The key to creating puffy hairstyles is to encourage volume at the roots during every stage of your cleansing and styling routine. To start, use a volumizing shampoo and conditioner, and then apply a root-boosting styling agent to your hair. Blow-dry your locks with your head upside down, brushing your hair in the opposite direction as it grows. For the finishing touch, tease different sections of your hair, depending on the type of hairstyle that you’re trying to achieve, to encourage extra volume.
Everything that you do from the moment you step into the shower will determine how much volume your hair will have, starting with what you wash and condition it with, as well as how you do so. In most cases, any shampoo or conditioner labeled as volumizing will work well, as this means that the ingredients in the shampoo will not weigh your hair down with heavy moisturizers or shine-enhancing ingredients. Oftentimes, these products will also contain ingredients that make it easier for your hair to achieve lift at the roots, a key requirement for puffy hairstyles. For the best results, concentrate the shampoo at your roots, and only apply conditioner to your ends, as putting it near your scalp will likely make your hair flat.
After you’ve washed, conditioned, and towel-dried your hair, apply a volumizing styling product directly to the roots of your hair. If you have thin locks, a mousse or spray will likely be ideal, as creams and gels will typically weigh your hair down, defeating the purpose of the product and limiting the types of puffy hairstyles that you can achieve. Thicker hair, however, can usually handle these heavier products, while mousses and sprays will not provide enough hold to lift the hair up. Work a small amount of whatever product is best for your specific hair type into your roots all over your head; simply applying it to the top portion of your hair will not give you a large amount of volume.
The manner in which you blow-dry your hair is just as important as the products that you use in it when trying to create puffy hairstyles. Drying your hair with your head upside down is a fantastic way to add volume, as it styles the hair pointing upwards, naturally lifting the roots. For a more controlled style, dry your hair in sections, blow-drying each in the opposite direction that it grows on your head. For example, the area at the crown of your head would be dried up and towards your forehead for the best lift.
After you have built up as much volume as possible in your hair, you can use teasing to add extra lift to specific areas. The parts of your hair that you tease will vary depending on the types of puffy hairstyles that you want to create. In any spot that you want volume, lift up a section of your hair, spray it with a light to medium hair spray, and then gently brush or comb it towards your scalp using a teasing comb for the best results, starting about 2 to 3 inches (about 5 to 7 centimeters) from the roots. This will create a sort of nest, so make sure that you only tease the underside of your hair, and gently brush over the top portion to smooth it out and hide the teasing. From this point, you can pin, curl, or otherwise style your hair any way that you want.