Woman combing hair in a bathroom
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My long hair, a mix of my mother’s waves combined with my father’s fine, frizzy strands, can at times make styling a nightmare. Rain, humidity, and heat create frizz, while excess oil or using too many products can make it fall flat. There’s also dryness, which leaves it looking limp and dull, especially at the ends. Fortunately, years of working as a magazine beauty editor and interviewing top hairstylists as well as experimentation with products have led me to discover the ultimate product arsenal to turn any day into a great hair day.

Frizz facts

When the outermost layer of hair (also known as the cuticle) is raised, it acts as an entryway for moisture, causing it to swell and create frizz. Wavy hair tends to be undermoisturized due to its shape while conversely, the scalp may also get very oily. Understanding the nature of the battle between oil and moisture along with choosing products wisely are essential in building the base of a beautiful hair day.

Feeling fine

Fine hair texture has the thinnest diameter of each individual strand, according to Philip Kingsley. This trichologist, a hair and scalp specialist, explains that those with fine hair, however, actually have more hairs on the scalp than those with any other texture. Fine hair has the tendency to quickly get oily and limp, as each strand has an oil gland attached to it. Fine hair can be straight or wavy. It may feel thin and lacking in natural body and bounce, and there may be areas where the scalp can be seen through the hair.

Use the right shampoo

Kingsley believes that daily shampooing and conditioning are best for the health of all hair types and scalps, creating the optimum scalp environment for hair growth. Fine hair tends to become oily at the roots very quickly, so daily washing is a good way to add body and shine while avoiding limpness.

Opt for a gentle, sulfate-free shampoo, notes Ryan Nickulas, hair expert. Shampoos with sulfates strip and dehydrate strands, which is the opposite of what you want when looking to maintain moisture. A shampoo that also includes glycerin can help combat frizz by penetrating the hair shaft and hydrating it from the inside out, creating a protective coating over the outside of the hair shaft.

Shampoo for a minimum of 30 seconds, which will help eliminate any water-soluble product buildup, such as hair gel or heat protectant. Allow water to run over the hair in a downward motion to prevent tangling. Work shampoo lightly through the scalp, going from the crown of the head to the nape of the neck to avoid matting or friction-induced frizz.

The case for conditioner

Don’t ditch the post-shampoo conditioner if you have fine, frizz-prone hair—it won’t weigh it down. Using the correct conditioner formulated for fine hair and applied in the right way will add shine and bulk, making hair appear healthy and shiny. A conditioner with hydrating ingredients such as coconut oil or shea butter should be applied from mid-shaft to ends. This will deposit moisture in the hair. Skipping conditioner can cause the cuticle to open up and allow moisture in, which is what causes frizz. Rinse with cool water, which seals in moisture to the cuticle, reducing frizz and making hair appear shiny, explains Nickulas.

Smooth things over

Choose styling products that add root lift and fullness throughout the length to prevent hair from falling flat and looking lifeless or dull. Also, be sure to use heat protectants that are alcohol free if heat styling; these will shield hair without impacting its texture. A moisture-infused smoothing product before blow drying is a go-to move for a sleek, frizz free, luminous look.

Add these ideas to your daily routine to turn any day from frizz to fabulous!