How to create the best haircare routine for your hair type

Do you have coarse, medium or fine hair?

man washing hair
(Image credit: Alena TS/Shutterstock)

When it comes to creating the perfect haircare routine, it can be difficult knowing where to start. There's lots of tips out there, such as whether you should shampoo every day or what natural remedies should be used for hair loss, but there's one important thing a lot of people miss. You need to know the exact hair type you have otherwise you could be following the wrong advice. 

Laura Elliott, head stylist and educator at Neäl & Wølf  comments: "The first step in creating the perfect haircare routine is to figure out your hair type. Whether this is coarse curly hair or fine straight hair, knowing this is key to achieving happy and healthy tresses and ensuring you’re using the right products.” 

When we talk about different hair types, there are usually three categories: coarse, medium and fine. Your haircare routine should then be based around your hair type, making sure you use the correct products that will help your hair look its best. Keep reading to find out more...

However, if you're looking for hair growth shampoo, read our guide on the best hair growth shampoo. If you're looking to shake up your hair care routine, you can also check out the best hair clippers so you can change up your style, best hair dryers for quick, frizz-free drying and the best hair straighteners for sleek smoothness. 

Coarse hair 

Laura comments: “The tell-tale sign of having coarse hair is if it feels dry or rough to touch. A lot of people with this hair type struggle to nail down a good haircare routine that can tame their tresses, but it all comes down to the right moisturising products that replenish dry strands.”

To keep coarse, frizzy and dry hair at bay, you need a lot of moisture and hydration. Due to the hair being thicker you can opt for denser shampoos and conditioners that provide moisture from within, but be sure to avoid sulphates. Coarse hair is prone to product build up so it's recommended switching shampoos every few months so your hair doesn’t get used to the same product. 

Medium hair

Laura says: “Medium porosity is the more common hair type and sits between coarse and fine. Medium hair will hold hairstyles better than thin hair and is more resistant to breakage but still requires frequent moisturising and strengthening treatments to maintain the hairs health.”

One of the main components to a good medium haircare routine is cleansing. Look for a sulphate free shampoo and conditioner that helps to freshen hair leaving it full of shine and ready for styling. You should aim to cleanse your hair as and when it’s needed and avoid leaving your hair unwashed for long periods of time - this can weigh the hair down and clog the hair follicles. You should also add a hydrating hair mask to your routine once a week. This will help to retain and restore moisture to the hair and make sure to pick one with nourishing ingredients such as Shea Butter, Argan Oil and Crambe Abyssinica Oil. 

Fine hair

Laura comments: “There are a lot of misconceptions with fine and thin hair, most believe they are the same hair type but this is wrong. Fine hair refers to the hair strands themselves and thin hair refers to the density. The good thing is the perfect haircare routine for both hair types stays the same. The main goal when caring for thin or fine hair is to nourish strands, limit damage and add volume.”

To add volume to your hair, incorporate a volumising shampoo into your routine that’s formulated with hair strengthening ingredients to give extra body and shine to fine tresses. Follow with a lightweight conditioner as fine hair is prone to tangling easily so adding in a moisturising conditioner will help hydrate and make brushing easier. 

Interested in more? Check out what happened when I slept on a satin pillowcase for a week. The results were insane!

Lizzie Wilmot
Staff Writer, Home

Lizzie is T3's Home Staff Writer, also covering style, living and wellness. She works closely with Bethan Girdler-Maslen, T3's Home Editor, ensuring all the latest news, trends and recommendations are covered. Outside of T3, Lizzie can be found mooching around Bath, attempting (or at least trying to) a new DIY project or spending time with family and friends.