Styles are held in place with hairspray. But while it seems simple to use, there are techniques stylists recommend for getting the most out of your hairspray. Using hairspray the wrong way can result in sticky, crunchy hair or fallen flat styles.

Know your hairspray ingredients

Hairspray contains polymers that coat the hair to hold your style. Here are the main differences:

  • Polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP): Medium, flexible hold for curl definition. Won’t flake.
  • VA/Crotonates Copolymer: Strong hold with high humidity resistance but can be sticky.
  • VP/Dimethylaminoethylmethacrylate Copolymer: Soft hold for volume, won’t crisp or flake.

Look for hairsprays labeled “flexible hold” for brushed-out styles. Maximum hold works well for updos and super-slick looks. Review hairspray ingredients to find the best one for you.

Choose your hairspray nozzle

Hairspray nozzles dispense products differently for styling purposes:

  • Conical nozzle: Precise, concentrated spray for sections
  • Flat nozzle: Wide distribution for overall hold
  • Rotating nozzle: Swivel action allows motion while spraying

A conical nozzle lets you target areas that need the most hold. Opt for a flat nozzle to quickly coat all your hair at once. Try a combo of nozzles for styling versatility.

Know when to spray

Most people spray hairspray last to lock in the finished look. But stylists say it’s equally important to prep with hairspray too:

  • Before styling: Spritz roots for volume and texture
  • During styling: Mist to hold sections as you curl, braid, etc.
  • After styling: Coat hair all over to seal and set the style

Using hairspray throughout the process ensures long-lasting hold. Just avoid oversaturating hair, which leads to stickiness.

Section hair properly

Stylists recommend sectioning hair before spraying for the most even distribution:

  • For overall hold, part hair into top, sides, back, bangs
  • For targeted hold, create cross sections, i.e. ear to the crown
  • Section dry hair cleanly, mist hairspray, then clip up
  • Release sections and respray lightly to blend

Sectioning hair methodically prevents missing spots and “halo frizz” when finishing your look.

Know how close to spray

Hold the 6 to 8 inches from your head, recommends celebrity stylist Jen Atkin. Any closer makes hair wet and sticky. If hair still feels crunchy or stiff, you’ve sprayed too closely.

Spray the right distance for your hair thickness:

  • Fine hair: 8-10 inches away
  • Medium hair: 6-8 inches away
  • Thick/coarse hair: 4-6 inches away

Find the hair salon in fort lauderdale provides hold without moisture overload based on your strands.

Use light layers

Buildup occurs after heavy spraying. Instead, stylists advise light, even coats:

  • Keep hands moving as you spray instead of focusing on one spot
  • Mist hairspray from different angles to cover all sides
  • Smooth with a brush after spraying to evenly distribute
  • Build hold with 3-4 light layers instead of one thick coating

Think of hairspray as applying multiple sheer coats of nail polish. Light, sweeping motions prevent wetness and crunch.


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