Quick Hair Tip: How to Apply and Layer Hair Products

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I touched very briefly in this tutorial about how to best apply hair products to your hair but I wanted to film a more in depth (though still quick!) video demonstrating how to apply certain products for the best results.

The particular products I used in the video can be found below but I want to emphasize that you do not need to use these exact products. The focus is more on the kind of product and the application method more than the product itself!

Alterna Caviar 3-in-1 Restructuring Bond Repair Sealing Serum (serum)

Bumble and Bumble Thickening Great Body Blow Dry Crème (cream)

Alterna Caviar Multiplying Volume Mist (liquid spray)

Aquage Uplifting foam (foam)

I used a vented paddle brush and the T3 Cura Blow Dryer.

The main takeaway is to start with the lightest/thinnest product first that is supposed to be good to the hair. Ideally you don’t want anything in the way of that product doing it’s job, which is why you want to put it on first. Then you’ll finish with the thickest product. If you feel like your hair is weighed down, you may be using too much product! Trial and error is the best way to determine how many products you can use without filling up your hair.

Typically the next step after applying products is blowing the hair dry, and you may want to make sure you aren’t making these mistakes!

I’m curious, how many hair products do you apply before blowdrying? I’m usually applying at least 2, sometimes more depending on what look I’m going for. 

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Comments (45)

  1. Michele says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Question about dry shampoo, which I’m new to: does it tend to make hair tangle easier? I’m enjoying it, but find my hair feels very different and easily tangles when I use it, unless I’m curling it (using one of your tutorials, naturally!)

    • Kate says
      Posted January 28, 2019

      It can, so maybe try a different brand OR use a bit less! And make sure you brush through it too!

  2. Posted January 28, 2019

    This is great! I’m always confused about the order you’re supposed to apply your products in. Would love a skincare version! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  3. Kimberly says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Great info! I know the order in which you apply your skincare products is important, but never gave hair products a thought!
    Would you please tell me if you think a person with fine, straight hair should have some layers for some volume?
    Thanks for all of the wonderful tips ypu give us!

    • Kaitlyn says
      Posted January 28, 2019

      I would love your opinion on this as well. I have fine, thin hair. I always keep my ends blunt (for a thicker effect) but never know what to do about layers. In the past when I’ve gotten layers they end up looking stringy; however, when I choose to do no layers there is no movement to my hair and the shape isn’t flattering. HELP!

  4. kate says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    how many products do you typically use?
    I use one but maybe I need more depending on what I am doing with my hair

  5. Clarissa says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I usually use two products, in small amounts. Big Sexy Volumizing Blow Dry gel all over, and either Aquage or Big Sexy for my roots.

  6. Jen says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I’ve been loving Alterna’s babmboo kendi oil. It’s smoothed my hair the best of all the oils I’ve tried. Would an oil get applied first like a serum?

  7. Allie says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    This is so helpful! Thank you! I a,ways apply a blow dry balm (the Caviar CC cream is so good) and will keep your technique in mind from now on!
    xAllie
    http://www.theallthatglittersblog.com

  8. Posted January 28, 2019

    gah! I’ve been doing it wrong lol This was super helpful, thank you! 🙂

  9. Annette Silveira says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Yay! This is so helpful. I’d like to know if you do anything special to keep your style going from day to day. I seem to remember that you said you can get a few days out of one style session.

  10. Angela says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Thanks for the tips! I’ve just now gotten back into using more styling products in my hair (it was in terrible shape after having my daughter) and you’ve piqued my interest with that Bumble and Bumble Blow Dry cream.

    Angela at Blush & Pearls

  11. Meaghan says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    This was super helpful! Thanks for making this video!

  12. Joanna says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I apply two, and usually in that order. I wasn’t applying correctly though, making sure to get all the hair, so I’m glad I saw the correct way. I do have a quick question. My daughter has super thick hair, and our hair girl gave us a serum to try out. It works great on my thinner hair, but hers still looks so frizzy. She hates it. Any products that you could recommend trying on her hair? Right now she uses the Joico Blonde Life serum on wet hair and will add a little more to dry hair. Thanks!

  13. Heidi says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Could you possibly give more examples of the serum, cream and liquid spray? I have no idea which ones are which. The only thing I use on a regular basis is the Aquage.

  14. Anu says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I’ve noticed with root lifting products my scalp tends to go oiler quicker. Not only that, the product buildup from that and dry shampoo does the exact opposite of what I want leaving me to have to wash my hair earlier than I would have had to if I didn’t use the root lifter to begin with. Which leaves me with the dilemma because I desperately need volume at my roots but also need something very light. I’ve seen you use Acquage many of times, I’m assuming it does not do what I’ve mentioned above. Please advice on how I should obtain volume with a product, Thanks!!!

  15. Eleanor says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Really interesting info thanks! Although I’m a sucker for a product I’ve realised I probably don’t apply any of them properly! Have learnt lots. As you are an experienced Hairdresser do you have any tips on hair loss (Perimenopausal). Have tried almost everything! X

  16. Posted January 28, 2019

    I just use a thermal spray and hope for the best.
    http://a-woman-of-a-certain-age.com

  17. Amanda says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    This was so helpful! One of your favorite products, the Kenra volume spray, has become something I really love. However, my only problem is that it clogs so quickly after purchase and no matter how many times I rinse with hot water I still get issues, and I only wind up using half of the can. Any tips so I can continue using this great product?

