6 Flat Iron Hacks for Flawless Waves

Because mastering the flat-iron wave is hard!

I get it: Sometimes you want loose, undone waves but whipping out your curling iron just feels a little extra (see also: time-consuming). But what if I told you you could create the perfect beach waves with a flat iron? Not only is it way easier than curling your hair, but it's also a genius way to get just-rolled-out-of-bed waves à la Emily Ratajkowski or Lucy Hale. Ahead, I gathered seven game-changing hacks that'll turn you into a hair-straightener convert immediately.

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #1: Start with the Right Products

Got fine hair that doesn't hold a curl or silky-soft texture with zero grips? Whether you're working with freshly washed hair or you're going on day three, prep for flat-iron beach waves with a healthy spray of dry shampoo. And as with any heat styling, you'll want to follow with a few spritzes of heat protectant to keep your hair nice and healthy. 

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #2: Create "S" Waves

If you're after soft, lived-in waves (read: the opposite of bouncy, Victoria's Secret-worthy curls), you'll love this flat-iron technique. Start by picking up a section of your hair and drop it (yup, drop it—bear with me) into the mouth of the flat iron to create your first bend. Then, with that same section, clamp your flat iron in the shape of an "S" to finish off the piece. You'll repeat this motion throughout your hair, focusing on your ends for a natural-looking finish🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #2: Create "S" WavesFor beachy waves that are slightly more defined, try the twirl and pull method. Holding your flat iron at an angle, insert an inch-long section of hair between the clamps, and turn it away from your face to create your first bend. Then, gently slide the iron down the section of hair before twirling the iron away from your face again. You'll repeat this method until you reach your ends—leave them relatively straight for an unfinished (yet cool) look. Once your entire head is done, run your fingers through your loose curls to make them more wave-like.

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #3: Twirl And Pull 

This technique is especially great for longer hair since you can actually get a fairly bouncy wave out of it. Using a 1.25-inch-wide flat iron, feed a 1-inch section of hair (starting closest to the nape of your neck, eventually working up towards your hairline) between the clamps. From there, in one fluid motion—or else you'll end up with divots—twist your wrist away from your face so the hair flows over (not under) the iron. Make sure the hair continues to wrap around the flat iron's barrel as you pass through your ends. Pro tip: The smaller the section, the curlier your hair will be.

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #5: Bend Your Wrist

Not super down for a time-consuming technique? This quick hack will give you subtle beach waves just by simply bending your wrist back and forth. You'll want to hold your hair horizontally from your head and turn your wrist away as you pass through the section. Then, bend your wrist back toward your hair, for some soft texture.

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #6: Start with a Braid

An equally low-effort technique, this flat-iron hack begins with a super-simple braid. After spritzing your braid with a heat protectant, gently run your flat iron over it a few times. When you let your braid out, you'll be left with perfectly imperfect beach waves.

🔥Flat-Iron Beach Waves Hack #7: Protect Your Waves with Pin Curls

If you're going to take the time to create flat-iron waves, you might as well make sure they last overnight. ('Cause who wants to restyle their hair in the morning? I certainly don't.) Post-flat-ironing, roll 1-inch sections of hair into loose pin curls, securing with a few bobby pins. When you wake up, gently remove the bobby pins and let your waves down.