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L.A. Beauty Insider: Backcombing, Revisited

Here’s a potentially unexpected truth about beauty in Los Angeles: backcombing used to be a dirty word. For a time hair-teasing was only really advocated by emo kids (who could forget this asymmetrical ‘do), but now it’s been chicly revised by a new wave of beauty mavens.

Just this week, Nasty Gal's brilliant beauty guru and stylist Stacey Nishimoto declared that “backcombing is the new beach wave.” Given L.A’s hair track record, that seems like a pretty lofty statement. However, it only took one glance at the blazing babe accompanied by her brave claim to realize that this updated teasing technique makes pretty much anyone look good, it just has to be done right.

To get Nishimoto’s modern backcombed look (pictured above), start with dry, tousled hair. Create a subtle lift by using the handle of Spornette’s Little Wonder Brush to separate a two-inch section of hair at the top of your crown and hold it vertically. Then, take your brush and start gently brushing the backside of the section toward your scalp (from about two inches above the roots) in short, quick strokes. Repeat in a few more sections around the crown, then arrange non-teased strands over the teased puff you’ve created. Complete the look with a light spritz of Oscar Blandi’s Lacca Hairspray for flexible hold.

Essentially, this is bedhead at its finest. While this look is good enough to become a staple, try to limit teasing since the small tangles can cause damage over time. Also, make sure to brush out the teased style before showering, since damp hair is more prone to breakage.

For even more insider tips on Los Angeles style, check out the rest of Natalie Alcala’s posts.

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