The Gloss Report: Salt Sprays & Hair Texturising Sprays

19 August 2016
Any products in this article have been selected editorially however if you buy something we mention, we may earn commission

1 / 17

The Gloss Report: Salt Sprays & Hair Texturising Sprays

With holiday season in full swing, beachy waves are everywhere - on our Instagram feeds, next to us on the beach (and hopefully on our heads too). The Glossy Posse have been hunting for that just-stepped-off-the-beach look without needing to actually go to one. Can this textured volume really be found in a bottle?

Salt sprays and texturizing sprays can help you to recreate that wavy tousle from your beach holiday, but which ones really work without giving you hair that's full of knots and crunch? We tried, tested and gave our honest reviews of the best salt sprays and texture sprays so you don't have to.

All-year-round beachy waves await. Click through the gallery to find out what we really thought...

2 / 17

Oribe Dry Texturising Spray, £39

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The promise: Dry Texturising Spray from ‘hair maestro’ Oribe builds in incredible volume, and allows you to style on-the-go, wherever you are.

We give it: 9.5/10

Review: “The Oribe Dry Texturising Spray gives volume and a sexy, tousled texture like no other. All it takes is a quick spritz and your hair is filled with va-va-voom texture in an instant. With no crisp or crunch, no stick and no white marks, this hair texturiser leaves my hair feeling and looking incredible. Also marketed as a dry shampoo, this spray does dry up my roots a little but for those days where you need a little extra help, I’d recommend popping on a bit of dry shampoo first.

“The high price point can be hard to justify when there’s so many cheaper alternatives on the market, but the product (and incredibly luxurious packaging) makes it so worth it. One spritz of this and you’ll be hooked - matte tousled tresses await. I can already feel a space opening up in my beauty collection for the mini version…”

Reviewer: LP

3 / 17

Sachajuan Ocean Mist, £18

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The promise: Gives that look and feel your hair gets after a day at the beach with sun and salt water.

We give it: 7/10

Review: “I love that beach hair look and I’ve been in the market for a good salt spray for a long time. I have been particularly keen on finding a spray that gives the right texture and smell, so there are a few boxes I need to tick before committing myself to a purchase.

"I was a little dubious about what results I might get with Sachajuan’s Ocean Mist - the directions for use were not very specific: “Use on clean, wet or dry hair”. I decided to use on washed, towel dried hair, spritzing generously throughout except for the roots, which I kept product free. I then scrunched and ruffled the ends and left to dry. I was pleased with the result - my hair was soft and agile and the spray really enhanced the bounce of my natural (normally lifeless) wave.

"The only negative about Sachajuan’s Ocean Mist, is the smell. Reminiscent of men’s aftershave (largely synonymous with mobile phone shop salesmen), it really put me off using it. After several days of use, I could not handle the ‘masculine’ scent of the spray any more and now it has unfortunately been banished towards the back of the drawer while my search for the perfect salt spray continues.”

Reviewer: GP

4 / 17

Unite Beach Day, £21.70

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The promise: Wanting those beachy, full locks without trying too hard? BEACH Day will give you that feeling in minutes. Full, tousled and very sexy. A hybrid of styling and finishing in one… it’s effortless!

We give it: 6.5/10

Review: “I love the effect a day at the beach has on my hair, but I would much rather not have to end up with sand in my swimsuit in order to achieve it. I was therefore particularly excited at the prospect of trying out a texturising spray to see if I could end up with the same results, sans the embarrassing sun and sea water-induced squinting.

“I liked the fresh, clean smell and the spray nozzle gave just the right amount without clogging too. It’s designed for use on wet or dry hair which is useful - you just need to apply a few spritzes and then just scrunch with hands (or leave to air-dry or diffuse if applied to damp hair). Overall, I found that it made a difference to its texture, however I would say that it’s more effective when used on damp hair, as it left my locks feeling pretty greasy and a little flat too. Also rather than tousled, the end result was more off-duty bed hair with a matte, lived-in finish. I personally liked the naturalness of the results (despite the chalky residue), but this product’s probably not worth the pricetag if you’re looking for lightweight, full, beachy waves instead.”

Reviewer: AM

5 / 17

Bumble and bumble surf infusion spray, £22

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The promise: A salt-in-oil innovation, this mellow mix of tropical oils and texturizing sea salts creates soft, sea-tossed waves with sheen.

