How to Make Hair Grow Thicker Naturally

Scientifically proven tips and tricks for a full, healthy mane.

Whether you were born with fine hair, are going through a period of temporary hair loss, or are experiencing long-term thinning, it’s only natural to want to make your hair grow thicker. After all, a lush and shiny mane is the perfect accessory. While there aren’t any quick shortcuts or foolproof “hacks” to make hair grow thicker instantly, there are steps you can take that lead to healthier, fuller hair over time.

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Below are some science-backed techniques you can work into your everyday routine to help thicken your hair naturally.

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Prioritizing Balanced Nutrition

Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet is one of the best things you can do for your overall health. A good diet can also help your skin look vibrant and naturally help grow your hair and nails.

“A host of nutritional deficiencies can cause hair loss and hair breakage,” notes Dhaval G. Bhanusali, M.D., board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Medicinals. 

He adds you may want to seek input from a professional if the issue is ongoing. “Doctors and dermatologists look at things like iron levels, vitamin D, thyroid studies, and other medical data points to make sure we don’t miss any internal causes of thinning or weakening hair,” he says. 

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Give Yourself Scalp Massages

It might sound too good to be true, but there’s scientific evidence that tells us scalp massage can help promote hair growth naturally. 

“Massaging the scalp increases blood flow, which helps to produce healthy hair,” explains Akis Ntonos, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist and co-founder of NYC’s Aion Aesthetic. “It can also cause the hair follicle itself to stretch, allowing hair to come out thicker.”

Using your fingertips, gently massage your scalp in light circles while shampooing or just before your shower. You can also try a scalp massage tool. 

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Protect Your Hair and Scalp From the Sun

You know the sun’s powerful rays can wreak havoc on your skin, but research suggests it can also take a toll on your hair and scalp. 

“UV rays set off free radicals in the hair shaft, which break down the bond networks. This leads to thinner, broken, and faded hair,” explains Michael Van Clarke, a London hairstylist and founder of 3 More Inches Haircare. “Keep hair covered when you’re in the sun with hats, scarves, or effective sun protection products.” 

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Minimize Stress

We’re sure you’re no stranger to dealing with the feeling of stress. Did you know that high levels of ongoing stress can actually impact your hair growth too?

“As stress increases, your cortisol level increases which can lead to long standing hair loss,” Dr. Bhanusali explains. “More acutely, there is a condition called telogen effluvium which has been linked to stressful events like surgery, trauma, pregnancy, breakups, loss of loved ones, and other distressing events.”

While this is fortunately a temporary issue, it can take many months or even years for your hair to get back to its normal, full state. The more quickly you can identify the stressful trigger and (if possible) eliminate it, the better.

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Be Mindful With Heat Styling

Heat styling is notoriously damaging to hair. Van Clarke says, “[Excessive] heat styling causes dehydration that weakens the molecular structure. Bonds break and the hair thins down.” 

If you’re experiencing thinning hair or your hair is naturally fine, reduce how often you use heat styling tools. It’s also important to use heat protectant products, which can shield your hair from some of the damage when you do decide to heat style.

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Maintain Healthy Scalp Moisture

Growing thick and healthy hair isn’t just about treating your current strands with care, says Dr. Ntonos. It’s also about laying the foundation for hair to come. Maintaining healthy levels of moisture on your scalp is one of the best things you can do to help with that. 

“Avoid drying the scalp by overwashing, washing with sulfate-heavy shampoos, overusing dry shampoo, or aiming a high-heat blow dryer at your skin,” Dr. Ntonos advises. In that same vein, prioritize your scalp health with nourishing scalp treatments and make sure to remove product buildup thoroughly. 

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