Photo: Ralf Nau/Lifesize/Getty Images
Unless you don’t like looking good, "shiny" and "frizz-free" are two terms you would love for people to use when describing your hair. To achieve both goals, you can apply an anti-frizz and/or shine serum to your hair. Serums are slightly thicker than a liquid, but have a filmier texture than a gel. Since the two serum qualities can be combined into one product, it’s important to know what each can do for your hair.
Main Ingredients: Anti-Frizz Serums
While each manufacturer may use different ingredients to achieve a shiny or frizz-free look, there are some ingredients unique to each purpose. To understand how an anti-frizz serum works, you must know that your hair shaft looks like a long strand that is covered with tiny shingles, much like a roof. If your hair is frizzy, the shingles are loose, flapping in the wind or just plain off your hair shaft. To keep hair from frizzing, manufacturers add ingredients like silicone or dimethicone to anti-frizz serums. These ingredients help to coat hair and keep moisture inside your hair shaft (where it should be) and make the hair appear smoother.
Main Ingredients: Shine Serums
Instead of adding silicone to the mixture, shine or glossing serums contain citrus extracts, vitamin B6, jasmine or olive oil. These ingredients are designed to condition and soften the hair, which can then make it appear shinier. These oils also can help to reflect light, which makes your hair appear glossier and healthier.
Two Products, Similar Goals
Do anti-frizz serums and shine serums have things in common? Sure, they do -- and they may even contain ingredients that help you achieve other goals, such as a sun protection factor or heat protectants. When serums reduce frizz, they typically make the hair look shinier because the hair shaft is smoother. Shine serums also make the hair look less frizzy because they typically condition your hair. So in the world of serums, there is definitely room for overlap.
Whatever You Do
Learning how to apply shine and/or anti-frizz serums can be an art. That’s because they typically contain oil that can otherwise weigh your hair down if applied with too heavy a hand. Start with a dime-sized amount, working mainly through your ends. If greasy hair is a problem, you may prefer to use an anti-frizz serum, because these typically do not contain the moisturizing oils as much as a glossing serum does.