I grew up on the left side of an Island, as one of the worlds most famous singer’s once said, so the challenges of hair care while living there was much different from it is now.
I would say they were not necessarily harder but alot less involved. I got my hair done every Saturday morning with out failure and I had a relaxer every 8 weeks like clock work by someone who my mother considered a great friend.
Now I take care of my hair myself, I eliminated the relaxer process and I have learned alot about my hair, which I never knew before.
As I discovered how my strands worked, I would always remember the one thing my hair dresser on the island would say every time she relaxed my hair or she wanted to give me a hair cut in the name of “damaged ends”. She would say to my mom, her hair is ‘so fine’.
To be honest, I had no idea what in the world she meant by that until now, over 10 years later. My hair is fine, it is the finest hair on the planet. What this means is that the width of each strand is smaller, weaker, thinner than another person who has medium to coarse hair.
When I was 13 I would kill for a relaxer, I wanted it so bad it was all I could think about, now that I am in my thirties, I wish I knew then what I know now. A relaxer is the number one thing on my list that a person with fine hair like myself should do without.
If you have fine hair like me, here are 6 things you should definitely avoid:
1. Do not get a relaxer
Sorry, but your hair will be much healthier without it. My relaxed hair was gorgeous, but over the years I watched the bulk of it disappear and no matter what I did or any professional did to care for it as soon as I got my relaxer, it would break and shed.
Relaxers are designed to remove the kink from the strand by breaking bonds that cause them to curl. If you already have fine hair the last thing you need is something else to take out even more surface area from it. It just makes sense that a relaxer was not for me.
Hi, I’m 16 years old and I have fine hair.. My mom is a hair stylist and the past two years she’s told me that my hair texture has changed so much. She says my hair is incredibly fine.. Now, I’ve been natural since June 2013 and I’m curious as to why my hair won’t grow. I also wear weaves so how can I tell if my hair is healthy or not if it won’t grow and it sheds alot when I take out my weaves??
Hi! I have fine hair too. Hair always grows ~ your hair is breaking. You have to figure out why. Maybe you need more protein. Maybe you need to lay off the weave. Everyone’s different…I use protective styling 99% of the time to avoid tangles & breakage. Hope that helps…
I have fine hair and I use weave as a protective style in the winter. Like Dreamee said, hair always grows, you hair is just breaking if you are getting any length from your weave. I have worn weaves for a while, and I know exactly what you mean about not getting any length from wearing weave. The truth is, you must make sure you are truly taking good care of your hair under that weave. a couple tips that may help.
1. Before each weave, get a protein treatment (over the counter aphogee has a great 2 step protein treatment)
2. Deep condition and L.O.C. your hair and let it try naturally before it gets braided up.
3. Only Co Wash you hair while weaved up. Do not use Shampoo. (fine hair tends to get dry easily, and shampoo does us no favors)
4. Co Wash Weekly
5. Oil your scalp not the weave with an oil with a nozzle or a braid spray.
6. Deep condition and use a protein treatment once you take your weave out.
I hope this helps.
I’m 14 and I have fine hair too. My hairs really healthy and fine. My mum always tells me but the problem is that it doesn’t grow. To be honest I think the best thing to do is to stop wearing extensions too much, only once in a while because weaves extensions tend to make our hair weaker and it’s better to care for our hair more than we wear extensions. My hair did actually grow at some point, but I don’t know how it did, I I think you need to keep treating your scalp with protein because that’s what I always do. I also treat my scalp with products that promote hair growth but I think I’m gonna start doing more protein treatment and use protein hair mask. Im not really worrying too much about growing my hair longer because according to other people, my hairs really long.
I have very fine hair also. I did the perm thing and listened to my folks about the “nappy” headed thing but since I went natural in ’06 I found this awesome curly 3c 4a hair but we have a love hate relationship. I want to know more about protien and moisture. I just learned so much from this article because I’ve always had the moisture retention problem. How can I find out more about what and how much protein I should use.
