How to Get Fluffy Hair
From our mom jeans to our obsession with neon, it is safe to say the 90s are back.
All the iconic beauty and fashion trends from the era are making their way back into our hearts.
It has brought back the voluminous blowout that cemented the era. Who didn’t want Cher Horowitz's glamorous fluffy hair in Clueless? I know I sure did.
The trend has gone viral on the likes of TikTok and Instagram and has officially deemed it the Holy Grail of hair these days. One of the wonderful things about this coveted trend is that it doesn't require a trip to the salon. No haircut or highlights are necessary; it is much more about the technique used.
In a way, it's the new beachy wave. Not that those are out (we’re still pretty obsessed), but this trend is just as gorgeous and effortless. We are breaking down why the style is hot and exactly how to achieve it.
What is fluffy hair?
While 90s babies likely just refer to it as a blow, fluffy hair falls somewhere between a bedhead and a modern blowout. It is a fuzzy volume with a bit of twist. But, if you are picturing big hair, that’s not quite the extent of it. Fluff is very tame in comparison and tempered, but perfectly undone at the same time.
For another throwback, inspiration looks no further than the gorgeous Topanga from Boy Meets World. Oh, those luscious, luscious locks of hers. The style is all about volume and bounce. The fluffier and more ruffled, the better.
How is fluffy hair different from poofy hair?
As this trend came back in style, it was easily mistaken for that poof we all know so well, but they are actually quite different. Fluffy hair is again a combination of messy texture with a blowout. Strands still have a smooth, shiny bounce to them and a bit of texture for balance.
Poofy hair, on the other hand, actually refers to hair that is styled with a ton of volume with a bit of added frizz. It is a common occurrence for those with thick, coiled hair and one of the main causes of poofy hair is that darn humidity. Fluffy hair is achieved through styling while poofy hair is usually a natural occurrence.
Why is fluffy hair trending?
As we all know, trends are constantly coming and going. Sometimes it is hard to pinpoint exactly why a trend comes back in style at a certain time; the mystery may always remain. The one thing that we do know is that the ‘90s and even early ‘00s have made a full-fledged comeback.
Celebrities and TikTok influencers alike have been spotted wearing high ponies, claw clips, and even skater skirts. To complete their throwback looks, many of them are always sporting that fluffy hair. Hailey Bieber and Emma Chamberlain have been seen wearing this trend, which no doubt has added to the popularity.
How to get fluffy hair
So, the world wide web has convinced you that you have to try the fluffy hair trend. Here’s how to achieve it perfectly.
First, if you are thinking a fresh cut will help, make sure you bring a reference picture. Try to find an example of someone with the same hair length and type so they can more easily mimic the style.
Step 1: Whether freshly cut or just stepping out and trying it yourself right away, start by grabbing all your goodies. You’ll need a hot tool, a brush, a comb, a heat protectant spray, and a leave-in conditioner to get started.
We love these leave-in conditioners:
100-percent vegan and cruelty-free brand Dae created this unique and effective leave-in conditioner using cactus flowers and prickly pear extract. The cactus flower supplies essential vitamins and minerals to help keep individual hair strands healthy. The prickly pear extra helps tackle hydration with its high content of vitamin E, omega fatty acids, and antioxidants.
Oh, how we love Aveda. They are 100-percent cruelty-free and vegan, use sustainable packaging, and wind & solar energy in their manufacturing plants.
On top of that, their products are pretty amazing. This lightweight leave-in conditioning spray helps to hydrate and replenish hair for up to 72 hours while also aiding in detangling and protecting. The naturally derived UV filter helps protect hair from the drying effects of the sun.
This conditioner from Odele delivers deep moisture, helps to detangle, and provides ultimate frizz control. Whether your hair is naturally thirsty or dry from treatments, this quenching conditioner has essential amino acids that help to strengthen and improve hair health over time creating better bounce and better movement.
Extra Tip: Add volumizing products
Like many hairstyles, the key to fluffy hair starts with volume. There are a couple of ways to add in volumizing products throughout your getting-ready process. This includes swapping in a shampoo and conditioner for a little boost or add a volumizing mousse after your leave-in conditioner.
This volume-boosting shampoo and conditioner duo gives your hair and routine a bit of a jolt. The combo is designed to gently cleanse and condition thin, flat hair and adds body and bounce without weighing it down.
We love: Vegamour GRO Hair Foam
Crafted with powerful phyto-actives, this rich, revitalizing vegan hair foam provides instant body and texture to your locks. It deeply penetrates your scalp to support visibly thicker, fuller-looking hair.
Step 2: Next, start dividing your hair into even sections and misting with your heat protectant. Make sure to spray it through all your natural hair layers so it can really work in and repel humidity as well as lock in that heat protection.
