Coarse Hair: Tips for Care and Treatment (2022)

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Despite what you might have heard, coarse hair doesn’t mean that your hair is hard to manage.

In fact, “coarse hair” is really just a way of describing hair strands that are thicker and wider than most other hair types.

These thicker strands when managed properly can hold a curl or style well, and look healthy, thick, and strong.

The key, as with most types of hair, is knowing:

  • how to care for your hair
  • what types of products to use
  • what to avoid

In this article, we’ll take a deeper dive into some of the hair care tricks that work especially well for helping your coarse hair look its very best.

Many people are genetically predisposed to have coarse hair. Coarse hair is simply a natural texture that many ethnicities share, and lots of people love having it.

When it comes to hair, stylists and dermatologists typically define coarse hair as having a thicker circumference than other hair types. It doesn’t mean that your hair is rough textured or hard to manage.

When you take a strand of coarse hair and roll it between your fingers, you can feel its thickness. It typically feels and looks wider than a piece of sewing thread.

With fine hair, the strand is much thinner and harder to feel between your fingers.

If your hair wasn’t always naturally coarse, there are some factors that can cause the texture of your hair to become coarser.

Coarse hair can be a side effect of:

  • prescription drugs, such as steroids and hair growth medications like Minoxidil
  • a hormone imbalance
  • some thyroid conditions

How is coarse hair different than thick hair?

(Video) Routine for Coarse Hair | Hair Care Routine (Vertical Video)

There’s often a lot of confusion around what’s considered to be “coarse” hair and what’s considered to be “thick” hair.

Hair that’s thick refers to the density of hair follicles on your scalp. In other words, if you have thick hair, you have more hair follicles on your scalp, which means you have more hair on your head than some other people.

Coarse hair, on the other hand, means that the individual hair shaft has a wider and larger circumference and feels more substantial between your fingers.

The texture and density of your hair are two different things. Everyone has some combination of the two.

Understanding what type of hair texture and density you have can help you determine the best way to manage and care for your hair.

Knowing how to care for your coarse hair may make it easier to manage and style. The right types of treatments may also help add body and shine to your thick strands.

Here, according to hair care experts, are eight ways to boost the health and manageability of your coarse hair.

Conditioning creams and serums can help your hair shaft lay flat, restoring its natural shape.

In addition, many frizz-taming conditioning creams can protect coarse hair from showing signs of damage by infusing the hair with silicone and proteins.

Serums can add gloss and weight to unruly coarse hair that doesn’t want to stay put.

Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum contains lightweight silicones that may help smooth, condition, and add shine to coarse hair.

(Video) Hair Care Tips for Coarse, Dry, Grey Hair : DIY Beauty

Hair Treatment Serum by Bali Secret is a leave-in serum that helps control frizz and enhance shine with a variety of plant oils and vitamins.

Alcohol is a core ingredient in many hair products, especially hair sprays and gels. Although these products can temporarily tame your mane, they can also strip your hair of moisture.

Coarse hair can dry out easily, making it prone to damage. Try to opt for alcohol-free or low-alcohol formulas for your styling products when possible.

Two alcohol-free options that may work well, include:

  • Pantene Pro-V Hairspray is a lightweight, alcohol-free hairspray locks out humidity to fight frizz.
  • L’ANGE Hair Luster Spray Laminate is an alcohol-free spray with botanical extracts that may be worth the higher price point if you’re looking for a styling product that also adds shine to your coarse hair.

Although there isn’t any research to support the claim, many beauty experts recommend sleeping on a silk pillowcase to protect your hair from:

  • snarls
  • tangles
  • damage

Silk pillowcases provide a frictionless surface that tends to be gentler on both your hair and skin than cotton varieties.

They also absorb less moisture, which means they may help your hair to retain its natural oil and shine.

If you decide to buy a silk pillowcase, be sure to get one that’s pure silk and not advertised as “silk-like,” which means it could be made of inferior materials.

Overusing heat styling tools can rob your hair of moisture, making it:

(Video) Fine vs Coarse wavy/curly hair | stylers & management techniques

  • drier
  • frizzier
  • less manageable

Keep your heat styling routine to a minimum if you have coarse hair. If you blow dry your hair, one study suggests that keeping the blow dryer about 6 inches away from your hair may help prevent damage.

It’s also important to keep the dyer moving and not focused on one spot.

