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Thin hair is often easier to manage than thicker hair, but finding the right products for this hair type can be tricky. Frizz-reducing formulas containing oil may just weigh it down, while those meant to add moisture can leave you with greasy hair.
Byrdie Researched & Approved
At the top of our list is the Kérastase Densifique Bodifying Mousse, which provides a boost of volume, smooths flyaways, and supports growth. For a wallet-friendly option, reach for NatureLab. Tokyo Perfect Repair Leave-In Treatment.
Though many products are a no-go for the fine-haired set, we caught up with a few hairstylists to bring you options that work. According to Jenna Spino of Maxine Salon in Chicago, "People with fine, flat hair should use a mousse or texture spray."
Hair expert Cataanda James says to avoid oils and intense moisturizers and instead look for foams, powdered hair-building fibers, and root-lifting sprays that create the illusion of thicker hair. "These products are typically lightweight, non-coating, and easily identifiable by terms such as 'volumizing,' 'thickening,' and 'fuller hair,'" she tells Byrdie.
With pointers from these pros in mind, here are the best products for fine, flat hair.
Best Overall: Kérastase Densifique Bodifying Mousse
What do buyers say? 86% of 700+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.
When it comes to formulas that play well with thin hair, Kérastase Densifique Mousse checks all the boxes. The light-as-air foam calls on intra-cylane to add weightless volume and uniformity, but it doesn't stop there. Ceramides smooth flyaways while peptides strengthen hair and encourage healthy growth.
"This mousse is great because it adds body to fine, flat hair without drying it out," says Spino. "It can be used to air-dry or for a blowout."
Price at time of publish: $59.95
Active Ingredients: Intracylane, peptides, ceramides | Hair Type: Fine, medium | Size: 5 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Budget: NatureLab. Tokyo Perfect Repair Leave-In Treatment
Doesn't help with detangling
On a budget? This Japanese beauty brand has you covered. Containing keratin, prickly pear, and stem cells, NatureLab Perfect Repair comes out as a soft foam and gets to work smoothing frizz and fortifying your hair without adding weight or wetness.
Price at time of publish: $17
Active Ingredients: Keratin, prickly pear, stem cells | Hair Type: Fine, thin, dry, damaged, color-treated | Size: 4.9 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Drugstore: It's a 10 Haircare Miracle Blowdry Volumizer
"I recommend It's a 10 Haircare's volumizing spray for fine hair," says hairstylist Carolyn Aronson. "It's a lightweight volumizer that has marshmallow extracts in it that help give the hair instant volume without drying it out."
Price at time of publish: $17.99
Active Ingredients: Thickening copolymers, hydrolyzed silk, marshmallow extract | Hair Type: All | Size: 6 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best for Frizz: Kenra Professional Volume Spray 25
Holds up in humidity
A little sticky
Got frizz? Kenra Volume Spray has your name on it. This finishing product promises to keep flyaways in place for a whopping 120 hours while protecting your hair from high winds and frizz-causing humidity.
Price at time of publish: $30.99 for 16 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Hydrolyzed wheat protein, vitamin B5 | Hair Type: All | Size: 1.5, 10, or 16 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best for Thinning Hair: Toppik Hair Building Fibers
Several shades available
Available in nine shades to match any natural hair color, this product deposits pigmented keratin protein and silica powder to add body and fullness. It's also great for root touch-ups.
Price at time of publish: $24.95 for 0.4 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Keratin, silica | Hair Type: Thinning, fine | Size: 0.4 ounces or 1 ounce | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Thickening: Oribe Maximista Thickening Spray
Spino is a fan of Oribe Maximista, and we're here for it. "This spray helps give density and hold shape," she tells Byrdie. "Spray your roots or throughout [your hair] to thicken it."
Price at time of publish: $39
Active Ingredients: Thickening copolymers, amino acids | Hair Type: Fine, medium | Size: 6.8 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Strengthening: Vernon François Nourishing Water Mist
Supports healthy growth
Results aren't drastic
If your hair is damaged or brittle, Vernon François is your best bet. This weightless mist strengthens weakened hair with amino acids, while ginseng supports healthy growth.
Price at time of publish: $15.99 for 6.3 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Amino acids, ginseng | Hair Type: All | Size: 3 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Texturizing: Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray
Doubles as dry shampoo
"Some sprays are to be used wet, some dry," says Spino. "This one is a dry spray you can spray [on your] roots or throughout to give your soft hair a little grit."
Price at time of publish: $49
Active Ingredients: Crystalline zeolites, plant extracts | Hair Type: All | Size: 8.5 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
What Our Testers Say
"It definitely gave a little more life to my hair, and it still looked totally natural." — Ashley Rubell, Product Tester
Best Smoothing: Qhemet Biologics Coconut & Green Tea Softening Serum
Not ideal for styling
Want smoother hair? Qhemet Biologics has you covered. While the oil content makes it a bit too heavy for styling, this is an excellent overnight treatment for fine, flat, and low-porosity hair.
Price at time of publish: $21
Active Ingredients: Coconut oil, castor oil, green tea | Hair Type: Fine, thin, curly, wavy | Size: 2 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Mask: Phyto Phytodensia Fluid Plumping Mask
To avoid weighing down your hair, consider an in-shower treatment that you rinse off after a few minutes. We're loving this mask from Phyto, which promises to plump and strengthen your hair without making it go limp.
