Help for frizzy, fuzzy, big hair in our sticky climate

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It's hard to believe it's the icky, sticky time of year already! All of a sudden, all of my clients are complaining about their hair either being flat, no matter how much they use mousse and blow dry away from their head, or that, no matter what they do, their hair just gets bigger and fuzzier.

Welcome to the Southern humidity.

Honestly, the only type of hair that behaves in this climate is naturally curly hair. With minimal product and leaving it alone, your curly hair will be effortless and look great all day.

For the other 95 percent of us, here are some tips and tricks to make your style last longer without staying in the air conditioning all day. The number one reason your hair will get flatter or bigger, depending on the hair type, is that it isn't completely dry. A good majority of the female population begins styling their hair too soon, thinking that it will stay better, and they quit styling when it feels dry.

This is the number one reason I hear people say "I spend so much time on my hair and 15 minutes after I'm done, it looks like I didn't do anything."

Styling your hair from when it's wet will NOT make it stay better. Stopping when it feels dry is the biggest mistake.

The hair holds moisture you can't feel, especially after drying with the blow dryer, because the head is also perspiring a little. Therefore that last bit of moisture you don't feel makes all of your styling efforts useless.

This is remedy No. 1. Do not use a brush or try to style your hair when it's damp or wet.

If you want volume, put mousse on your roots only. Not on your hair, only on your roots. Especially on the top and sides parallel to your cheeks and eyes. Then blow and blow. No brush. Just blow your hair in all directions opposite the way it wants to go.

Blow away from the head. Lift and push your hair in all directions with your hand. This will set your roots up and away, giving you more fullness and volume.

Keep doing this until it feels dry (this is key). But, it is not totally dry - you just can't feel that hidden moisture that will make or break your hairstyle.

This is when you take your brush - bristle is best - and again blow and style your hair. This last step will set the style and get the hidden moisture out of the hair.

Your style will stay 100 percent better and will take less time to do.

Now remember, it will stay longer and better under most conditions, but nothing is going to stay if you're golfing or on the beach. Just saying.

The final step should be an oil- or laminate-based product, used very sparingly, to put a barrier on the hair to prevent the salty, moist air from penetrating the strands and wreaking havoc on the style.

A little teasing to make it stay longer or dry shampoo also helps with the longevity. This is not necessary, but adds a bit more security.

I hope these few tips make your life easier and you happier with your hair even in this yuck. I will be happy to teach you how to style your hair to give you the most flattering, longest-lasting style without much effort and product.

There is no sense in having a style you can't duplicate. I'm here for you.

Joy Ross is owner of Style It Salon in Old Town Bluffton. www.styleitsalon.com

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