Are Old-School Hair Products Making a Comeback? Jen Atkin Thinks So

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Photo: Courtesy of @JenAtkinHair

Just as fashion trends come back around, so do beauty trends – and this year they’re bringing with them some seriously retro hair products that haven’t graced our beauty bags for a very long time.

During a recent catchup with celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin in Dubai, Savoir Flair learned that one of the biggest hair trends of 2017 will be the return of old-school hair products (cue: masses of mousse and the reappearance of the diffuser). “I really want to bring back mousse and diffusers,” Atkin told us. “I really think they’re making a huge comeback and will be the next big thing.”

This doesn’t come as much of a surprise seeing as old-school hairstyles reigned supreme at recent runway shows, from the 80s curls at Topshop Unique to the retro glamour of Charlotte Olympia, and we predict even more of them in the upcoming FW17 shows. With that in mind, it’s time to bid your straighteners farewell, put away that hairspray, and discover your new(ish) hair heroes.

Photo: Courtesy of Imaxtree


Whether you’re after a volume booster or dry shampoo, you need to make yours a mousse. Often associated with the big bouffant ‘dos of 80s sirens (one word: Madonna), it’s now making a massive comeback, with brands like Ouai, KérastaseBumble and Bumble, and even Balmain getting on board. “I love mousse products because you can really feel where the product’s going, rather than just spraying an outer layer. You really feel like you’re getting the job done! I love them so much that I just came out with a dry-shampoo foam, which has that mousse texture,” explains Atkin.

Forget those images of crunchy, hard hair and crispy curls because modern-day mousses aren’t like their old-school sisters. They’re now formulated without alcohol (which dries hair) and, instead, are loaded with lock-loving ingredients that help smooth and nourish whilst giving you the boost you need. You can either section your hair and spray the mousse directly on to your roots or pump it into the palm of your hands (it expands, so remember you only need a small amount) before combing it through from roots to ends. Whether you’re looking to define curls or add body and shine, mousse is officially a must-have.


If you’re not quite sure what a diffuser is, you’ll most likely find one hiding in the box that your hairdryer came in – you know, that spiky-looking thing that hasn’t seen the light of day since you shoved the box to the back of your cupboard. Well, it’s time to go dig it out because we predict that the diffuser will be the definitive hair tool with which to style your tresses in 2017.

“I feel like diffusers are thought of as a thing of the past, but they’re amazing for modern-day hairstyles. They’re 100 percent making a comeback!” Atkin tells us. “I’ve already had so many clients tell me how much they love them as they can easily do their own hair at home, and you can get that natural bend and work with your natural hair texture.” Not only can a diffuser help speed up your hair routine, but it also takes the stress out of styling. Here are Atkins’ top tips on how to use one.

To Define Curly Hair

“Diffusers are great for girls who want to enhance their natural curls without having to define them with a tong, set them with a spray, and then tousle them out. You can get a gorgeous wave by using a curl-defining lotion, then taking sections of your hair and cupping them into the diffuser to dry and set them. Your curls will look bouncier and more defined, and you’ll be out of the bathroom so much faster!”

To Boost Flat Hair

“When you’re blow-drying your hair, you’re essentially straightening it – which isn’t what you should be doing if you want body and volume! A diffuser is amazing because you can point it downward on the top of your hair (which also gets rid of frizz as it’s directed down the hair shaft) and use it to physically lift sections of your hair to create that natural lift, building up volume as you go. This, along with a good volume mousse, will give you bigger and bouncier hair without having to use a round brush, which can be really intimidating.”

Top Tip: Atkin recommends using a medium heat setting for this to avoid intense heat hurting your scalp. “Use the medium airflow setting and medium heat – it’s like cooking a soufflé!”

To Get Those Cool-Girl Waves

The army of stars that Atkin styles (Khloé, Kendall, and Gigi to name a few) all have one thing in common: those effortless, cool-girl waves. And now Savoir Flair can reveal how to get the look yourself as Atkin gives us the lowdown. “I use the Dyson diffuser after adding Ouai wave spray throughout the hair. I’ll take sections of hair and fold them up like an accordion, placing them into the diffuser. I do this until the hair is about 70 percent dry, and then let it air-dry naturally. You can then use a curling iron to add a little bend if you really need to.

Top Tip: You can use a diffuser even if your hair is completely wet – but it’s best to do it when it’s damp and towel-dried.

Are Old-School Hair Products Making a Comeback? Jen Atkin Thinks So

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