The 8 Weird Tricks That Make Hair-Commercial Hair Look So Good

Do not try in real life.

Hair commercial hair
(Image credit: Getty)

1. Secret Parts and Loooots of Back-Combing

"In commercials and advertising, the majority of the time you are only shooting from specific angles or the front of the model," says Herbal Essences Celebrity Stylist Charles Baker Strahan. "To make hair look incredibly full, I split the hair down the middle and pin it to push all the hair forward, or all to one side, back-comb the underneath and then use a fan or my blow dryer to open up the hair around the face. Then, I set with Herbal Essences Body Envy Hairspray and Dry Shampoo and all you see is impossibly full volume."

2. Soap

"One time on a shoot I opened my kit and realized I had no pomade—which is what the whole look I was about to do was based on," says Mara Roszak, L'Oréal Paris Celebrity Hairstylist. "I had to act fast and actually used a bar of soap to achieve the look. You wet the soap and actually apply the foam to the hair, similar to how you would apply pomade. After use, it gives hair volume and hold."

3. Dishwashing Detergent

"I'll wash hair with Dawn dishwashing detergent to dissolve the buildup of oil," explains Joel Warren, master colorist and co-founder ofWarren-Tricomi Salon, who's been on set for Garnier ads.

4. Pipe Cleaners (and Shaving Cream)

"I've set hair in what's called a wrap/rag set using a tiny curling iron and pipe cleaners to create the effect of an 80's spiral perm," says Charles Baker Strahan. "I've also used shaving cream to build mohawks in long hair."

5. Fishing Line

"I've used fishing line to support and hold up the perfect cascading waves before spraying with my Ken Paves You Are Beautiful Firm Hold Hairspray to literally freeze hair in place for the shot," says celebrity hairstylist Ken Paves.

6. Toupee Tape

Those bangs don't stay perfect by themselves, explains Paves. "I've used toupee tape to secure bangs to the forehead so hair stayed in place when the wind machine was turned on."

7. A "fluffer"

"I've stood on a ladder above a model and held her hair a foot above her head, then dropped the hair over and over until we caught the perfect shot," says Paves. 

8. Wind Machines

Nearly every stylist mentioned says that, yes, wind machines are still the #1 trick to getting that full volume, omg-look-at-that-head-of-hair look. In fact, many stylists say that they've even used/bought leaf blowers to achieve the same look when a wind machine wasn't available. (That's how precious that blast of air is.) "Since you can't have a team follow you around with a leaf blower and good lighting in real life, you can get ad-worthy hair with an amazing blowout," says Kenna of Kennaland Salon.

Samantha Leal
Senior Editor

Samantha Leal is the Deputy Editor at Well+Good, where she spends most of her day thinking of new ideas across platforms, bringing on new writers, overseeing the day-to-day of the website, and working with the awesome team to produce the best stories and packages. Before W+G, she was the Senior Web Editor for Marie Claire and the Deputy Editor for, with bylines all over the internet. Graduating from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University with a minor in African history, she’s written everything from travel guides to political op-eds to wine explainers (currently enrolled in the WSET program) to celebrity profiles. Find her online pretty much everywhere @samanthajoleal.