Somewhere between tightly-curled ringlets and sleek, straight strands, there lies a very special sweet spot: wavy hair.
Maybe we’re biased, but having natural waves seems like a gift from the universe. You already have the texture everyone else desperately tries to recreate with hot tools. What’s more, your bedhead also double as office-appropriate styling.
If you’re a wavy girl (or one who’s willing to recreate the texture with a curling wand), don’t take your shiny, voluminous hair for granted. We’re here to provide you with inspiration so you never get tired of playing with those near-perfect locks.
Ready for some of our favorite wavy hairstyles?
Perhaps the most in-demand of all wavy hairstyles is the beach wave. It’s so popular that there’s even a specific kind of curling wand named for the look. If you’re interested in looking like you spent the morning surfing the waves, beachy waves (boosted with a little sea salt spray) are the way to do it.
Extra-Long Bombshell Curls
Are you more of a lingerie model than a sandy butt cheeks kind of girl? That’s fine by us. To achieve these bombshell-level curls, you’ll need a large-barreled curling iron and plenty of clips. Be sure to finger-comb through your waves to make sure they’re not too perfect. Tousled, slightly messy ringlets are key to this look.
Half-Ponytail Bun with Waves
If your hair naturally dries with waves, the most challenging part of your morning routine is probably getting your hairline and part to look polished. Instead of fighting with your strands, why not use them to your advantage? Pull your hair into a half ponytail, then twist and shape your messy bun before pinning it in place.
Sleek with Center Part
There’s no cardinal rule when it comes to wearing waves, so why not mix it up occasionally? Using your blow dryer on nearly dry, clean hair, aiming the nozzle straight down to tame flyaways and prevent frizz. Style as usual, making sure you finish the look with a little shine spray for dramatic effect.
Old Hollywood Waves with Side Part
Glam waves never go out of style, and with good reason. To achieve this look, you’ll blow dry hair completely before curling it away from your face in one-inch sections. After each ringlet, roll the curl back up into itself and clip it in place. Once the style has cooled, release the pins and brush through the hair.
Blunt Medium-Length Cut
Blunt haircuts are most often seen on models, and with good reason: It takes plenty of time in the hair salon chair to maintain that sharp line. Still, if you’re particularly good with scissors or are searching for way to refresh your ’do, a medium-length style with blunt edges is an excellent choice.
Nobody has a love-hate relationship with air-dried texture quite the way wavy girls do. To maximize your waves and minimize time spent under the blow dryer, make sure you’re doing everything possible to defeat frizz. Pro tip: Instead of globbing conditioner onto your ends in the shower, try combing the product through with a wide-toothed comb. You should see a difference immediately.
Twisted Half-Ponytail Updo
If you have an important meeting but can’t muster up the energy to fully wash and style your locks, try this half-ponytail style on for size. Start with second day waves, spritzing dry shampoo on the roots to minimize the appearance of oiliness and provide texture. Then, pull a piece of hair from above either ear. Create a half ponytail, then twist the style.
Rope Braid (Plus No-Heat Waves)
Our favorite kind of hairstyle is one that makes our manes look even better at the end of the day. For the ultimate day-to-night ’do, follow our tutorial for a two-strand rope braid. Wear the style to work or class, then let it loose in time for your night plans. The result will be gentle, natural-looking waves.
If you’re trying to add more movement to your wavy hair, few styles do it better than choppy layers. These shorter pieces are lighter, which means they’ll curl more easily. The mix of waves and short ends is truly gorgeous and fresh-feeling. Need a seasonal refresh on your hair? Choppy waves are your new best friend.
Side Swept Long Waves
Long, wavy hair is elegant, feminine, and timeless. If you’re interested in putting your waves to work with this ladylike look, sleep with your hair in a loose bun tied with a no-crease elastic. In the morning, a little texturizing spray and a deep side part will have you looking like an Italian movie star on her day off.
Voluminous Pixie Cut
Have you ever wondered why it seems harder to keep your waves as your mane grows longer? It’s probably because your length is weighing your curls down. If you’re seriously interested in helping your waves reach their full potential, consider a pixie cut. The cropped style will show off your natural texture without tons of work or extra product.
Creating the perfect ponytail is an art form. The hair professionals might have three assistants and an array of tools available, but our version is almost as good. Create a half ponytail at the high point of your head, then bring the rest of your hair into a ponytail just beneath the first one. Backcomb your top tail so that it completely covers the one below. The finished style should look as if you have the thickest, waviest hair to ever grow from a human head.
Lob with Barely-There Waves
If you’re already wearing medium-length or short hair, you’re probably in an unofficial relationship with your curling wand. Instead of creating full ringlets and finger combing them out every day, try creating a few strategic bends on each strand. Spray your mane with texturizing spray and run your fingers through it. The result should be effortless-looking texture.
Wavy Ponytail with Clip
Styling your hair isn’t mandatory, especially if you’re skilled at repurposing your waves. Choose a sleek, modern hair accessory (we’re big fans of matte metal barrettes) and clip your waves into a ponytail at the base of your neck.