If there’s one person who’s been blessed with flat, thin, fine, limp hair, it’s me – how I wish I had hair like the girl in the photo! And trust me, I’ve heard and read it all when it comes to trying to lift that flatness and put some hair volume into it. Here, in no particular order, all the things I’ve tried, as well as all the tips that I could possibly find on giving your hair more volume.
1. Change your parting
Great for those with flat hair. It is a quick, easy tip that gives a temporary lift to flat hair.
2. The right haircut
Well placed layers, styles cut with a blunt end, and bobs all give volume to fine, thin hair. What to avoid: Hair cuts and styles that are heavily layered, or razor cuts. This was a big “a-ha” moment for me – once I stopped layering my hair and just went for a straight-across, blunt cut, my hair looked much, much thicker. I’m never getting layers again! (For more info about finding the right haircut, check out my post, Which Hairstyle Suits Me? How to Find Your Best Hairstyle.)
3. Volumizing Hair products
Try volumizing hair products. If you have colored your hair though, beware – some formulas can strip and fade the color. Also, because they are giving volume and are formulated not to weigh hair down, it does not contain so many conditiong agents. I remember using a volumizing shampoo from L’Oreal Professional and while it was great, my hair was quite dry – which gave it a fluffy, volumizing effect. A good leave-in conditioner that doesn’t weigh down hair is Redken Extreme Anti-Snap.
4. Blow-drying tricks
A tip all the pros use is to blow dry your hair upside down – lifting up the roots and therefore added volume. Also, apply voluming mousse and blow dry your crown area to get lift for flat hair. Blow dry hair by lifting each section to the sky, directing the hairdryer on your scalp. What to avoid: Heavy conditioners, hairsprays and styling products that will just weigh your hair down after all your hard work.
5. Dry shampoo
Here’s a general hair tip: Don’t wash it everyday! Use dry shampoos for the days you don’t wash your hair – it revives greasy hair and gives slight volume. It really works – it’s my “must have” hair products, and I really like the ones by Batiste.
6. Teasing/ Backcombing
Backcombing your hair at the crown and smoothing some hair over it will lift hair and not make it so flat. Beware though – backcombing is very damaging.
Coloring your hair instantly makes hair look thicker - particularly darker colors – and well placed high-lights and low-lights can give the illusion of dimension.
A semi-permanent, hassle free way to get volume is just to have a perm. You will save a lot on blow drying and products. A root perm will give lift to flat hair, a body perm will give you all around waves, so your hair will have instantly more body and volume. Unfortunately, perms are very damaging to your hair – it is best that you haven’t had any prior chemical treatments, and that your hair is relatively healthy. I would say that perms are the last straw, as it really is damaging. I’ve seen both extremes of perms – some were horrible (like mine when I was 15, updated: and my recent digital hair perm disaster) but some were really good and didn’t seem to damage at all (my best friend). So really think about it, and please get a good stylist that will do a proper job.
… That’s all from me. Safe to say I’ve tried them all, and my fail proof favorite is a perm, a blunt haircut and dry shampoo. What do you do to get volume in your hair? If you have any more tips I’d love to hear. :)
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