Deep conditioning hair masks are a great way to nourish, moisturize, and soften coarse hair. You can try making your own DIY hair masks using natural ingredients like:

  • coconut oil
  • olive oil
  • honey
  • aloe vera
  • avocado

If you’ve tried a hair mask that’s especially helpful for your hair, you can maximize the benefits by using it overnight.

You may also want to try hot oil treatments that contain:

  • avocado oil
  • jojoba oil
  • coconut oil

These plant oils can help protect and moisturize your hair, while reducing frizz and dryness.

You can use a hair mask or hot oil treatment on your hair once a week. If your hair is very dry, you may want to use the treatment twice a week.

While the right products and treatments can help your hair on the outside, what you put into your body can affect the health and vitality of your hair from the inside.

The vitamins and minerals that are especially important for healthy hair include:

  • vitamins A, C, D, and E
  • biotin
  • niacin
  • iron

The best way to increase your intake of these vitamins is to get them from the foods that you eat.

If you’re finding it difficult to get enough of these nutrients through your food, you may want to consider adding them as supplements. Supplements can help to make up for any deficiencies in your diet.

However, talk to a healthcare provider first before taking any supplements.

(Video) How to Manage Coarse Curly Hair | Brittle, Dry, Tangly, & Uneven Curls

Trimming your hair every 8-10 weeks is a good rule of thumb for every hair type.

Regular trims help get rid of split ends and hair that’s been damaged from:

  • blow drying
  • heat styling tools
  • coloring
  • other treatments

Scheduling a hair appointment every couple of months may help.

Working with a hair stylist can help ensure your hair maintains its shape and style without being weighed down by damaged ends and prone to snarls.

Use a flat or round brush that has ample space between the bristles.

If you have coarse hair, brush it when it’s wet. This may help minimize frizz, flyaways, and tangles as your hair dries. Also, avoid over-brushing your hair.

A brush that may work well is the Bsisme Hair Boar Bristle Brush. It helps to spread your hair’s natural oil from the scalp to the ends of your hair, while also removing excess oil.

Naturally coarse hair has strands that are thicker and wider in circumference than other hair types. It’s often confused with thick hair, which refers to the density of hair follicles you have on your head.

If treated and managed properly, coarse hair can hold a style well. It can also appear to have a lot of body and volume.

(Video) How I Style my Frizzy Thick Coarse Hair

But, as with other hair types, if it’s exposed to too much heat and styling, as well as too many harsh treatments, it can become dry, brittle, frizzy, and prone to breakage.

As with other hair types, it’s important to use products and ingredients that are well suited to helping course hair stay nourished and well conditioned.

FAQs

How can I make my coarse hair look good? ›

9 tips for caring for coarse hair
  1. Choose a shampoo formulated for coarse hair. ...
  2. Try co-washing. ...
  3. Conditioner. ...
  4. Use a hair mask. ...
  5. Eat a hair-healthy diet. ...
  6. Sleep on a silk pillowcase. ...
  7. Use the proper brush and brushing techniques. ...
  8. Incorporate a weekly hot oil treatment.

What hair type is coarse hair? ›

Coarse hair can be identified by a thick hair shaft. This hair texture has the widest and largest circumference of any other. Unlike thin or medium hair, coarse hair contains all three layers of the hair shaft — cortex, cuticle, and medulla.

How do you wash coarse hair? ›

Saturate your hair with lukewarm water before applying shampoo. When you first get into the shower, let lukewarm water run through your locks for 3 to 5 minutes. Because your hair is thicker, it'll take longer for all of it to get wet. The warm water will loosen built-up grime, product, and grease.

How can I soften my coarse hair without a relaxer? ›

Coconut milk treatment
  1. Coconut milk – 1 can.
  2. Honey – 2 tablespoons.
  3. Coconut oil – 2 tablespoons.
  4. Yogurt (plain) – 4 tablespoons.
  5. Lime – 1 (you will need juice)
  6. Cornstarch.

How do you add moisture to coarse hair? ›

The more moisture for thick, coarse dry hair, the better. So use a rich, rinse-out conditioner after every shower, and follow it up with a moisturizing leave-in spray before styling. Once a week, apply a deep conditioning mask. Allow it to penetrate for five to 15 minutes for a silky, smooth result.

