Stories Feature

It's safe to say that hair mousse isn't what it used to be – and that’s probably for the best.

By Tara Young

Long gone are the days of backcombing a cloud of sticky foam into your hair for mega volume, crunchy curls and a fringe that defied gravity. Once a mainstay in the bathroom cabinet of every 80s babe and hair stylist alike, beloved hair mousse has since been innovated and transformed into iterations of light airy foam that smell delicious, are super workable and can achieve a myriad of looks.

Finding the right mousse for your #hairgoals could be the instant gratification you need when you're short on time in the morning or the oomph in your glammed-up styling session before a night out. From thickening strands and adding airy volume to creating perfect texture, tousled waves and locking frizz-free, shiny curls in place, the magic of hair mousse never really went away.

However, with the aforementioned era of 80s spirals and sculptural waves that have been etched in our minds, it might seem a little intimidating. We’ve all had our fair share of hair fails, and being heavy-handed on the mousse might be one of them (guilty).


Fine and Thin Hair: Add volume and body

To use

  1. Choose the Right Mousse: Stick to a lightweight, volumizing mousse designed for fine hair.
  2. Prep: Start with clean, towel-dried hair. Fine hair tends to get greasy quickly, so avoid applying mousse to super-damp hair.
  3. Application: Shake the mousse can well. Dispense a golf ball-sized amount into your palm and emulsify by rubbing your hands together.
  4. Distribution: Focus on the roots and work your way through the lengths of your hair. Use a wide-tooth comb to ensure even distribution.
  5. Style: Flip your head upside down while blow-drying to lift the roots. Use a round brush to create volume and shape.

Curly and Wavy Hair: Reduce frizz and define

To use

  1. Choose the Right Mousse: Look for a curl-enhancing mousse with moisturizing properties.
  2. Prep: Begin with damp, towel-dried hair. Curly and wavy hair benefits from moisture, so avoid letting it dry out too much before application. Here is where you could also apply your leave-in conditioner.
  3. Application: Dispense a generous amount of mousse into your hands. Rub your hands together to emulsify.
  4. Enhance your natural texture: Flip your head upside down and scrunch the mousse into your curls or waves from the ends upwards.
  5. Air-Drying or Diffusing: Allow your hair to air-dry for the most natural look, or use a diffuser to speed up the process while maintaining curl integrity.

Straight Hair: Volume and movement

To use

  1. Choose the Right Mousse: Select a volumizing mousse that provides a light hold.
  2. Prep: Work with towel-dried hair.
  3. Application: Shake the can well and dispense a small amount (about the size of a golf ball) into your palm. Rub hands together.
  4. Distribution: Apply the mousse evenly from roots to ends, focusing on the roots to boost volume.
  5. Styling: Blow-dry using a round brush to create volume and movement. For added lift, blow-dry with your head upside down
  6. Finish with a cool blast of air to set the volume and add shine.

Short Hair: Texture and hold

To use

  1. Choose the Right Mousse: Opt for a mousse that offers flexible hold and texture.
  2. Prep: Towel-dry your hair until it’s slightly damp.
  3. Application: Dispense a small amount of mousse into your palm. Emulsify by rubbing your hands together.
  4. Style: Apply mousse evenly throughout your hair, focusing on the roots for volume. Use your fingers to shape and define your style.
  5. Air-Drying or Blow-Drying: For a natural look, let your hair air-dry. Use a blow dryer while styling with your fingers or a small brush for more texture and structure or for a piecey, textured look, apply a bit of mousse to dry hair and style.
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