This Classic Updo Is The Best For Fine Hair
Fine-haired ladies, this one's for you.
If you have fine hair, you know the struggle of styling it in any way that requires a little obedience. Not in the way of curly hair’s lovable unruliness, but in a way that flat out doesn’t want to be done. Despite this testy demeanor, fine hair is a little misunderstood. It’s often confused with thin hair, but the two terms refer to two totally different characteristics. Fine hair is referencing the diameter of the individual strand of hair, while thin hair is referring to the density of your hair as a whole. Hence, you can have fine hair that isn’t thin—like me. I have incredibly thick hair, but it’s so fine that I can’t make ponytails, updos, or even clips stay put, thanks to its overwhelming weight and fine texture. I only trust a select few styles to actually work for more than an hour without driving me crazy, and there is only one type of updo I’ll wear to any formal event, which also happens to be an all-time classic. Lucky us, fine-haired ladies! First, here's a little more about fine hair.
How do you determine if you have fine hair?
Odds are, your hair stylist has already let you know if you have fine hair or not. But, if not, there’s a handy little at-home test you can use to figure out if your strands are fine, medium, or coarse. Grab a single strand of your hair and hold it in between your fingers. If you can’t feel it at all, then you most likely have pretty fine hair. If you have coarser hair, you’ll definitely still be able to feel it between your two fingers. Even simpler, you usually can tell whether it’s super fine or coarse by holding up a single strand and seeing if it looks almost invisible—brunettes and blondes alike with very fine hair will barely be able to see the strand. While these techniques might not sound very technical upon explanation, it's the fastest and easiest way you can get an idea of your hair type in a matter of seconds! If all else fails, you can always ask your hair stylist at your next appointment.
What are characteristics of fine hair?
If you have fine hair, volume is the problem. Whether thick and heavy or thin and light, fine strands don’t get the natural volume and body it needs to help hold hairstyles easily, and it goes flat fast. Fine hair is also more prone to greasiness, as the many, many strands (with fine hair, there’s room for more!) each have their own follicle that produces oil. These two characteristics are the largest factors when deciding which products to use and how to use them when trying to make an updo work.
What is the one updo that always works for fine hair?
Ah, what you’ve been waiting on. Speaking from experience, as well as keen professional insight, a classic chignon is the most reliable updo when you have fine hair. Lucky for us, chignons are stylish, elegant, and not too difficult! Why chignons work the absolute best for fine hair boils down to a few things. First, it’s a low updo, which the lack of volume and holding-power of fine hair can handle the best. Second, it doesn’t require many pins. Thick or not, fine hair (due to its super small diameter) isn’t going to cooperate with bobby pins as well as coarser hair, which makes them precarious at best to rely upon for holding up a style. Lastly, you can manipulate your roots with products and tools to feign the appearance of voluminous hair—and it’ll stay that way because you’re quickly sweeping it into a low chignon without too much fussing or pinning. And with a little finishing hairspray, of course.
How can you do it yourself?
We happen to have the easiest, most stylish chignon that works for holiday parties and casual affairs alike—and you can do it in four steps. Check out the tutorial here. But, for starters, you can get your fine hair ready for the ‘do with a couple extra initial tricks. First, products are imperative. Use a root volume product, such as Living Proof Full Root Lifting Spray, before blow drying hair to get touchable volume. Then, after drying, if you want to ensure root lift that will last, use big-barrel rollers on just your most top section of roots as you curl the rest of your hair with a curling iron or wand (which is included in the tutorial). Follow the rest of our handy steps to get a classic chignon, and you can tailor the process to fit your needs, event to event, to make it even faster. The volume products should never be sacrificed though! If you can follow visual cues better than written instructions, this tutorial is extremely similar, but features some guiding photos of the steps.
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Do you have any tips for styling fine hair? We’re always looking out for the best tricks for party-ready hair without the hassle, so let us know.