Hair spray often presents us with this catch-22: We want something that will firmly keep whatever hairstyle we have in place, but we don't want it to be so stiff that our hair can't naturally move. Formulas have improved over the years to give us what we want, but at what cost?
We know the price isn't always reflective of how good a product really is, and we're always down to save a buck or two (or a hundred) when we shop. We asked hairstylists for the best drugstore hair sprays they actually use. Scroll down to see what the pros had to say.
"My favorite drugstore hairspray is definitely Pantene Extra Strong Hold Hairspray," says Giovanni Vaccaro, Glamsquad creative director. "I love it because it has a strong enough hold but doesn't leave residue, and it smells nice. For best results, use this by spraying the product six to eight inches away on fully dry, styled hair."
"This is the best lightweight, workable hair spray," celebrity hairstylist Bryce Scarlett once told us.
"I love the new Tresemmé compressed micro mist hair spray because it's so lightweight, brushable, and easy to use," says celebrity hairstylist Justine Marjan. "I can easily layer the hair spray by itself or with other hold levels to customize for every look and hair type. I like how it comes in a new, sleeker can that contains the same amount of hair spray with less gas (so it's better for the environment) and smaller particles that can easily penetrate the hair instead of sitting on the top and getting stiff or sticky.
It offers style without stiffness."
"It's a smoothing hair spray that helps create an instant barrier against frizz and creates beautiful shine and bounce," celebrity hairstylist Adir Abergel once told us.
"This hair spray is great because it's light but still gives me hold and more control of the hair," says hairstylist Emily Miranda.
This lightweight hair spray won't overwhelm you with its strength. It gives your hair great shine as well as fights off humidity for when it gets warmer.
It provides a 48-hour hold to keep your hair style locked in place but is still workable. It's also humidity resistant.
"When I need for hair or wigs to be fixed into place without moving, I always go for this '80s throwback spray," celebrity hairstylist John Ruggiero once told us. "There's nothing that gives hold quite like it. It's awful for the health of your hair [in the long run], but if that's not a concern and you want gravity-defying hold, I highly suggest it.”
To keep updos in place, we love this hair spray from Paul Mitchell. It's strong and gives hair a nice shiny finish.
Now we've proven that you don't have to fork over a ton of cash to find the best hair spray. Happy styling.