For as long as I can remember, I have wanted bigger hair. Not Dolly Parton big — I knew there was no chance I’d hit those incredible heights without a wig assist — but even just a slight lift at the roots to separate my strands from my skull. While other volumizing products have left my hair feeling more weighed down, the Living Proof Full Volume & Root-Lifting Spray appears to be the solution I’ve been waiting for.
This spray is a part of Living Proof’s newest line, which also includes a blow-dry cream and texturizing foam, that uses the brand’s patented Thickening Molecule. (A quick glance at the full ingredient list suggests that a combination of commonly- and not-so-commonly-used polymers are giving this formula its ability to create volume that lasts.) I tried all three products when they first launched but this spray was by far the standout for me: It added noticeable volume without making my fine hair feel crunchy or dry. I can still run my fingers through my roots when I use this stuff, which can’t be said of some other volumizers that give me similar oomphy results.
Hairstylist Kiley Fitzgerald is also a fan, telling Allure she uses the Volume & Root-Lifting Spray every time she blow dries her hair, “especially if I want a lot of volume that will hold.” For thin strands like mine, she recommends separating the hair into four sections — two at the side and two at the top – and then gently applying the spray at the root of each section to make sure you’re hitting every angle. “Then rough dry immediately!” she advises, noting that this will give you the most body.
I’ve been using Fitzgerald’s technique, first flipping my head upside down to rough dry with my Dyson Supersonic. Once it’s about 80% dry, I’ll switch to my Drybar Double Shot Blow Dryer Brush to smooth and style my hair into extremely loose waves, using the brush to twist my hair away from my face in sections, then tucking the front pieces behind my ears while they cool to get that little face-framing bend at my temples. Although Living Proof only claims that the volume lasts “all day,” I can attest to it lasting even longer for me; it seems to reactivate when I blow dry on days two and three before I wash my hair again.
The only downside I’ve found is that the pump tends to clog. The brand is clearly aware of this minor packaging issue too, since it printed an advisory to run it under hot water if that happens right on the label, but those few seconds spent by the sink haven’t deterred me from using it every time I blow out my hair.