Protein/moisture balance is key! I “cheat” a little by doing henna treatments every 4 months, so all I have to do is worry about is moisture…Curly Nikki put me up on that. Moisture is relatively simple: deep condition, leave in conditioner, aloe vera juice, coconut oil and or olive oil depends on what works for you without weighing down your hair. Only you can figure that out by trial & error. FYI HENNA IS MESSY SO BRACE YOURSELF IF YOU DECIDE TO GIVE IT A TRY…
At least you’re FEMALE, with DARK hair… Not a combo where true über-fine is possible. Physiologically, even, cuz apparently theres a minimum thickness for pigment to register with the human eye or something, if it thins past a certain point it won’t look dark no matter your genes or background
Take it from a 29yo ponytailed bloke whose thinning fine curly hair is getting progressively blonder and finer on the regrowth as steps are taken to prevent its receding – probably ‘ascended peach fuzz’ coaxed by accelerants to grow inches long. I’ve got mixed coloured head facial and bodyhair, platinum blonde yellow brown light black jet black even (crazy mix of ethnicities and races, and it shows), and the thinnest shortest non-stubbly black strand sprouting on some elbow somewhere is faaaar thicker than some of the blonde scalp hair I’m getting these days
Some’s so fine fingers calloussed from playing guitar and bass can rip it up just touching it wet
SURVIVING REAAAAALLY FINE HAIR TUPS:
1) lose the comb, plastic detangler palm brushes only – for ALL combing-brushing-detangling
2) even use those things to apply hair products
3) M-T-G good (rectified cade essential oil gets the growth, sulphur and zinc suppress irritations/dandruff/etc increasing survivability, mineral oil lubes it all up a bit) … ROGAINE BAAAAAD NO-NO. minoxidil has a LOW chance of converting the odd rest-phase hair into “stubble growth” mode, giving curly-haired people roughly 50% chance of an ingrown right off the bat when it actually generates a new hair – and 100% chance of mismatched texture thickness and growth rate monstrosity if it actually surfaces….Shapelys MTG at least grows YOUR hair
4) only OWN LENGTH relaxes fine kinks and curls in a way they’ll survive for years and inches more
5) WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS! – WET THE ABOUT-TO-BE-SACRIFICIAL TANGLE WITH ***CONTACT LENS SOLUTION*** (crazy hitech lubricant, harmless to hair as evidenced by daily contact with plenty of people’s lashes, bangs, brows, stray tresses, moustaches, etc)!!! 95% chance of full instant brushout without a single fallen hair, even if the tangle is the size of a golf ball
PS don’t disregard just cuz “blondie wouldn’t know jack” – though most of it is concentrated down toward my shaving waiver-grade neck, gradually decreasing ratio as it goes up – from 100% of neckbeard stubble to half and half sideburns to nearly no% up top, I’ve got a fair share of tough ultra-kinky Afrotextured jetblack wire in the mix (courtesy of some decidedly non -blonde non-white ancestry)… All the way up to and including stray thick&hard <5mm out-and-back-in-again ringlets and spirals "stapling" entire thinner locks to my scalp and other random joys of mixed multiracial hair like clusters of wavy thin browns held up en masse at ridiculous angles by 1-2 long thick black frizzy kinkies. Heck, the entire ponytail solution was because anything shorter defaulted to crow's nest no matter what I did to it
Great post dude!
Will definitely try the contact lens solution on my tangles and knots. Thank for the tip!
Latesa Storm says
Yes the Contact Lens Solution tip is Amazing, I’m definitely trying that #Awesome Post
I also have fine hair. I’m learning to deal with it. I transitioned out of a relaxer in late 2010-2011. The moisture balance trick is the hardest. I do plan on trying henna for protein. I don’t use any utensils fir detangling my hair because it’s so fragile. I just use my fingers to detangle. Unless I have a tiny knot at the end of my strands. I deep condition every week, when I wash my hair. That seems to be working for me.
If you use henna make sure to deep, deep condition after! I leave my deep conditioner in over night…Curly Nikki has some great tips on henna.
I have fine natural hair as well (4a). It’s one of the reasons I stopped watching Youtube “hair gurus”, like Naptural85, CharyJay etc. Those people with uber-thick, voluminous hair can do styles and use products that simply do not work with my fine, wiry hair. I’ve recently learned that protein-moisture balance is a very real thing, indeed. My hair was feeling quite mushy, and stretched and stretched in a bizarre way (it lacked protein). The most frustrating thing about having fine hair is the “gappiness” the author mentioned: twist-outs, braid-outs etc end up looking scalpy :-/ But I’ve been using Curlformers the past 6 weeks or so, and I’m really happy with what they do for my hair.
I absolutely do *not* use heat. Not even a blow-dryer. What’s the point in lying to myself? My fine strands just can’t handle it. I stretch my hair by african threading. I really liked this article.
Okay, awesome! I really liked your comment. So, my hair is really similar to yours. Mine is a little longer than shoulder length but I barely have any volume to it. So you think the protein treatment will help??
I used jamaican black castor oil once and it thickened my hair even more, maybe you could try that.
I have the same problem with my very fine, thin hair, “scalpiness”. What are Curlformers and African Threading? I’m just beginning to transition, and I’m new to the natural hair community.
Jacquelyn Haynes says
Maximum Hydration Method by Pinkecube saved my sanity. I sometimes use the modified version by Protective Princess. I use the process every three to five days. Three days is better for winter care. The haircare system works year round for my densely packed, low porosity,fine strands. Twists are labor intensive because my hair is shoulder length with densely packed fine strands. Up to four times a year, I use henna on my hair, followed by an indigo treatment at home. A hair streamer is my best friend. I hope this helps.
