The Very Best in Surf Sprays

Bumble and bumble Surf Spray
O&M Surf Bomb Sea Salt Spray
Davines’ Sea Salt Primer For Wizards
Ouidad Wave Create Sea Spray
John Masters Organics Sea Mist (with Lavender!)

It’s no secret that the hair-conscious community loves Bumble and bumble Surf Spray. It's been mentioned on this site over 20 times, by fans as varied as Leandra MedineCaroline Trentini, and 1D's Harry Styles. Why? Because you can trust the salt-watery concoction to mess up your hair to that perfect, convincing level of “Oh, me? I just walked right out of the ocean and into this dive bar,” without going full Daryl-Hannah-in-Splash overboard. Its cult following is certainly deserved, but, we recently wondered, could there really just be one surf spray to rule them all? So, we tracked down the many competing products and put them to the test (well, applied them to our hair). Here, we break down the best for your luxurious locks’ future pleasure:

The Reigning Champion: Yes, yes...Bumble and bumble Surf Spray. It’s the tried, true, signed-sealed-delivered, always-dependable product that got this whole frenzy going in the first place.

The Most Authentic Post-Sea-Soaked Hair: O&M Surf Bomb Sea Salt Spray. For crunchier, more realistic beach texture—as opposed to the salon version of 'vacation hair'—O&M is your best bet. It gives you the look, if not the touch (avoid running your fingers through your locks, or they might get stuck in the heavily 'pieced' tresses).

The Best Name: Davines’ Sea Salt Primer For Wizards. Unfortunately, no, the spray is not actually made for Hogwarts alumni (or maybe it is and we just aren’t special enough to know… Hermione’s hair did get a whole lot better around the fourth book), but this matte-finish spray will add body to naturally limp hair.

The Best Bottle: Ouidad Wave Create Sea Spray. Other mists tend to dry hair out to achieve the wave-washed look, but Ouidad’s Sea Spray’s seaweed and algae extract 'activators' will keep your hair well-hydrated.

The Best SmellJohn Masters Organics Sea Mist (with Lavender!). Attention Celiacs: this is the spray for you! The John Masters (certified) Organics’ solution is gluten-free, perfection for those of you who may legitimately (or not, like some of us in the Gloffice) be suffering from a wheat/gluten allergy. Either way, the spray uses lavender to keep it (and you) smelling fresh.

The All-Around Winner: The Ocean. Yes, we hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the beauty industry has yet to beat Poseidon when it comes serving up the best beachy hair. But, hey, ‘tis the season to take a dip beneath the waves. But, if, like us, your beach house is “under renovation,” or you’re just really busy and the Hudson is too gross, you can buy a pretty convincing ocean-in-a-bottle. The truth of the matter is that different salts work better on different hair textures—try out a few and find your jam. There are always more fish sprays in the sea.

Photos by Elizabeth Brockway.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Nomadic D.

    I'm a total Surf Spray addict myself so this is a pretty exciting list to me. And then I got to the end and I was like, The Ocean?! Awesome! Where do I get it? Ha! Joke's on me. I'm gonna stick with my B&B for now, see no reason to switch when it's definitely getting the job done. One thing that I thought was odd though was the gluten-free one; is that really a thing? I had no idea gluten sensitivity extended to beauty products as well as food... Learn something every day here at ITG, ha!

  • Lilly

    I have been thinking about trying the John Masters Organics Sea mist for a while. Great to see it on ITG. I love beachy waves.

  • Restless Blonde

    I am this fortunate that I hav my own hair like I 'have just come back from the beach'. So I don't really use these products. Yet, I think that the one from Bumble&Bumble is reaaally good.

  • Josef Šlaich

    I can't live without OCEAN MIST by Sachajuan. Perfect stuff!!!

  • amy

    drugstore buy is the not your mother's sea salt spray. lasts a good long time! can't wait to try the o&m one tho

  • TheHairDame

    We's obsessed with Kevin Murphy's beach spray. Surprised you didnt have it up here. It leaves a lot of shine with the texture.

  • Melissa Hurley

    Beach bomb by AG is the best! It goes on as a cream, yet still gives you amazing texture and beach vibes!

  • yael

    i take water when im at the beach in a glass bottle .

  • Nina

    B&b is the winner hands down. Have been using it for 6 years. I also like Philip B's Maui Wowie spray, but it's more loaded on oils than on salt, so it doesn't give as much as volume as Bumble. But I think it'd be really great for thick, dry hair.

  • Michelle

    The Sacha Juan Ocean Mist is really good too! Makes me feel like I'm a 21 year old, blonde, surf chick...

  • Lauren Sherman

    I don't know if it's an actual Surf Spray, but I also love Oribe Apres Beach--it's great for people who get keratin treatments!

    • mermaidsdream

      Oribe's is great because it adds shine on top of being an awesome beach spray. Too many "sea sprays" leave hair matte and gross feeling. Not the Oribe one. Plus the can is gorgeous!

  • Kristina

    I've tried everything in the books, but I think I'll always come back to surf spray...!


  • therealblonde

    B&B is just so expensive, for such a tiny bottle... Right now I have Balmain Texturing Spray (6.76 of for 16 euros), which gives a lot of texture, but is a bit drying and 'crunchy'. Next on my list to try are Davines and Kevin Murphy.

