How to Thicken Hair Naturally – 5 Ways

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How to Thicken Hair Naturally - 5 Ways

Looking for a simple solution to thicken hair naturally? I’m always trying to find new ways to make my long and thin hair look thicker. But, many products you find in the store for volumizing hair contain harsh chemicals and can often cause more harm to your delicate hair. If you’re like me, you want to have full thicker hair that is both shiny and healthy looking and the best way to get this is by using only natural ingredients.

Not only are the harsh chemicals bad because they can be absorbed through your skin, but they can also cause your hair to break more easily or cause hair loss as well. When I was in college quite a few years ago, I used to tease my hair and spray it with toxic hairspray to make it appear thicker. Even though it worked for some time, it just caused more damage to my hair and the toxic chemicals in the hair spray were frightening. But, there’s no need to use harmful chemical laden products, because there are several effective ways to thicken hair naturally!

Why is Thinning Hair so Common?

Over 60% of women have thinning hair or are dealing with some type of hair loss.

There are many health conditions and simple vitamin deficiencies that can cause hair to thin or thin hair may just be a genetic trait in your family. To treat thinning hair it is best if you can find out the cause. However, even if you don’t know the cause, there are many natural ways to thicken your hair that are very successful and simple to do. You can see results in just a few weeks to a few months!

Causes of Thin Hair

There are many causes that could be the reason you have thin hair or are experiencing hair loss. Listed below are just a few of the most common causes. In order to determine the underlying cause, you may want to see a Naturopathic doctor who can help you by getting appropriate blood tests to find out why your hair is thinning.

-Shampoo: If you’re shampoo contains harmful ingredients such as sodium laureth sulfate, which has been linked to causing hair loss, switch to a natural shampoo immediately. Castile soap makes a great all natural shampoo (see it here).
-Copper Deficiency– A deficiency in copper can cause hair thinning and other symptoms such as fatigue. A lack of this mineral is common because it can be difficult to absorb and those who supplement often with zinc, have even more trouble absorbing it. Women who supplemented with cooper saw an increase in hair growth by 38%.
-Manganese deficiency- German researchers found that some women were deficient in this mineral and those who took 10mg daily re-grew their hair in just 3 months.
Hypothyroidism– One of the most common symptoms is hair thinning. This is easy to check with a simple blood test.
-Vitamin D Deficiency– Hair loss is one of the primary symptoms of a deficiency in vitamin D.
-Hormonal Imbalance– A disruption in the balance of your hormones, such as estrogen or testosterone can cause hair loss.
-Stress – Due to increased cortisol levels, stress can cause hair thinning and hair loss.

5 Ways to Thicken Hair Naturally

1. Castor Oil:

Castor oil has been used successfully for many years for increasing hair growth, not only for your head, but also for eyebrows and eyelashes. It is well known for the many health benefits it provides including its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. Castor oil is high in omega 3 fatty acids, ricinoleic acid, and vitamin E, in addition to many other minerals and proteins. These nutrients help nourish the hair and scalp to increase growth. Castor oil also increases circulation, which is critical for promoting hair growth.

How to use it: Take a few tablespoons of castor oil (use more or less depending on how long your hair is) and massage it into your scalp. Make sure to use pure castor oil that is hexane free, like this.

It is a thick oil so it may be a little difficult to spread. You can mix it with a thinner oil to make it a little easier to put on, like coconut oil. (Just mix 1/2 coconut oil with 1/2 castor oil). Continue to massage it into your scalp for several minutes, then begin to work it through the rest of your hair. Let it sit on your hair for an hour or two, then wash it out. Try to do this at least once a week or several times a week for better results.

2. Onion Juice:

Onion juice increases circulation and decreases inflammation of the hair follicles, which promotes hair growth and decreases hair breakage. The onion juice also acts as a natural antioxidant to reverse the damage caused by a buildup of hydrogen peroxide on the scalp, which is associated with hair loss.

See how to make onion juice and how to use it to thicken hair naturally in my post, here.

