How to Find the Perfect Products for Your Hair Type
It's hair wash day—the time we set aside to show our hair some much-needed self-care. Whether your hair is less than cooperative, or behaves like a dream, it's the perfect time for a routine check-in with your roots and ends to ensure your mane's needs are being met. Just like your skin, your strands are one-of-a-kind. There's no one-size-fits-all solution or secret ingredient that works for everyone—but that doesn’t mean you need an arsenal of products to achieve salon-worthy locks. If you’re tired of trying countless generic products that promise to transform your tresses, but aren’t seeing results, it’s time to get to know your hair type and the ingredients that will bring out its best.
To help you get better acquainted with your mane, we’ve created a simple guide to understanding your hair type and the steps that will convert your strands back to their happiest, bounciest selves. Clean Hairapy is in session!
How to Determine Your Hair Type:
The genetics of your strands will determine what ingredients and formulas work best for your unique hair type. Type, texture, and porosity are all characteristics that make up your mane. To determine which hair type best describes your locks, examine a single strand. It’s best to do this test on washed hair that has air-dried naturally, without any added product. Looking at that single strand, would you describe it as straight, wavy, curly or coiled?
Next, roll that strand between your fingertips. Compared to a piece of thread, does your hair feel thinner, the same, or thicker than a thread? This is your hair texture. Texture is about the diameter of each strand, and is broken down by fine, medium, thick, and coarse. Thin hair will be thinner than a thread, whereas coarse strands will feel thicker than a thread. Thinner hair textures require lightweight formulas that won’t weigh you down, whereas coarse strands benefit from heavier hydrators.
Lastly, find out your hair’s porosity. Porosity refers to how your hair absorbs moisture. Take that single strand of hair and place it in a cup of water. If the hair sinks to the bottom quickly, you have high porosity hair. If it floats, you have low porosity hair. If the hair sinks slowly, you have an average porosity. This will determine how much added moisture you’ll need in a haircare product. Low porosity hair can benefit from applying leave in treatments and styling while hair is damp, to help with product absorption. High porosity hair absorbs moisture fast, likely due to damage and openings around the cuticle. Look for products that seal the cuticle—like oils and masks—to prevent breakage.
Based on these core characteristics, you should be able to determine your hair type. The 4 main types, 1. Straight, 2. Wavy, 3. Curly, 4. Coily, can be further sub-categorized by letters, indicating your hair’s porosity, texture, and density.
Now that you know your hair type, let’s find out which Clean Hairapy products are ideal for your tresses to look and feel their best.
Straight hair is one of the most common hair types, characterized by the streamlined structure of strands. Those with straight hair know that they are generally fortunate when it comes to sheen and resilience, but styling these stubborn strands can be a headache. Oily, limp, and flat hair are the most common concerns for straight hair types, due to the clear path oils have from your scalp, down into your strands. If you also have thin or low porosity hair, you’ll need to look for volumizing products that add some oomph.
There’s a reason this dynamic duo from Innersense are bestsellers—the gentle formulas provide healthy hydration while promoting full body bounce. Free of sulfates and harsh soaps, the gentle cleansing hairbath is a great place to start your routine. The shea butter and pumpkin seed shampoo helps to remove dirt and build-up, without stripping your strands. Now, you can move onto styling!
If the name doesn’t already give it away, this lightweight lotion gives even the finest of hairs a lift. Formulated with organic honey, aloe vera, and wheat amino acids, this medium-hold treatment nourishes your hair while providing volume from root-to-tip.
Everyone loves the look of beachy, effortless waves, but this hair type comes with its own set of challenges. Characterized by ‘S’ shaped strands, wavy hair types fall somewhere in the middle between straight and curly, and can be prone to frizz. Wavy hair is the most hydrated of the curl types, but can still benefit from added moisture in the form of lightweight serums and creams. Tousling in some texture can be the perfect way to show off your shape while maintaining the definition of your strands.
Give your mane the mermaid treatment with this pair of ocean-inspired hair care. Infused with amino-acid rich seaweed extract and organic aloe vera, the cleansing shampoo soothes and nourishes the scalp while keeping your strands immersed in moisture. The uplifting citrus scent makes wash days feel like a slice of paradise.
Now, onto styling—the secret to styling waves is to add the texturizing spray while hair is still damp. This allows the product to disperse and absorb so waves won’t feel weighed down or heavy. Flip your hair upside-down and scrunch the spray into your hair to allow for loose texture to form for bouncy, effortless waves. Avoid brushing your hair once it’s dry so you don’t disturb your waves and create unwanted frizz.
Whether your curls are loose ringlets or tight corkscrews, curly hair has a reputation for being difficult to maintain. But, with the right ingredients and tools, caring for your curls doesn't need to make you spiral. Due to their helix structure, curly hair thrives on full-bodied volume, and moisturizing products that add hydration and shine. Natural oils have a difficult time reaching the hair shaft of curly hair types, due to indirect patten from scalp to shaft. This can lead to an imbalance of moisture, leaving curly strands dry and brittle. To help your hair shine, add in condition.
Silky and hydrating, this moisture-rich match is a curl’s best friend. The award-winning Smart Curl Hydrating Wash is designed to gently cleanse the scalp while delivering a deep dose of nutrients to strands for added softness and shine. Amino and fatty acids help enhance and define your natural curl pattern, without leaving your scalp feeling oily.
After washing, be sure to comb curls out and add the Wonderbalm styling serum to wet hair. This medium-hold serum smoothes strands and fixes frizz for curls that look like they just walked out of a salon. Plus, the serum has added UV protection to prevent further dryness and damage! For maximum definition, use your fingers to shape ringlets in your desired curl pattern.
The tightest of all the curl patterns, this hair type thrives on creams, gels, and conditioners with maximum moisturizing benefits. Kinky curls are dense and porous, which requires protein-rich formulas and added oils to seal moisture into the hair cuticle. No hair type can compete with the density, volume, and body of coily tresses. Often characterized by a zig-zag ‘Z’ pattern, coily hair benefits from leave-in treatments that keep strands conditioned around-the-clock.We recommend washing with Holy Curls - Shampoo, and styling with
As the name suggests, Holy Curls is the mecca for moisturizing curl formulas. Made with Amazonian cupuacu butter and baobab oil, the luxurious lather of the shampoo contains three forms of omega fatty acids and a vast variety of vitamins to lock in moisture and add sumptuous shine. When styling coily curls, add the cream directly to soaking wet hair and scrunch the product in with a soft t-shirt or microfibre towel to remove excess water. This will reduce breakage and frizz and allow the styling cream to penetrate deeper into the strands. Now sit back and watch your natural coils take shape!
Now that you know the perfect pairings for your hair type, you can start to build a routine with clean, quality ingredients that speak your hair’s language. With a skincare inspired hair care routine, there’s no challenge your tresses can’t conquer! Read our guide on How to Create the Best Clean Hair Care Routine.
For more personalized product recommendations, take our Hair Quiz to build a start-to-finish Clean Hairapy routine.