Most of us are walking around like sweaty zombies right now, either daydreaming about dunking ourselves head to toe in freezing cold water or taking every chance we can get to go for a dip. So, spending a lot of time in front of the mirror with heat styling implements isn’t exactly a top priority. In this kind of heat, it’s easy to just give up, and pretend we’re rocking the ‘just ran a marathon’ look on purpose.
But cute styles that control frizz, hide oily roots or work with post-swimming curls are actually really easy. Check out these four tutorials for summer hairstyles that’ll work beautifully whether you’re going to dinner after a day at the beach or braving the steamy city transit system on a work day.
Smooth and Quick Topknot
Whether your hair is freshly shampooed and blow-dried, or sweaty and sticky from hanging out poolside or just traipsing around the city in this miserable heat, this bun style is quick and chic. You don’t need to have any styling implements at all to pull this off – just a single hair tie.
Check out this video and practice doing it at home a few times, and soon you’ll be able to do it on the go without even looking in a mirror. Keep little frizzes and wisps at bay with a lightweight smoothing product like Aveda Light Elements Smoothing Fluid, which you can either use on trouble spots after styling, or rub between your hands and apply to the length of your hair before putting it up.
Retro Rockabilly Bandanna
This style can range from full-on pinup glamour (read: a bit high maintenance) to simply tucking your hair into a bandanna and pinning back your bangs or the front section of your hair to create a little pompadour. In this video, Susie Brown shows off a Rosie the Riveter-inspired style with curls. It’s helpful to see how to wrap the bandanna around your head, but the style itself doesn’t have to be that complicated if you’re just trying to hide messy, unwashed hair.
Separate your bangs, or just a few inches’ width of the very front top section of your hair, and pull the rest back into a ponytail or bun, high enough on your head so that it won’t get in the way of the bandanna. Then grasp the loose front section, pull it straight up, and pin it down a couple inches past your hairline to create a little poof. Finally, tie the bandanna as shown in the video. Keep the poof in place with a spritz of non-aerosol hairspray free of toxic polymers and solvents like Giovanni L.A. Hold Hair Spritz, which comes in a convenient 2-ounce size and is available at many health food stores.
Messy Side Braid
This style is so easy, you could do it blindfolded – as long as you know how to braid (and there are lots of YouTube tutorials focusing on that specifically, if you need to learn!) It’s also really forgiving, since it’s supposed to be a bit messy, and easy to customize to your tastes by making it slightly sleeker or more voluminous. It gets your hair off your neck, but looks pretty with some face-framing wisps, for those who feel like straight-back updo’s are too harsh for their features.
Gel, mousse or texturizer might help hold your braid in place if you’ve got the kind of fine hair that’s constantly trying to escape braids. Rahua Hair Wax at Spirit Beauty Lounge provides lots of control and maneageability
Rocking Beachy Waves and Curls
If your hair naturally gets wavy or curly after exposure to moisture, work with it! Many women with straight hair go through an awful lot of trouble to achieve this look. While your hair is air-drying, lift your roots from your scalp with your fingers to give it a bit of volume (salt from seawater and sweat can be a big help with this.) Use a curl enhancer like Aveda’s Be Curly to intensify the waves while also taming frizz and boosting shine.
Need a little more control than that? The tutorial above starts with damp hair and requires no electric styling implements – just some gel, a brush and rubber bands. You’ll put your hair in little twists, let it dry and then finger-comb it into place. Song of Style also has a beachy waves photo tutorial that looks super cute while your hair is drying.
You can also fake it by swimming (or sleeping) with your hair in braids for a kinkier curly look, or in a low twisty bun for big, voluminous waves. Help along the volume with a salt-based spray like Josie Maran’s Bohemian Waves Argan Hair Mist or Sea Mist by John Masters Organics.