Easy Soft Waves Hair Tutorial

Sometimes doing my hair in the midst of an Atlantan summer feels like THE most pointless exercise. It's on a mission to lie flat as can be on my scalp even in the best of weather, so usually during summer months, I just throw it up in a bun and call it a day. Glamorous, I know.

BUT! On the occasions when humidity allows, I've got a really easy go-to style that looks good even as it falls a little, and with the help of lovely Elisa Restea and The Photography of Haley Sheffield, that's what I'm sharing today! 


  • Gator clips for sectioning
  • Teasing brush or comb
  • Hairspray
  • Brush
  • 1" - 1 1/2" curling iron (the larger the barrel, the looser the waves)

The key to acheiving even and quick curls or waves lies completely in sectioning. Basically, it breaks your work down for you into manageable segments that ensure you don't miss a single spot - especially when it comes to the tricky business of curling the hair on the back of your head!

Begin by sectioning the top of your head; use the pointed end of your teasing comb and run it across the back of your head from the top of one ear top the other, separating your hair into 2 large sections.

Now separate your top section further by running the tip of your comb from the center of your forehead straight to the crown of your head. That divides your top section in half. Aaaand we're gonna do that yet again on each half! The gator clips come in handy at this point for sure; twist and clip to keep things nice and separate as you're working. It's a great idea to use your ear as the dividing line - run the comb from the back of your ear to the top of your center part and clip each of the two sections you create. Repeat on the other side. 

At this point the top section of your hair is divided into four quadrants. Make sure each is clipped and secure, then tackle that remaining bottom section by splitting it in two halves at the back of your head. Four sections on top, two on the bottom. Got it? Pictures might work better than words, so just check out the images below:

Phew! Now curling's a snap!
I like to lightly back comb each section with my teasing comb before I lightly mist it with hairspray - it gives some volume and texture, which can help curls hang in there during summer weather. 

And we're curlin'! If you're just beginning to get the hang of curling, go ahead and use your curling barrel's clamp - no need to burn your fingers by wrapping strands around the barrel! You pros out there, feel free to wrap away. 
Begin with your two bottom sections, grabbing about three inch pieces of hair for each curl. Roll away from your face to get waves (rolling towards your face gives a slightly retro-looking curl). Completely curl one section, then take a clip out of the next and get to work again! Six sections, slight teasing, sculpting hairspray, curling away from your face and towards the back of your head. Boom. 

Once every section is curled (hooray!) spray a final mist (hairspray OR salt spray) over your hair and then run either your fingers or a detangling brush through your hair to loosen your curls slightly. You can set with hairspray AGAIN if you like, but that's really only if your hair's stubborn as can be about holding curl.

End result: loose, casual, touchable waves that provide sweet style without smacking of effort!

Elisa seems to like them, no?

What's your biggest summer hair frustration? Tweet us @campmakery and we'll see about tackling them with plenty of styling tips!