Ah, yes. The perfect effortless waves. Nothing makes us feel like we could be in Charlie’s Angels more than when we stroll out of the water, flip our hair over, and have the waves that dreams are made of glistening in the sun. The problem is, as hair dries, those waves can find all sorts of ways to frizz up, be inconsistent, and fall flat as the day goes on. Consider that problem solved. We’ve got the best guide for a wavy hair routine that’s simple, effective and will have you feeling like Farrah Fawcett in no time.
Rocking Wavy Hair Doesn’t Have To Be Complicated
Though I’m sure you adore your wavy hair, it’s no secret that it may need a little encouragement in order for it to look the way you love. It’s important that your hair care routine is optimized for waves and curls, rather than straight hair. Textured hair needs moisture, because the texture can prevent natural oils from travelling down the shaft of the hair (split ends, anyone?). Also, people with naturally wavy or curly hair are often trying to tame frizz and add definition in order to highlight their natural curl pattern.
Curls And Waves Are Different
Though curls and waves often get put in a similar category, there are some fundamental differences between them. Of course, first and foremost, they have a different shape. Waves tend to fall in a longer zig-zag, or “S” shape. Curls form a full 360, and often have more of a spring-like quality because of it.
These differences go beyond what catches our eye. Waves are often fine to medium textured, and fall flat more easily. Because of this, the right wavy hair routine will add a styling product with a strong hold to keep waves defined throughout the day. Waves are also more easily weighed down by product formulas, and they can form patterns lower down on the shaft. This is why sometimes people with wavy hair have straighter hair close to the scalp that curls closer to the bottom.
Styling Tips You’ll Love
Waves are often - what we call in the hair world - low porosity. This means that they have trouble absorbing and retaining moisture and natural hair oils. In other words, your waves are thirsty.
By starting your wavy hair routine with a sulfate-free, paraben-free shampoo and conditioner, you can keep waves healthy and maintain your hair’s natural oils. Try detangling your hair while it’s conditioning to enhance hydration, and keep your waves luscious.
For many people with curly or wavy hair, wet styling has been the go-to recommended method. This involves adding product to sopping wet hair fresh out of the shower in order to lock in their natural curl pattern before any frizz can form. Though this method is great for defining the shape of your hair, it limits the volume as it’s drying. It also can leave hair looking “wet”. Since waves have a knack for falling flat as the day goes on, damp styling is a great way to add volume. By adding styling products to hair that’s partially dried, you can give your waves more density and fullness.
Since wavy hair is also often fine in texture, damp styling allows for product to be added without making your hair look greasy or weighed-down. Damp styling also involves less drying time, so it’s great for those of us who like to hit the snooze button a few times. Damp styling also dries with more of a matte look. If you’re curious to learn more about wet vs. damp styling, look no further. We’ve got an entire blog on that topic here.
To brush, or not to brush - that is the question. Many of us with textured hair have learned that brushing our hair when it’s dry can leave us looking like a legitimate puff ball. This leads to many of us opting to brush our hair in the shower to detangle it without causing frizz. The only obstacle to this method? Using the wrong brush can cause damage to wet waves or curls.
In order to understand this fully, we have to take a look at how our hair is structured. When we take a steaming hot shower, the outer layer of the hair strand (called the cuticle) opens up and makes the hair susceptible. This is great for our shampoo and conditioner, as it gives them access to the deeper layers of the hair to nourish it from the inside. But this also makes our cuticles susceptible to damage, which can be caused by using a brush that doesn’t have soft enough bristles.
Wet brushes are specially made to be used to detangle hair in a way that won’t cause damage or breakage. The bristles are soft enough to not get caught on knots (and make that painful “ripping” sound), but still firm enough to push through tangles. For people with wavy hair, this is a game changer.
Using The Right Styling Cream
The styling cream that you use can make all the difference in the way that your waves fall on your head. The best wavy hair routine will include products that are light-weight, have a strong hold and are focused on forming clumps to avoid a stringy look. It’s also a good idea to look out for products that are moisture-rich in order to prevent your hair from looking dry or dull. Look for products with vitamin E and argan oil.
The Drying Process
Perhaps the most crucial aspect of a wavy hair routine: the drying process. Drying waves without heat is generally most recommended by curly hair experts.
“Plopping” is many people’s go-to when it comes to drying their wavy hair. This is the process of flipping waves or curls over, and having them bundled into a microfiber towel or cotton t-shirt. This process reduces frizz, and holds your waves in place as they’re drying. This is especially helpful if you’re like me, and find it near impossible to not touch your hair.
It’s also important to remember the placement of your hair as it dries. Make sure you don’t accidentally flip it into an awkward position and forget about it for hours. The same is true for putting hair up into a bun, behind your ear, or in braids. Your hair is going to dry in the shape that you put it in. You’re the one in control.
"Don't forget that drying matters. After the product is applied, tip your head upside down without touching your hair and give your waves a shake. For volume enhancement try root clipping while air drying or leave in a microfiber towel twisted on top of our head, shake out when ready to take the towel off."
- Casey Simmons, Royal Locks Owner
Feel The Heat
Of course, you won’t find any judgement from us if you opt for using a heat-styling tool to aid in your drying process. If you’re using a blowdryer, use the diffuser attachment to soften direct contact with heat. Use a low heat setting in order to prevent damage, reduce frizz and maintain the natural curl pattern of your hair. It also helps to flip your hair upside down to help the natural shape of your hair form.
The Perfect Wavy Hair Routine For You
Waves need love too! By incorporating products with high-quality ingredients, you can add moisture to your wavy hair routine and feel like a badass everyday.
For the perfect waves, we recommend Royal Locks Dream Cream. It’s formulated to fight frizz, enhance volume, and give a strong hold to add definition. And if you notice that your waves lose their volume and start getting frizzy throughout the day, try using our Party Curl Activating Spray. You can use it while you’re on the go to add a little boost.
The best wavy hair routine is one that works for you. Though most people don’t wake up with perfect sexy beach waves, with a few simple techniques you can have the effortless look that you love. Learn more techniques, tips and tricks from our other Royal Locks blogs!