Summertime is best spent at the beach, but one of the downsides to Hong Kong weather is having to deal with the relative humidity – averaging 65 to 70 per cent in the months of July to September, which equates to frizz and out-of-control poofiness.
This happens when moisture in the air breaks hydrogen bonds and creates swelling in the hair shafts, causing either hard-to-manage waves or hair that’s flat and limp. Artistic director, Fashion Week hair honcho and hairstylist-to-the-stars Marco Chan comes to the rescue, sharing his top tips to keeping your hair humidity-free over the summer.
Use a good shampoo and conditioner
Styling products help hair maintain its shape, but hair care is very important since a good shampoo removes grease and refreshes your scalp, and a good conditioner helps protect the cuticles and lock in moisture. Your hair is like a sponge – it can take in the moisture from the air, especially if it’s dry and damaged.
Make sure you use a good cleaning shampoo and a conditioner, like Oribe’s Gold Lust Repair and Restore, that hydrates and protects hair from potential damage, reinforces the inner strength of each strand, and reduces the friction between strands. For colour care, Oribe’s Masque for Beautiful Color protects and enhances hair colour with a combination of wild mango butter, keratin and bioflavonoids.
For dry hair, use Percy & Reed’s No Oil Oil (it comes in versions for fine and thick hair) as additional moisture and before styling. Apply one to two drops of this non-greasy vitamin B5-infused oil on towel-dried hair to ensure heat protection before thermal styling and keep the hair satiny soft.
Available at Sephora
Detangle your hair with a flat iron or a hot brush
Choosing the right hot tools helps smoothen your hair and the hair cuticles. Using a hot brush or flat iron, like GHD’s Glide Hot Brush, at the optimal temperature from 170°C to 180°C allows for the glass transition effect, where you can style hair and lock in moisture without damaging it. A styling tool that goes beyond 190°C will cause damage and dryness.
Available at Lane Crawford
Use styling products that block humidity
Dry shampoo is handy for getting rid of extra grease and adding extra volume to your hair while keeping it controlled. Percy & Reed Dry Shampoo is great for adding volume without the frizz.
Available at Sephora
A styling cream like Bumble and Bumble’s Styling Creme can be used on wet hair before blow-drying to set the style, on dry hair to work like gel, and rubbed on dry hair for a glamourous tousled effect. The product also works well on curly hair.
Available at Bumble and Bumble
Opt for a wet look
When going out in hot weather, a trendy option is to do a combed-through just-washed ’do, like Kaia Gerber at the spring/summer 2020 Versace show in Milan.
To achieve this look, apply a treatment paste like KMS Tame Frizz Smoothing Reconstructor on wet hair and use Session Style’s Tech Comb to style in the desired multi-textured look. Apply hair oil or serum like KMS Tame Frizz De-Frizz Oil to keep the ’do in place. This de-frizzing oil not only offers humidity control for up to three days, but also works to keep hair shiny.
Available at Feel Unique
Don’t forget to apply a finishing spray
After styling hair, spray Oribe Impermeable Anti-Humidity Spray or R+Co Foil Frizz + Static Control Spray on a brush or directly to hair for an anti-humidity shield. These are great for all hair types, especially those prone to frizz.
About Marco Chan
Marco Chan has worked his magic for an army of A-list celebrities, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Uma Thurman, Kylie Minogue and Kate Moss. He divides his time between Europe and Asia and is a regular face backstage during Fashion Weeks in London, Milan, Paris and Berlin. He is the first Asian hairdresser to appear on America’s Next Top Model, and has led hairstyling teams for the amfAR Gala and the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.