Allure March 24, 2024

Allure

Hair

17 Best Volumizing Hair Products That'll Take Your Crown to New Heights

 

Flat hair who?

Whether your second-day hair looks a little deflated or your hair has gone flat overnight, the best volumizing hair products can make all the difference. Mousses, sprays, and powders (oh my!) work to add dimension and texture to hair that could use a little boost, using ingredients like copolymers, polymers, and resins to restore your long-lost zhuzh.

You don't need fine or flat hair to benefit from a volumizing hair product, by the way. Even people with full-bodied hair can use these formulas to amp up their natural volume. Read on and get to know the 17 best hair volumizing products to give a lift to your crown.

Best Overall: Color Wow Xtra Large Bombshell Volumizer

Why It's Worth It: ColorWow's Xtra Large Bombshell Volumizer, a 2023 Best of Beauty Award winner for best volumizing mousse, features a proprietary polymer complex that creates weightless body in hair. The bamboo extract strengthens and promotes shine with use, and it only takes a few pumps for you to yield lasting volume.

Editor Tip: This volumizer can be used before styling but it looks equally as good on air-dried hair.

Key Ingredients: Bamboo extract, proprietary polymer complex | Who It's Good For: People with damaged, color-treated hair.

Best Multipurpose: Living Proof Full Dry Volume & Texture Spray

Why It's Worth It: This 2023 Readers' Choice Award winner is as versatile as it gets. Use it to absorb excess oils four days after a wash, as a light-hold hairspray for finished styles, or to add volume to limp-looking hair. It also offers heat protection up to 410 degrees Fahrenheit, eliminating the need for a secondary product and potential buildup from combining two formulas.

Editor Tip: For maximum volume, flip your head upside down and spray.

Key Ingredients: Hydrophobic resins, starch | Who It's Good For: People who don't have the time or budget to use multiple products.

Best Dry Shampoo: Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray

Why It's Worth It: You blew your hair out yesterday, but this morning's pilates class did a number on your 'do. Before you panic, the Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray is here to save the day. The floral citrusy-scented dry shampoo keeps your hair bouncy while absorbing excess oils before they have a chance to mess up your look.

Editor Tip: Because this goes on transparent, it works well for all hair colors.

Key Ingredients: Zeolite crystallines, ginger root extract, kiwi extract | Who It's Good For: People who work out or sweat a lot.

Best for Breakage: Nexxus Unbreakable Care Root Lift Hair Thickening Spray

Why It's Worth It: Broken ends, who? The Nexxus Unbreakable Care Root Lift Hair Thickening Spray (a 2023 Best of Beauty Award winner) masks breakage by simply giving the appearance of thicker hair, à la the brand's proprietary Strand Exxpand Technology. However, its beauty is more than spray-deep as the leave-in product is infused with ingredients like keratin protein, biotin, and collagen amino acids.

Editor Tip: If you're committed to achieving thicker-looking hair, try the three-step system, which includes the Anti-Breakage Shampoo, Thickening Conditioner, and, voìla, Root Lift Thickening Spray.

Key Ingredients: Keratin protein, biotin, collagen amino acids | Who It's Good For: People with heat-damaged or color-treated hair.

Best Powder: SexyHair Big Sexy Hair Powder Play

Why It's Worth It: If you need volume in a pinch, the Sexy Hair Big Sexy Hair Powder Play delivers just that. New York City-based hairstylist Mia Santiago loves this invisible powder for its ease of use. "Just sprinkle this miraculous hair plumper at the roots after your blowout or styling, and it'll immediately create lots of grit and volume at the root with a long-lasting lift," she says. BTW, it won't weigh down fine-textured hair

Editor Tip: To reactivate during the day, massage the area where you placed the product.

Key Ingredients: Rice bran oil | Who It's Good For: People with fine hair.

Best for Fine Hair: Verb Volume Dry Texture Spray

Why It's Worth It: For lived-in waves and high-as-the-sky volume, consider the Verb Volume Dry Texture Spray. This Best of Beauty-winning formula features glycerin to lock in moisture and vitamin B5 to smooth and hydrate hair while adding body. Users also love the fragrance of this spray, lightly scented with oatmeal and grapefruit notes.

Editor Tip: Those with scalp dryness will appreciate the aloe vera in the formula, which soothes and reduces flakiness.

Key Ingredients: Glycerin, vitamin B5 | Who It's Good For: Those with dry hair.

Best for Long-Lasting Fullness: Drybar Big Brew Instant Thickening Styling Treatment

Why It's Worth It: The Drybar Big Brew Instant Thickening Styling Treatment is the best volumizing hair product if you're not the type to wash your hair often. Why? It delivers 72-hour fullness, keeping your hair looking thick between washes. You can also get ahead of flatness by using it after you've freshly washed and dried your hair.