3. Ginseng:

Applying ginseng to treat thinning hair works because the beneficial compounds it contains help stimulate blood flow to your scalp and hair follicles, which aids in the regeneration of cells to promote hair growth. I use these American gingseng capsules. I empty the capsule and mix it with oil to make it easy to apply.

How to use it: Empty one ginseng powder capsule and add it to 3 to 4 tablespoons of oil (you can use coconut oil or jojoba oil). Stir the mixture and apply it to your scalp. Continue to massage it into your scalp for about 5minutes. Repeat several times per week or daily.

4. Massaging Scalp:

One of the simplest ways to promote hair growth and reverse thinning hair is to just to massage your scalp daily. Massaging your scalp increases blood flow and promotes circulation to stimulate hair growth. Just use your hands to massage your scalp for about 5 minutes, two times a day. I do it once in the morning and once at night.

5.Essential Oils:

There are quite a few essential oils that have been shown to promote new hair growth and prevent hair breakage. Two of the most common that are used to increase hair thickness are: grapeseed oil and cedarwood essential oil. Grapeseed oil contains a high amount of essential fatty acids and Vitamin E which promotes thicker hair. Additional beneficial essential oils include lavender, rosemary, and thyme.

How to use it: Add 5 drops of one of these essential oils to 2 to 3 tablespoons of a carrier oil (coconut oil or jojoba oil works great). Mix them together and apply to your scalp with your fingers. Continue massaging it on to your scalp for about 5 minutes. Repeat several times a week.

2 Ways to Make Your Hair Look Thicker Instantly!

If you start using some of the above mentioned ways to thicken your hair, you should see results in a few weeks or within a few months. But, if you want your hair to have more volume and look thicker instantly, there are two natural ways to do it.

1. Baking Soda-

Instead of washing your hair with shampoo, use baking soda. Typical shampoos leave behind residue that builds up on the hair shaft and can leave your hair flatter, more dull, and looking thin. To wash your hair with baking soda, take a 3 to 4 tablespoons of baking soda and add about 3/4 cup of water. Mix them together and it will form a liquid mixture that can be used in place of shampoo.

The baking soda removes the build up of residue and will instantly leave your hair looking thicker. With continued use it also works great because it stimulates the hair follicles and the exfoliation it provides can boost hair growth over time.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar-

After you wash your hair, take 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar and pour it over your hair as a hair rinse. Do not rinse it out with water, leave it in your hair and dry as usual. The apple cider vinegar is full of nutrients and it helps balance the pH levels of your scalp. After you dry your hair you will see it will have instantly more volume. This is because the vinegar removes the build up of residue on your hair.

Not only is apple cider vinegar great for adding volume to your hair instantly, but with continued use it will also promote hair growth and decrease hair breakage due to its rich source of vitamins and nutrients.

Have you tried any of these ways to thicken hair naturally?

Additional sources:

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  1. Rebekah says

    I think my hair is genetically thin, inherited from my grandma and mom. And it grows pretty slow. I try to do hair masks with coconut oil, olive oil, aloe vera, cinnamon, I even used onion (but it stinks so bad I don’t think I’ll do it again). I started taking biotin, which actually seemed to help prevent hair loss. I will consider manganese and copper. Thanks!

  2. Cindy says

    What about natural grass-fed gelatin? No mention of it here, but it’s great for thick, pretty hair.

    • Lori Klein says

      Grass-fed gelatin is fantastic! Thank you for mentioning it! I was trying to stick with more topically treatments, but dietary changes are extremely important as well. :)

  3. Robin Conkel-hannan says

    I tried the sodapoo but it dried my already dry hair.. I had been using 50/50 ACV and honey for hair loss.. I realized that it was also cleansing my hair.. After I rinse the mix from my hair I follow it with a vinegar rinse and with a bit of coconut oil.. My hair is the best it’s ever been..

    • Lori Klein says

      Hi Kim, I was using the ‘no poo’ method for a few years, but my hair became dry. So, I now wash my hair with castile soap and use apple cider vinegar as a conditioner.

