I know it’s never easy living with fine hair.
For many of us so blessed too often our crowning glory, such as it is, ends up lying flat on our heads like a skull cap. Not much glory, huh?
But believe it or not, with the right cut, using the right products, and even coloring it right, you can have hair that will hold a style and even show off some volume. How good is that?
All you have to do is know how to finesse it. Help awaits with these:
- Learn to Overcome Lack of Volume With the Right Cut
- How You Can Wash In the Body
- Why You Don’t Want to Don’t Skip The Conditioner
- How A Bouncy Blowout Can Mask Volume Challenged Hair
- The Unexpected Volume Builder
- How to Wear Go Long Without Falling Flat
- Why Volumizing Products Can Change Your Life Or Ruin It
Let’s get started.
Job One: Overcoming Lack of Body With a Good Haircut
Fine hair demands a good cut to look it’s best. It’s just the nature of this hair type. That’s because bad cuts are magnified with these rather unforgiving puny strands so a good haircut is an essential foundation to build on. This is why I call it Job One. It can work a miracle for hair like this. You might think of this as snipping your way to (the appearance of) major volume.
How to Finesse It: Stylists almost universally agree you want to keep thinner strands bra strap length or shorter because this will produce the most swingy body naturally. You also don’t have any excess length to weight down your struggling strands which can leave you with stringy limp hair.
This is also why those of us with finer locks are such huge fans of bobs. A blunt chin length bob can produce lots of body where you need it most – at the ends. Throw in a flirty fringe and you’ve got a complete and more responsive look.
Or you might want one of the trendy inverted bobs with the hair a smidge longer towards the front. Yes, this is another good cut to consider. Especially with layers cut in near your face. Tons of bounce with plenty of natural swing and movement here too.
Of course not everyone is a fan of the blunt look offered with straight across bangs. In that case there’s always a side swept or wispy fringe which work well with a more layered cut. Carefully slipping in layers around the crown can work wonders in the dimension department. You’re going to love it. Promise.
Sure this may be obvious to some. But how often do you consider the cut as it relates to your sorely lacking volume when on your way to get your hair cleaned up by your hairdresser? Beats resorting to a pony tail as your fave thin, fine hair style, right?
Did You Know? “Thick” or “thin” refers to the amount of hair. While fine, medium and coarse gets more into the texture of each individual strand.
Wash In the Body
Truth is you are naturally in a bind when it comes to washing a fine mane. Harsh cleansers can overpower your hair’s will to stand on its own. But if you don’t get the oil off well, any leftovers will eventually cause the strands to go all droopy on you sooner than you’d like. Still it’s not too much to expect a volumizing shampoo to do the job and impart noticeable volume.
How to Finesse It: A couple more things to try. First see if conditioning before shampooing helps. I know it sounds backwards but your hair will still have the hydration. It will still be soft. It just won’t be weighed down by any leftover conditioner. Second you might give a protein infused shampoo a whirl. These feed each strand and leave them looking thicker than they might otherwise if left on their own. Finally you want to avoid creamy shampoos. You hair just can’t take the weight.
None of this is going to produce “big hair”. But they will make the styling go better.
Did You Know? You can have thick or thin fine hair. You may think it’s a distinction without a difference but you’d be wrong. The latter is much harder to deal with since it actually means you only have a meager amount of hair on your head. And it breaks your heart to see women struggling with sheer, gossamer “almost there” hair, doesn’t it? It’s so sad.
Don’t Skip The Conditioner – It Can Be Critical
You want to be careful about conditioner. And note I didn’t say you want to skip conditioner which is tempting. Especially if your hair tends to be oily anyway.
Did You Know? Hair that is dry will shrink in size. It can become all staticy with flyaways galore. It can also go flat. This is why you want to keep the lower parts of your strands properly hydrated so as to avoid all that.
How to Finesse It: Focus the conditioner on the ends. For sure ear level and below. And whatever you do, don’t you dare get it anywhere near your scalp.
Just remember that even if you use volumizing formulas they aren’t the exactly the answer to your lack of volume. They do nothing to add lift. Instead they are lighter products that won’t weigh hair down.
How A Bouncy Blowout Can Mask Volume Challenged Hair
As anyone knows who has emerged from a salon appointment that was capped off with a professional blowout this can help things look downright lofty on top. Problem is few know how to blow dry their hair to replicate the look at home. So their hair flatlines as do their hopes for bigger volume.
How to Finesse It: To accomplish the same at home you’ll need to master using a round brush to lift the hair off your scalp while keeping the roots on the taut side when drying. This tension is what builds in the lift. At all costs you want to avoid blowing the hair downwards as this will leave it flat and harder to style. Those able to pull this off can mask their volume shortage with some they’ve created around the roots on the crown.
Another finesse move is to brush your hair in the opposite direction you wear it. This can also punch up the volume a bit more. Then comb and style once it’s dry.
No matter how you approach blow drying just remember to always target the roots first. And last. Yes, the last thing to do is give them a cold blast just to agitate the cuticle a little more.
Hair Color: The Unexpected Volume Builder
Let’s talk about adding some sinfully luscious shades of color to enhance the appearance of your sometimes wimpy mane. You may discover a new way to take the volume of your baby fine hair up a notch or two.
Did You Know? Coloring your hair will rough up the cuticles. An unlikely side effect is the creation of a bit more body. It’s not something you would think of when thinking about ways to get bulk up depressed and listless locks, but every little bit helps right.
