fine hair

Photo: David Tsay

5 of 6
Fine + Damaged
Even though fine strands are smaller in diameter than their thick counterparts, they have a higher percentage of cuticle, which can provide extra protection from chemical damage, says Westman. But fine hair often doesn't hold a style as well, so you may rely heavily on straighteners, curling irons, and blow-dryers. Over time, that heat can deplete your strands of moisture, causing dullness and breakage.

Wash: To treat damage without weighing down your strands, reverse your cleansing process: Condition, then shampoo, says Fugate. This allows the conditioning agents to penetrate the strands and coat the cuticle, protecting hair from any harsh cleansers.

Treat: To step up your defense, you can also apply a deep conditioner weekly. "When choosing any product, make sure it's labeled as weightless or for fine hair," says Wilkerson. "Otherwise your strands could look limp and lifeless."

Style: While healthy hair can handle the pull of a stiff boar-bristle brush, brittle strands may be too delicate. "The bristles can scratch the cuticle, making weak strands more vulnerable to damage," says Kingsley. Use a paddle brush, which has large bristles gentle enough for any hair type. .Wet Brush Galaxy Detangler, $10; TheWetBrush.com.

The best body-building routine? Apply a heat protectant, then a volumizing mousse or spray to the roots, says Chiccine. Blow-dry on low to medium heat, or air-dry and wrap sections around hot rollers, which are typically less damaging than curling irons. Pureology Clean Volume Weightless Mousse, $28; Pureology .com