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If you want to have healthy and lustrous hair, the first step is to understand your hair type for you to figure out the perfect hair routine and hair products that achieve desired results. This way you will bless your hair with targeted action. In this article we go through the 4 types of hair.

In our previous article, we talked about The Spirituality of African Hair, the next article will delve into caring for different types of hair but even before we talk about that, we need to understand the different types of hair.

Hair and skincare expert Monica Kalyonge asserts that hair comes from a root on the scalp skin and the strand is what we see. Discussing hair type is simply talking about how our hair strands curl. Thus it ca be curly, coily, wavy or straight.

The secret to understanding your type of hair is to wash your hair and leaving it to dry out. Then, observe how your hair looks. That’s your hair type. Another way is to combing your way and laying the strands on paper and seeing its pattern.

Moraa talked to us about 4 types of hair:

  1. Straight Hair
  2. Wavy Hair
  3. Curly Hair
  4. Coily Hair
  1. Straight Hair
The 4 Types of Hair

If your hair is not wavy or does not curl out, then you have straight hair. The natural oils from your scalp make the hair looks limp and flat. Sometimes straight hair might appear coarse or thick and less voluminous.

2. Wavy Hair

The 4 Types of Hair

Doreen Moraa tells us that wavy hair can be divided into three categories depending on the extent of the wave.

i) Type 2a – Type 2a of wavy hair is when you have straight hair for about two inches from the roots, which then goes on to become slightly wavy till the ends.

ii) Type 2b – This is very similar to type 2a, except that it has a slightly more defined wave in the shape of an ‘S’.

iii) Type 2c – If you have hair that has an ‘S’ pattern from the crown area itself, then you have Type 2c hair. This type of hair has a lot more defined waves, which gives that added hold and texture.

3. Curly Hair

The 4 Types of Hair
The 4 Types of Hair

Your hair is defined as curly if your waves form a loop. Curly hair, like wavy hair, is also divided into three and usually needs a lot of moisture and care.

i) Type 3a – This type of curl usually happens if you have fine hair, and is determined by really loose, big curls. Maintaining and styling this hair type is not really difficult because of the size of the curls.

ii) Type 3b – This is considered to be the best and most envied type of curl. These curls form perfect ringlets and are often seen on a lot of celebrities. The best part about this curl type is that it is neither too thick nor too thin, making it absolutely easy to style and maintain.

iii) Type 3c – If your curls feel super thick, coarse and have a corkscrew type of structure, then it is safe to say you fall into this category of curls. Type 3c curls are a hybrid of bouncy and tight corkscrew curls. If you have type 3c curls, you probably notice that your curls are coarse and not as soft as you’d like. Using the right product can help soften your curls a bit.

4. Coily Hair

The 4 Types of Hair
The 4 Types of Hair

Also known as Kinky Hair is also categorized as curly hair so basically there are two types of hair; straight and curly. This type of hair can be a cross between ‘Z’ and ‘S’ shaped curls that are super tight and frizzy, making them the most difficult to manage.

Type 4a – This type of coily hair has a very defined ‘S’ type curl, and has a very wiry texture. Type 4a is also usually very thin and delicate, but appears really thick, thanks to the tight curls. You need to be extremely gentle when washing and styling your hair as it is very prone to breakage.

Type 4b – Unlike type 4a, 4b has a very defined ‘Z’ pattern and can be thick or thin, depending on your hair texture. Even though this type of hair is soft to the touch, it is also quite fragile and can break quite easily, especially if you tend to comb your hair often.

Type 4c – This type of hair is very tightly curled, and is therefore prone to be super coily and frizzy. This is the type of curl that gives the shape of a natural afro, thanks to the tight z-shaped curls.

“once you’ve understood your type of hair” says Rachel, “You can begin to take care of your hair.”

Read Also: Tips on How to Maintain Natural Hair.

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