10 Products That'll Make Your Thinning Hair Look Thick AF
From scalp scrubs and texturizing sprays to detoxifying shampoos and laser combs, these expert-approved products for thinning hair will give you major volume.
So, you're here looking for products for thinning hair. Maybe you've noticed your ponytail has lost some of its cheerleader pep, or your blowout is beginning to look less voluminous than you remember. It might not appear overnight like clumps of hair in the drain, but one day you may realize your hair is thinning. Before you start freaking out, know that your hair is thickest at age 14 (sigh), and over time you experience a gradual decline in density and thickness, says Melanie Palm, M.D, a dermatologist at Art of Skin in San Diego and clinical professor at Scripps Encinitas Memorial Hospital. The bottom line: Unfortunately, it's normal.
Thinning hair or hair loss can have a host of causes from genetics to diet to styling habits and lifestyle. The most common cause, though, is a hereditary condition called male- or female-pattern baldness, notes Michelle Henry, M.D., a dermatologist at Laser & Skin Surgery in New York and clinical instructor of dermatology at Weill Cornell Medical College. This is typically an inherited gene, and hormonal changes—like the start of menopause—can also kickstart it. (Related: How to Prevent and Style Thinning Hair)
Major underlying health conditions can also be a culprit for hair loss, including hormonal imbalances (progesterone, testosterone, estrogen, PCOS, and thyroid conditions), anemia (translation: low red blood cell counts), low iron stores, and even certain vitamin deficiencies such as certain B vitamins and vitamin D, points out Dr. Palm. Life stressors like surgery, a major illness, some medications, giving birth and postpartum hormone changes can cause an acute hair loss called telogen effluvium three to six months later, she adds.
On top of switching to products for thinning hair, Dr. Henry recommends a diet rich in lean protein and healthy fats, which are the building blocks of healthy hair and promote growth and luster. She also suggests you check with your doctor about nutritional deficiencies; many can manifest in hair loss and could be addressed with diet changes or supplements. (Related: These Vitamins for Hair Growth Will Give You the Rapunzel-Like Locks of Your Dreams)
Ready to liven up your thin tresses? Whether you're experiencing normal shedding or noticing your hair is lacking fullness, try one of these best products for thinning hair.
Evolis Professional Reverse Activator
If you want to go the natural route for a thinning hair product, there's good news: There has been some promising research in using essential oils and Ayurvedic remedies for hair loss. While some of the studies are preliminary, peppermint oil, rosemary leaf oil, bhringraj (a medicinal herb), hibiscus, and green tea have shown promise in hair growth, says Adam Mamelak, M.D., a dermatologist in Austin, Texas. This tincture was developed for thinning hair to accelerate hair growth and strengthen existing strands with keratin, wheat proteins, and the help of rosemary leaf oil and green tea.
Bosley Professional Strength BosRenew Rejuvenating Scalp Scrub
A clean, exfoliated scalp is the key to not only maintaining a healthy scalp but also to adding fullness and body to fine, limp strands or thinning hair. This scalp scrub removes buildup, detoxifies, and invigorates the scalp—thanks to its natural ingredients and citrus-rosemary-tea tree essential oil blend. Bamboo charcoal absorbs excess oil, sugar crystals naturally remove dead skin cells, and caffeine energizes the scalp to give extreme volume prior to blow drying, says Colleen Camp, Bosley Professional Strength global director of education. (Related: Scalp Scrubs Are the Missing Link In Your Hair-Care Routine)
Bumble and Bumble Thickening Dryspun Volume Texture Spray
With over 500 glowing reviews on Ulta, this texture spray is loved by beauty buffs—not to mention, it's also one of the best-selling volumizing products at Sephora. The lightweight spray uses silk powders with holding polymers that interlace in the hair to build volume and fullness in fine or thin hair. A few spritzes at the roots after a blowout will give you that va-va-voom you crave. Fake it 'til you make it, right?
Nizoral Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Dandruff and thinning hair may seem like two unrelated issues, but chronic, untreated dandruff can exacerbate hair loss, says Angela Phipps, D.O., a hair restoration physician and medical advisor to HairClub. This shampoo contains ketoconazole, an anti-fungal and anti-yeast ingredient, to eliminate flakes and help keep hair full, she adds. The shampoo should be used a few times per week and left on the scalp for three-five minutes before rinsing so the active ingredient can penetrate the scalp. (Related: The Best Shampoos for Thinning Hair, According to Experts)
Nioxin Hair Care Kit System 1 for Fine/Normal to Light Thinning
This three-step regimen contains a 90-day supply of shampoo, conditioner, and scalp treatment, which can be used daily. "I recommend the formula because it reduces hair loss due to breakage and strengthens the hair while refreshing the scalp to nourish and repair thinning hair from its foundation," says Dr. Henry. And why not buy all the thinning hair products you need in one go?
Women's Rogaine 5% Minoxidil Foam for Hair Regrowth
Everyone remembers the miraculous looking transformations that were Rogaine infomercials, but the truth is, this thinning hair product is so well known because it works. "Rogaine contains minoxidil which increases the hair follicle diameter and extends the hair follicle's growth phase and causes hair regrowth," says Zain Husain, M.D., a New Jersey-based dermatologist and the founder of NJ Dermatology and Aesthetics Center. While it's available over the counter in foam and solution formulations, Dr. Husain prefers the foam since it does not contain propylene glycol (read: it's less irritating).
HairClub EXT Moisturizing Conditioner
While shampooing is often the treatment step in addressing thinning hair, you can't forget about conditioner. Target dry, damaged hair so your hair regrowth is strong, shiny, and healthy. This one recommended by Dr. Phipps has argan oil, keratin, and silk amino acids to protect against heat damage and rebuild damaged hair. (Related: Why You Need to Start Using a Leave-In Conditioner)
Kristin Ess Sea Salt Air Dry Mousse
Habitual straightening, relaxing, hot tools, excessive bleaching and coloring, and tight braids can all cause hair loss or breakage, says Dr. Palm. (See: What to Know About Traction Alopecia) While it looks fab, your daily blowout or style might be a contributing factor to hair loss, so it's worthwhile to find styling methods that give your stressed strands a break. One of the best products for thinning hair when you're going heat-free? An air-dry foam. This sea salt mousse gives texture and lift, while also keeping frizz at bay.
Hairmax Ultima 12 Laser Comb
While certainly more expensive than a volume-boosting spray or hair loss vitamin, your next-level treatment option comes in the form of laser combs or laser caps. These products for thinning hair emit low-level laser therapy to stimulate the regrowth of hair by allowing hair follicles to re-enter the growth stage in the hair cycle, says Dr. Husain. The treatment takes about eight minutes and should be completed at least three times a week for optimal results.
This oral supplement was specifically developed for hair growth in women and uses natural and botanical ingredients—like curcumin, biotin, and saw palmetto—to address hair loss. The formulation targets the five main reasons for hair loss and lackluster growth including scalp health, scalp circulation, building blocks for healthy hair, stress hormones, and female hormone imbalance, says Dr. Palm. (Psst...Here's Everything You Need to Know About Nutrafol and why it's a great product for thinning hair.)