Stories Feature
Drip Too Hard - How to Wet Style Your Hair

Fendi autumn/winter 2022

By Helena Madonna

The forecast lately has been wet, torrentially so. I'm not talking about the weather forecast, I'm talking about trends. I can't be the only one whose feed is saturated, rather drenched with trends both micro and mighty, that all allude to 'wet' looks.

We saw an example just earlier this year at the Met Gala when Doja Cat took the stairs in a floor-length Vetements T-shirt dress, which had been soaked through with hair gel to mimic an authentic 'wet' look that clung to her in the right places.

Aside from garments, we've also seen examples through make-up but most of all, through hair. This trend has been around for some time but this year we've seen a complete resurgence. So what is it about our current pop cultural climate that has us wanting to look like we've gotten caught in the rain? Let's find out.

We'll explore the benefits of wet styling plus all the tips and tricks to get the look, no matter your hair type.

Doja Cat at the 2024 Met Gala wearing Vetements

Before moving forward, it's important to note that when recreating any wet-look hairstyle there are 2 types of products that should always be used together: gel and cream.

Gel without cream will result in a dry and crunchy finish, and cream without gel will result in a finish with little structure and hold. This dream pairing will be enough on its own for some hair types but others require the addition of extra products to tame stubborn cowlicks or fly away fluff.


Much like how dewy skin indicates health, hydration and youthfulness, dewy hair suggests the same. It adds an element of effortless glamour and an edge of 90s grunge-cool factor, whilst your strands are soaking up all the benefits of the products you've layered on top.

Hate frizz? Wet styling will completely banish any sign of that. Fly-away fluff won't stand a chance under the smothering coats of gels, creams, oils and mousses. Wet styling can also be achieved with no heat, making for a damage-free, fuss-free styling option. Out of excuses yet? Good! Jump in, the waters fine.

Short Styles

When your strands are small but mighty, it can be hard to get them to cooperate, especially when wet styling. However, fear not, with the help of a few of our strongest styling contenders, your stubborn strands will be at their mercy.

Double Glazed
Want that Crispy Creme Glazed Donut glow? Pile on the gel, roots to ends, then use a fine tooth comb to mimic that crisp middle part, separated strands detail and complete with multiple generous coats of shimmer spray, you'll be glistening in no time.

Gone with the Wind
If a sleek and slicked do isn't your style, put down your comb and work with the greatest tools of all - your hands. Simply load up your palm with a foamy soft serve using your favourite mousse and get playing. Coat from roots to ends and then follow your hair's natural growth patterns. Any unique qualities your hair may have such as cowlicks or a stubborn crown, will only add more charm to this style.

Piecey Perfection
Details such as bangs or a little extra length through the hairline and nape area, only create more for you to play with when wet styling. Apply a trusty gel with a heavy hand and then simply pinch and piece out a few strands through your bangs for an effortless wet looking texture.


It's no secret that pin-straight hair textures do what they do best when laying flat on the scalp. For wet styling, that natural lack of volume works in your favour. Wet styling is all about sleekness, so load up on these products and let your hair do the rest.

Business in the Front, Business in the Back
Seriously sleek and structured. Look like you mean business without all the heat styling and fuss. For this, you'll need a product that's sturdy and rock-hard in nature. A sectioning comb will come in handy to achieve a super precise parting and a clean, sharp hairline. Apply and sleek your hair down in sections to further reduce volume and lock in long-lasting hold.

Torrential Sleekness
Heavy rain storm chic. Go the editorial route and kiss your comfort zone goodbye. A combination of strong hold gel, a lacquer or extra strong hair spray will help you sculpt your strands down your face and force them to stay there. Accessorise and layer your jewels over the ends of your hair to finish with runway-type flair.

Light Drizzle
If you're not quite ready to take the plunge into the world of wet styling but curiosity is swaying you to dip your toes in, try this. Rather than wet, drenched or completely sopping, this look is, shall we say, damp. Still sleek, sophisticated and easy to achieve. Go for a boar bristle brush when smoothing down your roots and on the ends, scrunch through a cream then finish with a heavy dose of oil.

Oil Slick
More is more when it comes to a look like this. If your hair ends up resembling what it would look like after being dunked in a bucket of water, you've nailed it. Be gluttonous with your product usage, deep scoops of a strong hold gel are necessary. Be thorough and apply in sections, even application is the key to keeping this look long-lasting. As for the fly away hair line details, an old toothbrush will do wonders.


Prepping your waves with a moisture mousse is essential for wet styling. Not only will it help to keep your locks looking and feeling hydrated, it will act as the perfect modelling tool to shape any movement and texture you want to set in place. Follow with a generous coating of gel and get your hands on a tail comb to define those wet waves.

Sea-Maiden Siren
Channel your inner mermaid with this finger wave/ wet look hybrid that allows for a glamourous done-up finish that will hero your natural waves and won't eat too much time into your pre-night out routine. For this you'll need a tail comb (this'll help you master that S shape) a few flat clips, a little patience and most importantly - your fingers. Pair with dewy skin for added hydrated drama.

Ripple Effect
A relaxed, almost two-dimensional wave that truly shines when done on hair blessed with a few extra inches. With the goal being to reduce volume rather than create it, apply your products from roots to ends by pulling down the hair shaft rather than scrunching. Once prepped with a moisture mousse, slather your strands with a high-shine oil until they resemble dolphin skin.

Curly/ Coily

Forget what you think you know about pomades. Due to the super-soaking ability that curly and coily hair textures have, wet styling can sometimes end up dry or crunchy. This is where pomades come in handy, they act as a great primer when wet styling. However, not on its own. Creating a custom blend of pomade and gel or pomade and oil (perhaps all three) will guarantee long-lasting, glistening and glossy curls. Pro tip: to reduce width and volume, set some flat clips in place through the ends of your hair, this will help to weigh the curls down and set them completely.

Up Tight
Curls tend to get extra thirsty when it comes to hair products, so get extra heavy-handed and thorough. Apply in fine sections and stretch the curls down with your products until they're completely rid of any fly-aways, only scrunching at the end. Once dried, to eliminate any crunchiness, scrunch some oil through the ends to loosen.

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