A fresh blowout is akin to other instantly gratifying acts of self-care, like a meditation session or a deep-tissue massage. With the turn of a round brush, it’s amazing how quickly your mood can shift in a single styling session. The problem is that as the days wear on, there’s a direct correlation between a flattened blowout and your overall demeanor, as trivial as it may seem. An oily scalp, tossing on your pillow, and general daily activity will take its toll on your strands, which doesn’t feel great after spending a good amount of money and time on an appointment. But according to celebrity hairstylist Emma Willis, whose client roster includes the likes of Ashley Greene and Kristin Cavallari, if you equip yourself with the right tools and styling methods, you can extend the life of your blowout, and in return, get more bang for your buck.
Meet the Expert
Emma Willis is a celebrity hairstylist, makeup artist, and men’s groomer based in Los Angeles. Originally from England, she trained at the prestigious London College of Fashion, where the inspiration for her future career was born. Willis is best known for her work on television production sets, and with Hollywood's leading names, providing both hair and makeup for stars like JoJo Fletcher, Tayshia Adams, and Giuliana Rancic. She is also a part of the Mane Addicts Creator Collective, founded by Jen Atkin.
What tips and tricks can you give Byrdie readers to make their hair actually last longer?
Willis has a four-pronged approach to extending the lifespan of your blowout, which starts the minute after your appointment is over. “Firstly, and once blown out and styled, stop touching, brushing, and playing with your hair,” she urges.
“Secondly, make sure to pull all your hair up and back on your pillowcase when you sleep; even into a soft silk large scrunchie (as you don’t want anything too tight [to prevent creasing]). Scooping it loosely on top of your head can also work depending on your hair type, just as long as your hair is not under your neck/shoulder.” She suggests investing in a silk pillowcase as an extra line of defense.
“Thirdly, keep the water lukewarm while rinsing off in the shower. The hotter you take your showers—no matter how quick you think you can be—any steam and excess moisture in the air will get into the hair. This, in turn, can dramatically affect next-day hair after having a blowout. Color-treated hair, overall, will be slightly dryer throughout (even if to the touch it doesn’t feel this way) so it generally can hold blowouts and styles longer in more environments than virgin hair.
“Lastly, be sure when reviving your style to use the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium 1” Curling Wand for added bends and structure and the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Thermal Paddle Brush for smoothness. Keep product to a minimum as it will end up having the opposite effect.”
What do you do for your clients to help their looks last until day two?
Willis says prep work is the key to the perfect blowout. “I love to use a volume or structure spray and will literally spritz it from root to tips. Always alternate between hot and cool temperatures, ‘setting’ the bends, waves, roots, etc. with the blow dryer and hot tools, etc.” If you’re giving yourself a blowout at home, consider investing in a dryer with a “cool shot” setting, like BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Classic Professional Pistol-Grip Dryer. This way, you can hit your style with cold air to seal the cuticle, which in turns helps to strengthen the hair and keep your look intact.
How do you quickly touch up a look to make it look like it did the day before?
For oily roots, a trusty dry shampoo is your best friend, along with another pass of the blow-dryer. Willis recommends spritzing on your favorite product before blowing out your hair using the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Classic Professional Pistol-Grip Dryer. “Alternate the dryer between its hot and cool settings and you’ll have a win-win combination.”
What tools do you keep in your kit for your A-list clients?
When it comes to blowouts, Willis has a clear favorite. “BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Classic Professional Pistol-Grip Dryer,” she explains. “I love this dryer as it packs a punch with power, and it’s lightweight.” For more control, Willis says she holds onto the longer nose of the dryer rather than at the base of the tool.
For waves and curls, Willis turns to the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Curling Wand in the ¾ inch barrel size. “I love the effortlessness of this curling iron and how super easy it is to work with, plus the design and colour of it is super cool so it’s great for a pretty setup too.”
For flyaways, she recommends smoothing them with the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Prima2000 3/4" Stainless Steel Mini Iron, adding that it’s “incredible for restyling tiny strands.”
Finally, Willis is a fan of the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Thermal Paddle Brush “for quick smoothness and added volume at the root”. Her technique is to flip sections horizontally, especially near the root, for added movement.
What tools specifically help with reviving body and volume?
“A hair-dryer and round brush used on the roots and midshaft of the hair work best,” advises Willis. To do this, she suggests wrapping dry sections around a round brush in alternating directions and directing heat from the dryer onto the strands just as you would if the hair were wet. Finish with some dry texture spray from mid-lengths to eds, and you’re good to go.
What tools specifically can help with restyling/reshaping the front and ends?
Wills turns to the BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium 1” Curling Wand to curl front sections after working a round brush and dryer through the hair “for extra smoothness and shine and [to] really lock in the shape.” She advises letting the hair cool before touching or brushing through to maintain shape, and to make sure to curl the front sections away from your face for instant volume.
There you have it. With a few key tools in your arsenal as well as some tried-and-tested styling products, your blowout can live to see a few more days. Just remember to take a gentle approach and go easy on the sprays to help maintain full volume and vitality.
Shop Emma’s go-to tools below!