How to Get Volume that Lasts

December 23, 2021

How to Get Volume that Lasts

You can fake it with the, ‘head upside down and empty a can of hairspray’ trick, but I don’t recommend this. For volume that looks and feels natural and lasts, the following ideas help. The more techniques you use the more lasting the volume.

1. Hairspray - A little hairspray can help to give grip and texture to floppy roots or hold a style, but shouldn’t be used to make a shape, only to hold one. Our Holding Spray is the go-to product backstage at the glittering runway shows. But if you want volume that lasts you need some foundation work.

2. Thickeners and texturisers - Silky floppy hair sits closer together so takes up less room. Texturising products like Thicker Quicker build volume and grip into the hair shaft so it occupies more space and is more workable. This alone can double the appearance of hair. A double whammy would be Thicker Quicker applied to the smooth roots then Volumising Mousse to the rougher mid lengths and ends to smooth and thicken. Both still keeping the hair feeling natural but much thicker.

3. Bend or Curl - Bend in the hair, and particularly at the first inch of the roots, makes proper volume last even for straight hairstyles. Round brush work and tongs give a full range of styles. Pin curls or velcro rollers put into lightly damp or dry hair then left or steamed in the bath is quick and works brilliantly.

Brush Strokes - different strokes for different folks

There are three basic round brush strokes - Dragging, Arcing and Wrapping

1. Dragging - takes out body making hair smooth e.g. dead straight hair. Dryer
can be aimed slightly in front of brush. Use thumb to control tension.
2. Arcing - hair appears smooth but has a bend e.g. above the shoulder Bobs. Dryer aimed accurately on the brush. If the dryer is in front of the brush you will be dragging not arcing. If the dryer is aimed past the brush most of the blast will miss the hair making the whole process take much longer.

3. Wrapping - Use this technique where every little bit of body and padding counts. This action reduces cuticle smoothing, limits new hair straightening and puts in maximum bend at the roots. Extra body can be obtained by keeping sections curled in clips or rollers while you finish the rest of the head. Dryer is aimed at the brush.

• Use different strokes for different hairstyles.
• Use different strokes on different sections of the same hairstyle.
• Use different strokes on the same sections.

e.g. You may drag the roots and wrap the ends or wrap the roots and arc the ends.


Mistakes when blowdrying bobs

Forced bend at the root, dragged through the mid-lengths, and over-curled at the ends. Hair ends up rigid, flat, lumpy and set looking.

Gentle, even arcing throughout the length gives a full but naturally moving effect.

On a swinging style you may want lift at the roots but for it also to move freely. In this case you would arc the roots but avoid too much padding or product hold which would stop the hair from moving freely. If the mid-lengths needed body you would wrap the mid-lengths and arc the ends to give a smooth effect. If the hair was naturally very curly at the roots you would probably drag the roots so the hair would move freely, knowing the natural texture would keep enough body in the hair.

Read: Home Blowdry Tips

4. Backcombing/teasing - Lightly applied to certain styles it can create volume and hold without being seen. It’s great for any chignons (updos) as it gives fulness to the shape where needed and helps hold the roots in direction to keep the style secure.

5. The Haircut - Not a quick at-home fix, but the haircut will make it easier or harder to get volume.

On short looks, texturizing into the hair can help to create lift, volume and movement.

On long hair, the most popular outline is the A-Line because it’s quick for hairdressers to do, but it encourages a flatness around the eyeline and too much width at the bottom, particularly if hair is textured or wavy. This pyramid shape benefits from a graduated outline and long layering to reduce the width at the bottom and shift a little volume higher around the cheekbones. Read: What’s the Diamond Dry Cut

Further Reading: Size Isn’t Everything

 Michael Van Clarke


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