Sometimes bigger really is better. Especially when it comes to your glorious crown of curls, we say "go big, or go home!" But if your curly hair is fine or low-density, achieving maximum volume-without drying out your strands or sacrificing definition-can be a bit trickier than all those girls on Instagram make it look.
The good news is there are plenty of body-boosting techniques you can add to your toolbox. Try these five tips for fuller-looking, more voluminous curls.
1. Bulk up with volumising products.
If your stylers aren't giving you the lift you crave, it's time to lighten up. Mousses and foam formulas are ideal for creating voluminous looks, and their airy texture won't weigh hair down. (Cream or oil-based stylers tend to have the opposite effect and are best for elongating curls.) Work a volumizing foam or mousse into your roots to create lift, then rake through to your ends to help define your curls. Need more hold? Scrunch a bit of styling gel into your ends to prevent frizz.
2. Clip at the roots.
Not a fan of that wet blanket look that happens when your curls dry flat against your scalp? Whether you air dry or diffuse, duckbill clips are the secret to more volume on top. Use these long metal clips to hold individual curls up at the root and away from the scalp. (Slide the clips in standing on edge, not flat, for the most natural look.) Once your hair is dry, remove the clips and massage your roots with your fingers.
3. Blow dry for body.
If your strands are fine, blow drying with a diffuser will help your curls look more volumised than air drying-but there are a few tricks to know to get maximum body-boosting results. Number one: When diffusing, hold your head to one side then the other to help curls dry away from the scalp. Another must-do? Make sure your roots are completely dry before your hang up your blow dryer; damp roots will get weighed down and leave your curls looking flat at the crown. Finally, once your hair is dry, remove the diffuser attachment and use the air from the dryer to blow your curls around a bit to create volume.
4. Pick it out.
A hair pick is a must-have tool for adding volume in all the right places. To create height, lift a section of curls with your hand, and pick in an upward motion to fluff the curls underneath, staying close to the scalp. Avoid using a pick on the top layer of your hair or picking through the ends-this will create frizz.
5. Choose the right cut.
A hairstyle that's all one length can weigh down your curls. Visit a talented curl stylist, who can reshape your hair to create a fuller, more balanced look where the curls fit together like puzzle pieces to form a style that's not too flat on the top or too bulky at the ends.