You will know it when you see it. Maybe you see someone between the aisles of the grocery store or across the patio at brunch and their locks fall like this. Some call it “French girl hair”. The plain and simple mess that may or may not have been eliminated that morning, but it doesn’t matter. It’s that effortless hairstyle and with all its blemishes it’s just perfect. But the ironic truth behind the best natural looking hairstyles is the amount of thought and care that it often takes to achieve them.
“Hairstyles that look effortless and undone require a personal feel and eyes that can measure what unravels organically by embracing imperfection,” says the celebrity stylist and Member of the R + Co Collective, Jenny Cho, which has worked its signature texture magic on Kristin bell, Jennifer Lawrence, Addison rae, and more. And to be honest, we wanted to know how to master that fresh, organic look that Cho is also known for.
So, we chatted with the hair whisperer to find out the secrets behind achieving that perfectly undone, effortless look for all hair types, along with her tips for careful air-drying and the styles you expect to see fall (hint: bangs of curtain are here to stay).
It takes a lot more detail than people might think to achieve that perfectly effortless / undone look. What are some of your favorite tips for going organic?
My advice for perfectly undone hair is to leave the natural curve or wave around the hairline and do not blow-dry or iron. Another trip is when curling with an iron, while the section is still hot, stretch the curly section down to relax the curl and look more natural. My last tip is to have the right product that can help you achieve the undone look.
Do you have any other tips to help people with more textured hair achieve an effortless look?
For an effortless look for a curlier texture, apply a smoothing texture balm (I’m a fan of Velvet Curtain) and shake the curls with your fingers right at the roots so they don’t frizz and separate the ends. Then shake out the tight curls and loosen them. This alone can make the texture look effortlessly relaxed and fresh. I also love to use Conditioner for dry cleaning without rain as a hair freshener to enhance waves and curls.
How about those with naturally straight hair?
To create a finished, undone look for straight hair, apply a dime- or quarter-size amount of Smoothing Texture Balm to towel-dried or dry hair, and run your fingers, squeezing them gently so that the hair parted a little.
Are there things you can do with your hair while air drying (or blow drying) to help it set beautifully?
I love running a smoothing texture balm through damp hair, setting it in sections to curl and hold. Let it dry naturally and shake it off. But, if your texture requires a blowout first, apply the appropriate products, blow dry, and apply a texture balm from mid-shaft to ends.
What other products do you have to have on your styling shelf?
I love using a full hair spray that you can use for hot tools, get rid of loose hair, and finish a style to keep it in place. I personally love it R + Co Outer Space Flexible Hairspray.
Moving on to a fall (probably with a lot of events), what cuts and styles do you think will be the most popular?
For awards and events, it’s hard to predict, but in life curly, wavy, or cool girl wigs are definitely making a statement right now and drapery bangs are here to stay.
More cool and effortless girl hair products:
Like the OG Mason Pearson brush, the boar bristle magic of the French product produces a glossy, voluminous effect (about half the price). Our associate editor swears it, but she’s not the only one. Even Seduce gives it a double thumbs up.
The brand sells a solid hair care set (it’s worth the splurge), but if you’re just looking to dip your toes into famed hairstylist Wendy Iles’ refill line, the finishing serum is a protector that you will want to wear every day.
Part of Jenny Cho’s Summer Capsule Collection with R + Co, this weightless spray is perfect for natural curls. Apply directly to damp roots and let the magic of air drying begin.
This super versatile, non-greasy balm leaves hair soft and hydrated. It is pure magic.
This fragrance-free pomade is perfect for curl touch-ups or adding a bit of texture. Apply a small amount to air-dried or blow-dried hair for a natural, frill-free look.
Blending traditional and modern ingredients from Japan, this optimized product delivers just the right amount of clean hydration for effortless hair.
Ideal for curly and textured hair, the key to a perfect air-drying experience may lie in this bottle. Apply in the shower after shampooing and conditioner, then apply and you’re done.
If dreamy beach waves are part of your vision for effortless hair, grab some hair food, your heating tools, and follow our step-by-step guide.
As part two of Cho’s R + Co summer capsule collection, the balm can be applied to damp or dry hair for a more elastic, cotton-like feel.
For curly girls, embracing dry air is so much more doable with this deeply hydrating conditioner on your side.
There is nothing that looks effortless on dry, brittle strands. Fortunately, this cream leaves a smooth and shiny effect (perfect for fine hair) as it is combed.
Apply this clean, feather-light cream to medium air-dried hair for a frizz-free look that works for all hair types.