BEAUTY IN THE FRIDGE

8 Easy Ways to Get Perfect Beach Waves Every Time

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Beachy waves are a go-to celebrity hairstyle for good reason: They look great on virtually everyone, since the effortless look flatters all face shapes, hair types, and ages. But if you think the idea of mastering those perfectly loose curls sounds more than a little daunting, rest assured that the smart tutorials ahead make it simple to pull off the popular summer hairstyle all year long… no beach trip or salt water required.

They key to making great waves is pairing the right hair products and tools with these genius styling tips and tricks from our favorite hair pros and the experts in the Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab. Bonus: Each one of these beach wave tutorials takes less than 10 minutes — some as little as two. Double bonus: Some don’t even require a curling iron, wand, or hair straightener!

How to Get Beach Waves with a Curling Wand

A curling wand is perfect for creating imperfect, gorgeous waves. The GH Beauty Lab says that’s because unlike a curling iron, a wand allows for ends keep their natural texture. The key to this look: Leaving a couple of inches at the ends of hair unstyled.

Start by misting heat protectant and then hairspray all over dry hair and brushing through. Then, using a 1-inch barrel, grab vertical sections of hair and wrap around, leaving two inches of ends out to prevent hair from looking over-styled. Alternate directions as you go and finish with a sea salt spray and a light finish hairspray.

How to Get Beachy Waves Overnight

Ever dreamt of waking up with perfect hair without having to waste time styling (or use damaging heat tools)? This is the hack for you. All you need is a fabric belt (one from a bathrobe works great!) and four hair ties.

To perfect waves, section hair in half and in each section, twist hair around the belt piece by piece, securing at the end with a hair tie. Then twist the entire section into a bun. Repeat on the other side. Wake up, unwind, and finish with hair spray.

How to Get Beach Waves Fast

A key feature of beachy waves is that they begin about halfway down your hair, around ear level. A genius shortcut: Pulling hair into a ponytail and curling just the tied section with a curling wand. This makes it easier to keep track of which pieces you’ve curled (versus those you haven’t) when your strands are gathered in one place.

Before using any curling or flat iron, the GH Beauty Lab suggests applying a heat protectant spray to shield strands from damage. Finish with texturizing spray to encourage a natural, blended style and a flexible hairspray to keep everything in place.

How to Get Natural Beach Waves Without Heat

If you’re all about that low-maintenance hair routine, you’re probably no stranger to the good ol’ air dry. And it works to make waves, too: With a few strategically placed buns (two at the nape of your neck!), you can air dry your way to a California girl look without heat. Just twist hair into two knots, secure them in place with pins, then wait it out until they’re dry. That’s it!

To boost the bends, before you start forming the buns, apply a styling product made to enhance your air-dried strands while hair is damp.

How to Get Beach Waves with a Small Curling Iron

You’ve probably been told that if you want small, tight curls, you should use a skinnier curling iron, and if you want large, looser waves, you should use a large barrel curler, right? Well, YouTube beauty guru Luxy Hair is about to blow your mind.

As she demonstrates in this video, if you break your hair into large sections and use a small barrel curling iron, you can quickly and efficiently curl all of your hair into voluminous waves.

How to Use a Flat Iron for Beachy Waves

This wave styling trick incorporates a flat iron into the mix rather than a curling iron — a choice that, as YouTube beauty vlogger HeyKali says, makes the waves look extra shiny. If you have thick, long hair, this tutorial might take longer than the others, but your flawless waves will be totally worth it.

The secret: Make sure your flat iron is facing down to the floor rather than horizontally. For even more shine, mist dry hair with a shine-enhancing finishing spray as a last step.

How to Get Beach Waves on Short Hair

Getting beach waves on short hair can be trickier than with long hair. Still, this very easy beach waves tutorial is simple to follow and takes less than 10 minutes. Use a 1-inch curling iron on a low heat setting and work from the front in vertical sections, alternating directions as you get toward the undermost layers to keep the style from looking too coiffed.

Our Beauty Lab pros recommend setting your style so it lasts and stays frizz-free by misting a medium- to strong-hold hairspray all over, holding the can about six inches away from your head for a light application.

How to Get Loose Waves on Medium-Length Hair

If you have medium-length hair, YouTuber Allan Davison’s pull-through technique is ideal. Section hair and use a 1-inch barrel curling iron to add a bend at the middle of the hair’s length and smooth out the ends for a perfectly tousled, undone wave.

Finish with dry shampoo at the roots and texturizing spray through the ends for volume, and a drop of hydrating oil on the ends to keep hair looking healthy.

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