Keep Hair Flattened Down

Short bowl cut with the hair flattened down
Photo: SunCity/Shutterstock
Q: Hello. This may seem like a dumb question but I was just wondering. How do you keep your hair flattened down? Kind of like the bowl haircut but just down. I had that kind of hair and then the side of my hair kind of started to stay up, and I looked stupid. Is there anything you can tell me that might help my hair stay flat and straight?
A: Many of the "long on top" hairstyles, like bowl cuts, under-cuts and mop-top styles, rely on the hair to lie flat to the head and move freely in order to look their best. In many cases, the length of the hair is sufficient to make the hair behave in this way, but sometimes the hair seems to have a mind of its own.
Particularly in cases where the hair is somewhat wavy or is particularly coarse and thick, you may need some extra styling to make it behave the way you want. The effect can usually be achieved in one of a few methods.
First, you can add styling products to help weigh the hair down and make it lie flatter. Anti-frizz serums and leave-in conditioners or laminating sprays are often great for this purpose. Just add the product(s) where appropriate in your hair care routine - before towel-drying for anti-frizz serums, after towel-drying for leave-in conditioners, and after blow-drying for spray laminators. The extra weight these products give the hair can make slightly "unruly hair" lie flatter and smoother.
Second, if the addition of product isn't enough to handle the uncooperative hair, you can use a flat iron to smooth out the hair and help it lie flatter to the head. Use the products above in their appropriate order, and once the hair has been dried, mist it lightly with hairspray and pass it through a flat iron in thin segments. This will usually be sufficient to flatten out all but the most unruly locks, and is a great choice for people like you who seem to have specific areas that don't behave they have in the past.
Finally, some people want to get a more long-term remedy. For them, I recommend trying one of the numerous hair straightening kits available. (That's hair straightening, not relaxing.) The best of these offer 6-12 weeks of straighter hair, and are great for flattening out and smoothing the hair for straight hair styling.
The method you choose is up to you. You'll make your decision based on your needs and the comfort level you have with the techniques involved.
See also:
Flat iron styling
Hair straightening
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