Some women are born with naturally thick, luxurious hair — and they keep it forever. Those are the women whose hair I lust after.
I was born into a family of women who lose hair as they age. I’ve spent hours scouring the internet for ways to make thinning hair look thicker and fuller. I’ve tried tip after tip, all to no avail — with the exception of a rare good hair day, my locks have stayed flat, limp and uninspired, and they’re getting worse.
After all the time I’ve spent trying to achieve my dream ‘do with long, full locks, you can only imagine how excited I was to be able to chat with Allen Ruiz, Aveda’s global style director for North America, and ask him for some tips to make thinning hair look voluminous and full (side note: How cool is my job?). He’s an expert at taking hair from flat to fab, and he wants to share that knowledge with me — and the world. Here are his top eight secrets and tips for getting the body you want from your thinning hair.
1. Short cuts
If your hair is thinning, the last thing you probably want to do is cut it off, but Ruiz says that might be a solution that works.
“The more length you have, the more it can weigh down your roots and cause your hair to appear flat,” Ruiz says. “By taking your cut short, you can maximize fullness and volume.”
2. Smoke and mirrors
If you can’t make it, fake it!
“If you have thinning hair with lots of breakage, I’d suggest trying extensions to create the appearance of having fuller/thicker hair,” Ruiz says. “You can clip in hair extensions to instantly disguise problem areas.”
3. Product choice
Careful selection of products can result in hair that looks more voluminous, especially if you stay away from products that will weigh down your already thinning hair.
“What products and product forms you use are key,” Ruiz says. “If you have thinning hair, you want to stay away from heavy and oil-based products. Avoid heavy crèmes, waxes, pastes and gels and opt for tonics, mousses and hair sprays.”
4. Flip it and reverse it
Ruiz says a simple change in your hair routine can help create volume, which will help disguise the thinning of your hair.
“Flip your head upside down when blow-drying so you can really focus on getting lift at the roots,” he explains.
5. Right of center
Another easy routine change-up can create instant volume — and give you a new look that totally camouflages your thinning hair.
“If you usually wear a center part, I recommend changing it; switch it to the right or to the left,” Ruiz says. “This is an instant volume fix and will give you the appearance of having more lift and body.”
6. Rough it
If you have thinning hair, ignore all those Pinterest tips about drying your hair with a soft T-shirt.
“When you get done washing your hair, instead of patting it dry gently with your towel, I recommend rubbing your hair dry, which will help rough up your hair’s cuticle and give you more texture/lift,” Ruiz says.
7. Scalp massage
The scalp massage is the best part of any salon appointment, and it might even encourage your hair to grow — that’s a win-win.
“Stimulating your scalp with a relaxing scalp massage can help remove scalp buildup and stimulate your follicles,” Ruiz says. Use your fingers and your favorite essential oils to massage your scalp in a circular motion for five minutes.