In recent years the runway has embraced women's natural texture, making an air dry more fashion-forward than ever. If anything, the change in seasons is inspiration enough to want to wash and go. Wavy and curly hair types, take notes—below we spill five air dry tips and hair products to master the wash-and-wear way of life that today is easier than ever to pull off.
1. Intensify Your Treatment Mask
Often times, the source of frizzy air dried waves or curls is a damaged hair cuticle, the outermost part of the hair shaft. Everything from the quality of your shampoo to how you treat your strands when they’re wet can irritate and damage the cuticle. Which is why it’s important to not only use shampoos free of parabens, phthalates, and silicones but also to hydrate your hair with a deep treatment mask. To lay the frizzy-free foundation for a flawless air dry, your work starts in the shower. Apply OUAI Treatment Masque (now in a tube!) to hair after shampooing with either OUAI Repair Shampoo or OUAI Curl Shampoo. Getting the most out of the Treatment Masque means ringing out your hair well after shampooing, and once evenly applied from mid-length to ends, staying in the shower. The steam of the shower will help the restorative formula’s artichoke leaf extract and amino acid blend penetrate the cuticle better, making for a salon-worthy deep treatment mask.
2. Layer Wash-and-Wear Products
You wouldn’t bask in the sun without lathering on SPF. The same applies to you air dry—stepping outside sans a wash-and-wear formula is a big no-no for curly, frizzy, and wavy hair types alike. The key to keeping your wash-and-go curls and waves in formation is layering products in the correct order. First, start by applying OUAI Leave In Conditioner to damp hair. The healthy hair essential will detangle without a hitch plus make it so that frizz keeps calm once your hair is dry. Next, massage in OUAI Air Dry Foam to encourage your natural wave pattern and soften the hair, thanks to a blend of kale protein and carrot protein. Once your locks are layered with the right products, you’re ready to go. For even more tips on layering products, we put together this Hair Product Cocktail Guide.
3. Create Loose Braids
On mornings you’re in a rush to get out the door, braids and OUAI Wave Spray are your air dry savers. Spray towel-dried hair with OUAI Wave Spray then loosely braid about six sections of your and secure each with a Blax Snag-Free Elastic. Our weightless rice protein-infused texture mist creates piecey texture and separation without crunch or frizz once you undo the braids. To perfect the air dry, call on OUAI Matte Pomade or OUAI Hair Oil to tame frizz and add shine.
4. Brush Once Only
The bane of any air dry diehard’s existence? Puffy, frizzy volume. The hack for keeping waves and curls defined until wash day, surprisingly, is avoiding your brush. Reserve the brush for wash days only, ensuring you’re brushing the ends first then brushing from roots to ends. The reverse method prevents knots and breakage. Consult our hair brush guide to find the right one for you. Once your waves air dry, stay away from the brush and avoid twirling your hair as the habit can create tangles and split ends.
5. Polish When Dry
For a truly flawless air dry, the last step is arguably the most important—banishing frizz and lackluster color. Our secret weapon and the cherry on top of any wash-and-wear hairstyle is OUAI Finishing Crème. Like lotion for your hair, the lightweight smart keratin-infused formula gives fine-medium hair the lived-in look and shine that takes a good air dry to a gorgeous air dry. Work a dab through dry ends to rehydrate.
Shop the air dry essentials below