How to get luscious curls

THE ARSENAL: Top products for making - and holding - curls.
THE ARSENAL: Top products for making - and holding - curls.

You always want what you can't have. It's true, ya know. You also always want the opposite of what you have - if you're thin you want curves, if you're curvy you want to be thin, if you have curly hair you want it straight, and those with straight hair want it curly.

I am "blessed" with poker straight hair. Hairdressers love it. I hate it. As a teenager I would twist my hair into frenetic little bobbles at night to create waves. It was painful, and would lead to a sleepless night and dreams of sleeping on pillows of rocks, but I didn't care - I'd do anything for a wave or two.

At seventeen I wanted my hair permed. My hairdresser was horrified, and refused to do it as it's so damaging to the hair, so I trekked out to the suburbs and joined the blue rinse brigade's gossip session under the hair dryers. I got a spiral perm, which looked fantastic - until it fell out eight weeks later. My hair was too straight and stubborn to hold the perm in.

EN VOGUE: Curly hair is everywhere this season.
EN VOGUE: Curly hair is everywhere this season.

I spent many years after that tying my hair into a scruffy little bun, and cutting into super short designer styles plied with product to give it texture. But I've recently begun to grow out my hair and the desire for curls has returned. This desire isn't helped by the fact that curls are everywhere this season either.

"Curls have recently been on catwalks around the world and are definitely en vogue this season," says L'Oréal Professionnel National Technical Manager Hayley Pullyn.

Not willing to frazzle my locks again with a perm, I've been primping and preening them with hot irons and clever styling products. After a few failed attempts and trialling more than a few curl-enhancing hair products, I think I've nailed it. Every few days I now bounce off to work with a wonderful mop of cascading curls - they are fun, and quite sexy in a wonderfully dishevelled sort of way.   

How to create a messy head of curls:

1. Prep the hair. Spritz a product like KMS Freeshape Hot Flex Spray onto towel-dried hair, and don't forget to spray in the roots. Freestyle gives you flexible hold and volume while protecting your hair from heat damage.

2. Flip your head upside down and blow dry it until dry.

3. Separate your hair into three sections and secure with clips. This will make it easier to work through your hair. Wrap your hair piece by piece around curling tongs or GHDs. Once each piece of hair is curled, roll it up and pin it to your head to cool and set. Continue over your whole head. 

Bronwyn's tip: Alternate the direction of your curls (by shifting the position of your hot irons) for a more natural look.

4. Once your head is cool, remove the pins holding your curls in place and let your hair fall free.

5. Carefully loosen the curls with your fingers, and shake to release them. Don't use a brush or you'll brush them right out.

6. Take L'Oreal Professionnel Super Dust, and sprinkle it into your roots. Now grab a comb and carefully backcomb your roots to give your hair a bit of lift. Super dust adds texture and grip, and is a fantastic volumiser to give you the messed up effect.

7. Flip your head upside down and spray liberally with L'Oreal Professionnel Texture Expert Fixing Mist. This gives the curls flexible hold without being crunchy.

8. Finish off with a light cover of Garnier Fructis Brilliantine Shine Glossing Spray. This will give a healthy shine to your curls.