Your hair texture determines a lot about the way you can style your hair. There are three ways to define your hair texture, these include; fine hair, medium hair + thick and coarse hair. Knowing your hair type is the first step to getting a beautifully healthy and luscious style.
In this blog post we’ll help you to determine your hair texture and show you how to work with your own texture in order to achieve the best styling results. This blog will also show you the best haircuts that will complement each of the three different hair textures.
The first thing to note is that hair texture is not really about whether your hair is curly, kinky or straight (professionals refer to that as hair ‘type’) or whether you have thin or thick hair as that refers to the amount of hair you have. Texture is really to do with the width of your hair, whether it’s fine, medium or coarse and the way it behaves (or doesn’t!) because of its width and structure.
The texture of your hair is determined by the shape of your hair follicles. The characteristics of the three types of hair textures include;
Fine hair is characterised by the diameter of each individual hair strand being thin, therefore giving off the appearance of having not a lot of hair. However, the good news is that contrary to popular belief, people with fine hair tend to have MORE hair than people with thick hair. Thin hair can have the appearance of looking softer and more feminine than other textures.
The problem with fine hair is that it’s fragile and can be easily damaged. People with fine hair mainly complain about three things; lack of volume, oiliness and the difficulty they experience in holding a style. They are often guilty of using two much hairspray and other product - hands up if this is you! Structurally fine hair only has two hair layers – a cortex and a cuticle.
Medium hair is thicker than fine hair, it‘s the most common hair type and usually covers the scalp very well. The positive of this hair texture is that it’s not as fragile as fine hair and can be styled easily, straight hair, waves or curls are perfect for this style and will hold well. Medium hair has more body and bounce compared to other hair types. Structurally, medium textures usually have two layers – the cortex and cuticle – and may contain the medulla which is the inner layer of hair which builds thickness in the hair.
This hair texture is strong because structurally it contains all three hair layers – the cortex, cuticle and medulla. The medulla, which is the innermost layer of the hair shaft is actually a series of empty spaces, filled with air and protein. This hair texture’s main drawback is that it usually takes longer to dry than others and can be very resistant to various chemical treatments. It can however tolerate heat well and resist breakage better than fine or medium hair.
Hair texture is determined by your genes in the same way as eye colour is and there’s not a lot you can do about it, although your hair can change after puberty and during pregnancy.
However, there is one thing that will make your hair thicker – and that’s colour or more accurately, bleach! But before you fine haired ladies all rush out to get your hair bleached, remember it can be a double edged sword.
Bleaching also makes your hair more prone to breakage and those pesky split ends so think about the trade off before doing it and always put your hair in the hands of a professional.
So what can you do to make coarse hair silkier and softer and fine hair thicker without risking it? Product and styling tools would be the answer.
Image source: @hairbymeganzitzke
If you have coarse hair be generous with the conditioner – use Argan oil liberally and use a heated styling tool to help seal your hair for a glossy finish. As your hair is thick you can use these tools on high heat.
Image source: @emme.hair
If you have fine hair and want it to appear thicker use product that adds volume. Condition lightly and although it’s tempting, try not to wash your hair every day to minimize damage which can make hair look even thinner and stringy. Girls with thin hair need to use styling tools on their lowest heat setting, again to minimize damage.
Every hair texture has a different haircut that will enhance it’s natural beauty. Making sure you have the right haircut for your texture will provide you with the perfect style you’ll love.
Image source: @laraworthington
Short structure bobs or lobs are great for people with very fine hair as these will create a thicker look. The best thing about bobs is that you can pick any length that suits your face shape and style from ear to collar bone. Bob hairstyles are so hot right now, so take advantage of your fine hair and change your style.
Image source: @haileybeiber
If you have fine hair and want to find a hairstyle that will compliment your hair texture well, opt for a style with texture and layers. Adding some texture and layers will give your flat hair more life and movement which creates a thicker look.
As short bobs work for very fine hair, longer styles also work well for hair that is fine.
Having medium textured hair gives you the most flexibility with your cut and style. You can go short to long and generally opt for choppy texture or a smooth result. What will determine this more is if you have curly, wavy or straight hair.
Image source: @kourtneykardash
Often you are best to keep your thick hair longer so the weight pulls it down and stops it from being so full and puffy. Thick hair is great, however if you’re looking to tame it, we suggest you look into Keratin smoothing treatments to reduce the bulk.
If you have thick hair but love the look of short hair, than shorter styles can also work but the only downside is that they may require more maintenance to look smoother than fine or medium textured hair. Having hair textured cut and the weight removed will definitely help to style thick hair more easily.
Now you have correctly determined your hair texture, follow the tips in this blog to achieve gorgeous, healthy looking hair.
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Love Your Style, the VS Sassoon Team x