Even if your hair does have a curly or wavy texture to it, Kimble says you can still get the water wave look. “Use a curl cream and let it dry naturally,” she explains. Try Intelligent I-N Bell-Curve Curl Cream to keep those waves in place.
Like with any hairstyle, the key to water waves’ longevity lies in the products you use. Fitzsimons, Appleton, and Kim all agree to set the look with some hairspray to ensure that the style lasts all day. Appleton likes to use Color Wow’s Cult-Favorite Firm + Flexible Hairspray (he’s the brand’s global creative director). R+Co’s Bleu Featherlight Hairspray and IGK’s 1-800-Hold-Me No-Crunch Flexible Hold Hairspray make for other great hairspray options.
Meanwhile, Kimble says thick hair textures would fare better with hair creams to keep the style in check. She recommends her own line’s Curly Butter Creme and Healing Leave-In Conditioner. Verb Curl Leave-In Conditioner is another treatment that would help preserve the waves as well
When seeking out the salon treatment for this style, Fitzsimons and Appleton both note a few things to keep in mind. Fitzsimons points out that this look is meant for longer hair, so those with shorter hair may need to look into getting some extensions to achieve the look.
“Consult with your stylist about what type of extensions are best for your hair and go from there,” he advises. Furthermore, Fitzsimons says wave intensity is another thing to consider. “They can be made to look very structured and intentional or can be brushed out to look softer and looser — depending on what look you’re hoping to achieve you can direct your stylist accordingly,” he says.
Appleton expresses similar sentiments when asking a hairstylist for the look, but he says to request “soft, voluminous curls.” No matter which way you go about getting water waves, you’ll always look like you just stepped out of the pool – no matter how long it’s been since you actually stepped foot in one.
This story originally appeared on Allure.