How can you tell if you have high or low porosity hair? I was told ny 4a fine hair needed to stay AWAY from protein because it would weaken it ans cause breakage. Nothing works for my hair.
Janay Thompson says
The way you can tell if you have low porosity or high porosity is by doing a strand test. You get you a cup of water and pull 3 strands one from the nape area, one from the front hairline & one from the crown area. You place these three strands in the water. Give each strand about 2 to 4 minutes. If they stay floating you have low porosity which means your hair doesn’t allow moisture in and doesn’t let any come out. If it sinks half to the middle of the cup you have normal porosity which means your hair absorbs enough moisture & if it sinks to the bottom you have high porosity which your hair absorbs too much moisture & lets it escape.
Now if they said you have “fine” hair that is just your hair texture. Meaning the thickness of the hair strand & every hair needs protein to temporarily fix problems in the hair strand it doesn’t fix. In this case it would be a trial & error on what kind of proteins your hair likes. Your hair could like hydrolyzed proteins or glycerin it all depends.
I have fine hair. Not sure of the hair type, I guess it’s a 4 b/c, but it doesn’t have a curl pattern et al when it’s dry. But while it’s wet I have a wavy/coily pattern. *shrugs*. What I do know is that I’m having a hard time finding a product that works in my hair. I’ve done the strand test to check my porosity, and it seems I fall in the normal to low range because my strands float for a while. It does well with water based products, like Gio Direct-Leave in, but shea butter based products are a complete no go…but either way, she is dryed out and begging for moisture by the next evening. I can’t wash and go (unless I’m in the mood for a fro) and a twist out only lasts a day….Any pointers??? HELLLPP!!
molly seay says
Try essential oils added to your leave-n products. Lavender will “straighten” hair after a few months and help it grow faster. Look up essentials oils for hair. I have hair like yours and was natural twice, but hated it. I love my relaxer, and my hair is healthy, but I hope you don’t give up if you want to be natural. I never wanted to be natural. I had a scalp infection that didn’t even go away when I was natural. It was at its worst then.
Sounds like you need major moisture treatments. How often do you deep condition? It could also be the products you’re using. Read the labels and avoid sulfates and cones -some products hide it so read carefully. Also, while your hair is in this ultra dry state avoid protein. You can also try Apple Cider vinegar rinse (1 part vinegar 2 parts water)…hope that helps!
My fine hair is extremely dry, also. I make a spray bottle of water, jamaican black castor oil, & rosemary oil. I spray my hair day & night. I rinse my hair from time to time with Aloe Vera juice. Coconut oil & shea butter just coats my hair.
molly seay says
I almost never comment on articles, but this one is light enough. I have ultra fine, extra dry baby hair. I’ve been natural twice and hated it. Actually last year the professionals ruined it from the flat iron so I got a relaxer after two years and am really happy. Coconut milk really plumped it up, and it’s armpit length. I only use heat on my roots when I’m in need of a perm, and I am just starting to use protective styles. (next week) I use essential oils in my doo grow growth lotion, and my old stylist, who’s a friend, says my hair has never looked better. By the way to the girl above me that’s how my natural hair is. My mom has long silky hair and she’s my hair model/crush so I’m anti-natural.
I have fine hair but it’s thick if that makes sense. I have problems trying to keep my hair moisturized but I am afraid to try protein treatments because my hair is sensitive and prone to breaking but shea butter based products seem to work. However, I have the hardest problem trying to style my hair because my twist outs/braid outs also come out with loose curls and quickly frizz no matter what products I try. I have been trying to do perm rods but they don’t seem to be working (i might be doing something wrong). I am drastic need of help. How do I successfully do a wash n go? Does anyone know of YouTubers with fine hair? What are yall thoughts on glycerin?
Au Pan d'Ore says
Thank you for this!! I realized a few years ago that I have very fine hair but that’s where it ended. I had no idea what to do about it. now I do. Thank you!!!
I also have fine hair. But I’ve found that more emphasis must be placed on nutrition. Ample vitamins and protein will help each hair strand to have increased strength and shine.
Important vitamins for strong hair is
Vitamin B Complex
Also consider adding silica to the diet. For me this supplement improves nails, skin and hair
HI my fine-haired ladies.
I have fine hair which is pretty dense which, through much trial and plenty of errors, is around 18 inches long having been natural since April 2010.
I have found the following regime helpful to me:
West Indian Castor Oil on scalp only 3x per week;
deep condition containing a hydrolyzed protein every other week; followed by
conditioner wash my hair with a moisturising conditioner every other week;
deep condition overnight with Bentonite-clay wash which leaves my hair wonderfully defined and tangle-free;
moisturise once per week with a leave which contains ONE PROTEIN, mixed with EVOO and Aloe Vera juice;
finger detangle and comb ONLY – I use a wide tooth comb on my roots only every 3 months and guess what, my fingers work just fine so don’t need a comb;
trim every 6 months;
wear protective styles 70% of the time.
