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Types of Hair: What Kind Do You Have?

A part of what makes us beautiful is our unique characteristics. Some of us have brown eyes, while some have green. Some of us have corkscrew curls, and some flaunt hair as straight as silk. 

No matter what your hair type is, it’s worth knowing. And once you have figured out your hair type, it’s worth getting to know. This will help you get the most out of your gorgeously distinctive locks.

Consider this your one-stop-shop for finding out what your hair type is, the major categories of hair types, the difference between hair type and hair texture, and how to coax the beauty from your natural hair with styling products that were tailored to your hair type. Take our hair quiz today to get personalized recommendations for your hair type!

Why Is Hair Type Important?

Determining what type of hair you have is important. This can make all the difference when it comes to your hair care routine. As an example, those with kinky hair can end up doing themselves a disservice by using hair products that are more suited for people who have straight hair, ending up with frizz or breakage. 

People with fine hair sometimes don’t need as much hydration because too much moisture in the form of leave-in conditioner can leave their hair feeling weighed down and greasy. Even amongst curly-haired goddesses, there are some differences! Depending on your curl pattern, curly hair types need individual kinds of love.

Crafting your hair care regimen to suit your hair type is key to achieving healthy hair. It can also help us figure out what hairstyles and haircuts suit us best. After all, discussing our hair type with our hairstylist at the salon will ensure that the cut we want is as flattering as it can be.

Discovering what kind of hair type we have isn’t difficult! There are a couple of main categories of hair types, along with subcategories as well. It can seem a little overwhelming to figure out the various hair types. What is type 2A hair, anyway? And how does hair texture come into play?

Let’s dive into the details. 

What Are the Differences Between Hair Type and Hair Texture?

Hair type and texture are not to be confused as the same thing! There are differences with some overlap. There are four types of hair, and under each type of hair is a possible texture. 

Straight Hair 

Straight hair is strong and one of the more resilient hair types, generally having low porosity and taking longer to wet and dry hair. It is very hard to curl straight hair due to sebum that can easily spread from the scalp to hair strands. Straight hair is also the oiliest hair type, so avoiding product buildup is key.

Wavy Hair

Wavy hair tends to be more accepting of heat styling, with an S shape in its structure. Wavy hair can be prone to frizz due to its coarser texture. Serums are a must here! One of the upsides of wavy hair is that it is very versatile.

Curly Hair 

Curlier hair will have the appearance of heavy S or Z shapes. The climate may greatly impact how curly hair reacts to shape, leading to frizz. Curly hair will need extra care as it can become easily damaged. Dry shampoo works well for those with curly hair since they should avoid washing their hair as often. Overwashing curls can strip them of their natural oils and cause breakage.

Coiled Hair

Coily hair (sometimes referred to as kinky hair) is very tightly coiled in texture, often featuring tight spirals. It is a very fragile hair type that is also prone to shrinkage when wet due to having fewer hair cuticles when compared to other hair types. High porosity is common for those with coiled hair types. Hair masks and deep conditioning products can be very beneficial for coily hair!

What Determines Different Types of Hair and Hair Texture

Like with most things in life, and with your physical characteristics, you can thank your parents. Genetics plays the largest role in our lives with our appearances, including our hair type and texture. 

While genetics is the biggest deciding factor in what kind of hair we inherit, there are some other factors to consider. Some medications can affect hair texture and possibly even make your hair curly when it previously wasn’t! 

Hormones can influence how our hair grows through extreme shifts like pregnancy or menopause. Chemicals used to style hair, like perms, can make changes to your hair. Finally, age can lead to changes in your hair, such as graying, which can change texture, hair density, and volume.

What’s My Hair Type?

Finding your hair type is simple enough. You can easily identify your hair type by seeing if it is straight, wavy, curly, or coiled (kinky) without any styling or product. 

Straight hair has no curls and is, like the name implies, straight as a stick. Wavy hair has very general S curls that are loose. Curly hair has well-defined loops and circles. Coiled (kinky) hair is much tighter curls that are tighter and will be more springy.

If you’re interested in digging even further and finding your hair texture, once you have found your hair type, you can check for one of the three texture possibilities outlined above. Take a strand of hair and rub it between your fingers. 

If it feels thinner than a piece of thread (or not even noticeable), you have fine hair (type A). If you can feel the hair, you likely have medium hair (type B). If the hair between your fingers feels very thick, you have coarse hair (type C).

How to Care for Aging Curly Hair and Wavy Hair Types

Keeping curly and wavy hair types healthy as you age is easy and only requires a few considerations.

Washing your hair as needed is a great way to keep it clean and prevent it from drying out. Frequent washing can strip your hair of moisture and irritate your scalp. Intuitive or less frequent washing of hair is a great way to keep your hair healthy and avoid dryness.

Hydration is a key aspect of taking care of wavy and curly hair. You will want to keep your hair moisturized, especially if you have hair types like 3b hair, 4a hair, type 4b, or type 4c. You encourage strength by using products that provide good moisturizing of the hair strands through the hair shaft and follicles. 

Check out our Bounce Back Super Moisturizing Shampoo for Curly Hair specifically designed for aging curly and wavy hair. Our Bounce Back Shampoo is a great way to care for curly or wavy thick hair that needs a little extra love — and bring back those ringlets! 

Combining it with our Bounce Back Super Moisturizing Conditioner for Curly Hair creates buoyancy, prevents your hair from becoming frizzy, and reduces breakage.

Caring for the scalp is a great way to care for hair as it ages. Your scalp is where the hair begins its process through the follicle. Scalp treatments stimulate and moisturize the scalp to help support healthy hair growth. 

Our Superpower™+ Advanced Hair & Scalp Duo helps do just that by using a serum designed to stimulate and an applicator to disperse our activating serum. Caring for your scalp is as easy as gently massaging your scalp with our hair and scalp duo.

How Do I Care for Aging Straight Hair?

Straight hair can bounce back a bit easier from damage than most other hair types (such as through blow dryers). But resilient hair still needs care, especially aging straight hair. 

The downside to straight hair is that it will show a loss of volume and thinning more easily, especially if you already have thin hair. We recommend the Lift Me Up Hair Thickener to lift, thicken, and nourish your hair. By wrapping around the hair strands and nourishing your scalp, you can care for straight hair while adding volume.

Conclusion

Now that you have the tools to determine your hair type, you can seek out hair care products that were crafted with you in mind. Each hair type is beautiful, from 1a hair to type 4a and everything in between. 

Knowing what kind of hair type you have means that you are on the fast track to seeking out shampoos, leave-in conditioners, mousses, and serums that will work best for you.

Sources:

Shape Variability and Classification of Human Hair | PMC

What Are the Four Types of Hair? | Medicine Net

Is Hair Texture Determined by Genetics? | Medlineplus.gov