On every beauty store shelf, there are products that promise to grow your hair longer, thicker, and fuller — but, no pun intended, most of them fall short. I've been trying to grow and thicken my hair for over a decade, and I've only just started to see results in the last year and a half. In an attempt to narrow down
the best hair growth products on Amazon that actually work, I sorted through endless reviews, researched tons of ingredients, and got in touch with actual experts in the health and hair care industries.
According to the experts I spoke with, the rate and thickness at which hair grows is influenced four main things: diet, supplements, hair tools, and hair care ingredients. "Diet has a large impact on hair growth. A lack of nutrients such as biotin, iron, vitamin A, C, D, and E, along with B vitamins, may slow hair growth or even result in a loss of hair," according to dietician and author
Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE. So Palinski-Wade suggests eggs, blood oranges, salmon, avocado, and steel-cut oats as foods that support thick, healthy hair.
We'll get more into the recommended tools and hair care products below, but
Jonathan Matias, lead stylist and colorist at Brooklyn's [salon]718, says this: "Patience, my friend! Most product lines will require a regimen for optimal results. Stick to the plan with your end goal in mind. Be open to different styles as your locks grow longer."
Finally, if you're not sure where to start, "listen to your stylist when they offer advice,"
Patrick Butler, technical director of education at Floyd's 99 Barbershop, tells Bustle . "Explain your goal and then ask what they recommend. This can be important when discussing color options, styling tools, and hair products."
Now that we've covered the advice portion of Thick Hair 101, it's time for the recommendations. Whether you're trying to grow your hair thicker or have it appear that way in the meantime, here are 23 products with
expert-approved ingredients to promote growth and thickness. 1 A Hyularonic Acid Mist To Plump Hair
According to Matias, "Hyaluronic Acid will help to plump the hair, making it look and feel fuller."
OPTIMIZED's hydrating mist is a favorite among reviewers because it does just that, in addition to strengthening and moisturizing strands without weighing them down. Since it also contains pH-balanced, vitamin-rich ingredients like biotin, sea buckthorn, and coconut oil, you can even use it on your skin, too. 2 This Thickening Cleansing Treatment
"One of the best ways to encourage growth and to maintain thicker, fuller hair is to use a shampoo and conditioner that is designed specifically for this," says Butler. "I recommend
Actiiv shampoo," which works like your standard shampoo — only it restores strands using plant-based compounds. "Actiiv cleanses your scalp and removes buildup that prohibits growth." 3 This Coordinating Thickening Conditioner
After thoroughly cleansing, Butler recommends conditioning your hair with
Actiiv's Recover thickening conditioner. "The only extra step is to leave it on for a few minutes which gives you an opportunity to clean the rest of your body like normal and then rinse away. [...] Their ingredients also are designed to nourish the hair strand and follicle so you are set up for success," Butler notes. 4 This Detangling Brush For Wet Or Dry Hair
Matias loves "the
Wet Brush when it comes to detangling. The bristles are soft and flexible so it easily glides through your tresses." Available in a wide variety of colors, this tool minimizes breakage and damage when brushing especially thin or curly hair — and even though it's called "The Wet Brush," buyers have used it on dry hair without issue, too. 5 A Plumping Wash That Reduces DHT 6 A Scalp Massager To Remove Buildup
During shampooing, Matias says, "Make sure you are really massaging your scalp to get blood circulating. It’s amazing to see how many people carry all of their stress in their heads." The
Maxsoft scalp brush is an Amazon cult favorite because it helps you achieve a deep, relaxing cleansing every time you shower. The soft silicone bristles encourage circulation, remove buildup, and help your shampoo clean better, while the ergonomic handle is comfortable and waterproof. Choose from three colors. 7 This Multitasking Liquid Supplement For Hair Loss
liquid hair supplement contains a cocktail of vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, folate, and Vitamin B-12 that you can add to smoothies or juices (or enjoy alone) to help promote strong hair follicles and hair growth, as well as clearer skin and more robust nails. One reviewer noted she has tried every hair vitamin and this one is the best: “Within 3 weeks, my roots were THICK. It was the most growth I experienced all winter long.” 8 A High-Quality Heat Protector Spray
"Protecting your hair is so important," Butler says. "Blow dryers and straightening or curling irons will force a tremendous amount of heat on your hair. A good thermal protectant will coat the hair and help to create a barrier against high heat."
