From the 1920s and beyond, finger waves have sat, undulating atop the heads of flapper girls, literary and cinematic heroines, and real life ones, too. From Downton’s Lady Edith Crawley and Greta Garbo, to Missy Elliott (who rapped about them in her 1997 song The Rain) and Janelle Monáe. Oh and not forgetting Amandla Stenberg’s devastatingly good braided wave for the Oscars in 2019 by Vernon Francois. While originally created to add shape and softness to otherwise hard bobbed hairstyles, they’re now used to conjure a bygone era, and to add glamour and gloss.
How to? “Always start with wet hair, and use a light and manageable gel, starting with a little, and adding more as you go” says hairstylist Cameron Rains. For tight waves, Rains recommends a finer tooth comb, and for loose ones, a wider comb. “Use flat sectioning clips to hold the waves, once you’ve moulded them in place, before carefully removing when set”. 

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