How to get those sexy, summer beach waves you've always wanted

In honor of TODAY's “Hair Essentials" series, legendary hairstylist Ted Gibson explains how to master your mane at home — with salon-worthy results.

How to get salon hair at home

  • Love how your salon blowout feels and looks? Consider purchasing the same products your stylist uses.
  • Be sure to use a good brush when blow-drying your hair. I recommend a nylon or boar bristle brush.
  • Ask your stylist to show you how to hold and use hot tools at home so that you can achieve that particular look. For example, while your stylist is curling your hair, ask to curl a section with their instruction so that you know how to get the look at home.

How to get the exact haircut you want

  • Come prepared. Bring in a picture of the haircut you'd like.
  • Manage your expectations. You can’t have va-va-voom without the voom! Make sure that you can get the haircut you want with the hair that you have. If you’re not sure, ask your stylist if he or she feels the cut that you want is achievable.
  • Ask your stylist to cut your hair a bit longer than the length you actually want. Your stylist can always cut you shorter, but it will take a few months to get your hair longer.
  • Do not be afraid to ask your stylist if he or she feels comfortable giving you the haircut you want. If it is beyond their skill set, ask them to recommend another stylist who can give it to you.

How to get summer beach waves

  • If your hair has a natural wave, use a salt-based hair product, scrunch it and allow it to air dry to hold your hair’s natural curl pattern.
  • Sleep with a tight bun in your hair. When you release your hair will retain a beautiful, wavy pattern.
  • Using a medium to large barrel curling iron, hold the iron vertically and wrap a 1-inch section of your hair around the barrel of the iron ( do not open the mouth of the clamp), leaving the ends out. Hold for 5 seconds and release. Do this to the entire head, then run your fingers through for a tousled, beachy look.

How to use a diffuser

Diffusers are a great tool for curly haired women to use to retain their beautiful, natural curl. To use:

  • First place the diffuser piece on your blowdryer.
  • Take a large section of hair and place on top of the diffuser plate.
  • Move the blowdryer upwards so the hair is scrunched against your head by the bowl.
  • Hold the blowdryer for 30-45 seconds while it is against your head.
  • Here’s the trick: Try your hair until it is 80 percent dry Do this to your entire head, then finish with holding spray.
  • Slideshow Photos

    Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

    From French to fishtail, there's a braid style for everyone and every occasion.

  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles -

    With endless variations and intricate styles, it's no wonder Instabraid — an Instagram account devoted purely to braid hairstyles — boasts over 1 million followers. From French to fishtail, there's something for everyone and every occasion. Need some summer inspiration? Founders Sophie Rose and Shir Ben-Zikry share some of their favorite seasonal hairdos.
    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Swept aside

    Instabraid
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    Zig-zag

    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Bun fun

    Instabraid
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    Long hair, don't care

    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Top bun

    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Single file

    Courtesy of Instabraid
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    Crowning it

    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Swinging left, right

    Courtesy of Instabraid
  • Instabraid favorites: Best summer braid styles

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    Twice as fun

    Courtesy of Instabraid
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