If you’ve ever spent any time during the summer in New York City or another sticky city like Florida, you know the effects of muggy weather on your hair. From the moment you step outside, it’s like a wine subscription you didn’t know you signed up for until it shows up on your doorstep. We’re pretty sure we didn’t agree to this. Fortunately, taming frizzy hair may actually be easier than canceling your monthly box of pinot (which, to be fair, we wouldn't want to do). Keep reading: There is a resolution for frizzy hair in moist climate.
For all of the other times when the weather is just fine, but your hair isn’t cooperating, it’s worth understanding what frizz is in the first place. “This is a question most people don’t really ask or know the answer to,” says Windle & Moodie’s co-founder Neil Moodie. “Frizz is generally caused by a raised cuticle layer. The hair looks dry and frizzy when the cuticle isn't lying flat. When the cuticle is flat, hair looks smoother.”
Also, people with naturally curly hair naturally have frizz, explains Neil. “Curly hair is drier than straight hair because the natural oils produced by our scalp can’t travel as easily down the hair shaft like on straight hair. Curly hair can also look frizzy if the hairs haven’t been bonded together to create a defined curl.”
So what’s a curly-haired, or humid weather–bound girl to do? Ahead, we asked experts like Drybar founder Alli Webb and Ramirez Tran Salon hairstylist Erin McKay their tips for smoothing frizzy hair. Keep scrolling for Erin’s number one tip (spoiler: use leave-in conditioner—but did you know there’s a correct way to apply it?), and a cohesive guide on how to fix frizzy hair for real. Finally!
DETANGLE IN THE SHOWER
“With naturally curly hair, the first rule is never to brush the hair when it’s dry, apart from before shampooing,” says Windle & Moodie’s co-founder Neil Moodie. Instead of brushing or combing hair, detangle hair while washing with conditioner suggests Dhiran Mistry, master stylist at Spoke & Weal in New York City.
APPLY LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER LIKE THIS
For happy, frizz-free hair, Erin McKay says her number one tip is moisture. She suggests leave-in conditioners, oils, and creams. “Apply to wet hair a few inches away from your roots through your ends.” The keyword here is wet. Mistry explains, “The more dry the hair becomes without product to hold it together, the more it separates, and that separation turns into frizz.” Noted.
THOROUGHLY DRY YOUR HAIR—IT MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE
Drybar founder Alli Webb tells Byrdie, “If your hair is prone to frizz, chances are you probably aren’t getting it 100% dry when blow-drying. Even the slightest trace of moisture will cause hair with texture or wave to frizz.”
HOLD THE BLOW-DRYER DOWN THE HAIR SHAFT
“The way we style our hair is a big factor for frizz control,” shares Moodie. “When blow-drying hair, whether it be straight or drying it from curly to straight, always remember to blow the air of the dryer down the hair shaft, away from the roots to the ends, following the brush with the dryer. If you blow the hair upward toward the roots, this will cause the cuticle to raise.”
ADD SMOOTHING OIL TO FINISH
Moodie suggests using smoothing oil or a little W&M Invisible Day & Night Cream to smooth down any flyaways without leaving a residue.
IF YOU CAN’T BEAT ‘EM…
“Sometimes in a moist climate, we can't avoid frizz,” shares Webb. “So I always tell people to work with it, not against it! Opt for waves with texture so when frizz does creep in, no one will even notice.”
How do you tame frizzy hair? Is there a product you can’t live without? Share your tips below!