We give it: 9/10

Review: “If you’re looking for authentic beach waves in an instant, I’d highly recommend giving this a go. I’ve tried great salt sprays and hair texturisers before, but never have I tried something to give such an authentic look as this. To test the product out, I curled my hair a little with my straighteners as I usually would do and spritzed the product through my dry and subtly curled hair. At first it looked a little damp but as it dried it moved into more of a beachy finish with a texture like no other. There was no crisp or crunch and my hair wasn’t left looking as though it just, well, really needed a wash - as I know some salt sprays very much do. The application was easy, and it left my hair looking and feeling as though I’d just had a day at the beach. Now to work on the beachy glow to go with it... “

Reviewer: LP

6 / 17

Alterna Bamboo Beach Summer Ocean Waves, £21

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The promise: A lightweight texturizing spray for sexy, just-back-from-the-beach hair.

We give it: 7/10

Review: "They say you always want the opposite hair to what you have and in my case that's 100% true. I have perfectly straight, fine blonde hair; what I want is big bouncy natural curls a la Sarah Jessica Parker or Kate Hudson. I use tongs a lot in an attempt to copy SJP but beachy waves would do just as nicely and would be a far kinder solution for my locks, so I had high hopes for this summery spray. Free of parabens and sulfates (foaming agents which can cause irritation), this Bamboo Beach option sounded perfect for my sensitive scalp and better yet it has a gorgeous scent of 'tahitian coconut' which was enough to put me into holiday mode in seconds.

"I sprayed it lightly onto dry hair from root to tip, scrunched it loosely and voila - I had slightly damp-looking, wavy tresses. It is a very natural look, as if I was blessed with loose surfer girl waves and had not long stepped out of the shower (or sea). However, I then tried to do the same on the other side of my head, and the back, and struggled. I was a little over-eager and used the 'more is more' mantra only to find my hair was wet, straight and greasy looking. This definitely takes practice and no heavy-handedness; the less you use the better it looks, and a hairdryer might be needed to make it more wearable. I'm marking it down as it takes time to master the art of surfer girl chic but overall, a great product."

Reviewer: JJ

7 / 17

Percy & Reed Wonderfully Wavy Texturising Spray, £14

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The promise: Adding volume in all the right places, this Reed Quite Wonderfully Wavy Texturising Spray gives you that sought-after sexy just rolled out of bed look.

We give it: 9/10

Review: “I have something to admit: texture terrifies me. The idea of spraying anything remotely resembling salt water onto my hair has never been something that appeals to me. As someone born with naturally wavy locks, I have faced a lifelong battle in my mission for manageability – why then, would I add to my own anguish?  The hot girl with the surfboard emerging out of the water à la Ursula Andress has never been me; the sea turns my hair into one giant, sticky, salty dreadlock and I inevitably get tangled in seaweed or trip on a crustacean so forgive me if I’m hesitant to recreate even one aspect of that scenario. Gently tousled, rolled-out-of-bed, Bridget Bardot hair, however, is a whole other (beach volley) ball game – and that’s exactly what you get with the Percy & Reed Wonderfully Wavy texturising spray. This is the Posh Spice of texturising sprays: it has a shiny, rather than matte finish; it smells divine and with added Willow Leaf extract, it leaves you feeling beautiful rather than brackish.”

Reviewer: ER

8 / 17

TIGI Catwalk Session Salt Spray, £16.95

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The promise: Formulated to control frizz and fight humidity the sea salt adds texture and definition to your look.

We give it: 7/10

Review: "I absolutely love that holiday feeling after a day at the beach when I leave with natural waves in my hair. However I sadly can't live at the beach and I haven’t yet managed to find a product that I like enough to give me the same effect. This particular spray aims to control frizz and fight humidity, while the added sea salt  adds body and definition to the hair to help create the beach head tousle.

"I firstly tried to be quick and efficient by trying it on my dried hair. Thank goodness I wasn’t planning on going out afterwards. Although the spray has a light texture, it didn’t sit well with my fine blonde hair, making it feel slightly sticky, heavy and full of product (some sprays are fine on dry hair too but I don’t think this one is meant for that). It should, I quickly learned, be used on wet, just washed hair and left to dry naturally. After a quick hair wash to give it another go, I spritzed it in and gave it a quick scrunch with my hands, adding some extra spray afterwards; this seemed to give me far better casual beachy waves that didn’t feel full of product. The spray smells amazing and it comes in a large bottle so it will last for ages. Although I wouldn’t use it everyday, it's the first bottle I'd reach for if I wanted that holiday hair of a causal tousled look with added body and texture."

Reviewer: SM

9 / 17

SHOW Beauty Premiere Working Texture Spray, £30

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The promise: Designed to give you a glamorous look with minimal effort

We give it: 7.5/10

Review: “Beachy salt spray this ain't. This texturising spray is about as far away from surfer dude as you could get; we're talking glossy waves rather than 6ft Hawaiian ones. Nevertheless it certainly adds interest and an 'undone' edge to a limp looking blow dry or tired two-day hair. I love that it adds shine and a bit of polish but if it's piecey, mussed up chic you're after this won't deliver on that front. This is texture for glamourpusses, as is to be expected when you consider that Tamara Eccleston is the brand's creator. No surprise then that it looks seriously bling on your dressing table and smells expensive. It's also pretty hefty - I think it will last me many nights out to come. With not a hint of stickiness and lots of swish, my inner heiress is actually quite loving this hair hero.”

