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How to get beachy waves without the beach

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You can get the tousled saltwater hair look at home

If you’ve ever returned from a day at the beach only to find yourself obsessing over tousled, wavy locks that resulted from dried salt water in your hair, you’re not alone. Beach waves are the perfect carefree summer hairstyle. Luckily, you don’t actually need to dunk your head in the ocean to get the beach wave look. We’ve got tips and product suggestions for giving yourself beach waves at home.

Shop this article: Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Texturizing Sea Spray, The Beachwaver Co. Multi Barrel Beachwaver, BondiBoost Wave Wand (32-Millimeter)

Sea salt sprays mimic the effects of ocean water

One of the most effective ways to replicate the back-from-the-beach look is by using a sea salt spray in your hair. These sprays are infused with salt to mimic the effects of ocean water on your hair by adding texture and volume. Sea salt sprays can hold your waves in place for hours.

When selecting a sea salt spray, it’s important to consider the kind of hair you have, be it straight, curly or thin. This dictates the kind of sea salt spray you should use and how to use it. Some sea salt sprays include a conditioner, helping to combat the salt’s drying effects.

Hot tools can also give a beachy wave effect

If you want to create a beachy wave look without the actual feel of salt in your hair, there are a number of hot tools available that can give that effect. Curling irons can be used to create tousled waves. Look for large barrel sizes, which create looser curls. Once you’ve finished curling a strand of hair, pull the curl straight with your fingers while it’s still hot to stretch it out and create more of a wave effect (rather than a barrel curl). 

Hair wavers are another great option for creating a casual waved style. These involve clamping your hair between a series of barrels or curved irons to create deep, mermaid-like waves. Hair wavers with larger barrels create deeper waves, while those with tighter barrels give more of a zig-zag effect. 

Use hair spray to enhance and hold your beach waves

Whether you opt to create beach waves with a sea salt spray or hot tools, you may want to finish the job with a hair spray to seal in those waves and make them last all day. Lightly mist your hair all over with hair spray (too much can have the opposite effect and weigh down your hair), holding the can 6 to 8 inches from your head while you do. When your hair is still moist from the spray, you can use your hands to scrunch your waves to give them more body. 

Best products for creating beach waves

Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Texturizing Sea Spray

This product works well for giving texture to fine hair and adding definition to curly or wavy hair. The lightweight formula keeps hair soft and it has a pleasant ginger scent. 

Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

Sun Bum Texturizing Sea Spray

UV protection for your strands is an added bonus with this spray, which works quite well, even on thick hair. A little goes a long way with this product, and it has a beach-inspired coconut scent. 

Sold by Amazon

Oliology Coconut Oil Beach Wave Sea Salt Mist Spray

If your tresses tend to get dry, you’ll appreciate that this product is packed with coconut oil, which combats sea salt’s drying effect. It leaves your hair soft and voluminous without feeling sticky or crunchy.

Sold by Amazon

The Beachwaver Co. Multi Barrel Beachwaver

It’s in the name: This curling iron creates beachy waves thanks to a motorized rotating barrel and a short clamp. Three wand attachments provide various wave sizes and styles. 

Sold by Beachwaver

BondiBoost Wave Wand (32-Millimeter)

To create a natural-looking wave texture, clamp your strands between this multi-barrel waver. If you prefer deeper crimps, use smaller sections of hair, and if you prefer looser waves, use wider sections. 

Sold by BondiBoost

CHI Enviro 54 Firm Hold Hair Spray

With just a few spritzes, this fast-drying and lightweight spray holds your tresses in place without weighing them down. It uses silk proteins to nourish the hair and increase shine. 

Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

Matrix Vavoom Freezing Spray

This option has strong hold to keep your style in place all day without reapplication. It works to create volume, even in fine hair. 

Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

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Talia Ergas writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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