What Shampoo Is Best For Fine Hair?


For so many years, your hair was easy to care for and style. You may have thought the texture you were born with would last a lifetime. Any shampoo would do because your hair was thick, robust, and resilient. Then your 40s rolled around and your bulky strands turn into thin fibers.

Like your skin, your hair and follicles are subject to the intrinsic effects of aging: a decrease in hair production, a drop in pigmentation, and shrinking follicles that churn out thinner and shorter hairs. Now each shampoo you try seems to take you further from your goal of healthy-looking, full-bodied hair. You are not asking for younger hair; you just want better. So what shampoo is best for fine hair?

What Is Fine Hair?

Hair texture is coarse, medium, or fine based on the width of your shafts. Fine hair should not be confused with thin hair:

  • Thin hair refers to the number of individual strands you have. The more scalp you see during your styling process, the thinner your hair.
  • Fine hair denotes the diameter of each hair shaft: fine, medium, or coarse. Coarse hairs have a wider diameter, while fine hairs are relatively narrow, and medium hairs somewhere in the middle.

Most aging women must contend with fine and thin hair, even if their hair used to be coarse.

Fine Hair and Your Follicles

Your hair follicles contract as you age, reducing the diameter of the hairs that grow from them. Simultaneously, some of your hair follicles become inert or take longer to replace hairs that fall out, making your hair appear thinner.

When fine hair is curled or straightened, it is more cooperative, holding these styles longer than coarse hair. Despite this, fine tresses are more susceptible to injury from high-heat styling tools and tend to tangle and fall flat.

To counteract these aging hair challenges, use a shampoo made to care for your hair and scalp.

Types of Shampoos

There is no one-size-fits-all shampoo, and what worked for you years ago, may no longer work for you today. When looking for the best shampoo for your fine hair, select a quality formula targeted to handle the needs of your aging hair biology. Types of shampoos include:

  • Repairing — Dry or damaged hair can benefit from the mild cleansing and moisturizing of a restorative shampoo like Better Not Younger’s Second Chance Low Suds Repairing Shampoo.
  • Clarifying — Clarifying shampoos remove silicone residue and excess build-up heavy conditioners and styling products leave behind. These cleansers use harsh sulfate surfactants that can harm your cuticles and strip away your hair’s beneficial sebum oils.
  • Color-protecting or -boosting — Women who color-treat their hair may profit from the extra conditioners, UV filters, and color-adjusting properties in these shampoos; however, they are often too heavy for fine hair.
  • Two-in-one — A shampoo/conditioner combo may seem like the ideal choice if you are short on time — but the heavy conditioning is often too much for fine hair. Unless your hair requires extra moisturizing, it is better to use a light conditioner like Wake Up Call Volumizing Conditioner sparingly after you shampoo.
  • Volumizing — A volumizing shampoo like Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo is perfect for treating fine hair. Formulated to gently clean without over-conditioning, it infuses your ultra-fine strands with bounce and luster.

Should I Avoid Sulfates and Parabens?

Women seek out shampoos and conditioners labeled sulfate-free because of their harsh treatment on fine or aging hair and paraben-free because of their potential link to serious health conditions. But what exactly are sulfates and parabens?

What Are Sulfates?

Known collectively as “sulfates,” these low-cost, aggressive detergents are surfactants made from mineral salts and generate the foaming lather most people identify with good hygiene. Surfactants pull grease, dirt, and oil from hair and skin and may cause fine hair and scalp issues including:

  • Cuticle abrasion — The cuticle is a network of overlapping cells on the outer-most layer of your hair. Sulfates force their way under these cells exposing the strand cortex to water and moisture causing frizz; or dry and hot air causing brittleness. The compromised cortex and cuticle diminishes the entire hair structure making fine locks susceptible to split ends and breakage.
  • Inflammation — Sulfate surfactants pierce your scalp’s water barrier and strip away natural lipids, allowing shampoo chemicals to permeate the top skin layers, causing inflammation. Simultaneously, your underlying skin layers are now vulnerable to disease-causing pathogens.
  • Age-related scalp issues — Sebum is the natural oil produced in your follicles’ sebaceous glands. Sebum protects and moisturizes your hair and scalp. As you age, your body’s sebum production drops, causing dry hair and an itchy scalp. Sulfate shampoos further reduce your hair and scalp’s sebum levels, triggering redness, and irritation.

What Are Parabens?

Parabens are preservatives used in pharmaceuticals, food, and cosmetics since the 1950s. They often appear on shampoo labels as methylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, or propylparaben.

Parabens prevail in cosmetics due to their cheap effectiveness at halting mold and bacteria growth. However, researchers discovered parabens are xenoestrogens, meaning they mimic estrogen in the human body. Xenoestrogen exposure may cause fertility problems and are known to contribute to estrogen-dependent cancer development.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) paraben factsheet, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and industry-led Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) upheld the CIR’s 1984 conclusion that parabens are safe to use in cosmetics. The FDA maintains that parabens “as they are used in cosmetics” do not affect human health.

Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo is Best for Fine Hair

Your fine hair needs a featherweight volumizing shampoo that cleans without harsh sulfates that can disrupt your body’s natural biome or dry out your scalp.

Better Not Younger’s Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo uses the astringent power of sage to unblock your follicles, bamboo to fortify your strands, and hops to tone and thicken your mane. Our sulfate-free, paraben-free formula rinses out easily, leaving behind nothing but clean and full-bodied hair.

Explore our Better Not Younger product page for our complete line of hair care products.