As colder weather creeps in (and fashion month rages on), out come the hats. This year, the options are plentiful: Stores and Instagram alike are packed with bucket hats, beanies, fedoras, and everything in between. But while summer head-toppers pair well with wind-strewn and salt-water-soaked strands, fashionable cold-weather hats call for a little more planning. After all, the goal is to prevent that dreaded “hat hair,” or basically what happens when you are wearing a hat all day — kinks and dents — and skip right into good hair that shines even when you take your beanie out.
If your commitment to hats runs deep, it might be worth opting for a cut that will shine under your chosen headpiece. It’s something that Los Angeles-based hairstylist Larisa Love considers when working with clients such as Millie Bobby Brown, styling their locks and then covering them back up with a cowboy hat or beret. “The best haircuts for wearing a hat would be to the length of your collarbone or longer,” says Love, since the medium-to-long strands will be weighed-down enough to fall naturally below the brim. “The shorter the hair, the more the hat will [cause] the hair to stick out.”
No matter what you are working with, here is what to consider.
1. Get Wavy and Add Volume
Hair will move if you are taking a hat on and off, so stick to styles that will benefit from a little agitation. Effortless waves make sure a little tousle when you take your hat off — like un chapeau— looks intentional. Love opts to curl ends with a flatiron, like the GHD Classic 1 Inch Styler and spritzing the look with hairspray (try Living Proof Flex Shaping Hairspray) for extra hold. Focus on the strands that will fall below your hat, leaving the hair closest to your scalp a little looser. Need to add some body to limp, second-day strands? “Joico’s Body Shake Texturizing Finisher is great for adding texture to the hair,” says Love. Another option: a small blast of dry shampoo.
2. Consider Sizing Up
If you are working with more strands than most — or particularly curly hair — you will want a hat with some room or adjustability. “I would suggest wearing a hat that is fitted for your head correctly and not too tight so that it gives the hair room to move,” says Love. If your hats usually leave a ring around your hair and head, size up. Baseball hats with adjustable straps just may become your new best friend.
3. Go Easy on The Styling Products to Prevent Frizz
Any extra balms or pastes will end up on the inside of your band. “I would suggest using Joico’s Blonde Life Brilliant Glow Brightening Oil, which adds moisture and allows the hair to be frizz-free,” says Love. If you still look like you have stuck your finger in an electric socket, consider a quick side-braid — it will keep hair contained and look intentional. You might also avoid particularly static-prone fabrics, such as wool.
4. Focus on Hold
Keep short strands from sticking out by locking hair in place with hairpins. You might even consider tiny pigtails, or, if the hair is long enough, French braids sticking out from under a trendy bucket or cowboy hat. Then, mist hair with a thin layer of Ouai Texturizing Hair Spray to keep everything where it should be.
5. Show Off Natural Curls
Curly types look best when a hat was placed with purpose, rather than a soft, slouchy beanie which can lead to a mushroom effect. “If you have curly hair, I would suggest wearing your hat upright so you can show the beautiful curls while still getting the look you want,” says Love. Hair naturally coiled? Consider softening curls with a flatiron or blow dryer, like the Dyson Supersonic, or opting for a side braid.