Everyone’s hair texture is slightly different from that of others, but they all come from the three basic types: fine, medium and coarse. It is possible to have combinations of all three types, making styling a bit more difficult.
Hair texture is not as much a result of race and ethnicity as are hair colors and curliness of the hair. The texture of the hair is determined by measuring the size of the hair strand. The circumference is used to determine to which of the three basic types the hair belongs.
The easiest texture of hair to process is fine hair. It has the smallest circumference and is generally weightless and flyaway. Being primarily straight, fine hair does not curl easily and usually has little volume. Because of its rather dainty structure, fine hair can be easily damaged from the various processes used to style it. Shampoos and conditioners that add volume are useful; wheat proteins and polymers will coat the hair shaft and give it a thicker appearance. As a final step, a spray-on volumizer will enhance the appearance without dampening the hair or destroying the style.
As with most definitions, hair of medium texture is considered to be the norm. The typical processing methods do not substantially damage medium hair and chemicals give good results. Hair of medium shaft circumference is generally the most manageable, and is the most common texture found. It is still important to treat the hair properly to avoid over-processing and the resultant damage. Lecithin can be used for its restorative qualities, while hair care products that contain amino acids will impart softness to the hair. The hair can be made to shine by applying a thin layer of gel or cream after styling.
The largest hair strand circumference belongs to the thicker, stronger hair classified as coarse. Coarse hair can be extremely difficult to process and is often practically impossible to color, perm or straighten. It has a rough appearance that can be adjusted by using heavier styling aids like pomades to provide moisture and shine.