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How To: Mischa Barton's "O.C." Soft Waves

How To: Mischa Barton's "O.C." Soft Waves

This week, FabSugar is paying tribute to the trendsetting fashion of "The OC," so I thought I'd join the party with a few posts about the notable hair and beauty looks featured on the indulgent SoCal teen drama. With their side ponytails, long locks, and flawlessly fresh makeup, the "OC" girls always managed to look pulled together and cutting edge.

First up: Mischa Barton's soft wavy style from the show's first season. Not only is Barton blessed with a hell of a body and a gorgeous face, but she's also got great hair: It's not too flat or too curly, and it looks great long whether it's styled wavy or straight.

It's easy to re-create this hairstyle at home, so to find out how


  1. Shampoo and condition your hair like usual and then towel dry. Brush hair, set your part, and work a small palm-full of volumizing mousse like Kerastase Mousse Volumactive from the roots to the ends.
  2. Blow dry your hair straight so that the cuticles are nice and smooth. Next, section your hair into about eight even parts and secure them with hair clips.
  3. Beginning with undermost layers, take a large barreled curling iron (about 1-1/4-inch) and set it on medium to low heat. Don't open the curling iron — you will get frayed and harsh ends — but instead, wrap your section of hair around the barrel and let it sit for about seven seconds. Repeat this for each section.
  4. When you are finished, you will be left with ringlets. You'll be temped to brush your hair out, but don't! Instead, flip your head over, shake out your hair, flip it back, and gently finger the curls to relax them into waves.
  5. Reset your part gently and then use a light- to medium-hold hairspray to set your hair. If you have bangs, your can brush them lightly to one side so that they blend into the waves, and then spray that area a little bit more heavily than the rest of your hair.

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Niki-Lovebug Niki-Lovebug 8 years
Very pretty, it looks loose and natural. I want to try this one! :-)
loveforstacy loveforstacy 9 years
Thank you so much for this! I've always wanted hair like this and I'm a complete fool at using curlers, etc.
sweetrae80 sweetrae80 9 years
I have extremely straight hair that usually doesn't curl but I would try this
p0izniv p0izniv 9 years
I used to do this a couple years ago for going out... when I used to go out that is... and when I actually used do my hair any way other than STRAIGHT! The outcome will be totally different for everyone depending on the type of hair you have. My hair wouldn't ever look like Mischa's - too straight :\
xMiss-Worldx xMiss-Worldx 9 years
I should give it a try :)
xMiss-Worldx xMiss-Worldx 9 years
I should give it a try :)
wowjules wowjules 9 years
I'm going to have to try this when my hair gets longer!
DRAGONIA DRAGONIA 9 years
Aww, pretty. :D
DRAGONIA DRAGONIA 9 years
Aww, pretty. :D
the4packrats the4packrats 9 years
I really like this look on her, very soft but polished
angelthelson angelthelson 9 years
will wait for my medium length hair to grow longer darn me for cutting it off!!
Calimie Calimie 9 years
I'm definitely trying this style. The result looks natural and simple, which is what I want.
Shpohlc Shpohlc 9 years
i want her hair...its so pretty. but this way...with these tips...i guess i CAN have her hair...Thanks
partysugar partysugar 9 years
Bella, I tried this look over the weekend and found this line: Don't open the curling iron — you will get frayed and harsh ends — but instead, wrap your section of hair around the barrel and let it sit for about seven seconds.Very confusing. My hair wouldn't stay put and slipped right off so I had to put it through the curling iron. Also I would have liked a little more detail in the how to, for example, what way am I supposed to turn the curling iron? Wrap it up or under? And when I hold it for about 7 seconds do I hold it vertical or horizontal? These are both crucial details (I believe) that could affect the final outcome of the hairstyle.
partysugar partysugar 9 years
Bella, I tried this look over the weekend and found this line: Don't open the curling iron — you will get frayed and harsh ends — but instead, wrap your section of hair around the barrel and let it sit for about seven seconds. Very confusing. My hair wouldn't stay put and slipped right off so I had to put it through the curling iron. Also I would have liked a little more detail in the how to, for example, what way am I supposed to turn the curling iron? Wrap it up or under? And when I hold it for about 7 seconds do I hold it vertical or horizontal? These are both crucial details (I believe) that could affect the final outcome of the hairstyle.
bananie726 bananie726 9 years
Thanks! I'll try this hair soon! :)
ss33 ss33 9 years
let your hair air dry or blow dry it (not straightening, just drying) with the blow dryer. it doesnt matter how crazy it looks, once you start curling it it will be so cute.your hair needs to be all the way dry... never curl it damp or wet!!!
ss33 ss33 9 years
let your hair air dry or blow dry it (not straightening, just drying) with the blow dryer. it doesnt matter how crazy it looks, once you start curling it it will be so cute. your hair needs to be all the way dry... never curl it damp or wet!!!
bananie726 bananie726 9 years
When you use a curling iron, is your hair supposed to be wet or dry or kinda damp?
rosyposy rosyposy 9 years
i want her hair but i think id have to wait for it to grow longer
lattegoodness lattegoodness 9 years
Yeah, Finesse mousse is the best. It smells good too! But yeah, I also don't see the point in straightening it just to get it wavy again... I'll just try normal blow drying before using the curling iron. Hope this works!
t_hive88 t_hive88 9 years
I love her hair!
ss33 ss33 9 years
PS:cheap mousse that works amazingly:FINESSE
ss33 ss33 9 years
PS: cheap mousse that works amazingly: FINESSE
ss33 ss33 9 years
i do these curls all the time, and i always get compliments on them. i've had people beg me to show them how i do it... but it's sooo easy!the trick is to make sure you're wrapping the hair around the OUTSIDE of the curling iron, don't use the curling iron the normal way you do!!the bad part about this is, you will burn your thumb & finger tip...so this is what i do... WEAR GLOVES!!it works!!!
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