving it. I mean, you can totally do that, but it tends to leave hair shapeless, awkwardly positioned, or just a bit wild. Luckily, there are things you can do to make air-drying into more of a styling process. Not only can air-dried hair look effortlessly cool, but it can end up saving your follicles from damage and lead to fuller and longer locks.
The first step to getting air-drying right all lies in the washing. You want a good shampoo and conditioner to set your foundations in place. I adore the Davines Love Smoothing Shampoo, which leaves hair feeling extremely light and clean, but still somehow silky and shiny. It also has the best smell of any shampoo I’ve encountered – so fresh and almost slightly sour.
A surprising hit in terms of conditioner is the Superdrug Extracts Conditioner in Coconut & Sweet Almond. It’s extremely cheap, but feel luxuriously thick and unctuous. The scent is also, quite simply, heaven.
If you struggle with getting movement in your hair more than with hydration, though, look no further than the Bumble & Bumble Surf Shampoo & Conditioner. These are absolutely ingenious in terms of adding texture and waves to lank hair – although may be a little too drying for some.
Straight after washing, while hair is still wet, I recommend going in with a leave-in conditioner. The best I’ve ever tried is the Davines OI All in One Milk, which is basically a one-stop shop for literally any hair concern. A strong budget alternative is the Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Leave In Conditioner, which has the smell of a bakery and is wonderfully lightweight. Once hair is coated in leave-in conditioner, distribute the product using a paddle brush – the Aveda one is the best.
Now you’ve taken care of nourishing the hair, you also need to consider style. I’d go for a product which offers hair extra grip and gives it some shape. A new love of mine is the Kristin Ess Weightless Shine Air Dry Crème, which is an excellent do-it-all for lazy days. If you’re more voluminous, the cheap and cheerful Boots Essentials Curl Crème is absolutely excellent for shaping and maintaining ringlets.
Getting hair out of the way during the air-drying process is also key. If you want to speed up your waiting time, a turban style towel can really help you out – go for a microfibre material for maximum water absorption. If you’re trying to get more volume, though, piling hair on top of your head with a scrunchie is key. The Slip Pure Silk Scrunchies are pricey, but the very best on the market, especially if you’re concerned about bobble indentations.
Once you’re about 80% dry, find your hair’s part and manoeuvre it into position. This is where you’ll want to add a lightweight serum, which boosts shine and minimises frizz. My absolute favourite is the Kérastase Oleo-Relax, which never, ever weighs hair down, but the OGX Coconut Miracle Oil works pretty well, especially considering the bargain price.
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