How To Air Dry Your Hair |

How To Air Dry Your Hair

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Going without your hairdryer may seem like a tough call, but if you’re aware your locks would benefit from a break, allowing hair to dry naturally can be a healthier approach to styling. So, how do you make sure your air-dry looks as good as a blow-dry? These top tips will help you put away the hot tools and master your air-drying technique this summer...

Switch Up Your Shampoo

Any hairdresser worth their salt will tell you the key to a good hair day (and successful air-dry) is a moisturising shampoo and conditioner to smooth strands. Adding adequate moisture will help to prevent frizz for a glossy, groomed look. The industry-acclaimed Hairstory New Wash, £44, is a shampoo-conditioner hybrid that’s already received rave reviews from beauty editors and bloggers alike – use as the perfect foundation for a successful air-dry.

Be Towel-Dry Savvy

Towel-drying your hair may be the first thing you do once you get out of the shower, and taking a couple of minutes to do it properly is worth it in the long run. Try to get most of the water out (that way, it should be dry by the time you get to work) by gently combing through and drying from side to side in a scrunching motion to create natural waves. This technique is less abrasive on the hair than vigorous towel drying and will also help to keep hair frizz-free. 

If You Have Fine Hair...

Spritz a leave-in conditioner through the lengths, working from the bottom up, and brush through with a wide-toothed comb or Wet Brush, £11.99, for an even application. Be sure to avoid the roots to retain natural volume at the crown. Then cup and scrunch the bottoms for lift and leave to dry naturally. We rate Kerastase’s Spray a Porter, £14.70, a lightweight formula made from a texturising mineral salt that really adds hold and a lived-in feel to finer hair.

If you’re looking to achieve a wavier look, take a tip from hair guru Adam Reed and “plait the hair whilst it’s damp before misting with Percy & Reed’s The Perfect Blow Dry Makeover Spray; let the hair dry naturally then undo and tousle with your fingers for a gorgeous, natural wave.”

On a Similar Note

If You Have Wavy Hair...

As frizz can be an issue with wavier hair types, try to use a microfiber towel to blot away excess water – these don’t create friction like regular towels and will help to keep hair smooth. For a beachy look that will enhance your hair’s natural movement, apply a sea salt spray like Bumble and Bumble’s Surf Spray, £10, when your hair is 70% dry. Mist the hair lightly and then scrunch it, gently pulling the hair away from the scalp. For added texture, twist small sections of the hair into ropes, then gently tousle. Finish with an extra misting of sea salt spray. Hairdresser to the stars George Northwood swears by Redken’s Curvaceous range, specifically designed for air drying wavy hair.

If You Have Curly Hair...

Firstly, work a light oil, such as Moroccanoil Treatment Light, £32.85, through damp hair, pulling it away from the head to control frizz. Then arm yourself with a mousse (don’t worry about '80s-style finishes, new-generation formulas, such as Ouai’s Soft Mousse, £22, are A-list hairdresser favourites) and scrunch through the hair with fingers. If you prefer more hold, mix in a bit of styling gel too, such as Tigi Bed Head Manipulator, £7.20, as this will prevent frizz from setting in as the hair dries for soft, smooth curls.

Top Tips: 

  • Tuck your hair behind your ears as it dries and clip a metal hairpin above each ear to exaggerate the wave – a tried-and-tested backstage trick.
  • Got super thick hair? Twist freshly washed hair into four buns before bed; come morning, pretty waves are all yours.
  • For curly haired girls, create two loose plaits before bed and clip them up into twists. Twisting plaits makes for smoother waves and prevents the hair from puffing up as it dries.
  • Don’t overdo it – while product is the key to a successful air-dry, work out whether you’re trying to create waves or control them and go from there.
  • If you love salt spray, finish with a shine spray, as salty formulas can make the hair dull.

Soft Mousse, £22 | Ouai

The Perfect Blow Dry Makeover Spray, £12 | Percy & Reed

Curvaceous No Foam Shampoo, £16.15 | Redken

Bed Head Manipulator, £7.20 | Tigi

New Wash, £44 | Hairstory

Hair Towel, £30 | Aquis

Surf Spray, £10 | Bumble & Bumble

Styling Spray à Porter, £14.70 | Kérastase

All Soft Supple Touch, £12.39 | Redken


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