When I first went natural, I thought my biggest battle would be handling thick hair. I thought I’d have a naturally voluminous mane. As it turned out, my hair does not rival a lion’s mane and on some days, depending on how I style it, it can end up looking thin and lifeless. Genetics as well as environmental or even hormonal factors can influence the density of our hair. Either way, if you’re keen on making your hair look fuller, here are five simple and effective tricks I’ve come across in my five years of natural hair care. 

1. Thoroughly detangle your hair 

I don’t know about you, but I’ll tell you this: my hair loves to grow in tufts. Whenever I undo my two-strand twists, my hair will happily remain coiled up in a tendril. I love the fact that my hair is versatile and can hold a curl without the need for any added product, but at the same time if I leave my hair in tendrils, it can give the appearance of thin hair. To restore my hair to a more voluminous state, I always take time to separate the tendrils into smaller sections. This process of detangling my hair gives it more body and bounce.

2. Fluff out your roots

To avoid a scalpy look that can give the appearance of thin hair, fluff out your roots. This can be by using an afro pick comb and gently lifting the roots up without combing through to the tip of your hair. If you don’t want to use a comb you can gently massage your roots while tugging upwards. As a naturalista with tight curls, my hair tends to become matted at the roots, so I simply use the tips of my fingers to massage them and then lift the hair. This method is bound to effortlessly make your hair look fuller and longer.

3. Get a tapered cut 

If you’re not scissor shy, you may want to consider a tapered or layered cut. Layers give the illusion of volume by adding shape and dimension to your hair. Some naturalistas like to have the front and crown of their hair a little longer than the nape area. This style of cutting hair is particularly transformational for naturals who like the appearance of fuller hair.

4. Avoid heavy butters and creams

This goes without saying for seasoned naturalistas, but if you’re a newbie, I’ll let you in on this hair trick: heavy butters and creams can weigh your strands down. Heavy butters such as cocoa butter and Shea butter are great sealants, particularly in extreme weather, as they lock in our hair’s moisture. However, a little goes a long way when it comes to these heavy-duty emollients, so if you want to have the appearance of fuller hair, use them sparingly. Apply them to your ends and use a lighter oil, such as Argan oil, along the length of your hair shaft.

5. Curl it up

A fluffed out, almost blown-by-the-wind-fabulous style creates a voluminous look. Lucky for us curly girls, nature’s given us some bounce already. If you still want more volume, use styles like twist-outs or braid-outs. You may even use Curlformers for a few twirls. Whichever your style of choice, once you’ve fluffed out your curls, bend over and shake your head from side to side. When you stand back up, let your curls lay as they are. You’re nearly guaranteed to turn a few heads with your effortlessly edgy, carefree curls!

Do you have tricks up your sleeve on how to make hair appear fuller? If so, feel free to leave a comment down below!