Reviewer: AH

10 / 17

Philip Kingsley Minimizer, £19

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The promise: The perfect product to tame wild hair and give you back control.

We give it: 10/10

Review: “For those with wavy or curly hair, achieving tousled tresses is a fairly easy-breezy business - that is as long as you have a super frizz-fighting product that both defines your natural curls, while adding a little weight and shine to your locks. After searching far and wide for what seems like an eternity, I discovered Philip Kingsley's Minimizer - a product which does precisely that. Containing wonder ingredient of the moment argan oil, just apply to hair (wet or dry) to hydrate, banish frizz and create luscious loose curls. Simply a must for all girls with curls.”

Reviewer: KB

11 / 17

Fudge Urban Texturising Spray, £6.99

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The promise: A dry formula that adds texture and volume in one.

We give it: 8/10

Review: “My hair is fine, thin, and poker straight - and all I’ve ever wanted is to have the opposite, which is why I am now somewhat of a pro with a curling tong. The promise of a textured tousle in a can is therefore my idea of hair heaven, and so I gave this a go with gusto and was pretty impressed. A dry spray that you use on dry hair, the sensation was somewhere between a hairspray and a dry shampoo (minus any of the white residue), and the ‘back-comb in a bottle’ slogan was not far off; my hair was visibly lifted, with my layers more bouncy and defined, and just generally, er, bigger. I did have to comb it out a little where it was too stiff (much like that unattractive knot you get when you spray your Elnett too close to your head) and the heavy fragrance of pear and vanilla was far too overpowering - I’d tread carefully if you have sensitive skin. It’s not a salt spray, so won’t necessarily give you grit or a wave, but it’s a fast option for adding in some rough and ready volume. I won’t be hanging up my curling wand just yet but I’ll certainly be reaching for it less often.”

Reviewer: JJ

12 / 17

R+Co Rockaway Salt Spray, £23

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The promise: The closest you’ll get to looking like you’ve been at the beach without stepping out of the concrete jungle.

We give it: 6/10

Review: "It must be said, my usual holiday routine involves more time washing the sand, sea and salt out of my hair than spritzing it back in!  I was therefore slightly nervous about the idea of dousing my mane in a layer of salt, which to me conjured images of dry, damaged and unruly hair.  Nevertheless, I approached this challenge with an open mind, choosing to road test the Rockaway Salt Spray on a two-day old head of hair, rather than mussing up my just washed joy!  The fragrance of this spritz is a pleasant beachy mist and along with the beach scene bottle, helped create an air of seaside glamour on application which, in my central London flat, was no mean feat.  On first spritz, I was pleasantly surprised by the instant wet, tousled and textured look that I was suddenly styling.  This did fade throughout the course of the day however, leaving my hair feeling a little dry and looking more like I’d been hauled from a shipwreck than emerged from the sunny surf.  In fairness to this product I think my hair is just too long and too voluminous already to really carry off the beach babe, tousled look.  In summary, whilst not quite the right for my locks, if you’re looking for “surf in the city”, I’d recommend giving it a try."

Reviewer: GB

13 / 17

TRESemmé Perfectly (Un)done Sea Salt Spray, £5.78

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The promise: “This non-sticky formula, infused with Sea Kelp Extract, helps you create a sexy, tousled texture in every strand.”

We give it: 6/10

Review: “Tousled tresses a la Gisele Bündchen - it’s the stuff of summer hair dreams. And while I had high expectations for this salt spray, the reality unfortunately fell a little flat. It did have some good qualities though - it was refreshingly lightweight and non-greasy, two aspects I’ve found hard to find in other salt sprays. It also had some great instructions on the back to help boost and style either straight or wavy hair types. My hair naturally falls into a mixture of the wavy and frizzy categories and so I followed the guidance to suit. Unfortunately my hair was left more big and fluffy than ‘sexy and undone’ (perhaps my hair was too thick) and while it didn’t work for me, it would probably be a better fit for finer hair types in my opinion. It looks like my dream of effortlessly beachy hair will have to remain just that for now.”

Reviewer: AM

14 / 17

John Masters Organics Sea Mist Sea Salt Spray with Lavender, £16

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The promise: The natural sea salt in this unique spray gives hair the same extra body it has after a day at the ocean, while certified-organic lavender protects hair from drying.