          • Admir says

            Hello Lori,

            After I saw this article into your website, I tried the method of onion juice.
            It is a bit difficult to practice due to the bad smell. So, I want to ask you a question:
            Does it matter the kind of shampoo I wash up the hair after I hold the onion juice for about a half hour onto my hair?!

            and another question is: could I use a conditioner shampoo? in order to remove all of the onion smell.

            thank you in advance.
            looking forward to hear from you.

            • Lori says

              Any type of shampoo or combination shampoo/conditioner should work to remove the smell. I use castile soap myself.

              • Admir says

                Thank you for your answer Mrs. Klein,
                I am using this method, I guess it is working well to me.

                have a nice day.

            • Lori says

              Probably about 4 to 6 months to really notice a difference. The 2 methods at the bottom helped me immediately, especially using the apple cider vinegar.

    • Lori Klein says

      Thanks Adrienne! I use castor oil about once every two weeks or so. It was hard to get out for me too! But, I apply a little baking soda afterwords and really helps get it out. :)

  4. says

    Alma naturals makes shampoo bars with essential oils. My husband uses the one for thinning hair and his hair is growing back. I use the one for dandruff. My daughter with oily hair uses the orange mint and my daughter with waist length hair uses the lavender and frankincense one. Willi never go back to liquid shampoo. I only condition my hair twice a month. The bars have argan oil coconut oil jojoba oil and olive oil.

  5. dee leatherman says

    How would I use the grape seed oil for my thin hair also I have Walmart organic extra virgin coconut oil will that work

    • Lori Klein says

      Coconut oil works great it is very moisturizing! You could mix some of the grape seed oil in with the coconut oil and apply it as a hair mask.

        • Lori Klein says

          Avocado oil is great! I’ve used castor oil, coconut oil, and jojoba oil before. Oh and olive oil. :) Just a few teaspoons is usually enough.

  6. E Pyer says

    Baking soda to get out residual castor oil. Can you explain. Make paste or put straight on head? Will any of this affect semi-permanent hair color?

    • Lori Klein says

      I pour a couple tablespoons of it dry into my hand and rub it near the roots of my hair. (You may not need to use that much- I have really long hair) Then put my hair under the water and massage it while I’m rinsing it out. It takes out the extra oil. :)

  7. Zulfi says

    I used Minoxidil 5% 2011-2012 and I got hairs density increased in one and a haif year,but when I left Minoxidill 5%,I lost that density much fast than it was before using Mino.
    I used your onion juice trick for 3 months it stopped my hairfall.For getting new hairs I started Mino since April.But I m afraid to leave it bcz it may harm. Can you give guideline.

  8. Tania says


    Has any of these natural remedies actually made your thicker? If so could you let me know which were most effective? I lose quite a few strands of hair when I’m in the bath tub and I get scared that I will lose my hair.

    Thanks :)

    • Lori Klein says

      For me, I’ve noticed a big improvement from doing the massaging (2 times a day for the past few years), castor oil (weekly), and doing the onion juice.

  9. Jitendra says

    I am 42 year old men.from last few years i lost my hair very fast.pls. suggest me best to stop hair falling,thinning and grow new hair.

    • Robin Conkel-hAnnan says

      ACV/honey mix, 50/50 works well for me.. I don’t think there is help for male pattern baldness as it’s hereditary..

      • joe says

        you never see a baldy woman I took acv honey baking soda cocanut oil grass and boil it up in the saucepan and ended up in the hostipal for a hold week it was horrible to drink

  10. none says

    I am a Guy and I want to thicken my hair, slightly. Would hyaluronic acid help? I eat a healthy diet. My hair used to be blonde, somewhat now it isn’t…what happened? Hormonal change, I think so. I intend to keep my hair forever so do you have any advice?
    You can email me back, if you want to.

    • Robin Conkel-hAnnan says

      All of the changes you mention can be the result of aging.. They can occur in some people who are quite young.. Darkening of hair can occur up to 30 or so.. Lightening/fading usually comes with late middle age.. I had an aunt who’s red hair turned brown, in late middle age..

  11. Shorya says

    My hair already have immense power to grow quickly but the one and only problem I’m suffering through is my thin hair!!!! Hardcore solution required soon ??

