How to Look Like You Live in Paris, or at Least Have Your Hair Claim You Do

As if you need another step to add to your beauty regimen.

So, rather than offer fussy tips that will require more time in the morning, the Paris hairstylist David Mallett, who tends to the coifs of Charlotte Gainsbourg, Clémence Poésy and Léa Seydoux, suggests rethinking the way you approach hair care in the first place.

“Frenchwomen wash their hair less, and they have more of a strategy when it comes to hair care,” said Mr. Mallett, who recently opened a salon in SoHo. “It’s less about blow-dry bars, which are very aggressive and hard on hair, and more about an organic approach.”

That includes D.I.Y. tips to refresh hairstyles until the next shampoo, as well as ways to maintain volume and texture throughout the week. Below you’ll find three of Mr. Mallett’s favorite tricks.

Tame unruly strands without piling on product

Dealing with the frizzies? If you have wild, textured or curly hair that has its own agenda, Mr. Mallett suggests sleeping in a bun.

“Pull your hair to the nape of your neck and twist it like a croissant, but the trick here is not to use an elastic,” he said. “An elastic will mark and bend your hair. Then the look gets aggressive and violent and not nice.”

Instead, he said, use a Fedora long hook hair pin to secure the ends (or search on Amazon for chignon pins like those from France Luxe, $22). Bonus points if you style your bun before showering at night.

“Your hair will absorb the steam from the shower and it’ll help the hair relax,” Mr. Mallet said. “At the same time, because it’s secured, your hair can’t swell overnight.”

Note, though, that finding the best position of the bun and how tight the twist may require a bit of trial and error. A higher bun will give you more volume at the roots. A lower bun may offer better smoothing. Twist too tight and you’ll wake up with barrel curls. The goal here is to wake up with a light bend in your hair without using heat styling.

If you have colored or damaged strands, invest in silk or satin pillowcases. “You can cause damage to your hair and create frizziness when your hair rubs on your pillowcase when you sleep,” Mr. Mallett said. Silk or satin pillowcases, with their slippery feel, reduce the friction on strands. Our selections: Slip ($85) or ShhhSilk ($79) pillowcases.

Create believable Botticelli waves

Give your hot tools a break. This savvy and environmentally friendly way of achieving “loose, low-key waves,” as Mr. Mallet describes them, requires just your fingers and a few minutes of planning before sleep.

Divide your hair into three sections: two pieces framing your face along your desired part and one section gathering your hair in the back. Braid the first two sections along the hairline and the last section down your nape. Ideally, you will jump in the shower so your braids absorb some humidity and then sleep with the braids.

“The result is very Botticelli or Pre-Raphaelite waves,” Mr. Mallett said.

Bonus tip: Make sure your hair is only a touch damp from the shower, not actually wet, Mr. Mallett said. Otherwise, you’ll wake up with wet braids, especially if you have thick hair.

Dial up the volume

If you ever consider going to Paris with limp strands, think again. “The French call a hairstyle ‘sad’ when your roots lay flat against the head,” Mr. Mallett said.

So how do Frenchwomen plump their roots, especially when so many ride scooters and wear helmets, as Mr. Mallett noted.

The best way is “a super-simple hair flip,” he said. “Tip your head upside down and use a warm blow-dryer to lift the roots off your scalp. As you do so, gently massage the roots with your fingers. This is a soft way of almost back-combing your hair by exciting or tickling your roots.”

Want extra va-va-voom? Sprinkle some volume powder at your roots before you massage. To try: David Mallett Volume Powder ($40), Christophe Robin Instant Volumizing Mist with Rosewater ($39) or Pantene Pro-V Volume Root Lifting Spray Hair Gel ($4.79).

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