When heat and humidity strike, the last thing you want to do is spend an eternity styling your hair, only for it to end in the F word: frizz. But that doesn't mean you need to settle for a ho-hum hair day. These ten hairstyles are quick, simple, and not the least bit boring.
Forget perfectly sculpted curls: The best summer waves are laid-back. To capture Saldana's easygoing look, hairstylist Kerrie Urban recommends making a middle part and blowing hair dry with a smoothing cream (she loves Moroccanoil Hydrating Styling Cream). Spritz hair with a light-hold spray, such as Bumble and Bumble Thickening Spray: "It will give hair a little grip and help the curls keep their shape," says Urban. Next, take a one-and-a-half-inch section of hair in front and wrap it around a large-barrel curling iron, like BaByliss Pro GT Gold Titanium 1 1/2" Spring Curling Iron (twisting away from the face), and repeat on the other side. For the rest of the head, curl similarly large, random sections, starting at the midshaft. Finish with a light mist of shine spray.
We'll say it again: Summer hair is meant to look effortless. And no one does effortless quite like Jennifer Lawrence. Begin by working a volumizing mousse (Urban loves Fekkai Full Volume Mousse) through damp hair, then flip your head upside down to blow it dry. If you have naturally curly hair, use a diffuser. When your hair is 100 percent dry—"That's the key to eliminating frizz," says Urban—bring your head back up, and create a side part with your fingers. Using a one-inch curling iron, wrap hair around the wand in different directions: Alternate with some sections going toward the face and some going away for a slightly disheveled effect.
Beachy waves are just as much of a summer essential as SPF (well, almost). And they're easy to get, no matter your texture. If your hair is curly, prep towel-dried hair with a frizz-blocking cream, like Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream, and blow-dry with a diffuser until it's 95 percent dry. Let it air-dry the rest of the way, and you're all set. If your hair is naturally straight, blow-dry hair smooth and twist it into a few different braids. Press over them with a flatiron—this will set the waves for when you untie them—and top with a lightweight hair spray, such as Dove Style + Care Strength & Shine Flexible Hold Hairspray. Then take them out. Pull a messy part with your fingers, and for extra body, haphazardly curl a few sections with a one-inch iron.
A no-brainer for hot, sticky days, a ponytail is the easiest (and quickest) way to sweep hair off your neck. We're not talking about the ponytail to casually toss your hair into when you go Spinning, though: Volume at the crown keeps Panettiere's looking fresh and polished. Once hair is blown out, tease the top layer (between the temples) and smooth it over with a comb. Sweep a ponytail into place with a nylon-and-boar-bristle brush, securing it with a hair elastic at the top of the crown. "High ponytails are great for drawing out cheekbones," Urban says. "They lift everything up." To disguise the elastic, take a section of hair from the ponytail—the width depends on the thickness of your hair, but aim for a half inch—wrap it around the base, and slide a hairpin through to keep in place.
Lively's ponytail is a little lower, a little tousled—and has a whole lot of sex appeal. If your hair is naturally wavy, enhance your texture with a salt spray, like Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray. If it's straight, wrap sections of hair around a one-and-a-half-inch curling iron to add body. Create a side part with your fingers, and tease hair at the back of the head with a comb. Next, gather your hair into a ponytail and secure it with an elastic at the nape of your neck. Pull a section of hair from your ponytail and tease it for extra texture before wrapping it around the elastic. The last step: "Pull out a few pieces around your face to make it look softer," Urban says. "This one's great for girls with lot of layers—it's effortless."
Mixed Textures Ponytail
This version swings both ways: Sleek in front and textured in back, Aniston's ponytail belongs at a cocktail party, not cheerleading practice. Mist volumizing spray (Urban loves Ojon Advance Thickening Spray) over damp hair and blow it dry with a round brush. As you dry the section of hair along the hairline, pull it forward. "It will drape more naturally this way," Urban says. Next, create a side part, back-comb the crown, and fix hair into a ponytail at the middle of the back of the head—leave out a face-framing section in front, and wrap a section of hair around the base. "If you have highlights, wrap a lighter section of hair around the ponytail to hide the elastic—it'll blend really well and look seamless," Urban says.
A swept-back bun is a saving grace as temperatures rise. But that doesn't mean that it's merely functional: Mara's version is full of volume—and looks sophisticated. Gather hair into a ponytail at the crown using your fingers and tease it lightly with a comb. "It's OK if there's a little frizz back there," says Urban. "It keeps it soft and pretty." Wrap hair into a bun and secure with U-shaped pins. To tame any flyaways, spritz your fingers with hair spray and smooth them along the hairline. "You don't want to look as though you're coated in hair spray," says Urban.
Colorful silk scarves add an old-school, Italian-holiday feel—no passport necessary. "There's a little indication of the '60s, a little Riviera feeling," says hairstylist Guido, who styled the hair at Dolce & Gabbana. He prepped hair with Redken Aerate 08 Bodifying Cream-Mousse and blew it dry. He then tied in a scarf, leaving a little hair visible along the hairline and covering the tops of the ears (though you can easily make this the last step, too). Guido rolled hair up into a French twist—this how-to is easy to follow—but instead of tucking the ends into the roll, he folded them under and fanned them across the top of the head. "It's very light, very untheatrical," he said.
Piecey Fishtail Braid
Fishtail braids look elaborate, but all they take is a little practice—and we think their carefree, bohemian feel is worth it. (Here's a good how-to video for beginners). Blow hair dry with a texturizing spray (we like BlowPro Beach Blow Texturizing Mist), and make a side part with your fingers. "You don't want it to look perfect," says Urban. Pull hair over your shoulder and start braiding, weaving in sections tightly. "It's always easier to go back and loosen it up," she says. When you reach the end, secure with a clear elastic, and mist the braid with light-hold hair spray. Then gently tug on the braid and pull out a few pieces for an easy, lived-in look.
Skinny braids add a pretty detail to an otherwise straightforward chignon. But because they can look messy if they're frizzy, this style is ideal for those with naturally straight or fine hair, Urban says. Before you begin braiding, work in a strong-hold gel (Nexxus Exxtra Gel Superior Hold Sculpting Gel is one of our favorites) and part hair down the center. Starting at your temples, weave a French braid about a quarter inch wide, keeping it close to the hairline. Instead of wrapping sections over each other, wrap them under for a cornrow effect. Wrap it around your ear, and braid until you reach the ends, securing it with a tiny clear elastic. Repeat on the other side. Once you're finished, twist hair into a low bun, and mist with hair spray.