How to get perfect beach waves
Images via MECCA.
It's one of the most frequently asked questions for hairdressers (and YouTube search bars) everywhere: "How do I achieve the perfect beach wave?"
Of course, everyone has their own answer. Some suggest a straightening iron over a curling tong, some think a light spritz of hairspray is more effective than sea salt spray, and some prefer to brush out the waves while others rake with their fingers.
So what is the best way to achieve these perfectly tousled, not-too-polished, effortlessly textured waves? Read on to find out how it's done in four very easy steps.
Step 1: protect
You're about to go in pretty heavy with styling products and hot tools, so first you must prep the hair to protect it.
Start by washing your hair with a volumising shampoo and conditioner that won't leave your hair too squeaky clean.
Next, apply a big helping of heat protectant cream or spray. Alternatively, hair primers are great for putting a barrier in between your fragile locks and the curling tong.
Pictured: Bumble & bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil Primer from MECCA Maxima, LUSH Big Sea Salt Shampoo, Kiehl's Heat-Protective Silk Straightening Cream from Myer.
Step 2: texturise
While your hair is still damp, generously spritz a texturising spray through your hair - we love Bumble & bumble Surf Spray from MECCA Maxima. Don't be shy either; lift the layers of the hair to ensure you get it all over!
Now it's time to brush, which can be the scary part if you suffer from knotty hair.
If this is you, apply a detangling lotion and use a comb or hairbrush that is designed to detangle the hair. Your locks are prone to breakage when wet, so this is very important!
Pictured: Tangle Teezer Compact Styler from Price Attack, Bumble & bumble Surf Spray from MECCA Maxima, RPR Untangle Me Leave-In Hydrating Mist from Itz All About Hair, Mason Pearson Detangling Comb from David Jones.
Step 3: blow-dry
Step three is an easy one: just blow-dry! Use a good quality hair dryer to dry your locks all over.
Find that blow-drying leaves your hair frizzy? MECCA has a suggestion for you: "Pull a large round brush through the lengths as you dry it for a smoother finish."
Seems easy enough, right?
Pictured: Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer from Shaver Shop, Schima Round Brush from Price Attack.
Step 4: curl
Last – and most important! – is the curl.
Everyone has their own formula for achieving the perfect wave, but we prefer a curling tong. It doesn't require as much skill (raise your hand if you've ever had a fight with a straightening iron while trying to do beach waves!) and it's easier to handle, making tricky areas like the back of your head a breeze!
First, split your hair into layers and work from the bottom up. Take a small section and wrap it around the curling tong, making sure you begin a couple of inches away from the root (to avoid pageant curls!) and you leave the ends free so they keep straight. In other words, you're only curling from the middle of your hair.
Once you're all done curling, rake your fingers through the curls for a messier wave, or brush them out with a coarse bristle brush for a bouncier, more glamorous wave. Secret hack: spritz on dry shampoo for a final shot of texture and you're good to go!
Pictured: Bumble & bumble Bb Thickening Creme Contour from MECCA Maxima, The Body Shop Mini Bamboo Hair Brush, Silver Bullet Ceramic Curling Tong from Price Attack.