How do I make my coarse hair soft and silky? ›

The good news is that there are a few things you can do if you feel like reducing the dryness of your hair.
  1. Get a trim. ...
  2. Take vitamins. ...
  3. Add omega-3s and antioxidants to your diet. ...
  4. Avoid washing your hair every day. ...
  5. Wrap your hair instead of air drying. ...
  6. Cut down on heat styling. ...
  7. Try colder showers. ...
  8. Use essential oils.

How do you take care of coarse 4C hair? ›

How to Take Care of 4C Hair
  1. Use a pre-poo. It takes a lot to detangle tightly textured hair. ...
  2. Use a sulfate-free shampoo. You want to avoid harsh shampoos that contain sulfates when it comes to this hair type. ...
  3. Deep condition regularly. ...
  4. Moisturize often.

What is coarse hair mean? ›

Having coarse hair means that your hair strands tend to be very thick. Naturally coarse hair has thick hair shafts with a wider circumference than most other hair types. It is not to be confused with thick or curly hair as coarse hair has a different texture.

What causes coarse hair? ›

When nutrition levels in your body drop especially Ferritin, Vitamin B 12,Vitamin D or any minerals like zinc & magnesium your hair can go brittle and break easily. Hormonal issues like thyroid disorders, pcod, high testosterone or post pregnancy hair fall can also cause the hair to become coarse & brittle.

What number is coarse hair? ›

In general, coarse hair tends to be very dry and prone to frizz. It also takes longer to dry than fine hair. Typically, type 4 curls fall into the coarse category.

How do you know if your hair is coarse? ›

To find out the width, start by taking a single strand of hair and laying it flat on a table. If you can barely see the hair or feel it between your fingertips, then you have fine hair. If the hair strand looks thick and appears to be textured, then the hair is coarse.

What type of shampoo is best for coarse hair? ›

  • Redken Frizz Dismiss Shampoo. Amazon. ...
  • Pantene Hydrating Glow Shampoo & Conditioner Set. ...
  • SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo. ...
  • Color Wow Color Security Shampoo. ...
  • Design Essentials Moisturizing & Detangling Shampoo. ...
  • Moroccanoil Moisture Repair Shampoo. ...
  • Philip Kingsley Elasticizer Deep-Conditioning Treatment.
3 Apr 2022

Should you wash coarse hair everyday? ›

So how often should you wash your hair if it has a coarse texture? According to the American Academy of Dermatology, no more than once a week depending on the hairstyling products and tools you regularly use.

How many times should I shampoo if I have coarse hair? ›

“Coarse hair should be washed twice a week using a super-moisturizing, sulphate-free shampoo, like L'Oreal Paris Ever Creme Deep Nourish Shampoo, and followed with a deep conditioning masque, like L'Oréal Paris EverCrème Renourishing Butter, to keep it feeling soft and manageable,” suggests Cucinello.

How can I straighten my coarse frizzy hair? ›

For thick, coarse hair, you usually need to set the straightening iron between 350 and 400 degrees, so make sure that yours is adjustable to that range. When you're straightening, start at 350 degrees and see if the iron can successfully straighten your hair at that temperature.

How can I make my hair smoother? ›

The following are a few tips and tricks to foster good hair health and long term silkiness.
  1. Comb When Wet, Brush When Dry. ...
  2. Use A Cotton T-shirt Instead Of Towel. ...
  3. Do Not Wash Your Hair With Hot Water. ...
  4. Avoid Heat Appliances And Treatments. ...
  5. Treat Your Hair With Hot Oil Massage. ...
  6. Aloe Vera Gel. ...
  7. Yoghurt. ...
  8. Coconut Oil.
9 Apr 2021

Does coarse hair need more conditioner? ›

Just like any type of hair, coarse tresses need deep conditioners and a leave-in conditioner every once in a while. Look for natural treatments that hydrate, nourish, and soften rough hair.

How often should you moisturize coarse hair? ›

You should aim to deep condition your hair 2-4 times a month. If your hair is extremely dry, you should deep condition it weekly. Also, some ladies incorporate a hot oil treatment into their moisture routine, which is also a great option.

Does coarse hair need protein or moisture? ›

Hair that is dry, brittle, or rough needs softening and moisturizing through fatty acid-rich ingredients found in plant, nut, and seed oils and aloe vera gel. Hair that is ultra-fine or chemically damaged to the point of having a mushy, cotton candy-like feel, needs protein.

