What’s Your Type?

Natural Hair Tips:

What’s your hair type?

Different hair textures need different types of TLC!  Knowing your hair type is incredibly useful when it comes to styling. Have you ever wanted to follow a hair tutorial on YouTube but when you actually try the style- it looks completely different? Chances are it’s because your hair is curlier, straighter, thicker or drier than a YouTuber among many other qualities. Understanding your hair type can help sift through the millions of styles and techniques to find what truly works for you.

Hair types are classified by the numbers 1-4 and letters A-C. The numbers signify how straight or curly your hair is, while the letters describe how loose or tightly curled your hair shape is within each category.

Type 1: Straight

There is no curl or wave pattern to type 1 hair.  It usually appears shinier than other textures because oil can easily travel down the hair shaft. However, the lack of shape to the hair strands can also cause it to look oily much quicker.  When looking for hair products people with type 1 hair usually do best with light products that add texture and volume.

Lana Condor, Sleek Hair

Type 2: Waves

There is a slight “S” shape to wavy hair.  This hair type usually has little volume and can experience more frizz than straight hair but still be weighed down easily by moisturizing products. This hair type usually does best with light products that fight frizz.

Gigi, Waves

Type 3: Curly

Type 3 hair has a deep “S” shaped curve or ringlets with a large diameter. This hair type experiences some shrinkage, which describes how much the hair decreases in length when it dries. It also has more volume than straight or wavy hair, and even when it’s thin it can look much thicker; due to its volume and pattern. The shape of curly hair takes longer for natural oils to travel down the hair shaft; it’s usually drier than Type 1 & 2 hair. Women with curly hair often do best with curl defining and moisturizing products with medium consistency.

Zendaya, Curls

Type 4: Kinky

Type 4 hair can range from very small “s” shaped strands, tightly coiled ringlets, and zig-zag shaped strands. This hair type has the most shrinkage and even waist length hair can appear to be only shoulder length when the hair dries in its natural state. This hair type grows up and out naturally more so than down than other hair types. Due to the shape of the kinky-curly hair, the hairs oils take very long to reach the ends of the hair and moisturize it. Women with kinky curly hair usually do best with products with a thick consistency, are very moisturizing, and help the hair “clump” together in order to combat tangles.

Yara Shahidi, Kinky

Hair type isn’t the end-all-be-all that determines whether your hair will grow or react a certain way, it’s a great start for people who have trouble styling and managing their hair. Next time you look for a hair tutorial on YouTube, try searching with your hair type to find a video that feels like it was meant just for you.

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