I Can’t Figure Out My Hair Type/ All I See Is Hair

What is my hair type? This is a question that plagues many naturals, considering that it is one of the determining factors in finding the right hair products, hair routines and even styles to suite your hair.

You are either born with naturally curly or naturally straight hair. This is due to the linking of a disulfide bond between hair proteins in the hair shaft. Hence, the amount of curl or wave in the hair would be dependent on the number of links. A person with greater links would have a kinkier pattern and someone with fewer links would have straighter hair.

To put in layman terms, there are two main hair typing systems; The Texture Typing System modelled after celebrity hair stylist Andre Walker and the LOIS Hair Typing System. We shall focus on the Texture Typing System.

The Texture Typing System

This system focuses on Types 1 – 4; which ranges from straight to kinky hair with subdivisions a – c; based upon the diameter of your wave, curl or coil.

Type 1 – Straight Hair

Naturally straight hair usually very oily

  • Type 1a – fine & very soft hair
  • Type 1b – slightly coarse, thicker strands & voluminous
  • Type 1c – coarse, thick & frizzy

Type 2 – Wavy Hair

Naturally wavy and forms an ‘S’ shape

  • Type 2a – wavy hair with a natural sheen
  • Type 2b – tends to be frizzy & usually resistant to hair styling
  • Type 2c – coarse & thick with a high tendency to frizz

Type 3 – Curly Hair

Appears to be straight when wet but curly once dried

  • Type 3a – loose curls, voluminous, prone to frizzing & loses definition easily
  • Type 3b – less shiny, coarse hair, smaller diameter curl & voluminous

Type 3c – the coarsest of type, highly prone to frizz, well defined curls, greater density & volume.

Type 4 – Kinky Hair

Naturally kinky or coily hair, usually the hardest to retain moisture.

  • Type 4a – usually fragile, coils are usually the size of a crochet needle & high density and voluminous
  • Type 4b – usually forms a ‘z’ shape, coarse, coiled tightly and densely packed, shrinkage of up to 75% of original length
  • Type 4c – coarse, densely packed coils, less definition & less curly pattern

Remember your hair may not fit perfectly into one category, or you may find that sections of your hair fall under different categories, this is completely normal so don’t be alarmed. Now that you know your hair type or possibly types, you can find the right moisturizer, leave-in conditioner or products that generally work for you.

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