Here’s a little updated video on how I style my shoulder length hair – regular readers have seen this all before, I’m not sure much has changed.
The Cloud Nine curling wand is still the tool of choice (here*) – it’s just the right diameter for the curls I like to make (they quickly drop into waves) and it doesn’t have a clamp to negotiate with. I don’t get on with the tongs with a clamp at all.
I choose to curl rather than wave because if I just wave the hair, by the end of the first day it’s almost straight ,just with better texture and volume. Curling it gives me at least a day or two of full, sexy waves and then a day or too more of texture. If I use enough dry shampoo and try not to touch my roots I can get four full days out of one torturous curling session!
(It’s not that bad. I just get aching arms from holding the wand in the air, which is testament to how unfit I am. Or maybe not unfit: untoned. My arms have always been weak and flimsy; it was my intention, when I was in my twenties, to really buff them up, GI jane-style, and do pull-ups like Sarah Connor in The Terminator but I think I managed about four pull-ups, once, before I decided that arm strength wasn’t for me.)
After curling the whole lot – it’s important to section off tiny strands because if you try to do chunks that are too big they don’t curl so well – I spray my roots with Living Proof Dry Volume spray (here online*) and then the whole thing with Elnett hairspray (online here*.)
Dry Volume Spray is a hair miracle in a can: spritz roots and massage in and BOOM. Massive volume without any crunch or stickiness. It’s fast becoming my “can’t live without” hair product. Elnett is for holding the waves. Again, no stickiness or crispiness, this just brushes out if you need it to, though I like to just layer it over a number of days until I’m left with a huge, grippy mass of hair on top of my head.
Any questions, let me know in the comments. My hair, by the way, is cut to all one length just at shoulder level in a sort of blunt-ended long bob. No layers.
This is how I style my mid length hair now that it’s slightly shorter than usual – it sits just below the shoulder. Obviously I use the word style in its very loosest sense because I’m about as wieldy with heated appliances as an elephant would be with a crochet hook, but I’ve just about mastered the art of putting some waves in without burning huge welts in my head and so I thought I’d share.
(It’s incredibly similar in vibe and “technique” to this post here if you’d like to see my version from a few years ago.)
I use the Cloud Nine curling wand (it’s here online*). I like it because it doesn’t have one of those clamps on it, the long section of the tong that can be opened and closed. I hate those because a) they are too taxing on my very basic coordination skills and b) they look (to me) a little bit like the speculum they use when you have a smear test.
So yes, it’s just one long heated round-ended bit of metal, really, and you wind each section of hair around it and hold on until your fingers start to smoulder through the heatproof gloves**.
(**this is not official advice. You’re supposed to hold the hair around for a limited amount of time so that you don’t a) damage your hair and b) singe off all of your fingertips, but I have no idea what that amount of time is. I suppose you just have to experiment…)
There’s an art to the hair-winding. You section off small pieces of hair and then wind all of them away from your face, or maybe it’s supposed to be towards your face… but it should be clear to you by now that I have no idea what I am doing and that I just wing it. Sometimes the hair turns out OK, other times I look slightly deranged for a day or two until the curls drop out. It’s a risky business.
The best part of the whole process is the day after. Delayed gratification. On my bleached, roughened hair, the slept-in curls suddenly go huge and voluminous and I get a lovely, sexy texture that has body and shape but no real discernible curl. So on day 1 I have the full curl, which is fun, on day 2 I have the sexy texture and then it stays sexily textured for around two or three more days, throughout which I add more dry shampoo than you’d think would be possible.
On day five I usually can’t resist the urge to wash it. It starts to feel like old felt. I then give it a day off and start the whole process again. I just think that the curl/wave/texture thing works really well on this length hair. Shorter would actually be even better, but I can’t bear not being able to tie it up so it’s not an option for me anymore. I’ve learned the hard way with that!
So that’s my current mid length hair style. The long fringe bit is annoying – can’t wait for that to grow out! – but it’s relatively easy to tong that bit separately and just ease it into some kind of gentle face-framer or (on energetic days) power quiff.
This wasn’t even supposed to be a written post, I was just going to bung the video up, so please do watch that for a more sensible explanation of how I currently style my hair!
See also: How I Style My Party Hair
Wearing: red Adidas track pants, bought here* and a Boden cashmere jumper from a few years ago.