How To Pull Off Slicked Back Hair

How To Pull Off Slicked Back Hair

Slicked back hairstyles offer maximum impact with minimal faff. Classic and sophisticated, it’s the easiest way to look chic in seconds – assuming you know what you’re doing and how to look after your hair in the process. Here, two celebrity hairstylists explain how to get the look…

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Pick Your Day Wisely

“When you want a slicked back look, it’s important to choose the day wisely,” advises A-list hairstylist, Syd Hayes. “It should be three or four days after you’ve washed your hair, or when it starts to become greasy. This is purely because your hair will be easier to work with and will likely have better hold, too. Think half up half down, or fully slicked back into a bun or ponytail.” Celebrity hairdresser Luke Hersheson agrees: “You either want it greasy, or you want your hair very wet as a starting point. I often soak the hair, then use my Hersheson’s Almost Everything Cream in excess. It helps to make the hair sleeker and tight, but without it going rock hard.”

Try Oils & Gels

“I swear by gels for creating slicked back hair,” continues Syd. “There’s no doubt they hold the hair best and help to create different effects, too. Try applying one with a wide tooth comb or a Mason Pearson brush so all the hair holds as one. Gels aren’t your only option, though. For a really laid-back, slick beach vibe, hair oils are the way to go. Everyone has one lying around, so it’s easy enough to find, but my go-to is the Clarins Hair & Body Oil. You can slather it all over your hair – it also has SPF protection – and it gives great, sleek results. It conditions, too, so you can take advantage of every benefit. Distribute it evenly with a comb, and you’ll find it sets everything in place without any wayward hairs.” 

Get Your Placement Right

“It’s important you don’t coat your gel or oil all the way through your hair,” says Syd. “Ideally, it should only go on the first 2cm-3cm from your roots. Try placing the gel or oil towards the ends of your fingers, as this will stop your hands from getting too sticky as you apply it. Layer it up gently and never go in too heavy handed.” 

Never Do Slick Hair Without A Comb

“It does depend on the finish you’re after, but generally speaking, the high-shine hair trend requires a good comb,” finishes Syd. “Use a wide toothed one to really push the roots of your hair into place – it’s why greasy, day old hair or wet hair is useful as it’s more malleable. You can use one to make sure everything is smooth in the right direction, for instance, towards where you want your bun. If you want to go super sleek, use a brush as it will smooth out any knots you may create. Finally, if you use a gel, skip the hairspray. You won’t need the holding powers of a spray as the gel will dry and lock everything in for you. An oil on the other hand may still need some holding benefits, so gently mist a hairspray on top in this instance.” 


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