Describing our hair is sometimes really tricky, especially if we come across similar-sounding adjectives like ‘thin’ and ‘fine’. Both terms are very closely associated but deliver entirely different meanings.
To mention a few types of hair, there is long, flat, wavy, medium, thin, heavy, thick, and fine hair.
Understanding the differences between these terminologies is vital for taking the best care and tending our hair since it additionally helps to debunk hair myths and misconceptions to absolute zero!
- Thin hair refers to a low density of hair strands on the scalp.
- Fine hair describes the individual hair strands’ thickness, which is smaller in diameter.
- Different hair care approaches are needed to address the challenges of each hair type.
Thin Hair vs Fine Hair
The difference between thin hair and fine hair is that thin hair refers to the total number of hair follicles tied or packed together in a braid or knot. If someone has thin hair, that means he or she has fewer hair follicles packed together, whereas fine hair refers to the condition when the diameter of a single hair follicle is so thin that it’s prone to breakage.
Thin hair is a collective term for the accumulated number of hair follicles when tied together. Understanding the differences between thin and fine hair also helps us in the way we tend our hair and also the way we treat it.
Looking at the breadth of your hair is the best method to tell if it’s fine or thin. Thin hair determination can be understood by tying a ponytail, and if the net quantity of the ponytail is less and the scalp is visible, then you have thin hair.
The two words act as a collective noun for the hair follicles together.
Fine hair is an entirely different story though if your hair is excessively silky while tying it and the diameter of your single hair is lesser than that of a thread, then your hair is prone to breakage and is considered fine hair.
Fine hair also indicates that your hair health is degraded and malnourished. Major hair fall issues include the ‘fine hair’ factor, and in this modern era, many cures have been introduced to help the hair grow and nourish it vitally.
|Parameters of comparison
|Thin hair refers to the condition when a person’s cranial scalp is visible when the hair follicles are tied or packed together.
|This is a condition when an individual hair strand is thinner than a usual sewing thread. The fragile and thin hair condition causes follicle breakage and absolute hair fall.
|The scalp is partially and sometimes significantly visible after braiding or tying down all the hair follicles.
|Scalp visibility is not prominent when the hair is free and un-tied. Scalp health is however affected by this condition.
|Thin hair means that the net growth of hair is less, which has caused the thinning of the natural hair density. It is a very common problem in this modern era.
|Hair health is very low, as the hair is not nutritioned and keratin is exponentially degrading when one is facing the problem of fine hair.
|Type of term
|It is a collective term for describing the thickness covered by all the hair follicles. It also shows the density of your hair.
|It is an individual term as it is focused on the health of a single hair follicle.
|Fixes and cures
|Scalp massages, essential oils and red-onion extracts, multivitamins, anti-thinning shampoos.
|Volumizing shampoos, sparing or less usage of conditioners, essential oils and medications, prescribed broad-toothed scalp comb for healthy hair growth.
What is Thin Hair?
Thin hair or less hair is referred to the condition when a person has fewer hair follicles in one single tied-up braid or ponytail.
Thin hair depicts that the hair growth is lower than average and scalp visibility increases when the hair follicles are packed together.
This can happen during aging or sometimes when the hair is malnutrition and net hair growth is subdued due to medical reasons.
Thin hair cures can be classified as temporary and medicated. Temporary solutions include the way your hair is shaped and styled. If your hair is thin, you may find that your scalp is exposed from time to time.
This might be because your hair strands are more widely spaced. It’s a good idea to select a haircut that’s appropriate for thin hair while still appearing trendy.
This can be helpful to superficially cover those long visible, lined scalps and can make you look quite trendy and stylish!
Hair thinning can be caused by lifestyle choices, genetics, or a combination of the two. Hair thinning can also be caused by certain medical disorders.
On average, a human loses 50 to 70 hair follicles daily, but if the rate exceeds 200 and ranges up to 250, then hair thinning, in your case, is at its maximum and can cause permanent baldness.
Essential oils, onion oils and multivitamins, scalp massages, and proper hair combs can help cure these phenomena.
What is Fine Hair?
The condition of fine hair is a major problem in this modern era. Due Exposure to excessive heat, dust particle accumulation in the scalp, dandruff and excessive usage of hair dryers have caused the weakening of scalp-to-follicle binding.
As a result, the nutrients do not reach the hair roots, and eventually, you get diagnosed with exceeding fine hair and eventual hair fall problems.
If you have fine hair, that means your single hair follicle is thinner than a strand of sewing thread.
Fine hair is prone to follicle breakage, sometimes it might be genetic but usually, it happens due to the degrading quality of water used to wash hair as well as not nourishing the hair follicles properly.
It’s smooth and lacks natural volume, and it’s most common in lighter hair colors, such as blondes.
It’s crucial to remember that fine hair relates to the thickness of the single hair itself and has nothing to do with the density or volume of the total hair.
Many misconceptions are carried along with the ‘fine hair’ type, including the myth that fine hair doesn’t require conditioning. Well, it is tempting to assume that one can skip conditioning because fine hair appears naturally smooth and velvety, but it still requires the balance of hair growth proteins, keratin-enhancing agents, and lipids.
Fine hair is observed in people who inherit a lighter hair color like blonde or albino white hair.
Fixes and management of fine hair without causing hair fall or permanent baldness include periodic scalp massage with the application of essential oils, intake of supplementary multivitamins to improve the health of hair prescribed by hair professionals, and washing hair with soft water and using volumizing shampoos as well.
Main Differences Between Thin Hair and Fine Hair
- Thin hair refers to the condition when the hair follicles are packed together, and the net density of hair is less than average, causing prominent scalp exposure, but fine hair refers to an individual hair strand that has a lesser diameter than a sewing thread.
- Thin hair is not genetically inherited, whereas fine hair can be a genetic trait of an individual.
- Thin hair is not always shiny, but fine hair is always shiny and silky.
- Heat styling is difficult in thin hair but easy in fine hair.
- ‘Thin hair’ is a collective attribute and term, but fine hair is a hair type and refers to a single follicle’s description.
Last Updated : 09 August, 2023
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Chara Yadav holds MBA in Finance. Her goal is to simplify finance-related topics. She has worked in finance for about 25 years. She has held multiple finance and banking classes for business schools and communities. Read more at her bio page.