As anyone who’s tried to style thin hair will tell you, creating volume where there is none is no easy task. But if you think no amount of texturising spray, teasing and rigorous blow-drying is going to make your fine hair look thicker, good (if blunt) news: you’re wrong.
Below, we’ve quizzed three of Australia’s best hairdressers for their tips on how to style fine hair and the haircuts, products and techniques guaranteed to give life to limp, lifeless locks.
The products you’ll need
Products in every fine-haired girl’s arsenal should include dry shampoo and volumising powder, thickening mousse, dry texturising spray and a hairspray that gives a solid dose of volume as well as staying power (we like Kevin Murphy Bedroom Hair).
“Dry shampoo as a finishing spray is your secret weapon in the war on fine or limp hair,” says Jo, senior stylist and colourist at Barney Martin 2. “Spray versions are best for a softer finish, compared to powders that have a stronger hold for more buildable volume.” Try R+ CO Death Valley.
Just don’t overdo it. “Too much styling product can make hair look flat if not used correctly, so be selective with what you use!” warns evo and Cloud Nine Creative Director, Lauren McCowan.
Haircuts for fine hair
“Super long hair and fine hair don't really go together very well but can be made to appear thicker with well-cut layers,” guides Jo. “I would say optimum length is nothing much further than the shoulder.” Feeling brave? Go even shorter for the full (pun intended) effect. “The angled lob or a choppy bob with tousled ends works well with thin hair,” says director of UVA salon, Marie Uva.
Pro tip: Ask your hairdresser for blunt-cut ends to create the illusion of thickness.
How to style it
What hairstyles work best on thin hair? Anything that makes the hair appear thicker is your friend, according to Jo. “Half ups with some back combing are a great (and quick!) fix,” she says.
Can’t give up on your dream of Victoria’s Secret style waves? This is what to do.
1/ Select your products wisely
2/ Put the brush away
“Hand-drying and air-drying keep the cuticle layer open, giving a fuller appearance for longer,” guides Jo. Flip your head upside down and from side to side and blast hair in the opposite direction that you want it to fall to boost volume. “Once I’ve hand-dried the hair with root lift, I twirl the hair away from the face in four large sections while drying. This adds wave and body to the hair without the need for a brush,” instructs Jo.
3/ Spritz and tong
“If you wear an undone look, spray with dry shampoo. If you prefer a slightly more polished look, I would finish with a large barrel tong and only wind random pieces away from the face,” says Jo. “Irregular texture is a great way of tricking the eye into thinking there’s more hair.”
To fringe or not to fringe?
While some fringes are typically suited to thicker hair types, you don’t have to give up on the idea altogether. “Fringes that are longer, grazing the cheekbones, are best suited to thin hair,” says Jo. “Anything structured takes away from the bulk of your hair and tend to be high maintenance and not suited for fine hair, which tends to be oily.”
Pro tip: “Add highlights to create the illusion of fuller, more voluminous hair” - Lauren McGowan