How to Get Full And Soft Hair, a photo step by step



Back in 2015, which was actually less than a month ago believe it or not, I had an opportunity to work with Living Proof. I’m now completely addicted to their dry shampoo and have really enjoyed the products that the stylist recommended for me.


I do a lot of wavy and curly hair tutorials, but today I wanted to show you how to get lots of volume using a Hot Tools 2 inch curling iron.


In the shower, I washed my hair with Living Proof Full shampoo and conditioned with Living Proof Restore conditioner. Then, I applied just a dime size amount of Living Proof PHD 5-in-1 styling treatment all over my hair, except for my roots. I squeezed a golf ball sized amount of Living Proof Full Thickening Mousse into my palm and applied it to my hair, focusing on the root area.



With the T3 PROi dryer, I dried my hair with my fingers until it was about 80% dry. Next, I grabbed a paddle brush and smoothed through my hair section by section until it was completely dry.



To encourage the most volume, I started at the top “mohawk” section of my hair. I sprayed the entire section with a light mist of Living Proof Flex Shaping Hairspray to help hold the curl. I really love this for setting my hair. It isn’t overly wet, so you don’t hear the iron sizzle as it touches your hair, which is never a good sign.



I put the barrel in horizontally, and wrapped the entire section. Afterwards, I pulled the iron out but left the curl in it’s shape using duckbill clips to hold it and allow it to cool. This is the absolute best way to get plenty of lift at the crown!


For the bottom half of my hair, I sprayed more Living Proof Flex Shaping Spray, but I inserted the iron in vertically. I wanted twisted ends, like they were curled in a ringlet, versus ends bent under or out.





Once the bottom was curled, I pulled the clips out and ran my fingers through my hair to blend everything together.




I finished the look with a bit of Living Proof Control Hairspray, which has a stronger hold than Flex, but isn’t too stiff.



I loved the final result! It was different than how I usually wear my hair, but still really full and bouncy. This is a great way to style your hair on the day you wash it in order to set yourself up for success on day two. Too much product and too much styling doesn’t fare well overnight, so full and soft styles are a much more forgiving route! Plus, the Living Proof PhD Dry Shampoo is so great at refreshing (and cleaning!) your hair that you will likely love your hair on day two as much as you did on day one.

I love seeing your versions of any tutorials or step by steps I share, so use #smallthingshair if you post a photo on Instagram!

This post was created in partnership with Living Proof.


Leave a Comment

Comments (68)

  1. Beth Tessier says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I’ve recently switched to Living Proof because of you and MaskCara! I’m super happy with their products! I am using the curl line. Great tutorial. Thank you!

  2. Melanie says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Kate – if I have short and fine hair would you recommend I get full shampoo and full conditioner? Or should I get the restore conditioner? Also – my hair tends to get oily fast so should I skip any steps in this process to avoid extra oiliness?

    • Abbi says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      Hopefully Kate can answer more about the styling products but I wanted to give my two cents since I also have oily hair. My roots get oily quickly but my ends are dry and damaged due to coloring. I’ve been using the full shampoo and the restore conditioner and I SWEAR my hair stays clean and less oily longer. Like I can go 3 days now with dry shampoo on day 2 and three. I could probably go longer but haven’t pushed it yet.If you don’t have dryness issues in your ends I think you could do full shampoo and full conditioner , however, the restore conditioner actually feels pretty light to me (but still smoothing) so you may be able to use that to combat any dryness. Hope that helps!

      • Melanie says
        Posted January 14, 2016

        Great info! Thanks for the input!!

    • Jessica says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      I agree, the dry shampoo has CHANGED MY LIFE (hair). I have oily hair after 24 hours, but the combo of mousse after shampoo and the dry shampoo means I can skip washing every day and just fluff up my style with a blow dryer.

  3. Melanie says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Kate – if I have short and fine hair would you recommend I get full shampoo and full conditioner? Or should I get the restore conditioner? Also – my hair tends to get oily fast so should I skip any steps in this process to avoid extra oiliness?

  4. Chelsea says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Have you tried the living proof nightcap? I saw the promotion they are running and I was considering trying it. Or is there something you would recommend instead?
    I have thick wavy hair that’s about the same length as yours if that makes a difference!

    • Gina Sharpe says
      Posted January 23, 2016

      I highly recommend the Living Proof nightcap. I started using it this summer for my dry, damaged ends (growing out a pixie). It is wonderful!! I have also been using the restoring shampoo and conditioner for about a month. My hair is extremely dry and I only wash it twice a week.

  5. kathy olson says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Hi! I love your blog.
    Would this curling iron be a good substitute for that T3 Waver I’ve seen lately? It’s so expensive and this one is more reasonably priced.
    I was wondering if you had used both and how they compare?

  6. Madeline says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I’m confused about your thoughts on Living Proof. I was looking for a past video the other day, and came across a video you made saying you would never use the shampoo and conditioner again?? Why the mixed reviews?

    I don’t think your hair looks much different than usual. Just another iron to buy!

