I was so excited to share this recipe for homemade hairspray that I had a hard time conducting an adequate test phase! I’m happy to report that after using it every day for over a month, I’ve been thrilled with the results. (UPDATE: I’ve been using this formula for over two years now, and won’t ever go back to store-bought!) Here’s how and why I make my own hairspray.
My Issues with Commercial Hairspray
Nowadays I have very thick, curly, long(ish) hair and need to use a generous amount of hairspray no matter how I style it. (My hair scares Matt if I don’t tame it with at least a little bit of hairspray.) I used to be a fan of maximum hold hairspray, but it left my hair so crunchy my 4 year old nephew wanted to touch it every chance he got. The chemicals and cost of keeping my coif looking good frustrates me. I cringe when I think about the chemicals I inhale with cheap hairspray, not to mention that is sits on my hair all day. The cost of natural hairspray tends to make me cringe too.
It’s time for something different.
To my delight, Matt received a basic recipe for homemade hairspray from a DIYNatural reader named Charli. I. Was. Giddy!
I tested the recipe, made a few tweaks, and came up with this wonderful recipe.
- 1 whole orange (for dark hair) or lemon (for light hair), preferably organic (to avoid having pesticides in your hairspray)
- 2 cups distilled or filtered water (find the best water purification systems here)
- 2-3 tablespoons high proof vodka (or other clear grain alcohol)
- 6-8 drops of lavender essential oil (find 100% pure essential oils here)
Cut a whole orange or lemon into wedges and combine with 2 cups water in a small pot. Boil over medium high heat until liquid is reduced by half.
Strain liquid through cheesecloth into a measuring cup. If you boiled too much liquid out add water until you have 1 cup. Allow citrus juice to cool.
Combine alcohol and essential oils in a small bowl, swirl to mix, then add to the cup of citrus juice. (Feel free to experiment with your favorite essential oil or leave them out altogether.)
Use a funnel to pour into a spray bottle with a fine mister and shake to combine ingredients. Shake before each use.
A Few Things to Note
This is not a maximum hold hairspray that will freeze a prom up-do or 80′s bangs. I can say with confidence that it’s a flexible hold formula. I was a loyal user of firm hold hairspray for years before trying this formula, now I PREFER this to my old sprays.
This formula has been tested on my brunette hair. Use an orange for darker hair, and lemons only if your hair is light-colored. There is a chance the lemon can lighten your hair when exposed to sunlight.
Grab the orange or lemon sitting in your fruit bowl and give this hairspray a whirl!