How to Get Intense Volume for Big, Beautiful Hair
Keep your teasing comb in the drawer. You can get fluffy, voluminous hair without damaging your mane.
While Damian from Mean Girls may think that big hair always equates to big secrets, today's haircare professionals think fluffier locks mean more confidence. "Adding volume is like power posing—you'll take up more space in a crowded party scene," says Manhattan-based hairstylist Devin Rahal.
Luckily, you don't need to book an appointment for a blowout to get voluminous hair. Add these expert-recommended tips and salon-worthy products to your arsenal, and you'll get fabulous, fuller-looking hair that lasts all night long.
1. Keep your roots clean.
"To achieve volume, it all starts at the scalp," says Jonathan Colombini, a L'Oréal Paris consulting hairstylist. Keep your roots clear of oil and debris that could weigh them down by shampooing regularly with a nutrient-dense, volumizing formula, such as Love Beauty and Planet Volume & Bounty Shampoo (Buy It, $7, target.com). (Here are other shampooing mistakes you might be making.)
2. Lighten up on the conditioner.
When choosing a conditioner, opt for formulas that are infused with ingredients like amino acids, which will fortify and densify strands without heavy silicones, for better hair volume. Look for a thickening formula, such as Aveda Invati Advanced Thickening Conditioner (Buy It, $32, amazon.com) or John Frieda Luxurious Volume Thickening Conditioner (Buy It, $8, ulta.com).
But remember: "using too much conditioner can weigh the hair down and make it feel greasy," says Rahal. For fine to medium strands, start with a dime-size amount and apply only to your ends. For curly or textured hair, work roughly a quarter-size dollop of conditioner throughout strands before rinsing for hair volume that never flattens. (No time to shower? Try these quick ways to boost your hair volume after a workout.)
3. Focus on the follicle.
Hair volume begins at the follicle, says celebrity hairstylist Kristin Ess, the founder of the eponymous hair-product collection. Apply a root-lifting mousse close to the scalp on towel-dried hair. "The formula works its way to the ends as you blow-dry," she says. Once hair is dry, Ess aims a texturizing spray or powder at the roots for extra oomph (try Alder New York Texture Powder, $27, amazon.com).
4. Use the blow dryer and other hair tools to your advantage.
It might seem like you could never match the hair volume you can get from a professional blowout, but a few small styling tricks can go a long way toward making your hair voluminous. "If you're not adept at blow-drying while lifting your hair by the roots with a round brush like a pro, flip your head over and use a paddle brush while drying instead," says Jennifer Yepez, a celebrity hairstylist for Kérastase. "This will ensure that the air hits the roots at an upward angle, creating more lift."
Do this for the first few minutes of your blow-dry, then stand up and use the concentrator attachment and a large round brush, says Ess. This is will create tension as the hair is heated to smooth frizz. "Add a couple of Velcro rollers at the crown, and let them sit for 30 minutes," says Ess. Take them out when hair is cool, and voilà, gorgeous, bouncy body.
Pre-blowout, prep your hair at the roots with a few spritzes of texturizing spray such as Hair Rituel by Sisley-Paris Volumizing Spray (Buy It, $90, nordstrom.com) or Philip Kingsley Maximizer (Buy It, $37, dermstore.com). P
ost-blowout, set your style with a lightweight spray, like Tresemmé Compressed Micro-Mist Hair Spray (Buy It, $5, target.com)—it provides lasting hold without any hard, sticky residue, so your hair can still move naturally— or Kristin Essentials Refine Signature Finishing Spray (Buy It, $14, target.com).
5. Master mousse.
Those who prefer to air-dry their hair should consider using mousse as their styler of choice. "The latest formulas will thicken your hair without making it stiff," says Colombini. Apply a golf-ball-size amount of light, volume-boosting mousse, such as It's a 10 Haircare Miracle Styling Mousse (Buy It, $13, walmart.com) or Kérastase Densifique Densimorphose (Buy It, $37, sephora.com), to clean, damp hair. "Work it through from your roots down the hair shaft but not to the ends," says Colombini. "It will plump your strands while also giving them a soft look."
6. Do your part.
Something as simple as changing your part can also make your hair look fuller. "By flipping your hair to the side you don't normally wear it on, you create natural lift at the root," says celebrity hairstylist Christopher Naselli. Another pro tip: When styling, spray a bit of volumizing product, such as Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray (Buy It, $46, nordstrom.com), on a clip and attach it lengthwise along your part line. "Let it sit for a few minutes before removing-it will give your part a great root boost," says Naselli.