Wet hair is making a splash. It made a few appearances on the runway this season, including the drenched ends at Altuzarra and the slicked-back hair at Balmain. But even before then, there was Kim Kardashian at the VMAs this year and Beyoncé at the VMAs several years ago.
So how can you master the look at home? “Don’t use water, but loads of wax and gel instead,” says hairstylist Cesar Ramirez, who styles the likes of Ciara and Kim Kardashian. Water may make hair look wet, but the effect is only temporary. “Only use it when you’re at the end of your hairstyle and want to go one more day without washing,” he adds.
Unlike other trendy styles, the wet hair look is amenable to any hair texture, and to demonstrate, the Cut enlisted five women with different hair types to test-drive the watery look. For naturally straight hair, Ramirez suggests raking wax, which is slightly thicker than a gel and not water-based, through the roots and around the pieces that frame your face to shape and volumize. On the ends, he says, you should use a gel, which will stiffen as it dries and prevent frays.
There are a few ways to approach curly hair. For waves, start with blow-dried hair and then work Mizani’s wax in sections throughout hair (Mizani calls their wax a gel, but it is not, Ramirez clarifies.) Don’t use a gel, as the water in most gels will take straightened hairs right back to their curly state. You’ll want to use enough wax to completely drench your hair and then scrunch strands lightly to create waves.
If your hair is curly and you’d like to keep it that way, employ the help of a leave-in conditioner, like Mizani’s 25 Miracle Leave-In, Ramirez suggests. After misting hair with the spray, work a heaping amount of gel into hair to lock curls in place.
It’s important to note that no matter what your texture, the style won’t last more than a day. But on that day, you’ll look like the sleekest thing in town.
Styling: Shiona Turini; Beauty editor: Kathleen Hou; Hair: Cesar Ramirez; Makeup: Sierra Min