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Fine Vs. Coarse Hair: Understand Your Hair Type


When you get to the root of it, our hair is quite complex. Just like understanding our skin type is key to planning an appropriate skin care regimen, getting to know your hair type is equally as important when planning your hair care routine.

Even though most of us think we know our hair type, and understand its needs, here is a chance we might be completely wrong!

Many a time, I’ve found myself standing in front of the hair care essentials aisle at a store, checking out a product, and wondering whether it is the right fit for me. The main question which keeps popping into my head: Do I have fine or coarse hair? 

Understanding more about your hair texture and type can help you take better care of your tresses. Also, it makes it easier to keep your locks manageable and well-styled. 

Keep on reading to understand your hair texture and learn how to keep your hair silky smooth all the time. 

Table Of Contents

  • What Is Fine Hair?
  • What Is Coarse Hair?
  • How To Determine Your Hair Thickness
  • Tips To Care For Fine Hair
  • Tips To Care For Coarse Hair

What Is Fine Hair?

Since each strand contains the least amount of protein structure that makes it appear thin and devoid of any volume, fine hair texture is fragile and silky. What is more, fine hair has quite a small diameter - only about 50 microns! This is about half the thickness of a copy paper sheet!

red hair, healthy hair, fine cut hair

If your hair texture belongs in the category of fine hair, your hair shaft will be thin, and your locks will weigh down easily, making it difficult to style them. 

Also, fine hair has just two layers: cortex and cuticle. Despite all the negatives, fine hair can feel like a blessing on several occasions. Such hair texture can easily hold hairstyles with updos, and your locks will dry super quickly after each wash without any need for blow-drying!

What Is Coarse Hair?

Coarse hair has a super thick texture with three layers: the cortex, cuticle, and medulla. The innermost layer medulla is filled with protein structure and air that makes your strands appear thicker.

A mane with coarse hair can easily withstand heat styling tools and a variety of hairstyles unlike fine hair. Also, coarse hair is less prone to breakage and hair fall. 

coarse hair, curly hair

The downside of having coarse hair is the extreme fizziness in humid weather conditions. Also, it takes too long for coarse hair to dry after each wash. 

Coarse hair is often found resistant to chemical relaxers and hair colors. So, if your hair appears to be quite full and voluminous and matches all these criteria, then you have a coarse hair texture.

How To Determine Your Hair Thickness

You might still be finding it a bit complicated to understand which category your hair texture falls into. Here’s how you can determine your hair texture based on its thickness:

According to expert hairstylists and experts, just observing your strands is enough to determine the thickness of your mane. Simply pluck a strand of your locks and feel it between your fingers.

hair strand

If you can feel the strand in between your fingers, and it appears to be rough and stiff on your fingers, your hair texture is coarse. Since coarse hair has a higher amount of protein, it tends to appear stiffer.

If your hair strand can be barely felt on your fingers and is extremely fragile, then your hair texture falls in the category of fine hair. The protein content is present in the least amount in fine hair, which makes it appear extremely thin and fragile. 

Tips To Care For Fine Hair

Now that you have it all figured out and understand that your silky, smooth, and delicate strands fall in the category of fine hair, you might be intrigued to find out how you can take better care of your locks. 

Check these easy tips to care for fine hair:

Avoid frequent shampooing and conditioning

Those with fine hair can easily relate to how easily their locks can get greasy. Fine hair is known to produce an excess amount of sebum that can make the scalp oily. 

Regular use of shampoo to get rid of this oiliness does more damage than benefit. That’s why it’s recommended to use a gentle shampoo as well as conditioner for your tresses and that too in less frequency. 

red onion black seed shampoo, red onion black seed conditioner

Use a soft bristle brush

Wet hair tends to break more in comparison to dry hair, especially for those who have fine hair. Your fragile locks aren’t meant for the harsh tugging and pulling that goes on with a regular brush. That’s why it’s crucial to opt for a brush with soft bristles that can ensure minimal damage to your strands. 

Add a leave-in treatment to your routine

Fine hair takes less time to dry in comparison to coarse hair. Thus, make sure to avoid blow drying your delicate strands at all costs. 

That being said, it’s natural to get tempted towards all those heat-styling tools that can help you flaunt your favorite hairdos and keep your locks bouncy. In such a situation, leave-in-conditioner works as an apt solution that can help you manage your locks and give them that naturally sleek look. 

Tips To Care For Coarse Hair

For those who have coarse and thick hair, keeping your crazy head full of hair manageable and glamorous at the same time might seem like an impossible feat. But, with these right tips, it won’t seem so difficult:

Opt for a hair mask

Coarse hair tends to be dry and brittle and lacks an essential dose of moisture. That’s why it’s vital to keep your strands hydrated regularly by opting for a smooth hair mask. Restore your unruly and rough strands with a moisturizing hair mask that won’t let your hair weigh down.

coconut hair mask, wow hair mask

Go for a round brush

Opt for a flat or round brush designed in such a way that it leaves enough space between bristles for your strands to pass through easily. 

Add natural hair oils to your regimen

Those with coarse hair must add moisture-sealing all-natural hair oil to their regimen as it can help them keep their locks easily manageable, smooth, and nourished. 

Go for regular trim

It’s essential to keep your hair healthy and fresh all the time. Avoid getting split ends by making a habit of visiting your salon regularly for haircuts. Regular trimming of your locks will also prevent those nasty split ends from traveling up your hair shaft. 

Styling your hair and managing it becomes much simpler once you understand your hair type and texture. Now that you have an idea of your hair texture, caring for your locks should be an effortless journey, and showering the locks with love a piece of cake. 

Follow the recommended tips and suggestions and witness your tresses go all shiny and vibrant. 

Why settle for plain good hair when you can have OMG WOW hair day every day? Fine or coarse, the right products and tricks can do wonders for both. 

Geetika Kapoor

Deeply passionate about writing, I’m a freelancer and have been working on several writing projects for several domains across the globe since last three years. I love reviewing different products ranging from skin care products, perfumes, body lotions, feminine products, hygiene items and several others. An English teacher by profession, I love interacting with kids and discovering different personalities as well. When I’m not writing I spend most of time reading novels, listening to songs, solving tricky puzzles and travelling around the world to my favourite destinations. Collen Hoover and Nicholas Sparks are my all time favourite authors. Their writing leaves a deep impact and stays with me for long.

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