On those mornings you don’t wake up feeling like P.Diddy—the alarm goes off early, your cat won’t stop meowing for food, and your hair looks like crap—it’s important to have a backup plan. We can’t do much about the cat or clock, but we can help you prepare for a bad hair day. We spoke to InStyler’s celebrity stylist, Dean Banowetz, who has created ‘dos on American Idol, to find out how you can wake up with super voluminous hair. Here, he answers all our “how to get volume” hair questions, for long-lasting, fuller-looking locks:
How To Get Volume…
…At the start of the day
After you get out the shower, the first step is to use a wet product; Dean recommends Aquage Uplifting Foam ($18.25, Aquage.com). Then turn your head upside down to out blow your roots. “I have seven sisters, so I always tell them: How much body you want depends on how many steps you have,” Dean said. “If you just want a little bit of tousled volume for you natural texture, that’s a great way to do it.”
Want to take your volume to the next level? Dean recommends using a Bohn Comb, or non-plastic comb, to “back comb” (tease). “When you’re backcombing, the key is really just to push the hair down and pack it to the scalp, so you have that body and it actually pushes the hair up,” he said.
…And have smooth hair
“Step one: I use the uplifting foam on the roots. Then I Bohn Comb backcomb. Then, right where the backcombing stops, that’s when I’ll use my 1 ¼” InStyler and, I’ll smooth it all out.” In case you haven’t heard of it, the InStyler ($98, Target.com) is a nifty tool that straightens your hair while a brush rotates and smoothes it out.
But just because your hair looks fab in the morning doesn’t mean it’s going to last. There’s a trick for that too. If your hair is getting flat midday, “All you have to do is take a pen or pencil and push it into the roots and lift,” he taught us.
…Without Looking 80s
Dean knows 80s hair—at a recent taping of Dancing With The Stars, the stylist was asked to whip up ‘dos for an 80s night, and got very, very excited about it. Although he loved the big hair trend, he still gives good tips to keep your ‘do looking full and contemporary.
The trick to getting current-day volume is knowing how to tease your hair: Always add lots of body on top, near the crown, and less so as you move down to the neck. “The more backcombing you put towards the ends of the hair, the more frizzy and messy it looks,” Dean said. “So I always like to keep it concentrated at the root area and just do some light separation, maybe with a Mason Pearson brush, towards the ends.”
…When You Over-Straighten Your Hair
Though it might seem a bit obvious, the trick to keeping volume in your hair is using the right hair straightener. “Very few people look good with poker-straight hair,” Dean said. “The trend is a fresh, blowout look. Everybody loves smooth, shiny hair, they just want to have body, and that’s what you get when you use the 1 ¼” barrel InStyler.”
…Underneath Your Bangs
If you have really long bangs and you want to give them some lift, Dean says to go back to the teasing (did you ever realize what an impact that technique could have?!). But you have to be aware of frizz.
“If your bangs are to the bridge of your nose, you can actually go in under and do backcombing by the roots,” to get a full, natural-looking style. “Then you can just give it a little blast with long-lasting hairspray,” Dean advised.