How can hair styling products help?
Wet stylers like mousse and gel help the reshaping process in two ways. They help rewet the hair so that there is water available to loosen up the hydrogen bonds and polymers help hold the hair strands together in place until the strand is completely dry and the set is complete.
What about heat styling?
Curling irons work on the same principle - even on dry hair. The water embedded in the hydrogen and salt bonds mobilizes from the action of heat - allowing the bonds to be reshaped.
Watch out for humidity attack!
Water in the air as humidity can also penetrate your hair shaft and loosen up those hydrogen bonds you worked so hard to create. Note the effects of humidity in the images at right.
Hair Science Advice
The best way to prevent "humidity attack" is to use hairspray on your finished hairstyle. The hold polymers in hairspray are the most humidity resistant polymers around. That's because hairspray polymers are not soluble in water alone- the water must be mixed with surfactants, like shampoo, to weaken hairspray bonds.
Hair styling products for volume can be generally categorized into three categories by their key holding polymers. All three have different unique benefits in the styling process.