Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning we get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through our links, at no cost to you. Please read our disclosure for more info.
Do you feel like you're always spending time fixing, styling, and maintaining your hair? You're not alone. In fact, research shows that the average American woman spends approximately six full days each year on her mane!
Using the right types of hair products can significantly cut down the time you spend maintaining your hair. They can also improve the overall health and appearance of your precious locks.
Let's get into what you need to know.
In This Post:
Your Hair Type
When it comes to selecting the best hair products, you need to know your hair type. Your hair type serves as the template for determining the strengths (and weaknesses) of that gorgeous mane of yours.
The width of your strands indicates your hair type. Lay a single strand of hair on a flat surface. If the hair is barely visible, you probably have fine hair. If it's thicker and textured, you have coarse hair. If it falls somewhere in the middle, you most likely have a moderate width.
Density refers to the thickness of your hair. It's an easy test. Pull a front section of your hair to the side of your head. If you're able to see your scalp underneath, your hair is thin. If you can't see any scalp, your hair is thick.
Straight hair refers to the absence of any bends or creases. Wavy hair tends to have ‘S' shapes. Curly hair has curves without the spirals, although ringlets indicate spiral curls.
Porosity refers to how your hair absorbs products and moisture. Determining porosity is relatively simple.
Place a strand of hair into a bowl of water. If it sinks to the bottom, your hair has a higher porosity because it's absorbing all the moisture. If the hair remains floating on top, your hair has a lower porosity. Extremities can be problematic either way.
Hair with low porosity means that it takes more time and effort for product absorption. For example, you might notice that it takes longer to dry your hair- or you might find that products build up on your scalp.
Hair with high porosity may absorb products too quickly, which means you find yourself needing to apply more. Your hair may dry quickly, but it doesn't look shiny or moisturized.
Shampoo and Conditioner
The perfect hair starts in the shower. Despite what fancy marketing will try and tell you, not all products are created equally.
First of all, your hair type will guide the frequency of how often you wash your hair. Learn more about the differences between treating fine vs. thick hair and the unique needs of colored hair.
Fine hair fares best with thickening shampoo and conditioner. One of the major challenges of fine hair is that scalps tend to become greasy and oily. Therefore, you want to look for labels that have words like volumizing, balancing, or strengthening.
However, you only want to condition the very ends of your hair to avoid an oily buildup on the scalp. Make sure to rinse very thoroughly. Any leftover product could result in more grease accumulation.
Thicker, wavy hair often benefits from anti-frizz shampoo and conditioning products. Conditioning is essential, and you may want to consider conditioning twice to seal in extra moisturizing effects.
Kinky or tight curls benefit from extra moisturizing. You're going to want to use a deep conditioner, and you may consider leaving some of it in your hair after rinsing. The residue will help keep your curls looking healthy and shiny.
After you've conquered the shampoo and conditioner, it's time to dive into the dizzying selection of styling products. And let's be real. All those choices can feel overwhelming.
As a general rule of thumb, a professional stylist will likely have the best guidance for you. If you've been working with someone who knows your hair, don't be afraid to ask! What products do they recommend you use?
Lightweight mousses can bring thin strands to life- without the stiff and crunchy effect. For best results, you'll want to apply the product to damp hair and blow-dry for lasting shine.
Thick and Coarse Hair
Styling creams and pastes on damp hair preserve shine and gloss while fighting the enemy of humidity. Apply evenly throughout hair after washing and blow-dry to seal in the moisture. You may also want to add a shine-enhancing hair spray to perk up the appearance of your locks.
Whether you blow-dry, straighten, curl (or all of the above!) your hair, the heat can have a detrimental effect on your locks. Heat protection products are great, preventative measures to mitigate damage. All hair types benefit from them.
Heat products form a protective layer from the heat to your hair shaft. Additionally, they provide moisture, which helps reduce damage.
For maximum results, spray and distribute the protectant evenly throughout the hair before blowdrying and styling. Use a liberal amount and comb through to ensure it spreads evenly.
Final Thoughts On Different Types of Hair Products
There are numerous types of hair products available today. The options can seem endless! Sometimes, it will require a trial-and-error process to find the combination that works best for you.
Likewise, many experts recommend that you switch up your products every few months. Just like we get bored with the same routine, your hair needs variety, too!
Are you interested in learning more beauty tips? Be sure to check out the beauty section of the site.