Ladies believe it or not the one thing us fine-haired ladies NEED is PROTEIN once or every other week to strengthen our delicate strands !!!. Not the harsh e.g.Aphogee but a protein which contains hydrolyzed silk, wheat,keratin or collagen etc BUT NO MORE THAN ONE PROTEIN as a combination of more than one is likely to cause breakage.
I hope this helps ladies.
For more info. email [email protected]
conditioner wash only my hair wth a moisturising conditioner every other week
crystal fox says
I like your story and I feel the same way about my fine hair. Everything you said is true. I am natural and rocks the curl-out. I use hair product that is not heavy on my hair because its ways my hair down. I adore “Aveda” products. I use a leave-in conditioner and use a pomade that includes moisture. As long as I have my hair products I am fine. ;-D Thanks for the confirmation.
My mom has fine hair and she just started using the Wen products and she loves them.
Latesa Storm says
I have Super Curly Fine hair & I use WEN leave in Conditioner 1x a week & it works & I also feel like my hair has grown a little since using it. Most importantly only a few strands come out when I do my Sunday wash compared to a large ball of hair coming out when I used other conditioners. Use WEN My Fine Hair Sista’s it works! Buy it from Amazon though because from the site they send automatic shipments & with thin Fine hair we don’t need that much
I have fine hair. When I was 27 I finally embraced my then processed hair. Three years later I decided to go natural. I have been natural for 15 years now changing styles frequently. I mainly love rope twists but I noticed that while I loved them, the weight of them was damaging my hairline and breaking it off to the point where three years ago I stopped braiding and now only braid for special occasions and then only leave them in for a short period.
Recently I decided it was time to get to know my natural hair. it is interesting because I sleep on my right side. I have noticed the hair there doesn’t grow like my hair on the left. the left side is a little looser, the right side is kinkier and even though they are approximately the same length, because of the incredible shrinkage on the right side it makes it difficult to find a style that I like because it looks asymmetrical naturally.
So now in my mid 40’s I’m on a quest to get to know my natural hair and all of its intricate differences and textures and hopefully it won’t take me 27 years to fall in love with it. P.S. I have several wigs for the winter and a few hair pieces for the summer.
I have fine hair – natural since 2011 big chop – I had to start over in 2013 after I colored my hair and it broke off something awful.
Since then I have learned how to care for my fine hair – no color – protein treatments and almost no heat. I’ve blown it out 3x since 2013.
I liked the article and agree with most – I do not trim my ends – i dust at the most if that every other month and I am still retaining length @ 1/2 inch per month. My goal is to hit waist length – with patience and hard work.
Love Nurture Grow says
I had to laugh when I started reading about you wanting a perm so did I .. after years of perms I finally decided to go natural and went to Locs. I recently a few months combed them out and refused to go back to a perm and I love it.. when I blow it out and straighten it it looks just like I have a relaxer.. but I still have the same issue as I did with a perm it won’t hold curls. It will curl beautifully with heat even if roll it at night the next morning the curls are beautiful but in 3 hours they are gone. What do you suggets
Alma Ruddock says
I would suggest curling your hair using holding products like gel, holding mousse or as a final resort using a hairspray to keep the curls. There’s nothing wrong with hair that does not hold a curl, its not a failing per se so don’t worry 🙂 You just need to be a bit more purposeful with product usage if you want your curls to last.
Having fine low porosity hair is like walking on a tight rope, too much moisture and your ends get limp and break off, too much protein and your strands are brittle and snapping off. I’m still trying to find the balance, protein overload has derailed my natural hair journey two times already. I don’t care that my hair is fine, I just want it to be healthy. Finding out I was low porosity was definitely a game changer, I deep conditioned properly for the first time and my curls popped and clumped up beautifully. I cleanse with bentonite clay which is fantastic and leaves my hair super soft and defined. My advice to my fellow fine-haired lasses is to tread carefully with protein, RUN from coconut oil and embrace moisture. Oh and don’t keep deep conditioner in your hair for too long, learnt that the hard way too! I’m still trying to find a good leave in and the perfect oil. I feel like if/when I figure those out, I’ll finally get it right. Not so simple considering my hair hates everything from glycerin to cones and butters.
As for protective styling, I lose a tonne of hair from box braids even when I do them myself????, I’ve found some success with twists but my ends still suffer, maybe I’ll have better luck with crotchet. Nonetheless, I refuse to subscribe to the notion that we always have to have our hair hidden for it to grow, let’s be real, that’s why a lot of us don’t know what do with our hair. You can’t master something if you never have to deal with it 90% of the time.