    • Sara says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      I think she was talking about Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Shampoo, Conditioner & Styling Treatment specifically.
      In this, she’s using Living Proof Full shampoo and conditioned with Living Proof Restore conditioner.

  7. Steffi says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I just recently started using the Living Proof Full Shampoo and conditioner and love it. Its worth every penny.

  8. Alyssa says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    This is exactly how I want my hair to look every day. Thanks for this tutorial!

    Alyssa | Glitter and Grey

  9. Kelly says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Would that curling iron be a good substitute for the one I linked to above on Sephora? I know it’s a touch bigger but I have long hair so maybe that wouldn’t matter. I love the look!

  10. Posted January 14, 2016

    Hmm this might actually work for my hair! How long did it take you to do this? I have annoyingly thick hair so doing any sort of styling usually takes forever! It’s such a great classic look though!

    Mary Kate

  11. Carrie says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Love this tutorial and I love that there are step by step photos instead of a video!!! I find this so much easier to read and understand!! Thanks for all you do!

  12. Morgan says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    What paddle brush are you using? I need a new brush and I hate wasting money on ones that are no good.

    • Michelle says
      Posted January 19, 2016

      I’d love to know about the paddle brush too!

  13. Posted January 14, 2016

    beautiful tutorial!

  14. Posted January 14, 2016

    Great post. Love the that you did step by step pictures

    Kisses from

  15. Michele O'Sullivan says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I love that last picture of you (the split screen one of you kinda looking backwards at the products). If I tried a cute pose/ face like that, I’d look less cheeky and more creepy!

    I wish I could use dry shampoo without feeling like it’s still dirty. I tried it at the hospital after having my baby and it certainly didn’t make me feel less gross. Maybe I was just St trying the wrong kind? Thanks for sharing the tips!

  16. Vivian Vinson says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Love this????
    I’m excited to try the products and the style tips????

  17. Katie says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I love this look! I’ll definitely have to pick up some of that mousse and hairspray.

  18. Alyssa says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Literally obsessed with Livingproof dry shampoo! I am a bottle blonde and I feel like it really refreshes 2 day or 3 day old hair. I have naturally greasy hair and it not only absorbs grease but adds bounce and smells great! Ive tried many dry shampoo products and this is by far my favorite (besides the price!). I also use the living proof full shampoo and conditioner. I love it! I damage my hair a lot with irons, blow drying and highlights. These products keep my hair as healthy as it can be with all I do to it! I would recommend the dry shampoo for anyone who deals with greasy hair and doesn’t have the time/energy to wash and style it everyday!


    • Posted February 10, 2016

      I was looking for a dry shampoo for a long time now and hasn’t found any that doesn’t leave a nasty grey/white residue on my weave… How’s this one, please if you could tell me? Thanks 🙂

  19. Posted January 14, 2016

    I am loving Living Proof products! Its the only thing that has allowed me to go any amount of days in between washes. Thanks for the great tutorial!


  20. Becky says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Hi Kate,
    I was wondering what curling iron you are using in this tutorial. Or, really, what curling iron you recommend that is reasonably priced? My hair curls well, but it never stays curled (we are talking less than 2 hours!). Any recommendations?

    • Nicole says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      Hi, I’m not Kate but I have some advice. That used to always happen to me all of the time! I would curl my fine hair, and then thirty mins later its was straight as an arrow. I use Hot tools, and I turn the heat up all of the way. I think it goes to like 425 degrees or something. The hot tools are usually pretty reasonably priced too. Two Christmas’ ago I got one and I loved it so I asked for another this past Christmas.

  21. Nicole says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Hey! You should do some more nail posts. I love nail art that is simple but cute. Also I love your top! Loft has the best clothes that border simple but dressy.

  22. Aileen says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I love this look! It’ll be great for first day hair. I just need a larger barrel curling iron; I’m so sad I’ll have to take another trip to Ulta. ha.

  23. Jillian says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I just bought the Perfect Hair Day dry shampoo and while it works well I am not in love. But I do want to try other stuff in that line.

    Does this mean you are converting from Aquage Uplifting foam for volume?

  24. Angela says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    My favorite look for you!!! I’m going to try this, thanks!!!!

  25. Beth says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Can you please share what curling iron you are using? Thanks!

    • Kate says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      Details are within the post! It’s a 2 inch barrel.

  26. Sydni says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Yay! Thank you for doing this photo step-by-step tutorial. I like being able to see what you do, but don’t want to sit for a 7 minute or longer video. Thanks!!

  27. Posted January 14, 2016

    Ok so I need a curling iron with a barrel that huge!! That thing is awesome!! Your hair looks amazing!

  28. Posted January 14, 2016

    I’ve been a fan of “Living Proof” since the company started. I won’t go into details, but my 60-year old hair needs TLC..and I do a roller set once a week–I swear to god before setting the hair I apply the “Nourishing Styling Cream”. It keeps my hair looking great for a week. I kid you not. Here’s a link to a blog post that I wrote last night. Scroll down to the two pics of me after I styled my hair. That will prove to you this stuff is the bomb!

  29. Jenny says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Living Proof dry shampoo is the absolute best. I have used many different kinds and this is the only one that leaves my hair feeling refreshed. It does not cause a build up like most of the other ones do.