We give it: 7/10

Review: "Full disclosure - the idea of every day being a beach day is my worst hair nightmare. I spent a recent holiday in Thailand avoiding the camera because my curly and frontally wispy hair scares small children when water, sun and salt combine (luckily my own children just roll their eyes). I have since had a soft keratin treatment precisely to avoid enhancing my natural curls - sorry, frizz -  as salt spray is designed to do, in any way.

"So what can it do for straightened hair? I was pleased to notice it did add volume and a certain boho bed-head look (keratin treatments can leave the hair decidedly flat). Plus, it smelled natural and didn’t leave my hair sticky in any way the following day, possibly because there’s nothing very much added – the only ingredients are water, salt and lavender.  A good volumising spray if you are looking for all-natural ingredients - although I’m baffled as to why all salt sprays are relatively pricey given that they are basically salt and water."

Reviewer: VW

15 / 17

Oribe Apres Beach Spray, £34

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The promise: Create all year round beach-to-bombshell hair - tousled, touchable waves with sun-kissed shine...(all without salty stiffness).

We give it: 8.5/10

Review: “I absolutely adore the effect that a salt spray can give. The most perfect undone, beachy textured waves are something I look for all year round but I just can never get behind the way it leaves my hair feeling - crunchy and crispy and really, just feeling as though it needs a wash. Little did I know, I just needed to find a really great salt spray to change that… Enter the Oribe Apres Beach Spray and the most perfect beachy tousled tresses were finally found.

“This spray adds texture, gloss and a touch of volume while definition but still allowing you to run your fingers through your hair. The packaging is uber luxurious and after use, your hair is left feeling the same which leaves me with less doubt when thinking about spending the big bucks for this product. It’s the perfect hair finisher if you’re looking for that oomph you can (usually) only get after stepping off a beach.”

Reviewer: LP

16 / 17

John Frieda Beach Blonde Sea Waves Sea Salt Spray, £5.89

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The promise: Create beach-tousled waves for an effortless, matte-textured style, any time of the year.

We give it: 8/10

Review: “I’m not normally a massive fan of salt sprays - I really don’t like how they make my hair feel, I’m quite a fiddler and I find myself sat there pulling apart the knot (or the texture as some may call it) that will have formed after using them. I have naturally curly/wavy hair which can be quite the mane at times so I just don’t feel I need to add fuel to the fire by adding more volume and texture to it, however this product has definitely changed my opinion. The John Frieda salt spray was a cult classic way back when, which they’ve brought back (thanks to an Instagram competition they ran) and I’m glad they did! It leaves your hair wavy and textured without being knotty and too huge.

"I used this on wet hair which I towel dried and brushed through before adding the salt spray; using a towel I then just ‘scrunched’ my hair to form the wave and let it dry. What you’re left with is piece-y waves and texture that don’t feel like a mangled mess and your hair is still soft to touch as well. A bonus about this product is the smell of coconut that you get every time you spray, but it isn’t an overpowering, sickly sweet scent - it just smells like holidays so you can dream of the beach whilst doing your daily hair routine! One thing I will add though, and maybe this goes out to all salt sprays, the texture that it gives your hair DOES NOT bode well when you combine it with a city breeze, a mishap I unfortunately encountered whilst out and about, leaving m elooking more like Doc from Back to the Future, far from effortless and beachy!”

Reviewer: RM

17 / 17

Captain Blankenship Golden Waves Sea Salt Shimmer Spray, £25

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The promise: Mermaid inspired, and made with entirely organic ingredients. Moisturising with a beachy rose scent and natural gold mica for a glowing subtle touch.

We give it: 9/10

Review: “The brand name makes this shimmery gold potion sound as if it hails from treasure island; as beach waves goes, it feels mighty authentic, in a luxe kind of way. If Kanye had salt spray (and hair), it would be this stuff. The packaging and golden formula are quite a sight to behold, and as for performance, its effects are surprisingly subtle. I spritzed it onto dry hair and it added definition and shape without the ‘scrunch’ that some salt sprays leave behind, and the delicate rose fragrance makes Golden Waves feel more grown up than your average surf dude texturiser. The aloe vera and sea kelp formulation is clearly up to something, as ends felt and remained soft and perky throughout the day, and the shimmer is a huge boon for blondes. While my brunette hair definitely looked more ‘interesting’, I didn’t particularly notice added gloss or light, but then it’s quite hard to tell when you’re just glancing at your mug every now and again during a working day. I should have done a survey to quiz onlookers as the whether they were blinded by my glowing hair halo, but I didn’t notice too much squinting. All in all, this is an 100% organic beauty, made with considered and effective ingredients. Of course you’re paying the price for that, but for those of us who’ve dropped many a pound on crunchy, mattifying and drying alternatives, it could be well worth it."

Reviewer: AH