Just like your skin, your hair experiences many changes as you grow older. You may start to notice differences in your hair's color, texture, and thickness. Hair texture such as brittleness can also result from years of bleaching, coloring, and straightening your hair.
This article explores the reasons behind changes in hair texture and how Ayurveda helps improve your hair's texture. Read on to learn more.
What Is Hair Texture?
Hair texture describes the circumference of your hair strands. There are three types of hair textures - fine, medium, and coarse.
Hair texture determines the following aspects:
- The thickness of hair strands
- How well the hair can hold a style
- How much heat the hair can bear
- How prone it is to breakage
In Ayurveda, hair texture is determined by the balance of three vital energies - Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. These energies are known as doshas that govern a human body, and the combination of these three doshas is known as Prakriti.
Every individual has a unique Prakriti that regulates the type and texture of the hair. The imbalance in any of the dosha affects the health of the hair.
Vata dominant individuals have thin and straight hair. Pitta dominant hair has a medium texture, and Kapha dominant have thick and curly hair.
Hair texture has no relation to the volume of the hair. It is the density that represents the number of hair strands present in the scalp. Also, hair texture doesn't denote your hair type, such as straight or curly.
Generally, people get confused between hair type, hair texture, and hair density. Let us tell you that all these are three different terms with distinct meanings.
Hair density represents the number of hair strands present on your scalp. It is of three types - low, medium, and high. You can check your hair's density by tying it in a ponytail. The thickness of your ponytail can show you how dense your hair is.
Similarly, most people mix the definition of hair texture with hair type. But, hair texture has nothing to do with hair type. Your hair type depends on the hair curling pattern that is determined by the shape of hair follicles. The types of hair classify into four categories - straight, wavy, curly, and coily.
What Are The Different Types Of Hair Textures?
1. Fine Hair
Hair with a small diameter is fine in texture. Typically, its texture is smooth, greasy, and lustrous. However, it is fragile and weak as the hair strands contain less protein. It can also be easily damaged if not taken care of properly.
2. Medium Hair
This is the most common hair texture. Medium texture hair strands have neither too small nor too big a diameter. It is not as fragile as fine hair, so it is more resistant to damage. Such hair textures are also smooth to touch.
3. Coarse Hair
Hair strands are wide in diameter. Coarse hair is generally dry and tends to look dull. However, it is more resistant to breakage and can tolerate heat.
How To Know Your Hair Texture?
You can run a quick test to know your hair texture by comparing your hair with a sewing thread. Pull out a strand of your hair and place it next to a sewing thread. If your hair is the same width as the thread, your hair texture is medium. If its width is less than the thread, then your hair has a fine texture. If your hair’s width is more than the thread, then your hair has a coarse texture.
Looks thicker than fine hair
Can’t hold style well
Can hold style well
Can hold style well
Fragile in nature
Breaks only with the overuse of heat styling products
Can tolerate higher amount of heat
Why Does Hair Texture Change?
While changes in hair texture are a normal part of aging, various other factors also contribute to it. These include:
1. Hormonal Changes
Hormones play a vital role in impacting your hair's texture. A woman experiences hormonal changes several times, such as during menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. Imbalance in some hormones like androgens and estrogen affects the hair follicles and hair growth.
Stress has a direct relation with hair as it makes it fragile and fine. High-stress levels attack the hair follicles and cause hair loss. Telogen effluvium is a type of hair loss that happens due to stress, in which follicles go into a resting phase.
Genes play a key role in determining hair texture . From the thickness of hair to the type of hair, everything depends on the variation of genes.
4. Heat And Pollution
5. Poor Diet
A diet that lacks proteins, iron, minerals, and other nutrients can affect your hair's health while making it thin and weak . Hair gets its nourishment through nutrients and minerals in your blood that circulates to the scalp.
6. Excessive Use Of Hair Styling Products
Heat styling products like curling irons, straighteners, and hair dyes can negatively impact the hair's texture. With excessive use, hair becomes weak and may even start to fall.
7. Loss Of Collagen
Collagen is a protein that promotes healthy hair growth by strengthening the roots and preventing hair follicles from damage. It moisturizes the scalp that makes the hair smooth and shiny. Your collagen levels reduce as you get older, leading to a change in hair texture.
How To Improve Hair Texture?
"Khalitya (hair fall or thinning) is classified under kshudra rogas in Ayurveda. Kshudra rogas translates to 'minor diseases' in Ayurveda, signifying that premature hair fall and thinning can be treated effectively with the right therapy," says Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix.
Let's look at the Ayurvedic ways to improve hair texture naturally:
1. Know Your Dosha Level
2. Hair Mask (Shirolepa)
Shirolepa is an ancient Ayurvedic treatment to reduce mental and physical stress. It nourishes the hair roots deeply and provides strength to the hair. You can use different herbs to make a paste and apply it all over your scalp and hair. Some popular Ayurvedic herbs used to make shirolepa include:
A. Amla: It is one of the best natural sources of Vitamin C and other nutrients that promote hair growth and prevent premature greying of hair.
B. Gotu Kola: This herb improves blood circulation in the brain and scalp, which stimulates hair growth.
C. Triphala: It is enriched with antioxidants that control dandruff and repair damaged hair.
D. Heena: Heena has antibacterial and astringent properties that help restore the scalp's pH level and improve hair texture.
E. Neem: Neem is beneficial to fight scalp infections due to its antibacterial properties. It strengthens the hair roots and curbs hair fall.
F. Aloe Vera: It reduces split ends, frizziness, and dryness in the hair. If applied regularly, like 2-3 times in a week, you get back your hair's shine.