  18. Sarah O says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Right now only uplifting foam! But id like to try some of the others you suggested.

  19. Claudine Monette says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I usually apply 2 products before blowdrying: MoroccanOil Treatment and Aquage Uplifting foam. On day-2 and day-3, I use MoroccanOil Protect & Prevent spray to brush my hair (prevents static) before applying some Bumble and Bumble Prêt-à-Powder (dry shampoo). And of course, I always finish with Kenra 25 Volume spray to set my style. I have you to thank for that! Thank you and keep up the good work, it’s really appreciated and helpful.

  20. Lisa Long says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Hi Kate,

    I love your blog and I have learned so much about hair and makeup from your post over the years. I have REALL
    Y thin/fine hair and I have struggled to find a product that gives really good volume. Can you suggest some that would be good for my hair type?

  21. Rose says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    Kate are you still trying to work with the Dyson Airwrap?

  22. Priscilla says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I have tried to mix products, that didn’t combine (think turned into cottage cheese) will layering prevent this?

  23. Kelley Gennity says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I’d also love to hear where in the order hair oil should go in the lineup! I use one too but feel I am likely using it in the wrong order.

  24. Tamara says
    Posted January 28, 2019

    I use a thickening cream, then foam, then volume mist. I’m going to switch the last two tomorrow. Thanks for the tip!

  25. Deena says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    I use four products. After playing around I’ve manage to find just the right combination for now. I still need to find a texturizing product that isn’t sticky.
    Love you channel, IG, and blog! You’re family is do beautiful.

  26. Marie says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    I have very difficult hair to comb through after I wash it….it’s just kinda corse after I wash…..I’m always looking for a great product that I can get a comb and brush thru wet hair.
    Any suggests would be great.
    Thank you.

  27. Michelle Kilponen says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    Great video! Do you wait until your hair is also about 70-80% dry to apply the products as well or should you put on wet hair and let the products “sink in”?

    • Kate says
      Posted January 29, 2019

      I wait until my hair is a bit dry but also let the products soak in for a few minutes before I start blowing it dry 🙂

      • Rose says
        Posted January 29, 2019

        Kate did you keep your Dyson Airwrap? Trying to figure out how to best use mine 🙂 ty in advance

  28. claire says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    My hair is so fine and it lacks volume so i don’t like to apply so many products to my hair. i only use a serum and a foam!

    https://www.clairetalksbeauty.com/

  29. Emily H says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    I usually start with the Bumble & Bumble volumizing spray, then the Aquage foam at my roots. And then sometimes I’ll add a leave-in conditioner at my ends if I feel like I need it — but based on this video it looks like I should be using the conditioner cream first, so I’ll give that a try!

  30. Megan F says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    If it is thin to thick wouldn’t the spray be first, then serum, then cream?

  31. Lindsey Roy says
    Posted January 29, 2019

    When would I apply a heat protection spray? I was putting it on first but confused if thats right?

  32. Molly says
    Posted January 30, 2019

    Usually 2 for me! A lighter leave in conditioner spray and then a cream or serum-y product to help with shine and blow dry time! I’ll use aquage uplifting foam if I want to get a little crazy 🙂

  33. Miriam Finchelescu says
    Posted February 2, 2019

    Hi. First of all, you have a lovely face.
    My question. I’m nearly 70, I have shoulders long hair, thin and very damaged. Chemicals and all that. I need repair and volume, but nothing that makes my hair feel like a helmet.
    What’s your advice?

  34. Diana L Wilson says
    Posted February 16, 2019

    Hi, I actually bought these products! I had one already because of your suggestion. My question is: do you find that these provide enough grit to hold your curl? I have hair about your length and it is layered. I do prefer a curl on my hair vs. Straight. Thank you so much!

  35. Crystal says
    Posted February 22, 2019

    When would you apply a leave in conditioner like It’s a 10?

  36. Emily says
    Posted February 22, 2019

    I love Oribe Royal Blow Out spray. I also like to use a blowout cream. In what order should I use those products? Thanks!

  37. Dana says
    Posted February 22, 2019

    Unfortunately I’ve had terrible luck with Acquage. I wanted to love it but it leaves me coarse/thick hair greasy to the point that I need to use dry shampoo to correct it even though I have just washed my hair.

  38. Lori says
    Posted February 22, 2019

    None. I don’t blow dry my hair. Would Layering products still work?

    • Kate says
      Posted February 22, 2019

      absolutely! there is no requirement to blow dry!

  39. Teresa says
    Posted February 22, 2019

    Can you please demonstrate the “Tyme Iron” please? It’s all over my instagram feed & I bought it but I’m finding it difficult to get the correct angle to use properly. I have a long layered bob shoulder length. Please help!

    • Posted March 14, 2019

      My hair is so fine and it lacks volume so i don’t like to apply so many products to my hair.

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