  12. sooniu says

    i have oily should i avoid oil massage or use it?if i should use which oil? my hair is falling a lot and now its too thin. is it bcoz of oily hair.what can do

    • Lori says

      You can still use oil even though you have oily hair. Sometimes hair becomes oily because we are washing it too often and stripping away the natural oils.

  13. says

    Hy i extremely need your help. Please tell me can I use baking soda to thicken my hair? Does it also reduce hairfall.? What is cider? My hair are very thin and it is falling a little but I feel embarrassed of my thin hair. What should I do?

    • Lori says

      I’ve used all of them over the past few years and the ends of my hair are color treated. They still came out good and didn’t harm my hair.

  14. Riyaz says

    Hi, I am 48 yrs, male n m going bald and my hairs are thin, can you suggest something for me, will castor oil with jojoba oil help regrowth? Thanks

  15. says

    Does baking soda make hair dry and brittle. Can anyone having already dry hair can use it? Can egg also make volume in hair and what vinegar should we use white or green

    • Lori Klein says

      I use apple cider vinegar after baking soda, it acts as a natural conditioner. Egg works great for shine and moisturizing.

  16. Taran says

    Great article above ! It was mentioned to use ACV rinse after washing hair and not rinse it out… But If I just dump half a cup of ACV onto my head after washing and not rinse it out… won’t my hair smell like vinegar after Blowdrying? Also does ACV rinse not make hair greasy ?

    • Lori says

      Glad it was helpful! My hair doesn’t smell at all after it dries (air dry or blow dry). ACV doesn’t make hair greasy at all. It’s nothing like regular conditioner. Commercial conditions always make my hair look really thin and weighed down. The ACV helps soften my hair, gets rid of tangles, but gives my hair a lot more volume.

  17. E Pyer says

    Isn’t it also true that your hair follicles decrease in size as we age and thus causes thinning of the hair that does grow?

  18. Has says

    Are these products (castor oil, etc…) and treatments (onion juice…) safe for a pregnant woman ?

    Thank you.

    • Has says

      … and is there something to replace the ginsen products ? can’t buy it where i am !

      one last thing, how to apply castor oil on eyelashes ?

      Thanks again.

      • Rachael says

        Castor oil if taken internally is thought to induce labor… not sure about using externally. Might want to stay away from this one while pregnant or ask a doctor.

  19. Zahid Chaudhary says

    Hi Klein,
    I like the way you address the issues of the people. I’m male 32 and suffering the problem of hair loss from the last four months. In the last four months, I lost my hair’s so rapidly and much worried about the problem. All of my friends and family members are also noticed the change.
    I’m wondering why is that happening in that quick way and what should I have to do to stop the hair fall…
    Still..the problem getting worse and worse…
    needs your advice.


    • Lori says

      Hi there, you may want to see a naturopath to see if there is an underlying cause, such as a thyroid issue, adrenal, or hormonal cause.

  20. Sruthi Iyer says

    Hey!!! My haier is genetically thin…And I started using onion nd coconut juice…What else can I do for the thickening of hair soon????

    • Lori says

      You may want to consider some of the additional remedies I listed in the article, like massaging and lavender oil.

  21. Mujammel says

    Hi , thanks for this very informative article .
    Lately I’ve noticed my hair had gone thin and weak .

    I just realised now after reading this , it’s because I have been using shampoo that contains the harmful ingrediant sodium laureth sulfate ,( which I had never heard go until now )
    I checked my shampoo to see if it contains this , I found it does .
    I will stop using this shampoo from now on .

    Thanks again .

  22. marisacigliano says

    Hi! I’m looking for a routine/remedy that would help my hair. It is thin, dry, and it gets wavy/frizzy during the day. I want to moisturize it while also increasing it’s thickness and volume and keeping it straight. If you have any ideas please let me know what I could buy and also the process of using the products. Thank you! :)

  23. ruby flores says

    Olive oil works best for me,just massage it on your scalp and leave for 30 mins or more.I noticed that my hair fall is decreasing.I also tried it with aloe vera and onion juice it made my hair shinier.

