Skip to content.
Dry Hair vs Frizzy Hair: Are They Different?
Dry Hair vs Frizzy Hair: Are They Different?

Dry Hair vs Frizzy Hair: Are They Different?

Table of Contents

    Although dry hair and frizzy hair share similarities, they are distinct issues requiring specific treatments to address and manage the underlying causes. In this blog, we have broken down how to spot the difference between the two as well as the causes and treatment options for combating dry or frizzy hair.

    What is Dry Hair?

    Dry hair happens when your hair is deprived of moisture and natural oils causing your hair to become brittle and break easily. This happens when your natural oil production is out of balance and unable to retain moisture. Here is how to identify dry hair and what causes it:

    Characteristics of Dry Hair: 

    Lack of shine: 

    One of the first telltale signs of dry hair is it often looks dull and lacks the healthy glow that well-hydrated hair has. 


    If your hair has a brittle texture and easily splits because of its weakened structure is another sign of dry hair.  

    Itchiness and Flakiness: 

    If you are suffering from dry hair, chances are your scalp is dry as well. This can lead to an itchy scalp or flakes to come off your scalp. 

    Causes of Dry Hair: 

    Excessive Washing:  

    Washing your hair excessively with hot water is going to dry out your scalp and hair. Your scalp needs time to naturally produce oils and regulate itself. 

    Heat Styling: 

    Using heat styling tools or hair dryers on a hot setting can dry or damage your hair by drawing out moisture. It is best to use hair dryers on a cold setting, let your hair air dry or use a heat protectant before using heat styling tools. 

    Chemical Treatments: 

    When your hair has undergone chemical treatments it is more prone to breakage as the hair’s cuticle is weakened and lacks the protein structures to retain moisture. 

    Environmental Factors: 

    Another consideration is environmental factors such as exposure to hot or cold weather can dry your scalp and hair out. 

    Poor Nutrition: 

    If your diet is lacking in vitamin E, biotin and essential fatty acids, your hair can become dry and brittle. It is important to eat a wide range of fruits and vegetables or supplement with hair growth vitamins to give your hair that extra boost it needs. 

    What Is Frizzy Hair? 

    A marker of frizzy hair is the hair cuticles lacking smoothness and control. This happens when your hair cuticle is raised, drawing in moisture into the hair shaft and making it frizzy. Here is how to identify frizzy hair and what causes it: 

    Characteristics of Frizzy Hair: 

    Unruly Texture: 

    A key marker of frizzy hair is that it seems to have a mind of its own, with the hair strands sticking out in many directions making it hard to manage. 

    Excessive Volume: 

    As moisture is drawn into the cuticle, it creates a puffy, static appearance. 

    Lack of Definition: 

    Depending on your hair type, your hair may appear to have lost its shape, such as curls losing their definition or straight hair becoming frizzy. 

    Frizzy hair symptoms

    Causes of Frizzy Hair: 


    If you are in a humid environment, it can exacerbate frizz as there is more moisture in the air that can enter into the hair shaft and cause it to swell up. 

    Damaged Cuticle: 

    Your hair cuticle can become damaged if you are overusing heat styling tools, chemical treatments or roughly brushing your hair. 

    Inadequate Moisture: 

    If your hair is lacking moisture, it can become frizzy. This can be due to overwashing, excessive heat exposure or using drying shampoos with sulphates or alcohols. 

    Hair Type: 

    Depending on your hair type you may be predisposed to frizz because of the inherent structure of the hair shaft. 

    How to Tell the Difference between Dry Hair and Frizzy Hair? 

    Whilst it is difficult to distinguish between dry hair vs frizzy hair, looking at your hair's texture, appearance and underlying hair care practices or environments you are in can lend information as to what condition you are dealing with. As discussed above, dry hair feels rough and brittle with a lack of shine, moisture and buoyancy. Frizzy hair, on the other hand, often has a mind of its own, appears puffy and is difficult to control, particularly in humid environments. 

    dry vs frizzy hair

    How to Treat Dry Hair and Frizzy Hair? 

    Now that you have distinguished if you are suffering from dry or frizzy hair, let’s explore how to best treat each condition: 

    Treating Dry Hair: 

    Moisturising Shampoos and Conditioners: 

    Using hydrating and sulphate-free shampoos and conditioners designed to seal in moisture and feed your hair nutrients without stripping away your natural oils is the best practice for treating dry hair. 

    Deep Conditioning: 

    Using a deep conditioning mask once a week will give your hair that extra nutrient boost it needs. Opting for one with shea butter, such as Pump’s repair mask, will seal in moisture and protect the hair shaft from further damage.  

    Avoid Excessive Washing: 

    Limiting washing your hair to a couple of times a week will give your hair time to maintain its natural oils. 

    Balanced Diet: 

    Making sure you are eating a well-rounded diet, and getting all essential vitamins and minerals will support your hair from becoming dry and brittle. 

    Scalp Care: 

    Looking after your scalp by using gentle hair care practices will help your hair grow fuller and healthier. 

    Regular Trims: 

    Making sure to cut off any split ends regularly will help your hair stay refreshed and less prone to breakage. 

    Treating Frizzy Hair: 

    Hydrate and Condition: 

    Frizzy hair also needs proper hydration and conditioning to not become susceptible to frizz. 

    Frizz-control Products: 

    Using anti-frizz products such as an anti-frizz spray, hydrating shampoo or conditioner will help support your frizzy hair. Pump’s anti-frizz trio pack offers a viable solution to managing frizz. 

    Use a Wide-tooth Comb: 

    Wide-toothed combs are gentler on your hair and do not damage the hair cuticles. 

    Avoid Overwashing: 

    Similar to dry hair, overwashing can cause your hair strands to frizz. It is best to keep your washing to once or twice a week to give your hair time to produce its natural oils. 


    anti frizz hair products


    Cold Rinse: 

    Washing your hair with cold water will seal in your hair cuticles, making it less prone to drawing moisture, which is the primary culprit behind frizz. 

    Key Takeaways: 

    While it is difficult to determine if you are suffering from dry hair vs frizzy hair, taking the proper steps to identify and treat your condition is possible. Follow the steps discussed above and you will find your hair gets back to the luscious locks you desire. 

    Read more

    Please check out the rest of my blog posts for hair advice and more!

    Tash's Blog
    What Is Hair Slugging And Does It Really Work?

    Hair slugging is an effective way of making sure your hair gets all the moisture and protection it needs.

    Read the article
    What is Hair Porosity?

    Questions have been flooding in! And honestly, they’re super valid.

    Read the article
    Tash's Blog