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How to Wave Hair: 4 Different Ways to Achieve the Beach Waves Hair

Everything you need to rock the beach wave.

You can take the girl out of the beach, but it’s a lot harder to take the beach outta the girl—especially when sexy-looking hair is involved! To wit: Although we love ourselves a good polished, structured wave, there will always be something about beach hair waves with their distinctly light and tousled-looking structure that’s airy, light and super sophisticated. Bonus: beachy waves are easy to create and can work on virtually any hair type or hair length. To help you to create these loose, messy-looking waves, we’ve created a guide on  how to wave hair to create a beach waves look.  Read on and we’re sure you’ll be rocking beach hair in no time with all this inspiration:

Step 1

Start with Clean Hair

Prep your hair by getting it clean. Wash and condition your hair using moisture-rich shampoo and conditioner to clean your locks as well as to supply them with some hydration. Try out Dove Intensive Repair Shampoo and Conditioner.


beach waves hair on clean hair
Step 2

Prep Your Tresses

Spray your clean locks with some sea salt spray. This special formula can enhance your texture by creating volume, while giving your hair a matte sheen. Make sure that you distribute the spray evenly for optimal results.

spray sea salt spray to achieve beach waves hair
Step 3

Use a Heat Protectant

Make sure you spritz your hair with a heat protectant, like the TRESsemmé Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Sprayto ensure that your hair stays protected from the heat of your curling iron.

protect your beach waves hair with a heat protectant
Step 4

Use a Curling Iron

A curling iron will enable you to create wavy and loose curls. To start, grab a small piece of your hair as you wrap the strands in a circle around your curling iron, making sure to leave the ends free and loose.

curling iron to create beach waves hair
Step 5

Tighten for Stellar Curls

Tighten the curling iron towards your crown to develop the shape of your curls.

beach waves hair using a wand
Step 7


Enjoy your day of having low-commitment and fun beachy hair waves.

beach waves hair tutorial and tips
beach waves hair tutorial blogger-worthy
Stunning beach waves as seen on Jennifer Palpallatoc of Haute Off the Rack. Photo credit: Kristen Soileau

Step 1: Divide Your Hair

Split hair into four even sections on the top, bottom, right and left sides of the head.

Step 2: Add Some Hair Mousse.

Rake some of the Nexxus Styling Mousse Plus through one section at a time, then blow-dry your hair using a diffuser to protect against humidity and bring out your natural wave.

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Step 3: Twist Your Hair

Twist each section around itself to create a rope braid, wrap into a loose bun and secure with some bobby pins.

Step 4: Blast More Heat

For added hold and texture, blast each bun with heat from the blowdryer.

Step 5: Shake Out Your Hair

Once cooled, release the braids, and shake out with fingers for an effortless finish.

Step 1

Spray Some Sea Salt Spray

To achieve a textured beach wave hairstyle (without any heat!), spray some salt spray, like Love Beauty and Planet Coconut Milk & White Jasmine Salt Spritz Texture Sprayliberally all over your hair.

sea salt spray for beach waves hair
Step 2

Scrunch It Up

Use your hands to help you to create natural-looking beach waves. Scrunch your hair upward until you get the loose beachy waves you desire. Apply some mousse for additional hold.

beach waves hair tutorial scrunch hair
Step 3

Lock Your Waves In

Set your waves in place with a holding spray, like TRESemmé Beauty-Full Volume Flexible Finish Hairspray to keep your hairstyle in place. This product will ensure that your hair waves have a flexible hold.

beach waves pink colored hair final look
beach waves hair on long hair
Rock your length with fun beach waves. Photo credit: Verity Jane Smith

Step 1: Wash Hair

The best way to have long wavy hair that lasts is to prep while your strands are still damp. Wash and condition your hair, then gently towel-dry.

Step 2: Apply a Thermal Protectant

Use a spray that shields hair from heat damage, such as Dove Style + Care Smooth and Shine Heat Protection Spray, before blowdrying hair on a medium setting. For extra bounce, use a diffuser attachment and aim the nozzle from the ends upwards. Blow-dry your hair until it’s at least 90% dry, or just barely damp to the touch.

Step 3: Coat Your Hair Lightly with a Texturizing Spray

Holding hair around 12 inches from your head, spray an even coating of a wave-creating agent on your lengths for a beachy, salted look. Our faves is Bed Head by TIGI Queen Beach Salt Infused Texture Spray!

Step 4: Part Your Hair into Sections

Using the end of a rat-tail comb, section off the top part of your hair from one ear across to the other, divide into left and right sections and clamp each up with a duckbill clip. Begin to divide the bottom part into three sections—left, right and center—and clamp off with clips too.

Step 5: Twist Sections Around a Closed Flat Iron

A flat iron can usually give a chunkier, more deliberately tousled look to wavy hair versus a rounded curling iron. Working on the bottom sections first, take one section and insert it briefly between the two tongs before clamping the tongs shut. Next, curl hair around the closed tongs—essentially using them as a curling wand—while gently tugging hair through in bursts, creating a more angular bend. For help, check out this nifty tutorial on how to best create wavy hair with a flat iron.

Step 6: Save the Hairline for Last

The hairline is a crucial section when creating wavy hair, as it’s the area that people notice the most. After you’re done curling your bottom sections, unclamp one side of your top sections and repeat the curling process with a flat iron: Insert it between the tongs to lock in the hair, then close the tongs and curl hair over and around while tugging. Ed’s tip: Twist hair away from the face for a more flattering look.

Step 7: Tousle!

Here’s the fun part: After all sections are evenly curled, gently tug each section down to loosen the spiral. Next, run fingers vertically through the hair to further separate each spiral and create a messier, beachy wavy hair feel.

Step 8: Finish with Hairspray

Lock in your new beach waves hair look with a hairspray that keeps your look in place while also keeping strands from frizzing out. To make sure you’re spraying hair evenly, form the capital letter L with your arms when spraying.

1. Create Them at Night

To achieve longer-lasting beachy waves, you can also start at bedtime. This involves creating tight mini-twists throughout your hair using a flat iron. Hold the twists together with small ponytails and spritz your buns with some sea salt spray. In the morning, you will have some gorgeous-looking waves that last all day.

2. Use Mousse for Some Help

In general, hairspray should be sufficient to lock in your beach waves, but if your hair is prone to falling limp, you may need some styling mousse like the TRESemmé Flawless Curls Extra Hold Mousse. This product can also work to help revive any flat or limp ringlets, as it gives some bounce to your strands. After you apply the product, scrunch the mousse and your hair together as you go for bigger, rejuvenated curls.

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