Price at time of publish: $59 for 5.5 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Grape polyphenols, hyaluronic acid, collagen, milk thistle | Hair Type: Fine, thin, damaged | Size: 1.5 or 5.5 ounces | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: No
Best Cream: Living Proof Full Thickening Cream
Lack of texture can make thin hair appear flat, and this cream tackles the issue with mastery. The kicker is Living Proof's proprietary "thickening molecule," which coats your hair with teensy-tiny dots to make them look and feel fuller.
Price at time of publish: $29 for 3.7 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Thickening molecule, emollient blend | Hair Type: Fine, thin | Size: 2 or 3.7 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
What Our Testers Say
"My initial reaction after I dried my hair was whoa. It actually looked like I had more hair on my head." — Joline Buscemi, Product Tester
Best Mousse: Joico Firm Hold Design Foam
A little sticky
Spino recommends mousse for fine hair. Team Byrdie loves JoiWhip, an ultra-light foam that adds noticeable volume with thickening polymers while smoothing and strengthening with keratin.
Price at time of publish: $22.50
Active Ingredients: Thickening polymers, keratin | Hair Type: All | Size: 10.2 ounces | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Shampoo: The Mane Choice Peach Black Tea Vitamin Fusion Shampoo
Dissolves scalp buildup
Can be drying
"Peach Black Tea & Vitamin Fusion Shampoo gently cleanses and dissolves buildup without stripping the hair, leaving it full of body," says James. "Botanicals, vitamins, and nutrients help to reduce breakage and improve hair's overall integrity."
Price at time of publish: $16.97
Active Ingredients: Biotin, saw palmetto | Hair Type: Fine, medium, dandruff-prone, textured, curly | Size: 8 ounces | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes
Best Conditioner: R+Co DALLAS Biotin Thickening Conditioner
Smooths split ends
Supports healthy growth
The secret to this thickening conditioner is saw palmetto. The plant-derived ingredient expands your hair to create weightless volume and fuller, denser hair.
Price at time of publish: $32 for 8.5 oz bottle
Active Ingredients: Saw palmetto, biotin, vitamin B5 | Hair Type: Fine, thin | Size: 2, 8.5, or 33.8 ounces | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes
The best product for fine, flat hair is Kérastase Densifique Bodifying Mousse. It's a lightweight stylist-approved foam that adds volume, smooths flyaways, and strengthens hair. For those on a budget, we recommend NatureLab Tokyo Perfect Repair Leave-In Treatment, which comes out as a foam and smooths frizz without adding weight or wetness.
Meet the Expert
- Jenna Spino is a stylist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, Illinois. She's seasoned in everything from blowouts and bobs to long layers and sleek up-dos.
- Carolyn Aronson is a licensed hairstylist and the founder/CEO of It's A 10 Haircare.
- Cataanda James is a beauty expert specializing in multiracial haircare. She is also a Brand Educator for The Mane Choice.
- Michelle Pasterski Mesen is a Houston-based hairstylist who specializes in dry cutting and razor cutting.
What to Look for in Products for Fine, Flat Hair
When it comes to fine, flat hair that lacks body, you'll want to look for products that contain ingredients that can thicken and plump. These vary but include things such as polymers, collagen, and even plumping powders. "These are the ingredients that give hair body and guts," says Mesen.
The lighter, the better. Steer clear of thick balms or pomades and opt for aerosols, whipped mousses or creams, or featherweight powders. After all, the last thing you want is for the product to be too heavy and end up weighing hair down instead of boosting it up. "With a dry product like texturizing sprays or hairsprays, think about the size of the droplets from a pump vs. an aerosol product," says Mesen. "The bigger the droplet, the more weight it will place on the hair. Fine mists are much lighter, keeping the hair from being weighed down. When it comes to wet hair, a whipped product like a mousse can often give more volume than a gel or volumizing spray due to the light formula and the foamy texture of the product."
Products Compatible With Your Hair Color
Mesen also stresses finding products that will be compatible with your hair color to avoid it looking dull, chalky, or gray. "Blonde and light-colored hair does well with most standard dry products [like volumizing and texture powders and powder sprays], while brunette or red hair may require a colored powder or at least very translucent."
Can you use styling products on fine hair?
Fine hair can benefit from the right styling products, but you’ll likely want to use less than someone with a thicker texture. Celebrity hairstylist Mara Roszak says to avoid applying anything to your roots except for root-volume spray and to focus any other product on your ends first. Additionally, start with a small amount of product, as you can add to it if you need more, but there’s not much you can do if you already applied too much.
Why Trust Byrdie
Theresa Holland is a commerce writer specializing in beauty and lifestyle. When writing this story, she interviewed three hairstylists for their product recommendations and expertise on various formulas, then looked at dozens of products from myriad brands and referenced peer-reviewed articles to fact-check the claims. As someone with inherently fine hair, she's tried many products on this list, including Oribe, NatureLab, Living Proof, R+Co, Phyto, and It's a 10. Theresa covers hair care, makeup, and skincare at Byrdie.
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