Let’s face it, not all of us are gifted with naturally voluminous hair. For some of us, our hair may start out thick during childhood and teenage years and then become progressively thinner as we reach our 20s and 30s. Thin, flat hair can be caused by various factors including stress, genetics, over–styling/damage, and even diet. It’s not possible to increase your hair’s thickness overnight; however, we’ve put together a few tips and tricks that will help you enhance your hair’s volume the next time you style your hair.
Start at the root.
Clean roots are the foundation for voluminous, thicker looking hair. While cleansing, focus on your scalp and roots first, and then move your way toward the ends of the hair. Sebum, oil that is produced from the hair follicle, tends to build up at the root of the hair. Buildup of this oil over time can weigh down your roots and give the appearance of limp hair, which is why it’s essential to shampoo your scalp thoroughly. In addition, some sources indicate that this buildup of sebum may also contribute to slower hair growth over time.
A healthy scalp is essential for normal follicle growth and we recommend using a gentle, sulfate free shampoo
. Sulfates are harsh surfactants used in various cleaning products (even garage floor cleaners!) to cut through dirt and oil. The corrosive nature of sulfates strips the hair of natural oils that are important in keeping the scalp hydrated and normalized. According to naturalnews.com
, lather produced by sulfates “roughs up the cuticle of the hair, making it appear dull, dry, and damaged . . . . It has even been linked to follicular damage and can potentially contribute to hair loss.” A sulfate free shampoo will not only give your roots a clean foundation, but it will also help prevent against follicle damage and dry scalp.
Incorporate volumizing products.
A good volumizing conditioner
and finishing spray can also help enhance your hair’s volume. Some volumizing conditioners create the appearance of fullness with ingredients that coat the hair, thereby increasing the diameter of each strand which results in more volume. Ingredients like collagen (a protein) increase the density and flexibility of the hair to give the hair fullness and movement. When conditioning hair, focus on the ends and then work your way up to the scalp. Be careful not to over-condition your roots, as doing so may result in a weighed down appearance.
Volumizing sprays are also a great solution for adding lift and body to the hair. Volumizing sprays are typically focused on the roots where thickening support is most needed.
Blow dry to volumize.
Certain styling techniques can enhance the volume of your hair. When blow drying, focus on the roots first. Flip your head upside down and blow dry the roots until they are almost dry. Then flip your hair back over and finish drying the rest of your hair with a round brush in an upward motion. If you have thin, fine hair finish it off with a lightweight volumizing spray or dry shampoo instead of hairspray. The dry shampoo will give your hair extra texture and fullness while reducing oiliness as the day goes on. It also gives the hair more grip, cutting down on static and that “too-soft” feeling. Keep a travel size dry shampoo in your purse for touch ups throughout the day.
Prepare your hair for bed.
You can prime your hair at night to save time washing and styling in the morning. After you wash and blowdry your hair at night, pull it into a loose bun (or two, Princess Leia style) to sleep on — use an old school scrunchy (preferably silk or satin) to avoid creases or breakage. The overnight bun will give your hair some natural wave and volume when you take it out the next day.
To give some additional body in the morning, you may also try experimenting with texturizing sprays like this DIY
from The Beaty Department (skip the oil and leave-in conditioner if your hair is extra fine and thin). Or, you may choose to apply dry shampoo to your roots and blow dry your hair upside down to create some extra fullness.
Get a fresh cut.
Regular haircuts keep hair healthy, fresh and thicker-looking, too. Split ends make hair look wispy and thus, thinner. Regular cuts also give the hair a more uniform shape which will even out your ends for a fuller appearance.
No matter how much volume your hair lacks, there are several techniques and ways to enhance your volume, whether it’s changing up products or styling a different way. What are some other techniques you use to liven up your hair? Do share!