The Anatomy of the Perfect Blow-Dry
Have you ever had an experience that turns your entire life upside-down? I just had one. And yes, I’m being dramatic because it only had to do with my hair, but as I’ve mentioned before, my hair is very important to my general sense of self. Hence, this blow-dry made me rethink everything. I’ve been doing my hair the same way for years (I learned from the best). But one morning not too long ago, Clayton Hawkins—who's assisted Mark Townsend with the Olsen twins, Rachel McAdams, and our associate editor Victoria Hoff—gave me the best blowout of my entire life.
Keep scrolling for the step-by-step breakdown.
“Whether you like your hair bone straight, voluminously waved, or with a beachy bendy texture, the perfect blowdry has one thing in common: a smooth start,” Hawkins advised. “In order to get a silky base, start by applying a serum to damp hair (I'm obsessed with Bumble and bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil, £32).”
Bumble and bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil (£32)
“I then begin my blowout using my trusty Spornette Porcupine Rounding Brush (£30) and my GHD Air Hair Dryer (£80)." He added, "The key to smoothness is to separate the hair into small sections and to use as much tension as possible when blowing it out. If your hair is naturally curly, use a flat, no-crease clip to set the hair at the root after each section.”
“Once the hair is fully dried and smooth, you get to play with texture. Most of my clients want a sexy, off-duty model feel to their hair." (Myself included.) So, in order to achieve that look, Hawkins uses a flat iron to make bends in the hair. This is easier than it seems!
He explains, "Grab a section of your hair and bend it with your fingers into an S shape. As you bend it, gently clamp the flat iron over it. Not only will you get a nice wave, but the flat iron will add even more shine and smoothness.”
“After I've done this to all the hair, I go in with my GHD Curve Soft Curl Tong (£110) and wrap random, small sections of hair from the root to mid-shaft."
“Once the hair is fully bended, lightly mist the hair with Oribe Après Beach Wave and Shine Spray (£34) for extra shine and added texture.”
Oribe Après Beach Wave and Shine Spray (£34)
“The final step to hair perfection is to get rid of any minor frizz on top. I spray a natural bristle toothbrush (a mascara wand can work too) with hairspray and gently comb down the tiny strands on top. It's those little extra steps that will totally change the look and feel of your blowout."