The Best Alcohol Free Hairspray
Are Alcohol Free Hair Sprays Better Than Traditional Hair Sprays?
A new trend is starting to hit the hair beauty and cosmetics world: non-alcoholic hair spray. While this is a huge change from the traditional formulas used for this product, it does have some merits and might be considered if you are looking for something specific from your hair styling products. We have taken the time to put together a brief list of factors to take into consideration if you are looking into making a purchase for specific hair products. Here is our comparison of alcoholic vs. alcohol free hair sprays:
1. Best For Curls
When it comes to curls, alcoholic sprays are the way to go.
Curls are created by dehydrating hair and subjecting it to a heat source. This bends the protein in your hair molecules and makes it more flexible. When the hair cools down, the flexibility disappears, and whatever position it is being held in is where it will stay until it is either washed or heated up again. As a result, there are 2 major factors that destroy curls: water and heat.
Alcohol naturally dehydrates you. It stops your body from retaining water. This is extremely helpful when it comes to creating curls since the number one killer of curls and hairstyles in general is humidity in the air. This is why alcohol free hair sprays are problematic when it comes to retaining curls - they do not remove water from your hair, resulting in hairstyles that droop after a very short time.
On the other hand, alcoholic hair sprays are tremendous at retaining hairstyles under almost all conditions. A great example of this is Sebastian’s Hair Spray. In our tests it kept hold extremely well and beat out any hold times we could find for alcohol free hair sprays on the market.
2. Best For Volume
Volume is best created through the use of aerosols.
Aerosols by definition do not contain liquid and are therefore extremely lightweight when compared to non-aerosol. Not all alcohol free sprays are aerosols, but every alcoholic hair spray is. This means that you may be acquiring a non-aerosol product when you purchase an alcohol free hair spray, and this can have a serious impact on your hairstyle under humid conditions.
Additionally, alcohol-free sprays generally test very poorly when it comes to hold duration as compared to alcoholic hair sprays. In other words, you can achieve the same hairstyle with both products, but one (alcoholic product) will generally last longer.
Most alcohol free products will contain some form of water in them, which will naturally weigh down your hair and reduce its volume. This is why an alcoholic product might be a better choice if you are looking for volume. A favorite of ours was Schwarzkopf Osis+ Elastic Finish Flexible Hairspray.
It had enough water resistance to keep hair in place even under muggy conditions but was not heavy enough to weigh hair down and make it droop.
3. Best For Colored Hair
When it comes to colored hair, there are many more factors to consider when applying a hair spray. Alcohol-based hair sprays will naturally dehydrate your hair. When combined with the stress coloring puts on it, you are looking at a lot of potential damage on your hair if these products are used together regularly.
That’s why some people choose to use alcohol free hair sprays on their colored hair. Even though the hold lasts for a shorter duration, it is worth it to avoid the damage that comes with prolonged exposure to dehydrating hair products. That being said, it is worth keeping in mind that alcoholic hair sprays exist that help with hair health.
One example is Keratin Complex Flex Flow Finishing Hair Spray.
We love everything about this product because it holds all the benefits of an alcoholic hair spray (longer, strong hold, flexible use and light formula) with none of the drawbacks. Additionally, it includes elements that make it extremely healthy for your hair, providing extra strength, thickness and promoting growth. Lastly, it is color-friendly, so it can be used without risking damage to your hair.
Conclusion: Alcoholic vs. Alcohol Free Hair Spray
There are many products out there that maximize your hairstyle’s hold and reduce the impact of humidity on it. In general, alcohol-free hair sprays reduce the stress placed on your hair by hair products, but also perform less well than traditional aerosols. Additionally, the chemical make-up of these products means that they tend to clump up and can become more time-consuming to use than traditional hair sprays.
If you are looking for healthier alternative for your hair, alcohol free hairspray is definitely the way to go. It is important to understand, however, that while these products are healthier for your hair, they also perform poorly when compared to normal sprays. The only exception to this rule is with regards to colored hair, although there are alcoholic hair sprays that counteract this problem.