HSI PROFESSIONAL is one of the most versatile and popular options on the market. It's sulfate-free, works with all types of styling tools, and uses argan oil to protect your hair up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. 9 This Hair Serum For Those Who Love Hot Tools
For those who regularly use flat irons or curling irons, "you may want to invest in products that protect against up to 350 degrees of heat," notes Matias. "My go-to for iron work is
Serum Therapiste from Kérastase." In addition to protecting hair against high-heat tools, it also reinforces strands with special repairing fibers, which minimize split ends while maximizing elasticity. Buyers say it's also non-greasy and has a pleasant scent. 10 A Scalp Serum With 15 Hair-Nourishing Ingredients
"My salon stylist had me try this product for my delicate, thin hair," one reviewer wrote. After trying
PURA D'OR's scalp serum, the customer "noticed my scalp is calmer and less irritated! My hair looks fuller/thicker. After my first bottle I had to purchase another." In fact, countless buyers have had great results with the formula, which is loaded with 15 growth-encouraging ingredients like argan oil, biotin, caffeine, stem sells, and DHT blockers. 11 This Conditioner That Protects Fragile, Thinning Hair
For a conditioner that helps to protect fragile hair, this
anti-thinning conditioner is a highly rated pick that contains biotin, moisturizing argan oil, and amla oil to encourage hair growth. This sulfate-free conditioner keeps strands smooth and thicker looking and one reviewer said, “I have used this conditioner for over a year, and it is the best! My post menopausal hair thinning has become a thing of the past, and my hair looks and feels like it did before menopause.” 12 A Thickening Spray That Won’t Weigh Down Hair
"I am a hair stylist and love this product. It works great on fine thin hair WITHOUT it feeling dirty or gummy," one reviewer wrote. "I have used it alone or with other products and find it performs really well." And, according to
BOLDIFY thickening spray's 4.4-star rating, thousands of others agree that it's an easy way to boost texture and volume in under 60 seconds, all without weighing hair down. 13 The Heated Styling Brush That Volumizes
Revlon One-Step is a cult-favorite tool because it dries, styles, and volumizes hair — in one easy step, and while causing way less damage than a standard straightener or curling iron. Since it's a brush and blow dryer in one, it directs hot hair through the bristles so you can style hair in a single pass. It's also made with a ceramic coating and a negative ion generator to further reduce damage. "My hair is now growing thanks to this," one buyer wrote. 14 This Dietary Supplement To Nourish Follicles
dermatologist Joshua Zeichner in an interview with Bustle, Viviscal's supplements help "provide the building blocks to the scalp so follicles can function optimally." This supplement contains ingredients like zinc, biotin, vitamin E, horsetail extract, and iron, all of which help to nourish follicles from the inside out. In short, it has a 4.5-star rating on Amazon because reviewers rave, "Viviscal brought thickness and length." 15 A Budget-Friendly Vegan Biotin Supplement
"Biotin is also a great natural supplement to aid in the hair growth process," Matias says — but there are tons on the market to choose from. This certified vegan
biotin supplement is non-GMO and includes calcium. Each veggie soft-gel contains 10,000 micrograms of biotin to support hair growth — and it helps with nails and skin, too. 16 This Microfiber Hair Towel That Reduces Breakage
"Does it dry your hair faster? Yes! Does it cut down on frizz? Yes! Is it super absorbent? Yes! My hair stylist has told me to switch to microfiber towels to dry my hair and now I understand why," one reviewer wrote. In fact, hair stylists regularly recommend the
DuraComfort towel because the soft microfiber material minimizes damage and breakage. It's also lightweight so it doesn't put pressure on your roots and removes excess water so you need less heat for styling. 17 A Shampoo For When Your Hair Won't Grow More
If you "can't seem to grow [your] hair past a certain point," Matias recommends "
Extentioniste from Kérastase, which will help to promote longer, stronger hair." The formula is designed to target weaker strands, helping you get past the point of no new growth. It's also cleansing enough to lift away dirt, oil, excess product, and impurities from the scalp, but does so gently while adding nourishing lipids. 18 This Diffuser Attachment That Enhances Curls
Dozens of reviewers say their stylists recommended the
Black Orchid hair diffuser, which helps you to create defined, frizz-free curls as an alternative to excessive heat styling. It fits on any hair dryer with a 1.8-inch diameter; then it directs the air through the ventilated fingers, which are extra long to encourage strands into ringlet shapes. The 360-degree airflow dries hair quickly while minimizing damage, and the inner seal helps the tool to stay in place. 19 A 100-Pack Of Cotton Hair Ties That Reduce Damage
According to Butler, "If you are pulling your hair up please avoid elastic rubber bands. They create a high amount of pressure in a specific area. This can weaken the hair and cause breakage." Unlike most elastic options,
J-MEE hair bands are soft, seamless, and made with stretchy cotton. They're designed to prevent damage, but they still offer a slip-free hold for various hairstyles. You can get this pack of 100 in three colors combinations: neutrals, rainbow, and all black. 20 The Fan-Favorite Invisibobble To Limit Tension
Additionally, Matias says the "
Invisibobble is a unique hair tie that really helps to reduce breakage because of its lightweight low-tension hold." Unlike elastic-based hair ties, this one uses a spiral design that gently holds hair up without slipping and without creating creases. Thanks to its smooth surface, it won't tangle or damage hair. 21 These Foam-Covered Rods That Curl Hair Without Heat
Another stylist favorite: these
heat-free curling rods from Tifara Beauty. "I have been trying to grow my hair for years and it has been a long and extremely slow process," one reviewer wrote. "It has also been difficult to find cute hair styles that are 'damage free' until I bought these. I am actually amazed at how well these work." When wrapped into damp hair, the flexible interior holds strands in place while the lightweight foam cushions your head and wicks excess moisture. By morning, reviewers have "beautiful ringlets" with minimal effort and breakage. 22 A Best-Selling Hair-Growth Foam From Rogaine
When it comes to regrowth, this treatment is a popular one — both among experts and reviewers. "Rogaine foam contains an ingredient called minoxidil, which has been clinically shown to improve thinning hair," dermatologist
Zeichner told Bustle . This two-month supply conditions the scalp, exfoliates away old skin that may be blocking follicles, and creates a healthy environment for hair growth. (The company also makes a similar treatment for men.) 23 This Phototherapy Comb With Both Blue & Red Light
massaging brush combines vibration for circulation, blue illumination for anti-inflammatory effects, and red light wavelengths for strength and growth. It's also USB-rechargeable for convenience. So far, reviewers say it's easy to incorporate into their routines and actually helps with hair regrowth. Experts: Patrick Butler, technical director of education at Floyd's 99 Barbershop Jonathan Matias, lead stylist and colorist at [salon]718 in Brooklyn, New York Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, dietician and author
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This article was originally published on
March 15, 2020