Editor Tip: The formula is fueled by a triple peptide complex, along with biotin and caffeine, which help create an optimal condition for hair growth.

Key Ingredients: Hemp fibers, soy protein, peptides | Who It's Good For: People with frizz.

Best for Wavy Hair: Bumble and Bumble Thickening Dryspun Volume Texture Spray

Why It's Worth It: Bumble and Bumble Thickening Dryspun Volume Texture Spray won a Best of Beauty award in 2019 for its translucent formula, which leaves roots looking volumized all day long. It's made with zeolite and silk powder to add grip and texture to your strands and is scented with lemon, bergamot, apple, and white musk.

Editor Tip: Pair with the brand's Thickening Volume Shampoo for mega volume.

Key Ingredients: Zeolite, silk powder, sunflower seed extract | Who It's Good For: Those with straight to wavy hair types.

Best Pre-Blowout: Amika Brooklyn Bombshell Blowout Volume Spray

Why It's Worth It: Amika's Brooklyn Bombshell Blowout Volume Spray creates intense volume and texture with just a few spritzes of its polymer-based formula. For application, use it before blow-drying your hair to protect against any heat damage or after your hair is dry to give an extra lift.

 

Editor Tip: The spray has a built-in lock, making it a great choice for traveling.

Key Ingredients: Vitamin B5, sea buckthorn | Who It's Good For: People who get blowouts (or do at-home blowouts) often.

Best Matte Finish: Unite Hair Texturiza Spray

Why It's Worth It: "The Unite Hair Texturiza goes on dry hair after it's been styled," says Santiago, who uses this volumizer on clients and herself. "It's a go-to because it creates texture and volume that just won't quit, and I love that," she adds. It has a medium hold and provides thermal and UV protection.

Editor Tip: This has built-in UV protection, perfect for those who spend a lot of time outside.

Key Ingredients: Sunflower seed extract and glycerin. Who It's Good For: Since this is matte, it's a good choice for people who want a beachy-looking style.

Best Splurge: Starring by Ted Gibson Shooting Star Texture Meringue

Why It's Worth It: Starring by Ted Gibson's Shooting Star Texture Meringue may be a bit of a splurge but there's a reason New York City-based hairstylist Devin Toth swears by it. "This mousse-like texture never feels sticky or stiff once applied to the hair," he says.

Editor Tip: This features notes of fig, amber, and vanilla for a luxurious scent every time you apply.

Key Ingredients: Castor oil | Who It's Good For: People with curly hair

Best Drugstore: Tresemmé One Step 5-in-1 Volume Spray

Why It's Worth It: The Tresemmé One Step 5-in-1 Volume Spray is more than just your average volumizer. It's made to yes, give lift and condition, but also to strengthen hair and protect it against heat and static. You can grab it from Amazon in a 2-pack and save while you style.

Editor Tip: After spritzing the product on, you can use a blow dryer it with a round brush for extra dimension.

Key Ingredients: Castor oil, collagen amino acids | Who It's Good For: Those on a budget.

Best for Adding Shine: Ouai Volume Spray

Why It's Worth It: Made with polymers to thicken and lift, hibiscus extract to soften, and panthenol to add shine, you'll love what the Ouai Volume Spray can do for your hair. It's a light-as-air formula that gives loads of volume to all hair types.

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Editor Tip: Try the brand's matching North Bondi Eau De Parfum if you can't get enough of the scent.

Key Ingredients: Panthenol, polymers | Who It's Good For: People with oily hair or scalp.

Best for Thin Hair: Joico Rise Up Powder Spray

Why It's Worth It: Limp hair will be lifted to new heights with just a few pumps of the Best of Beauty Award-winning Joico Rise Up Powder Spray. The formula delivers immediate extra volume at the roots and a light texture throughout the hair. The lightweight, fine mist truly feels like nothing is there.

Editor Tip: This has the volume-boosting benefits of a powder but comes in a pump, making it less messy to apply.

Key Ingredients: Moringa seed extract | Who It's Good For: People who want on-the-go thickness.

Best Strengthening: R+Co Bleu Magnifier Thickening Spray

Why It's Worth It: In Toth's experience, the R+Co Bleu Magnifier Thickening Spray creates touchable, long-lasting hairstyles that never feel sticky or stiff. "This lightweight product has nourishing proteins [like pea protein] that strengthen and plumpen fine limp hair," he adds.

Editor Tip: After you mist the spray onto your wet hair, you can style it as you normally would. AKA, air-drying works just as well as blow-drying.

