One of the biggest challenges of having fine natural hair (or just fine hair in general) is styling it in a way that looks full and voluminous. Then, there may be concerns over maintaining one’s length.
When looking to achieve length and/or density, you have to look at each goal separately but also jointly. Fine hair needs to be cared for a little bit more meticulously than someone with thicker and/or more dense hair.
Your density is what determines the fullness of your hair. It has less to do with the fineness of the individual strands. When it’s not understood that you can have a head full of individual fine hairs, you can be scoffed at for saying you have “thin hair.” Yet you can absolutely have thick (high density), fine hair.
‘Hair density is the amount of hair strands on the head. Generally, it is measured by counting the number of hair strands found in one square inch (2.5cm) of scalp. When a stylist tells you that you have thick hair, it is high density he/she is describing.
Generally, the classifications of hair density are thin, medium, and thick, and are unrelated to the texture of the hair. The average head has approximately 2,200 strands of hair per square inch, and a total of approximately 100,000 hairs.’-hairfinder
It would be just wrong to talk about the number of hairs on your head without saying a little something about shedding. Shedding is a normal process of releasing a hair follicle from the scalp once it’s reached the end of its life cycle. An average person sheds anywhere from 50-100 hairs per day.
If you find that you are shedding above the norm and you have no diagnosed health issues, here’s a few things to take a look it:
- The ingredients in your hair products (natural and chemical – you can be allergic to either)
- Are you stressing your hair with tight hair styles?
- Nutritional intake
- Vitamin/Mineral Deficiencies or Over consumption
Assuming your shedding rate is normal, how do you then increase the density of your fine hair? That’s the bad news. You can’t. It’s genetic.
The good news is that while you can not increase your hair’s density, you can increase the thickness of the individual strands (somewhat). Substances like protein and henna are key to bulking up fine strands. As a fellow fine haired natural, I apply protein treatments to my hair biweekly, full strength henna applications bimonthly and henna tea sprays multiple times per week (thanks to Curly Proverbz on Youtube).
For someone without fine hair, that may seem like a bit much. Yet, if your hair IS fine, you will recognize that your strands will love the extra support 🙂
That brings me to the next area of maintenance. Length.
Fine natural hair has challenges with maintaining length due to its fragility. I’ve written a number of posts on length retention which I will link below. There are multiple hair practices that can be adopted but when it comes to maintaining your length, what you do to maintain your fine hair’s “weight,” will help you to also maintain its length.
How you handle your hair day to day will also determine how much length you retain. Here are the articles I referenced above:
If length retention isn’t a big concern for you, and all you care about is density, follow the tips recommended to support your hair’s strength but then consider getting a haircut that will give you the appearance of even more volume. Naturally curly hair can look quite voluminous when shaped in a manner that includes layers. It just depends on what you are looking to achieve.
Regardless of your length and density, giving your hair the love and support it needs consistently will eventually reflect the most beautiful head of hair you were destined to have. Long gone are the days of wanting somebody else’s head of hair. Let’s love what we were born with. Love + Nurturing = A Great Head of Hair 😉