How to Finesse It: The best way for you to use color is with strategically placed semi-permanent highlights and lowlights. They make for an excellent choice when looking to add some depth and volume. Highlights are not nearly as hard on your hair as an all-over bleach job. Plus that can leave your hair looker blah and boring not to mention flatter than it otherwise would. This is a great way to leave you with a prettier color on your hair that looks to be fuller than it really is.
How to Wear It Long Without It Falling Flat
Long, stick-straight fine strands can produce what looks like a sheet of gleaming hair. Think Marcia Brady hair as seen on the Brady Bunch reruns. It can be absolutely breathtaking. Well I think so anyway.
How to Finesse It: Hair like this reminds us that fine hair at times that is all one length looks it’s thickest. Or if you want to amp up the volume another way, ask your stylist to cut in some shorter layers under the long strands. This too can help with the illusion of thickness.
The Magic of Hair Extensions All Without Trying Too Hard
As long as we are talking long, seems this is the perfect time to explore another trick you might consider. Add more length by adding more hair.
How to Finesse It: Hair extensions. Yeah, maybe it’s time to see about a total hair transformation that no longer is limited to those in Hollywood. Best way to do that is with some natural clip in hair extensions which can work wonders for adding fullness where you need it most. They are perfect for those looking to add a bit of length and to ramp up the thickness in a beautiful way. Transforming otherwise thin and limp hair into something your friends might actually envy.
Best of all, human hair clip-in extensions are practically fool proof. They are an easy to keep it looking real. Nor are they likely to damage your natural hair. Just be sure to buy some that best mimic the color and texture of your own locks. Better still they can be colored to match your hue if you wish. In fact it’s a good idea to darken the roots anyway just a bit. This is how your hair looks naturally. A shade darker at the roots and then progressively lighter to the ends.
Extensions can do for your mane what David Blane does for magic. Create illusions that aren’t easily done any other way.
Volumizing Products Can Change Your Life Or Ruin It
Terms like “body building”, “thickening” and the obvious one, “volumizing” are what you want to see on the label. They suggest plumping properties anyone looking to add body to their hair might want. And the results can be truly uplifting. Some of these effortlessly work to thicken your strands with polymers although these may not be the best choice if your hair is super fine or oily to begin with. Still what’s not to like about better hair through chemistry?
Volumizing Decoded: To get relief from the curse of fine, thin hair, you want to use styling products that do one or more of the following. Thicken the appearance of your strands. Boost the lift they display. Or enhance the appearance of fullness in your hair. And you want this without leaving your hair feeling like a stiff, shellac brush. That’s not too much to ask, it is?
How to Finesse It: When was the last time you used a root lifter? Many flatheads find they can benefit from this type of styling aid. These are basically products applied to your roots, well DOH! They add to the overall dimension of the strands to instantly boost the volume. Some you apply before blow drying. Others can be sprayed on say Velcro rollers to help with the final oomph factor. All should leave you amazed at the results as long as you don’t overdo it and apply too much. Yes, it’s the overapplication that can ruin your life.
Then have you noticed? Hair styling pros repeatedly state their undying love for mousse. Some swear by it. The reason why is obvious. Used correctly it can produce a fullness that looks totally natural and oh so sexy. Particularly extra-hold and volumizing mousse. Surprisingly this will give your strands more structure than gel. Conditioning mousses however, not so much. They turn out to be more volume robbers than volume enhancers.
Did You Know? Despite being smaller in diameter, and despite having more hair per square inch of scalp than those with other hair types, it just plain looks like you have less hair. Then there’s all those extra oil glands doing their thing. Given the strands have less circumference for the oil to cover, this explains why oiliness can be a real problem for those looking for extra body.
Then here’s another stylist trick. Dry shampoo. Used as intended it can sop up extra oil all those follicles on your scalp are churning out. Also turns out the particles in the product can add a bit of subtle heft the roots. So it can also be used with styling in mind. To get the second benefit just sprinkle it on your brush and then run the brush through your roots around the crown of your head.
Tip: See if applying any volume enhancing styling products work better on your damp hair. For one they won’t be diluted by any excess water in your hair. Two, they won’t be removed by extended drying time.
Lastly, don’t turn to hairspray for help any more than you have to. Over-spritzing those puny strands again just weighs them down. The exception would be volumizing hair spray which can help keep your hair looking voluminous.
That said this video shows a simple trick you can use to take your hair from flat to voluminous in five minutes or less. And it uses hair spray. And the can it comes in. It’s easier to tell you watch this then it is for me to try to explain it.
Fine Hair and Frizz Prevention
Not a big problem but you want to be careful here. Sure, no one likes to see frizz in the mirror. (And being more fragile, fine hair is more prone to hot styling tool damage which can lead directly to more frizz. Which is why you should be all the more diligent about using heat protectant – just saying.) Yet you’re going to find that the standard frizz fighters work a little too well with those fine strands of yours. What happens? Instead of frizz, you are left with limp, greasy ball hair that just hangs around.
How to Finesse It: The good news here is there are newer lightweight formulations designed for this hair type that use the some great defrizzing ingredients, just less of them. Still, you don’t want to overdo it. You need a tiny dab and no more. The rule being the less product you layer onto your struggling strands the more life, lift and bounce they are likely to have.
So the next time your thin, delicate locks have you frazzled and desperately looking for solutions, stop and take a deep breath. Then try to remember these ways to finesse your way to hair that while not exactly possessing stacks of body and bounce, it is at least closer to that state than what you had before.
Layers on the crown never have worked and always hated it with fine hair. Looks like a spidery toupee tacked on. Wish more stylist know other techniques than that. Only other one I seen was on Sam Villa education channels.
Thanks for sharing, Stacy. Agreed that Sam Villa does put out some awesomely helpful videos!