Key Ingredients: Biotin, pea vegetable protein | Who It's Good For: People with damaged or thin hair.

Best Mousse: DevaCurl SuperMousse Coconut Oil Infused Volumizer

Why It's Worth It: Curly hair folks, this one is for you. Infused with moisturizing coconut oil, DevaCurl SuperMousse Volumizer does way more than keep hair conditioned and super soft. The formula maintains moisture in curls, reduces frizz, and works magic in humid conditions.

Editor Tip: If your hair is more wavy than curly, opt for the brand's Frizz-Fighting Volumizing Foam, which won't weigh down waves.

Key Ingredients: Castor oil, coconut oil | Who It's Good For: People with coarse, curly hair.

Best for Color-Treated Hair: Biolage Volume Bloom Full-Lift Volumizer Spray

Why It's Worth It: With a formula inspired by the naturally expanding cotton flower, the Biolage Volume Bloom Full-Life Volumizer works to plump fine hair, no matter the length. It also features the classic Biolage fragrance, a melange of bergamot, mandarin, peach, and sandalwood, among other delicious notes.

Editor Tip: Spray starting at the roots, working down to the ends for the best effect.

Key Ingredients: Cotton, orchid oil | Who It's Good For: People with fine or color-treated hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a volumizing hair product do?

According to Toth, a volumizing hair product lifts roots from the scalp. "Some are simply weightless, some give incredible hold and texture, and some coat and surround each strand of hair," he remarks.

Raven Hurtado, a Chicago-based hairstylist at Maxine Salon, echoed Toth. He previously told Allure, "It works great for updos, and you could also use it as a dry shampoo." Hurtado explains, "You can also touch up your second-day blowout without having any residue."

While healthy hair can benefit from hair volumizing products, they can also be helpful for supporting damaged locks. Cosmetic chemist, Ginger King told Allure, "Heredity, stress, poor nutrition, improper care of hair, and environmental damage (such as sunlight and harsh brushing)" can all be potential causes of thinning hair. If that sounds like you, a hair volumizing product could make a big difference, either as a permanent solution or to tide you over while going on a regrowth journey.

How do I choose a volumizing hair product?

Many products claim to be effective volumizers, but before you hedge your bets on a bottle, it's important to examine what could be suitable for your hair type and desired style outcome. If you like your hair more touchable and smooth, New York City-based hairstylist Mia Santiago recommends a root spray or mousse before blow-drying. "If you like feeling your hair more textured, an aerosol spray or volume powder is a great choice," she adds. If you're getting into the hair volumizing game, you might need to try a few different products before you land your best option.

What should I avoid in a volumizing hair product?

King previously told Allure to be wary of heavy oils and silicones since "not all oils or silicones are created equal." She mentions that while they can provide benefits like softening and hydrating, coconut and jojoba are weightier than other oils. Silicones also vary in weight and grade, but you don't need to be a scientist to determine what that means. "If it feels greasy on your fingers, chances are it will weigh down your hair," King advises.

How we test and review products

We always enlist a range of testers for our makeup vertical, but hair-care products and tools are another story. While there are certain products that can be used across different hair textures, lengths, curl patterns, thicknesses, colors (natural and unnatural), and needs, hair products are often created with specific consumers in mind. Many are created in order to address a concern (dandruff, breakage, brittleness) or to work most effectively for a specific hair type (4C curls, wavy hair, gray hair). You wouldn’t want to pick up a purple shampoo that’s only been reviewed by someone with, say, auburn hair, or a diffuser that’s never been tested by anyone with curls — right?

For our review of volumizing hair products, we enlisted the help of multiple editors, writers, contributors, cosmetic chemists, and makeup artists — who have a range of experience studying and using these products. Testers considered performance across four primary categories: efficacy, texture, experience, and formula. For more on what's involved in our reporting, check out our complete reviews process and methodology page.

Our staff and testers

A beauty product is a personal purchase. You might be searching for a face cream to address persistent dryness or a new nail product to add to your Sunday self-care routine; you may simply be browsing around for the latest launches to hit the hair market. No matter what you seek or your individual needs and concerns, Allure wants to ensure that you love anything we recommend in our stories. We believe that having a diverse team of writers and editors — in addition to the wide range of outside testers and industry experts we regularly call upon — is essential to reaching that goal.

After all, can we really say a skin-care product is the “best” for people over 50 if the only testers we’ve solicited opinions from folks who have yet to hit 30? Can we honestly deem a high-end diffuser worthy of your hard-earned cash if it’s never been tested on curls? We’re proud that our staff spans a wide range of ages, skin tones, hair textures, genders, and backgrounds, which means that we are able to fairly assess any beauty product that comes into the beauty closet.


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