How do you moisturize coarse 4C hair? ›

4 Proven Ways to Soften Your 4C Natural Hair (Without Chemicals)
  1. Use a Water-based Moisturizer. The most important factor in keeping 4C Natural Hair manageable and healthy is hydration. ...
  2. Invest In a High Quality Satin Bonnet. ...
  3. Gently Stretch Your 4C Hair. ...
  4. Deep Condition Your Natural Hair More Often.
18 Apr 2021

How can I take care of my hair naturally? ›

Follow these simple tips from dermatologists to maintain healthy hair.
  1. Wash oily hair more frequently. ...
  2. Concentrate shampoo on the scalp. ...
  3. Use conditioner after every shampoo unless you use a “2-in-1” shampoo, which cleans and conditions hair. ...
  4. Concentrate conditioner on the tips of the hair.

How do you keep your 4C hair healthy and moisturized? ›

Keeping 4C hair moisturized can be difficult, but we've got 10 amazing tips for you that will make hair care a breeze.
  1. Stay hydrated. ...
  2. Use a good moisturizer. ...
  3. Lock in moisture using the LOC method. ...
  4. Minimize heat exposure. ...
  5. Don't touch! ...
  6. Sleep in a satin bonnet. ...
  7. Wear protective hairstyles. ...
  8. Deep condition your hair.
22 Jun 2020

What style is best for coarse hair and why? ›

A graduated bob or long layers are the best options for coarse hair. These shapes won't look bulky on thicker hair and will show off the beauty of coarse hair: it's natural volume.

What grows coarse hair? ›

Remedies to thicken hair
  • Eggs. Eggs are rich in protein, which is essential for strong, thick hair. ...
  • Olive oil. Olive oil is rich in omega-3 acids and other nutrients that are essential for overall health, including hair health. ...
  • Proper nutrition.
  • Orange puree. ...
  • Aloe gel or oil. ...
  • Avocado. ...
  • Castor oil. ...
  • Coconut oil.

How thick is coarse hair? ›

"Hair with a larger diameter—or coarse hair—has a typical diameter of about 120 microns." For comparison's sake, a piece of copy paper is 70 microns thick. "Fine hair is almost half the thickness of copy paper, and coarse hair has about twice the thickness of copy paper," Spengler says.

Is coarse hair better than fine hair? ›

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.

What is the best hair type? ›

When buying natural hair, the best types to consider are Brazilian, Malaysian, Indian, and Peruvian Hair. Though the four hair types have some differences, there are also similarities. They are both of good quality with similar body and natural wave patterns.

Can coarse hair become soft? ›

A regular hot oil treatment added to your hair care routine can help you nourish and soften coarse strands. This type of treatment uses plant-based essential oils like coconut, almond, or olive oil to seal the hair's cuticle, reducing frizz and dryness for silky, smooth hair.

What is coarse hair a symptom of? ›

Coarse hair is part of a long list of hypothyroidism symptoms. In some studies, up to 75% of people with hypothyroidism have coarse hair, making it the second most common hair change in an individual with hypothyroidism, after hair loss.

Why has my hair become so coarse? ›

When nutrition levels in your body drop especially Ferritin, Vitamin B 12,Vitamin D or any minerals like zinc & magnesium your hair can go brittle and break easily. Hormonal issues like thyroid disorders, pcod, high testosterone or post pregnancy hair fall can also cause the hair to become coarse & brittle.

How do you keep coarse hair moisturized? ›

The more moisture for thick, coarse dry hair, the better. So use a rich, rinse-out conditioner after every shower, and follow it up with a moisturizing leave-in spray before styling. Once a week, apply a deep conditioning mask. Allow it to penetrate for five to 15 minutes for a silky, smooth result.

How do I make my coarse hair flat? ›

For thick, coarse hair, you usually need to set the straightening iron between 350 and 400 degrees, so make sure that yours is adjustable to that range. When you're straightening, start at 350 degrees and see if the iron can successfully straighten your hair at that temperature.

What is coarse hair look like? ›

Naturally coarse hair has thick hair shafts with a wider circumference than most other hair types. It is not to be confused with thick or curly hair as coarse hair has a different texture. Hair density, diameter, and elasticity set apart this type of hair from other hair types. It tends to look a bit rough and unruly.

How often should you condition coarse hair? ›

If you have dry, coarse, curly, or color-treated hair, you may benefit from conditioning your hair more frequently — daily or every other day. These hair types tend to be on the dryer side, and may love a little extra moisture.

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