  24. swati says

    Hi klein,
    I read your article.. Its really great…! I hv a query reharding onion juice. You mentioned i should be applying that daily at night fr 30 mins. So is it like i am supposed to shampoo my hairs daily then? As i thinkbit will b greasy then .. So wont that be harmful.. Applying shampoo daily?
    Also please let me know can we completely replace our shampoo with baking soda and conditioner with ACV? And how frequently we can apply that.

    • Lori says

      I left it on for about an hour to a few hours and then washed it out with shampoo. I’m not sure if washing with baking soda would remove the onion smell enough.

      • swati says

        Actually, i am really nt concerned abt onion smell. Just tell me:

        1. can we completely replace shampoo with baking soda or should we mix it with some amt of shampoo as well.
        2. Should vinegar be poured over the scalp? Or only throughout the length of the hairs.

        • Lori says

          For the no-poo method, they replace shampoo with baking soda. I pour apple cider vinegar mixed with water over my whole head and the length of my hair as a conditioner.

  25. says

    Herb” Fo-Ti” is great for growing hair and preventing your hair from going grey. Also black sesame seeds are excellent for hair, because they have a great amount of copper. And you can also utilize copper pyramid( for meditation use) , when you seat inside it your body will absorb copper, through the energy flow. Good Luck! :-)

  26. Rey says

    My situation is completely different, i nearly died from a blood clot on my lung, i had been put on wafarin (blood thinner made from rat poison – yes its real and scary) this made me lose half of my beautiful crop. I now have very thin hair! I was on tne medication for 6 months and am concerned. It looks terrible and makes me feel very low! How can i reverse whats happened??
    Thanks so much!!

    • Lori says

      Hi Rey, so sorry to hear that. Hope you are seeing an improvement and one of the natural remedies helps :)

  27. Nadiya says

    I will definitely try the baking soda and acv…its cheap and its worth a try, being that I’ve tried so many other stuff….I had full, very thick hair, but not again…..hoping to get positive results. I use alot of castor oil and coconut oils, even GNC hair/Nail/Skin, and still hair drops bad. Skin improved drastically though….will let u know the results with the baking soda and acv…..thanks so much for the info

  28. DM says

    Hi Klein,
    I have used several methods through diff website and the result were useless. but i sud say; your remedies are D Best :)
    i used the baking soda & Acv method and i saw the difference in just on wash.
    i am very happy and it would be grateful if you could post something on dietary supplement.

  29. Husna Hussain says

    Below are the list of ingreadients in my shampoo. Please could you let me know if i should change it?

    Aqua (Water), Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Dimethicone, Sodium Chloride, Biotin, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Ethyltrimonium Chloride Methacrylate/Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein Copolymer, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Coco-Betaine, Polyquaternium-10, Glycol Stearate, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Laureth-4, Laureth-23, Parfum (Fragrance), Citric Acid, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Sodium Sulfate, Disodium EDTA, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Hexyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Benzoate, CI 60730 (Ext. Violet 2).

    • Lori says

      You can look up the ingredients on EWG site to see what hazard rating they have. There are lot more natural shampoos than the one you’re using. I like castile soap myself.

  30. Paparezzi says

    A couple of months ago I had really thick hair. And it was very very thick. And now suddenly it’s got so thin now. How much time will it take for my hair to be naturally thick if I use onion juice and baking soda??
    P.S MY shampoo contains Sodium Laurth Sulphate and I’ve been using it since I was 10. And I am now 12 .Plz reply

    • Lori says

      If you’re looking for a shampoo without sodium laureth sulfate, I like castile soap. In the study, those who used the onion juice saw results in 4 to 8 weeks.

    • Anonymous says

      Sometimes a buildup on my hair will make it appear thinner. I shampoo with baking soda and have instant improvement. It couldn’t hurt to try it.

  31. Priyanka says

    Lori, I have very thin, rough and dry hair. I also have hair falland split end problem. Among the above mentioning methods which one suits my hair better ? Please help me.

  32. Priyanka says

    Hi Lori
    I have thin, dry and rough hair with lots of split end. Among mentioned methods, which one suits me.