You can make a thick paste with these herbs, or you can try different combinations of hair masks by mixing these herbs with other natural ingredients like egg, honey, and rose water for quicker results. Apply the paste on the scalp and hair and leave it on for 30 minutes. Wash it off with herbal shampoo.
3. Murdhani Taila (Head Oil)
This is a procedure of conducting treatments on the head using herbal oils such that it remains in contact with your scalp for a fixed duration. It helps balance aggravated doshas, which improves hair texture. The massage increases blood circulation in the scalp, leading to healthy hair growth. Murdhani Taila is performed in 4 ways:
A. Shiro Abhyanga: This is essentially a complete massage of the head, neck, and shoulders using Ayurvedic herbal oils.
B. Shiro Seka: It is a procedure in which a herbal oil or a medicated liquid like buttermilk or milk is poured on the scalp using Dhara Yantra.
C. Shiro Pichu: A cotton pad or piece of cloth is dipped in herbal oil and placed on the head to cover the scalp and the hair.
D. Shiro Basti: Shiro Basti means pooling liquid medicines, especially herbal oils and ghee in a chamber or compartment constructed over the head.
4. Herbal Cleanser
Hair cleansing with a mild Ayurvedic shampoo twice or thrice a week, helps remove dirt, sweat and excess oil accumulated on the scalp. Herbs that are known for cleaning hair are:
A. Shikakai: It has been used as a hair cleanser for a century now. Shikakai is rich in Vitamin A, C, K, and D that nourishes the hair naturally. Its antioxidant properties help treat scalp infections and dandruff. You can use a shampoo that contains Shikakai or make a paste with its powder to wash your hair.
B. Reetha: Reetha helps balance dosha levels and promotes hair growth. It makes the hair shiny and healthy. Mix reetha powder with warm water. Make a paste and apply it all over the scalp and hair. Leave it for 15-20 minutes and wash it off with plain water.
C. Multani Mitti: Multani Mitti is also a commonly used hair cleanser that soothes the scalp and removes excess oil and dirt that accumulates on the scalp. Make a paste by mixing multani mitti with water or rose water. Apply it on the scalp and rinse it off after 15-20 minutes.
D. Hibiscus Flower: Hibiscus seals the hair cuticles and makes hair smooth and shiny. It also helps treat dandruff and hair fall. Mix some crushed flower petals in water and store it in a bottle. Add a few drops of the mixture in your shampoo to wash your hair.
1. Healthy Diet
Vitamins A, C, D, and E, folic acid, iron, protein are required by your hair to grow and shine. You can include foods like beans, peanuts, whole grains, green vegetables, eggs, citrus fruits, milk, nuts, strawberries, and sunflower seeds. Such nutrients and minerals deeply nourish the hair and strengthen the hair roots.
2. Microfiber Towel
Replace a cotton towel with a microfiber towel to dry your hair. Microfiber towels have a soft fabric that quickly absorbs the water from the hair without harming the cuticles.
3. Hair Oil
Oil massage with natural oils like coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil, and castor oil is beneficial for healthy hair. It improves blood circulation in the scalp and moisturizes the hair. You can also use essential oils like lavender oil, lemongrass oil, tea tree oil, and rosemary oil to massage your hair. Massage your scalp 2-3 times a week.
4. Natural Ingredients
You can find ingredients in your pantry beneficial for your hair health like eggs, fenugreek seeds, and honey. Applying egg as a mask nourishes the hair and improves hair texture. You can also use onion juice to the hair as it promotes healthy and thick hair. Another ingredient is yogurt, which is a great way to cure dandruff and boost shine. Similarly, you can apply curry leaves by making a paste on your scalp to treat thin and fragile hair.
5. Practice Yoga
Regular yoga helps improve the texture of the hair. Yoga reduces stress and boosts blood supply to the scalp, which makes the hair strong and thick. Yoga asanas like Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward-facing dog pose), Vajrasana (thunderbolt pose), Sarvangasana (shoulder stand), Sirsasana (headstand), etc. can be performed daily.
Does Hair Texture Change With Age?
Yes, your hair texture changes with age. As you grow older, the size of the hair follicles shrinks, and hair growth slows down. Also, the production of pigments like melanocytes (responsible for hair color) and collagen levels (protein) decreases as you grow older. These changes can make the hair grey, dull, and fragile. Moreover, hormonal changes occur at every stage of life, leading to a change in hair texture.
Can You Change The Texture Of Your Hair?
Several external factors are responsible for changing hair texture, such as heat, pollution, and chemicals. By protecting your hair from such agents and using Ayurvedic hair care products, you can balance your dosha level and improve your hair texture.
Additionally, by practicing yoga and consuming a healthy diet, you can control the internal factors like stress to maintain good hair texture.
How To Change Your Hair Texture?
Here are some quick tips that you can consider to change or improve your hair texture:
1. Add lots of nutrients and minerals in your diet
2. Protect your hair from UV rays and pollution 
3. Don't wash your hair with hard water
4. Avoid using hair styling products
5. Use mild or herbal shampoo and conditioner
6. Regular washing of hair is must
7. Practice yoga everyday to balance stress and dosha levels
8. Give yourself a head massage with herbal or natural oil, at least twice a week
The Last Word
Hair texture is something that you are born with, but your external environment and internal mechanism can affect your hair texture. Ayurveda has a plethora of solutions to improve the texture of your hair naturally. At Vedix, we provide a customized Ayurvedic hair care regimen that aligns with your dosha level.Know Your Dosha Now