Don’t get us wrong; we love warm weather as much as anyone else — trips to the beach, outdoor grills, warm sunny days — but one thing we don’t love is frizzy hair. While some of us are more prone to this condition than others (such as those with curly or curly hair), higher temperature and humidity levels can make even the straightest hair types among us limp and frizzy.
Just because hot weather inevitably leads to frizz doesn’t mean you have to hide under a hat or umbrella. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite hair care tips, styling products, and strategies for getting rid of frizz. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, these tips will help keep your hair smooth, straight, and frizz-free.
1. Rinse hair with cold water
Showering at a cooler temperature can protect your hair and skin by preventing dehydration and frizz. Hairstylist Josh Shellhammer recommends using a cold conditioner to lock in the cuticle. After shampooing, lower the heat and finish with a rinse of cool, refreshing water. If you’re not ready to ditch hot showers entirely, tie your hair up to protect it from hot water damage.
2. Choose a conditioning shampoo
“Sometimes shampoo can be too drying. It’s important to make sure you’re getting the right stuff—a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner are the best,” says celebrity hairstylist David Stanwell.
Frizzy hair is usually caused by misalignment of hair fibers. Steigerwald explains: “Conditioning shampoo is great because it helps detangle and realign the hair fiber. Taming hair while it’s wet, like in the shower, is the easiest way to prevent frizz later.”
If you have frizzy hair, you should opt for a moisturizing detoxifying shampoo. When shopping for shampoo, look for products that say: Hydrates, regulates moisture, or controls frizz.
3. Dry hair with a microfiber towel or cotton T-shirt
Your towel can also contribute to frizz because it roughens up your cuticles. Instead of drying your hair with a regular towel, use a microfiber towel or cotton t-shirt instead. Microfiber towels are made from finer fibers – which means less friction and tangling in your hair.
4. Comb hair with a wide-toothed comb
Using the wrong brush can roughen the hair cuticle and cause frizz. Never use a bristle brush to comb wet hair. Use a wet brush instead. Wide-toothed combs are great for frizz-prone hair because they allow more room for the hair to pass through the teeth, helping to prevent breakage. Oil and product residue can linger on your brushes, so Shellhammer recommends cleaning them to prevent excess material from getting into your hair and potentially causing frizz. “Wash your brushes with a mild shampoo at least every few weeks,” he explains, “and there can be fluff in the bristles that can get into your hair.”
5. A hair dryer with ionic technology
“Regular hair dryers use hot air to dry hair, and over time the heat can cause damage. Ionic hair dryers use magnets to draw moisture out of the hair, helping to seal the cuticle more smoothly. Many people make the mistake of using high heat all the time. With an ionic dryer, you can turn this feature on or off,” says Muschelhammer. Another tip is to turn down the heat to warm or medium and when your hair is almost dry, blow dry with cool air. “Hair is pliable when it’s warm, but when you cool it down, it seals the cuticle, which makes the hair shinier,” he says.
6. Start with a good haircut
Get rid of dry dead ends. Split ends can travel up and cause more damage and frizz, so it’s best to get a haircut when it starts to fray. If you live in an area with high humidity, Thevenot recommends a straight cut. “This helps maintain the weight of the haircut and also helps keep the hair open,” he says.
7. Lower the temperature
While a hot shower is good for your muscles, it won’t do much for your hair. “The temperature of the water causes the cuticle to rise,” says Thevenot, “and when the cuticle rises, the hair needs more moisture.” That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to put up with a shaky shower: a twist is just a turn to turn the knob. Go down a notch or two so your shower is warm and not wet.
8. Wash carefully
“Products that are high in alcohol tend to dehydrate hair, causing it to seek moisture,” says Thevenot. To reduce frizz, use a shampoo that contains hydrating ingredients like glycerin, which is a great humectant, meaning it absorbs excess moisture from the air and creates a protective layer over your strands.
9. State, state, state
You might think that you need to wash your hair every time you shower, but that’s not true. Even the best anti-frizz shampoo can strip your hair of its natural oils and moisturizers. Instead, alternate shampoo and conditioner one day and conditioner only the next to lock in your natural moisture. Also, make sure to only condition from the nape to the strands to avoid a greasy scalp.
10. Let hair dry naturally before blow drying
While hot tools may seem counterintuitive here, they can help seal cuticles and keep your locks flat and smooth. Just like with a hairdryer, it’s important not to over-dry, as heat damage can also lead to frizz.
secret? Apply a heat protectant, like our custom conditioner, while your hair is still damp. Then let most of the hair (about 75%) air dry, and blow it flat with a blow dryer. Just make sure to set the blow dryer on a low setting, keep it 6 inches away from your hair at all times, and keep it moving so that no part of your hair can overheat and cause damage.