  30. Becky says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    I have been looking for a way to get fuller hair. Love the tutorial. I was so close to buying living proof hair stuff yesterday! GAHH! Oh well, next time I guess

    Thanks for the sassy hair tutorial,


    The Bexter Review

  31. Posted January 14, 2016

    Such a useful blog post girlie and I love the products!

    XO, Jessi

  32. Brooke says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Are you not using Aquage Uplifting Foam anymore?

    • Kate says
      Posted January 14, 2016

      No, I still love Aquage. I used the volumizing mousse for this step by step. It’s good for all over volume!

  33. Leah Willis says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Kate, have you ever had issues with volumizing mousse (like Aquage Uplifting Foam or this Living Proof foam) causing your client’s hair or yours to seem dirty and too heavy? I feel like no matter what brand I use, my hair actually weighs down more with it – looks flat – and almost dirty rather than volumized and fresh. I don’t know if I’m doing something wrong or if it’s just my personal hair (which is naturally oily and limp) that is giving me those results.

    Thanks for your help!

  34. Jill says
    Posted January 14, 2016

    Your hair looks so good! Love it 🙂


  35. Posted January 14, 2016

    One of my 2016 goals has been to have better hair…better quality, better styling…just better! Would the living proof shampoo and conditioner improve dry hair problems? I’m going to give this tutorial a whirl tomorrow! Here’s hoping for some luscious locks 😉

  36. Amy says
    Posted January 15, 2016

    I need some new hair product in my life. Have you ever tried the Tyme iron for curling/adding body? I keep seeing a bunch of stuff about it, and I think I want to try it.

  37. Cara says
    Posted January 15, 2016

    Love the step by step tutorials! A busy mom myself, I’d rather scroll through a tutorial than a video. Thank you for the great tips you give!

  38. Betsy green says
    Posted January 15, 2016

    Kate, I love your tutorials and your hair. I’m currently growing out a long bob and want a cut that is exactly like yours – in your blown dry but not yet styled pic in the above tutorial. Could you give a basic description I could use when sharing the photos w my stylist? Thanks so much!!

  39. susan says
    Posted January 15, 2016

    Great tutorial, and a really beautiful look.
    I am going to give Living Proof a try. Thanks!

  40. Katie says
    Posted January 16, 2016 This look is fabulous, thank you for sharing!

  41. Kate says
    Posted January 16, 2016

    Kate, I love the top you are wearing! Where is it from?

  42. Posted January 16, 2016

    My favorite hair look I’ve seen you do. Gorgeous!

  43. Katie says
    Posted January 16, 2016

    Love this tutorial!! Please do more photo tutorials like this in the future! Sometimes it is easier to read and try to follow than watching a video.

  44. Ashli says
    Posted January 16, 2016

    You have the best hair! I love the length too.

  45. Lisa Hays says
    Posted January 17, 2016

    You have always raved about Aquage Uplifting Foam and I have yet to try it. In this post you used a mousse at your roots. Where is the Living Proof on your scale? For me that would be easier to get my hands on but if I could only get one………. Any advice?

  46. Posted January 19, 2016

    You look so pretty in the photos!

  47. T.J. says
    Posted January 21, 2016

    I love your shirt in this post.

  48. Erica W. says
    Posted January 24, 2016

    would you mind offering a suggestion for the paddle brush you use? i have seen you recommend a couple other brushes before but never a paddle brush….do you like it better? feel it does a better job? i really need to replace mine and I never do well with round brush while blowdrying! thanks so much!

  49. Faye says
    Posted February 3, 2016

    This might seem like a silly question, but when dealing with the top “Mohawk” section, how do you pull the curling iron out while keeping the hair curled to clip in place? Maybe my hair just isn’t layered enough? Would that make a difference?

  50. Gen P. says
    Posted February 4, 2016

    I love it!! I just tried it yesterday. Sooooooooo easy to do, soooooooo fast to do and it looks so good! This will be a weekly go-to for me from now on.

    Thanks Kate! 🙂

  51. Shari says
    Posted February 9, 2016

    I have waist length hair and am considering getting it styled like yours. I have a ton of hair!!! Don’t get me wrong….I’m not complaining. I was just wondering if your style would work for me.
    Thanks for you input.

  52. Posted February 10, 2016

    I’ve never thought of adding some mousse to my roots, instead I put volumising spray and it does the trick. 🙂

  53. Lauren Brintlinger says
    Posted February 10, 2016

    Not only do I love your hair in this (like always), but I LOVE your shirt!!! Please share with us! Thanks

  54. Kate says
    Posted February 20, 2016

    What is the name of the brush you’re using in the blow drying photos?

  55. Posted March 18, 2016

    Hey! Where did you get the tee from? Looks great! Awesome tutorial as well

  56. Debbie Lee says
    Posted April 10, 2016

    I don’t have luck with the duck bill clips, so I put my hair at the top in Velcro rollers while it is still warm from the curling or flat iron. It holds it out of the way while I work on the bottom, and I get pretty good volume that way.