We love these heat protectants:
Get serious blow-out results with body, bounce, control, and shine. This vegan protectant from SEEN protects hair up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, protects from pollution, and UV damage for life-changing hair health. It is also dermatologist-designed and non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog pores or compromise your skin health.
This heat-protecting spray also nourishes your locks. It provides a protective surface on the hair to prevent damage from your styling tools. It gives a light shine and hold as well as helps reduce blow-dry time. Safe up to 450 degrees this formula is also paraben and sulfate-free.
This high heat spray from vegan beauty brand Pacifica helps to hydrate and defend your hair against high heat tools and general damage. It is suitable for all hair types and is formulated without silicones, parabens, or phthalates. It also has an amazing bright orange and vanilla scent that will waft with you all day long.
Step 3: Blow drying your hair upside down. Since fluffy hair is all about volume, one of the easiest things you can do to liven up those locks is blow-dry upside down. This helps to lift your roots off your scalp which helps to achieve that amped-up volume. Simply flip your head and hair over and dry with a bristled brush to get that fluff.
Here is our go-to hairdryer:
Since we are aiming for the beloved retro blowout, we had to reach for the ultimate blowout blow dryer. This blow dryer takes a cake as the best, not surprising as it was designed by the blowout bar queens. It helps you achieve an ultra-smooth, frizz-free style and fast.
Volume Booster: Add rollers
If you have the time and patience for hot rollers, they are another way to get that ultra fluff. This method is sure to add volume to even the flattest of hair. Hot rollers also help to keep the frizz under control. It is also a great option for all hair lengths as they come in a variety of sizes.
Short on time in the mornings? Sleep with the rollers in to make styling a breeze in the am.
The T3 Volumizing Hot Rollers offer incredible volume, body, and shine just from one product. Powered by HeatCore Technology, they are equipped with dual temperature settings to ensure optimal heat for your styling needs.
Extra tip: Use a hair diffuser
One of the easiest ways to fluffy up dense curly hair is to reach for your hair diffuser. This tool is an attachment to your blow dryer and should be in every curly-haired girl's bag. It gently dries while also fluffing curls to add bounce and a healthy set of curls. It also aids in speeding up drying time to help you reduce heat usage.
We love: Drybar The Bounce Diffuser
To pair with our favorite pick hairdryer, this diffuser from the hair geniuses at Drybar is the perfect addition to any morning hair routine.
Step 4: If you opted for rollers, you may just need to touch up those waves after but if you didn’t you’ll for sure want to grab that curling iron. Start by working the curling iron down the shaft of your hair and finish by tucking the ends under. You will want the ends to flip inwards, almost slightly curled under.
We love the l’ange Le Duo Curling Iron
Le Duo is a great multi-tasker and an easy pick if you are looking to upgrade your curling iron. It is lightweight and its ergonomic styler features an easy-to-use clip that is studded with tiny air vents that help to cool and lock in your style. Perfect for helping you create an effortless fluffy do that holds all day.
Step 5: Finish your look with a firm hold hairspray to lock everything in and keep the bounce all day long.
We love: Playa Endless Summer Spray
Formulated with sea salt harvested from Southern California, this spray gives your hair a perfectly tousled texture to enhance your beautiful fluffy hair. It protects your hair from the day’s events while also giving it a perfectly undone look.
Extra tip: Add some dry shampoo
One thing that easily destroys your fluffy look is when the hair starts to get weighed down. To keep that volume all day, carry around your favorite dry shampoo to touch it up when the day starts to weigh down on it. This step helps to absorb oils, refresh your strands, and pump up the volume.
This affordable dry shampoo is super effective. It absorbs the hair's excess oils leaving your hair feeling fresh and clean. It doesn’t leave a white residue and has a wonderful linen scent.
Step 6: Tease
Although not a necessary step, teasing your hair will certainly help you achieve that coveted volume that is key to the perfect fluffy do. Teasing is all about combing your hair strands backward to build in extra volume for an overall thicker look. If you find certain sections of your hair look a bit limp, teasing will bring them back to life. This technique is especially helpful for short fluffy hair.
Grab your favorite little comb and just spruce up those limp spots. Keeping a comb in your purse, along with that mini bottle of dry shampoo is great for throughout-the-day touch-ups.
Please note: A product appearing in our blog is not an official Kinder Beauty endorsement. While every product we feature in an article is cruelty-free and vegan, these products do not necessarily meet all of our strict brand standards for curation in one of our boxes.
Jackie Lutze has been writing about cruelty-free beauty for years and loves finding the best vegan products to help readers build their ultimate beauty routine.