7 Things To Stop Doing Immediately If You Have Fine Hair
Don’t let those skimpy strands fall flat.
We’ll never be the type that gets up in the morning, stretches our arms, and says “I can’t wait to do my hair today.” It’s just not what gets our motor arunnin’.
Admittedly, styling your own hair is not the easiest task to tackle before the coffee hits, but we give it the old college try nonetheless. A little spritz here, a little gel there. Can’t hurt, right? It can.
Turns out, your hair type could be sabotaging the whole process. Rather, how you are approaching your hair type might be sabotaging the whole process. If you have fine hair particularly, you’re sporting super skinny strands that can’t seem to hold volume if their follicles depended on it.
Fine hair—as well as its comrade, thin hair—has a proclivity for falling flat. Just one misstep, and the strands are dragged down to the depths of styling death. Luckily there are sneaky tricks that will set those with fine or thin hair (often suffering from similar issues) up for success.
If you’re not in the know, you might be making one of these fine hair mistakes every day. For example, you might’ve been told that you need to use more product, should get more layers, start slathering up with more conditioner. Wrong, wrong, wrong.
Here are 7 major mistakes to avoid if you have fine hair.
Mistake #1: Using too much product
You’ve been hoodwinked into thinking that fine hair needs all the product to lift it up. Gels, mousses, sprays, and balms—they’re secretly weighing your strands down even more. Those roots don’t stand a chance. Fact: This is the number one mistake fine-haired ladies make.
Choose one volumizing root lifter, such as John Frieda Luxurious Volume Perfectly Full Mousse, and use a small amount on the roots (if you apply it to the length of your hair, it’ll just be dragged down). Pair this perfect touch of product with the proper blow-drying technique—more on that later—and you’ve done not too much, not too little. Just enough to give those roots the boost they need.
Mistake #2: Getting the wrong haircut
The answer to so many hair woes is simple: get more layers. If you have skimpy strands, this might actually be the basis of said woes. Too many layers will make your hair appear even more lacking in body and volume. Instead go with volume-enhancing styles like blunt ends, full bangs, and short lengths.
The only exception is the rare case of someone with fine hair—but a ton of it. If you have thick hair made up of densely packed fine strands, well-placed (read: not too many) long layers will give dimension and volume to your cut.
Mistake #3: Using too much conditioner
This sly, slippery little bugger has been right under your nose the whole time. Same song and dance: Fine hair doesn’t need to be weighed down, and using too much conditioner in the shower (much like using too much product when styling) is going to add unwanted weight to your strands and drag them down to Flat Town. Instead use a tiny amount on the section of hair from midway down to your ends. Do not go near those roots!
Mistake #4: Letting your hair grow too long
The sweet spot for fine or thin hair is shoulder length or shorter, hands down. It removes enough weight to give your mane a boost of fullness and bounce, and it makes it much easier to add volume to the roots. When fine strands get too long (especially when paired with too many layers), they can tend to look stringy, ratty, or lifeless. Keep the ends blunt to feign even more thickness.
Mistake #5: Forgetting about your scalp
Let’s get to the root of the problem, shall we? The roots! In order to maximize your volume potential and stimulate new hair growth, you should invest in a clarifying shampoo or scalp scrub. These are designed to remove product buildup (see #1) and exfoliate your hair follicles.
“A scalp scrub will give you a deeper clean and will physically exfoliate away the dirt, oil, and product build-up that can clog hair follicles,” says Franck Izquierdo, co-founder of IGK Hair Care. As a result, volume-building and hair growth is much easier to achieve.
Start by using Ouai’s Scalp and Body Scrub or IGK’s LOW KEY Cleansing Walnut Scrub one to two times per week, and mix in a clarifying shampoo, like Aveda’s Rosemary Mint Purifying Shampoo, into your routine once a week.
Mistake #6: Using the wrong blow-drying technique
There’s a reason you always leave the hair salon with a higher-than-Heaven, bouncy blowout, and it’s all in the round brush. After applying the smallest amount of volumizing mousse or spray, use the round brush to lift your hair up and away from the root as you blow-dry. This gravity-defying trick might be hard to master, but it’s more than worth it when you're rocking fine or thin hair.
WATCH: The Trick To Using a Round Brush That No One Knows
Mistake #7: Ignoring that you're prone to breakage
Fine hair—our fickle, fickle friend—is super prone to split ends. Split ends, as we know, make your hair appear less healthy in terms of volume, length, and density. Once the damage is done, it travels up the hair shaft until you cut it off. The best approach? Getting ahead of it.
No more roughhousing. That means investing in a microfiber hair towel (like this one), silk pillowcase (find it here), and a gentle detangling brush (such as this best-seller). These game-changing products will keep your strands in tip-top shape and breakage at bay. Plus, consider limiting how much you’re using a flatiron. The heat accrues damage while flattening your roots.
Who knows, tomorrow morning we just might be excited to do our hair.