Yes. You read that correctly. I make my own hairspray. No seriously! And I do it with ingredients that are probably j-chillin’ in your kitchen right now. If you look on the back of your hairspray bottle, you’ll likely find anywhere from 15 to 50 ingredients you can barely pronounce. I decided to make my own after I noticed breakouts along my hairline that would only appear if I was using styling products. This was especially true for aerosols since they go everywhere.
I wanted to simplify the chemicals I was putting on my body—and most likely inhaling—every day. I did some research, found tons of DIY recipes, and tweaked them to my liking. So I present to you: my mega healthy, miracle worker hairspray (plus a cute printable label!)
You only need four ingredients:
1 cup water
1 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp hard liquor (I prefer plain vodka)
5-10 drops of essential oil or perfume
Here’s what you do:
- Boil water in small pot
- Add desired amount of sugar*
- Boil and stir mixture until completely dissolved, about 2 to 4 minutes. Let cool to room temperature
- Add alcohol and your fragrance**
- Store in airtight mist bottle and add my super cute bottle label (see below)
* Be sure to use white sugar (not brown or raw sugar). You can adjust the amount depending on your preference for hold. More sugar will give you stronger hold, and less will give you a flexible hold. Just be careful not to add too much or it will get too sticky.
**I like to use either Lavender or Peppermint essential oil, however you can also use your perfume or body mist! Just spritz directly into the bottle and shake to combine.
Frequently asked questions:
Q: “Margaret, if you’re spraying sugar water on your hair, won’t it attract bugs?”
A: If you’re thinking this, odds are you watched the Parent Trap where the twins give their stepmother “bug spray” that’s actually sugar water. Let me assure you: unless you’re literally living in a sleeping bag in the woods, you shouldn’t have any problem with bugs. Just be sure to keep it closed in its bottle and you’re good to go!
Q: “But Marge, won’t the hairspray go bad or get moldy?”
A: If you keep the hairspray in an airtight container, it should last indefinitely. When you boiled your tap water, you killed any bacteria, viruses, or protozoa that could have been lurking in it. Similarly, the alcohol also acts as a sanitizing agent and preservative.
Q: “Why do I need to put alcohol in the hairspray?”
A: Besides it’s use as a preservative, the alcohol helps the mixture dry quicker once you mist it on your hair!
Q: “Why would I put essential oils in my hairspray since water and oil don’t mix?”
A: Right you are! Separation is natural. However, if you shake the bottle before use, it will disperse the oil long enough for you to mist your hair. Problem solved!
Q: “Um…Marge? Why does my hair feel sticky?”
A: Oh boy. Well, there are two possible reasons. One: you used too much sugar in your recipe. Or two: you haven’t allowed it to fully dry before brushing (about 1 to 2 minutes). Once it dries completely, you can brush like normal and your hair won’t congeal or tangle together!
So if you’re feeling creative or just want to see what the actual heck I’ve been doing to my hair. Give it a try! Believe me when I say I was skeptical at first but I’m so glad I gave it a shot. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below and I’d love to hear if it works for you!
Here’s to good hair days,