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Frizz is one of the most common hair problems. Experts explain its causes and offer tips to fix it and avoid the problem recurring.

How to get rid of frizzy hair: 6 expert tips, plus why frizz happens and how you can avoid it in future

  • Frizz happens when dry or damaged hair absorbs too much water. Curly hair is especially susceptible. Experts suggest steps you can take to minimise it
  • These steps include adding products to your hair care routine, adjusting the frequency of your hair washing and swapping your cotton towel for a microfibre one

One of the most common hair complaints you will hear about is frizz, and there are lots of formulas, collections and accessories out there that will supposedly fix it.

Sadly, there is no one magic trick to get rid of frizz. There are many factors that can cause it, and the best way to remedy it is to find out what is causing yours.

What is frizz?

If you put a strand of your hair under a microscope, you would see that the cuticle – the outside layer – is covered in scales.

When your cuticle is healthy, the tiny scales are smooth and point in the same direction. When it is dry or damaged, the scales stick out in all directions, like a pine cone.
The best way to remedy frizzy hair is to find out what is causing it for you.

When that happens, water from the environment – sweat, humidity and rain – penetrates the strand, causing it to swell and change form.

“Hair is a porous structure,” explains Dr Sharon Wong, a UK-based dermatologist who specialises in hair and scalp disorders. “The amount of water absorbed from the environment is determined by how dry the hair fibre is. The drier the hair, the more water it can absorb, and the frizzier it gets.”

Does your hair need conditioner? How to choose one that works for you

What causes frizz?

Four main factors cause frizz. One is the environment.

“Humidity disrupts the hydrogen bonds in the hair, causing it to frizz and shrink,” says Bianca Hillier, celebrity colourist and ambassador for Olaplex, which sells hair repair kits.

One of the most common hair complaints you will hear about is frizz.

Another factor is the thickness of hair – the thicker it is, the harder it will be to modify and reorient it. A third is how curly your hair is. The curlier the hair, the more difficult it is for the strands to align appropriately.

Finally, damaged hair is more susceptible to frizz; split ends, cuticle loss and breakages will make it tougher for the hair to fall into place.

With all that in mind, here is how you can tame frizz for good.

Amika’s Hydro Rush Intense Moisture range.

1. Pick a moisturising shampoo

While you might be tempted to only use products for damaged hair or for repairing, one of the keys to fighting the frizz is moisturising. A conditioning shampoo will help untangle your hair and smooth it down.

“You start building the moisture in the hair with your shampoo and conditioner,” Camille Friend, celebrity hairstylist, explains. “So pick one designed to inject moisture and instantly hydrate your hair.”

We recommend:

  • Kérastase’s Bain Magistral Shampoo

  • Oribe’s Gold Lust Repair & Restore Shampoo

  • Amika’s Hydro Rush Intense Moisture Shampoo

Aquis’ Rapid Dry Lisse Hair Turban.

2. Switch to microfibre hair towels

Your hair is at its most fragile when it is wet – that is why it is so important to use the right products before your hair is dry.

However, frizz might be down to your choice of towel, too. The fibres in regular cotton towels are big and rigid, which can catch and snag your hair and damage it.

Microfibre towels work best for hair that tends to frizz up, as there is less friction and less stress on your hair, and they absorb water faster.

We recommend:

  • Coco & Eve’s Microfibre Hair Towel Wrap

  • Aquis’ Rapid Dry Lisse Hair Turban

  • Act+Acre’s Intelligent Hair Towel

Moroccanoil’s Mending Infusion Styling Hair Serum.

3. Add a hair serum to your routine

Hair serums can make a huge difference to how your hair shapes itself, as they are usually formulated with silicone – molecules which help line up hair fibres, give your hair slip and shine and make strands softer.

“Adding lightweight oils and serums to your hair care routine will help with frizz and dryness,” Hillier advises. But, while certain hair types may benefit from silicone, those with curly or fine hair may want to avoid them.

Serums with silicone alternatives exist – search for ingredients like hemisqualene, which is derived from plant sugar and also protects against colour and heat exposure.

We recommend:

  • Virtue’s The Perfect Ending Split End Serum

  • IGK Crybaby’s Anti-Frizz Smoothing Serum

  • Moroccanoil’s Mending Infusion Styling Hair Serum

Ouai’s Treatment Masque. A deep conditioning treatment will take your hair care routine to the next level.

4. Start deep-conditioning your hair

A deep conditioning treatment will take your hair care routine to the next level. These treatments will not only make your hair softer, smoother and shinier; the nourishing, deeply moisturising ingredients in the formula will coat your hair strands with vital lipids and oils that will help decrease frizz considerably.

We recommend:

  • Olaplex’s No. 3 Hair Repair Perfector

  • Ouai’s Treatment Masque

  • K18’s Leave-In Molecular Repair Hair Mask

Living Proof’s Perfect hair Day Dry Shampoo.

5. Do not wash too frequently

Over-cleansing can actually dry out the hair and scalp, causing frizz,” hair stylist Lorin Van Zandt says. If you experience frizz regularly, washing your hair twice a week should be enough.

In between washes, experts recommend maintaining your hair with dry shampoo, apple cider vinegar rinses or texturising dust. If you need to wash your hair more often, avoid shampoo and use only water and conditioner.

We recommend:

  • Living Proof’s Perfect hair Day Dry Shampoo

  • dpHUE’s ACV Hair Rinse

  • Verb’s Volume Texture Powder

Dyson Supersonic hair dryer. When hair is exposed to high temperatures, we put it at risk of damage, drying out and frizzing.

6. Keep heat styling to a minimum

When hair is exposed to high temperatures, we put it at risk of damage, drying out and frizzing.

If you need to use a hair dryer, use a hair diffuser to limit direct heat exposure. Use hair straighteners or curling wands on their lowest setting.

Always apply heat protection first – it will form a barrier against heat damage and seal in moisture for smoother, more glossy strands.

We recommend:

  • Dyson’s Supersonic hair dryer

  • Redken’s Acidic Perfecting Concentrate

  • Olaplex’s No. 7 Bonding Oil