  • Addie Cain

    I've tried a few surf sprays, but they all seem so heavy on my fine hair. I'm a big fan of Beach Waves by the Gnarly Whale.

  • CFH

    no way, B&B has the best bottle. I love the wetsuit material!

  • katie

    i bought the b & b surf spray a few months ago due largely to all the hype surrounding it, not considering the fact that my hair is already naturally wavy with a tendency towards the sort of mild frizz one associates with ocean water. when i put this on, it has a tendency to make my hair a little crunchy-feeling, grossly, and impossible to brush/do much of anything with. unless one has fine, straight hair, i feel products like this are kind of irrelevant-- something i wish i'd read somewhere before i bought into the hype.

  • sophia

    the sally hershberger spray is amazing! it also smells really great

  • maashmaah

    How do you apply these sprays? I have pretty average straight thick hair that can be a bit boring at times. Do you do it while it's still wet?

    • ITGElizabeth

      Hi Maaashmaah,

      I tend to spray it on my hair when it is wet-- that way you still get a good amount of body and it can help keep curls together but limits the intense crunch/tangle feeling. If you want to add a lot of body to your hair and dont mind the harsher texture, I'd definitely say try it out with dry hair. They work both ways but it depends on the feeling you're going after. Hope this helps!


  • Celina

    I've had my eye on the B&B Surf Spray for a while now. I've also heard a bit about the Sachajuan one too. xx

  • AndiC

    Verb has a great one.

  • alicake

    I started out with the b&b Surf Spray but it smells weird and I never felt true love. I tried a bunch of others, including Blow which is pretty good, but the BEST, hands down, is Liquid Fabric by Shu Uemura. My fine, frizzy, damaged hair comes out looking full-bodied, piece-y, and just perfect when I spritz a bit of Revlon Equave leave-in conditioner on my towel-dried hair, then some Liquid Fabric, and blow dry it with my head upside down.

  • Hayfa

    I've only tried Bumble and Bumble's and I just LOVE it! :)


  • caitlin willard

    while i must admit i have a bit of an obsession with the entire kevin murphy line, i adore the hair resort cream and also the hair resort spray when i want something lighter. since i am a sucker for pacakaging and cheeky marketing i need to pick up davines sea salt primer for wizards asap.

  • bedpeace

    How exactly do people walk out of the ocean with their hair looking amazing and wavy? I have long, fine hair with a little wave, and a lot of it, but whenever I get out of the ocean it's pretty much a wet, tangled mess matted to the back of my head.

    • LGandaB

      Whenever I exist in my normal life my long, fine hair with a little wave looks like a gross tangled mess, but oddly sea water turns into into Goddess Hair. It's gotta be genetics!

  • Emma Hager

    I have yet to invest in a surf spray, as I've been sort of cheap and just made my own using some common ingredients around the house, as instructed by countless DIY sites. I promise to get Bumble and Bumble one, one day. The actual pacific ocean is just close enough that to I prefer to use the real deal when I can. Great post -- thanks for the recommendations!

    • taf

      I've just used up my bottle of KMS salt spray and was thinking of DIY-ing my own with a bottle of de Lorenzo leave-in conditioner that I'm not really using, along with some sea salt/epsom salts. Fingers crossed!

  • Gabrielle A.

    The new Sea-Kissed texturizer by Pureology is AMAZING AND VEGAN AND SALT-FREE... I work at a hairsalon and these babies sell like crazy! All the hairdressers are also sold to this product!

  • Holly

    Thank you so much for adding captions to your photos! It wasn't the easiest thing to be constantly scrolling up and down to read captions, especially for photo-heavy posts. Thanks!!

    • Julie

      agreed! and i'm wondering if theres a way to make it so when the photo is enlarged we can scroll through? i hate having to reduce the size, go to next photo, enlarge, reduce the size, and you get the point :)

  • icole

    The best beach spray ever is by Brooklyn Beach, called Brooklyn Beach Hair. You can support a local independent business, and shower yourself with all-natural ingredients. It actually works wonders (especially on my dry, frizzy, curly hair). And didn't need me aching for a shower about 2 hours after applying which all other surf sprays do. It has a delightful scent. Plus, bonus points for the effortless "Brooklyn cool" packaging.

  • clara

    brooklyn beach hair smells like hippy beach heaven

  • felled

    Love L'Oreal EverStyle Beach Spray. It has a bit more hold than your average beach spray, so it's volumizing and texturizing.

  • islandfeversisters

    Paul Mitchell makes an excellent one called Awapuhi Wild Ginger Texturizing Sea Spray. Beware- it will take you on a tropical destination with the scent.

  • Dylan J.

    It seems only a few, very few were chosen. This is a very bad list. I agree with the general results but they are too general. There are hundreds of sprays and 4 results is an unacceptable result.

  • LouAnn – ScrapCraze

    I tried Surf Spray for the first time this weekend and loved it! I'm now trying a DIY one on pinterest, hoping it works as well. The price of B&B is a bit steep for me


john masters organics
John Masters Organics Sea Mist
Ouidad Wave Create Sea Spray
Davines No.14 Sea Salt Primer for Wizards Hair Spray
O&M Surf Bomb Sea Salt Spray
Bumble and bumble
Bumble and bumble Surf Spray