According to celebrity hairstylist Lona Vigi — her clients include Sarah Paulson and Reese Witherspoon — frizz occurs when the hair is dry and lacks moisture. And as a result, the outer layer of your hair takes in moisture, causing the strands to swell, aka frizz. This explains why your hair might grow a few horizontal inches every time is rains outside or is humid. Those with wavy, thick or coarse hair are most prone to frizz.
Porosity, or how well your hair absorbs water, plays a major role in how moisturized (and healthy) your hair is. Hair with low porosity has a hard time absorbing water because the cuticles are compact and tightly bound, but when the hair does absorb moisture, it retains it for much longer. Although porosity isn’t always directly correlated with how healthy your hair is, low-porosity hair is typically considered to be healthier — shiny, bouncy and easy to detangle. The majority of us have medium-to-high porosity hair because of routine heat styling and color treatments. This set of hair absorbs water quickly through cracked spots on damaged cuticles but loses the moisture just as quickly through those same spots. This damage is what causes your hair to look rough, dry and frizzy.
And while some people are embracing the frizz, #frizzyhairdontcare has over 60,000 tags on Instagram, I have yet to jump on that bandwagon. My hair tends to look dryer and more damaged when my frizz acts up, so why would I spend time taming my natural hair when the humidity is about to turn me into a human chia pet? Well, as it turns out, you can manage the frizz.
On my quest for perfection, I asked the top hair stylists on the market how to tame frizz this summer:
“You definitely want to cut the dead ends off [every four to six weeks], as the hair will continue to split and make it appear frizzier. You should add moisture back in the hair with a really good deep conditioner. When styling, I would use, depending on how thick or thin your hair is, an oil mixed in with a great leave-in conditioner. I suggest washing less in the summer and just shampooing your roots and not run the shampoo down all the way through. If you have pretty curls or slight waves, I would use no heat and let it dry naturally in the summer. Rather than fight them, do a braid, top knot or put a pretty barrette in — there are so many cute hair accessories now. Also, I recommend silk pillowcases because they help fight against frizz.” — Vigi
“There are two great R+Co products that we recommend to combat frizz. Foil Frizz + Static Control Spray and the Moon Landing Anti-Humidity Spray, which also helps from getting frizzy and rough texture due to the environment. It helps to seal down the cuticle, which keeps moisture out. When you go outside, moisture gets into hair, so the product repels against keeping the hair cuticle coated.” — Garren, R+Co cofounder
“A great way to combat frizzy hair in the summer is to do a masque and keep hair hydrated. I recommend Bumble and bumble’s Quenching treatment on damp hair, wrapped with an Aquis hair turban. The turban will absorb the excess water, allowing your hair to soak in the treatment better.” — Derek Yuen, Constance Wu’s hairstylist
“Don’t over shampoo. The natural oils help tame the unwanted frizz, especially with the summer humidity. [The oilier the hair, the less frizz you will have because of oil’s conditioning properties.] Rinse your hair without shampoo to get rid of the sweat and just to refresh the hair.” — Marcus Francis, Julianne Moore’s hairstylist
“I use the ultimate anti-humidity product cocktail. My secret is to combine Virtue Moisture Defining Whip with Virtue Un-Frizz Cream.” — Xavier Valasquez, stylist at Serge Normant at John Frieda New York
“If you have hair that has a tendency to get frizzy, it really helps to not wash your hair often. Over-washing can lead to dryness, which can lead to even more frizz. When you do wash, it’s important that you’re using the right shampoo and conditioner to help minimize the frizz problem.” — Buddy Porter, stylist at Mèche Salon in Beverly Hills
“Less washing, more cold rinsing. We tend to over-wash hair, which leaves it dry and leaves the cuticle open. I tell my clients to cut back on washing. Rotate between shampooing and rinsing every other time you’re in the shower. I like to condition my ends and rinse with cold water.” — Ericka Verrett, Miranda Kerr’s hairstylist
“Virtue Lab’s Un-frizz Cream is my DREAM product for combating frizz! It’s effective yet extremely lightweight! I always apply it on towel dried hair from the mids to the ends and style as desired, whether it be air dried or blow dried in!” — Rena Calhoun, stylist at Andy LeCompte Salon in Los Angeles