A Guide To Getting Non-Crunchy Waves When You Have Straight Hair

Photo: Via @liesjerose
Ever since I ditched the dyed black, heavy-fringed hair of my 2006 emo phase, I've yearned for beachy waves. You know, the fresh-from-the-sea or just-rolled-out-of-bed nonchalance of wavy hair. From Patti Smith's shoulder-skimming shag to Haim's long tousled locks, I'm tormented by women who effortlessly wear their waves with style. Why? Because the grass is always greener. I have friends with curly hair who straighten it to within an inch of its frazzled life. We're just never satisfied with the card we've been dealt. Still, that hasn't stopped me from seeking The Perfect Waves.
Now, thanks to the looks presented on AW17's catwalks, the textured style is dominating this season's hair trends. From Fendi to Dries Van Noten via Chloé and Alexander Wang, models embraced their natural movement and soft curls. Just one glimpse of the flowing locks of Stephanie Broek and Lindsey Holland on Instagram is enough to push me over the edge. And don't think I haven't tried. I choose not to think about the amount of pub money I've spent on salt and texturising sprays that leave my hair feeling more crunchy than covetable.
So how can I achieve the Birth of Venus-esque hair of my dreams? Sam Burnett, owner and creative director of London salon Hare & Bone, is here to convince me.
Sam, will I ever have the loose waves I'm looking for?
“Yes! A simple way to achieve soft (non-crunchy) waves is by applying KMS Moist Repair Revival Creme to towel-dried hair before you go to bed, pulling into a high or low ponytail. Next, split the pony in two, rope braid the hair, tidy around base and secure with strong pins or a hair elastic. Then, pull out in the morning.”
Should I focus on post-wash styling, or do curling shampoos and conditioners work?
“They absolutely do. To maintain healthy, structured curls or waves, my go-to is KMS Moist Repair Cleansing Conditioner. It works as an in-between product that cleanses and absorbs the natural oil from the hair but doesn’t leave the hair dry. It’s perfect for holding the texture and shape in place, for a more lived-in feel.”
And which products should I be using after I've washed my hair?
“Begin with nourishing hair oil – my favourite is Kérastase Elixir Ultime. Run this through the hair from the mid-lengths to ends. For soft waves, I keep the curls in place with KMS Curl Up Bounce Back Spray, which is an innovative styling treatment that activates the shape for a longer lasting hold and structure.”
So there we have it. According to Sam, it's all about preserving moisture while holding the shape of your curls. Another thing I've learned along the way? The amount of product to use. Curls and waves will be weighed down by excessive use; you really only need a 5p coin-worth of each. Click through to see the products I'm toting for natural-looking waves. And bring on AW17 – my hair is ready to bounce.