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beach waves must-haves

I recently was asked about the products I use for my hair, so I thought I’d put together a little post about it in case any of you are hoping to get the messy, beachy, sort of tangly but in a good way look ;) Here are my secrets for making hair magic happen every single day…

The Haircut
Successfully sporting wavy hair has a lot to do with getting the right haircut. I haven’t blow dried my hair (other than my bangs) in almost two years, and I owe that entirely to showing up at the salon with air dried hair. This allows the stylist to see the way hair settles naturally, enabling her to cut it in the most flattering way. San Diego ladies—I highly recommend Detour in Encinitas. Go to Megan and tell her I sent you ;)

The Color
Though I was born a blondie, I turned into an adult brunette. Until, that is, the day I decided to go back to my roots and become a blonde again. I’m not saying that you need to be blonde to have beachy hair—but rather, that color of some kind really helps add necessary dimension to wavy hair. If you can do blonde highlights, just be sure to emphasize that you want them to be more of a bohemian feel—the colorist will do them differently if she knows you aren’t blowdrying and straightening your hair everyday! If you’re a brunette, I recommend trying what my friend Karen just did and adding in some subtle ombre coloring on the ends. It looks sun-kissed without being overdone. It’s laid-back and easy going—which is exactly what you’re going for if you want the beachy hair look.

In The Shower
Picking the right products to wash and condition your hair with is another important piece of the puzzle. I recently switched to L’Oreal EverCurl shampoo and conditioner and have been really pleased. Not only is it paraben-free, sulfate-free and vegan, but it has a heavenly hibiscus scent that reminds me of being in Hawaii. If you have wavy to curly hair and aren’t satisfied with your current products, I’d give these a try.

Styling
This is where I keep things really simple. When I get out of the shower, I wrap my hair up in a Turbie Twist to remove some of the wetness (silly, yes, but so much easier than a heavy towel). Next, I comb out my hair with a wide-tooth comb so it’s tangle free and get my bangs out in front so I can style them. With them hanging down my forehead, and the rest of my hair tucked behind my ears, I blow dry them so they lay nicely when swept to the side. Then, I flip my head upside down and use the blowdryer to take out some of the wetness at the roots—just for a minute or so. From there, I let my hair dry as it pleases.

Every Once In A While
Now, I don’t do this everyday, but sometimes—usually for a special occasion, a date, or when I know I’m going away for the weekend and won’t be as interested in showering (yes, that’s real)—I use a curling wand for nicer, fuller waves. When I know I’m going to style my hair this way, I try to shower at night so it’s ready in the morning. Or, if I can wait to style until later in the day, I’ll shower in the morning to give my hair time to air dry. If you’re really in a rush, you can do a quick blow dry to move things along.

Finishing Touches
On a normal day, when my hair is nearly dry, I brush the ends a bit so they have more volume and don’t look stringy, then spritz my hair lightly with a salt spray to give it more texture (focusing on the middle part & ends, rather than the roots). If I’ve curled it with the curling wand, I brush through the curls with my fingers so they’re looser and messier, then give they ends a little spray. Personally, I use Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Spray and I love it. I recommend carrying a little bottle of the spray in your bag with you at all times—it’s great if you have to leave the house before your hair dries and don’t get a chance to spray it at home. Also, it works for touching up your hair later in the day if it looks “blah.” If you don’t carry one already, I recommend putting a little brush in your bag, too. As someone with fine hair, sometimes my locks need a little love from the brush so they stay looking full and fresh (rather than dirty or too thin).

There you have it–those are my hair secrets! Hope you found them helpful :)

What are the must-haves for your go-to hair style? Do share!

P.S. I’m kind of obsessed with Jessica Biel’s wavy-hair-plus-blunt-bangs look. What do you think? I’m tempted to give it a try…

Jessica Biel image via Flare

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Jacket: J.Crew
Shirt: J.Crew, old (similar)
Necklace: To: Hello Beautiful
iPhone Case: J.Crew

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