  33. Aafreen says

    I used to hav long n thick hair but in course of time may b since two -three yearsam losing my hair
    Can u help me out with wat to aply to my hair

  34. Mangboi says

    baking soda and ACV for a rinse, will this help the hair remain normally thick or we should done daily or how frequent? i am gonna try out this…lookin forward for ur reply…..

  35. Yasmine says

    Hi Lori,
    I just wanted to know what I can do because my hair is thin like you can see my scalp more, if theirs anything you’d recommend me to try to thicken it or something please thank you..

  36. Lydia Thurston says

    I have worked with acv if you don’t rinse it out with water won’t your hair stink? Also I did do the baking soda and my hair is dry, would oil help to soften it up a bit?

    • Lori says

      I thought it would leave a smell. But I don’t notice any smell after I dry my hair. The apple cider vinegar really helps to moisturize. But, if it’s still too dry, you could use an oil.

  37. Bee says

    In theory, could you mix some castor oil, grapeseed oil and ginseng powder together and apply? Or would any of these ingredients react with or lower the effectiveness of any of the other ingredients?

  38. Jenny says

    Hey Lori,
    I have a question I have very dry hair and thinning by the minute it feels like. I just tried the castor oil and coconut oil mix. Is it okay to leave a little of the oil in my hair being that its so darn dry. About how long till I can may see a little difference in my hair texture.

  39. Deepanjali Kumar says

    I’m a graduate student and from 3 years I’m losing my hair rapidly. Although I’ve taken and I’m taking treatment but it seems of no use…. I’m very depressed kindly suggest me the best way to get thick hair…😔

      • Vanshika says

        Hi lori
        After suffering from hair fall for 6 momths my hairs have become very thin and are not growing acurately i need ur help ….i have started using olive oil but pls tell me some tips for growing my hairs and making them thick and how much time will it take? Pls help me or should i have a cut? ;but i dont wonna cause i want thick and long hairs initially i was having very thick hairs .

  40. Priya sharma says

    Actually when I’m tensed about my hairs.they have become too thin.. Will applying baking sad on hair work?? When will I be able to see the results????

  41. Laura says

    Hello Lori, I want to try the onion juice and “no poo” remedy. Though I’m conflicted. I use temporary hair coloring like Natural Instincts by Clairol and Color Charm because it adds thickness to my hair. Can I continue this coloring monthly and also wash with the baking soda and condition with the ACV as a rince daily? Does temporary coloring defeat the benefits of your suggested remedies?

    • Lori says

      I used to use the same temporary color lol. I don’t think the baking soda or onion juice would effect the color. However, I haven’t used them on temporary color myself. I haven’t colored my hair in about 10 years. You should still get the benefits because the onion juice gets applied daily/or weekly and it will still be absorbed by the scalp.

  42. McKenzie says

    Hi I just found your website and I was wondering how long you have to use the baking soda to get thick hair. My hair I can tell is thinner and I was going to try something to help it. I use a straighter when I need it for a few pieces of troubling hair. Hope I can try it soon!

  43. Kimberly says

    How exactly do I apply the vinegar? Do i need to dilute it and is it really safe to just leave it in without rinsing?

    • Lori says

      I apply it straight most of the time. But, you can also mix it with water too. I leave it in without rinsing after for the best results.

    • Lori says

      I haven’t heard anything about it being harmful. ACV is said to be very beneficial because it contains many nutrients and minerals.

      • Michelle says

        hi what about hair loss due to medication? I’ve lost over half my hair over the 10 years I’ve been on Methotrexate can you suggest anything for me? Thanks

      • Frank says

        So how long did it take you to thicken your hair, what were different remidies that you used and when did you start seeing a difference?

  44. Seul Ra says

    hy.. if we use the ACV as a condtioner.. and no need to rinse it with water.. doesnt it smell like vinegar after that?? bcus i would like too use ASV..

  45. Anonymous says

    Hi Lori I am 13 years old girl and my hairs are very thin so which remedy will be the best for me please reply please ibreally want to get thick hair fast so tell me the quick remedy that can make my hair thick In a month please reply


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