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It is important to know the category your natural hair falls into. There are three types of curly natural hair; type 2, 3 and 4. These types also have sub categories A, B and C.

 

 

Type 2 Wavy Hair

Type 2 Wavy Hair

 

 

Type 2 waves are neither straight nor curly. It is flatter at the roots and gets curlier downwards. It has S shaped waves mixed with curls.

 

 

Type 2A Curly Hair

Type 2A Curly Hair

 

2A’s have a fine texture and is very easy to straighten. This type of hair does not have much volume;

the strands are very fragile as heavy styling products can render them limp and lifeless.

 

 

 

 

 

Type 2B Curly Hair

Type 2B Curly Hair

 

This hair type is straight at the roots and has S shaped waves that have more definition from mid length to the tips. It has a medium texture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type 2C Curly Hair

Type 2C Curly Hair

2C waves are more defined and start from the roots to the tip of the hair.

It has springy curls and has more volume than the other type 2 hairs.

 

 

 

 

Type 3 Curly Hair

Type 3 Curly Hair

Type 3 Curly Hair

 

 

Type 3 curly hair ranges from loose to springy corkscrews. This type is more prone to frizz.

 

 

 

Type 3A Curly Hair

Type 3A Curly Hair

 

 

3A’s have well defined loopy curls; they tend to be shiny with large, loose curls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type 3B Curly Hair

Type 3B Curly Hair

 

 

3B hair ranges from bouncy ringlets to tight corkscrews. It has a more defined curl pattern with less space between each bend than 3A.

The hair texture is coarse and dense.

 

 

 

 

 

Type 3C Curly Hair

Type 3C Curly Hair

 

3C curls are tight corkscrews that range in circumference from a straw to a pencil.

The strands are densely packed together and the hair has great volume. This type of hair is prone to frizz.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type 4 Kinky Hair

Type 4 Kinky Hair

Type 4 Kinky Hair

 

 

 

This type of natural hair is also called coily hair; it is very dry and spongy in texture. The hair can either be soft and fine or coarse and wiry. The strands form very tight and are prone to shrinkage. It is one of the most common hair types found in black hair.

 

 

 

Type 4a Kinky Hair

Type 4A Kinky Hair

 

4A’s have tight coils; it has an S pattern when stretched.  It is wiry and delicate by nature. This type of hair has a naturally defined curl pattern.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type 4B Kinky Hair

Type 4B Kinky Hair

 

 

4B strands are densely packed and can bend in sharp angles. They have a z shape pattern and have a more fluffy cotton appearance. It is prone to shrinkage so it appears shorter than it actually is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Type 4C Kinky Hair

Type 4C Kinky Hair

 

 

4C is similar to 4B in look and texture but it is more tightly coiled. The coils are fragile and have a tight zigzag pattern that is not so visible.  Without products it has no defined curl pattern. It is also prone to shrinkage. It is the most fragile hair type so you have to wear protective styles if you want it to grow long.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Your hair type is determined by the shape of the hair that grows from your scalp. You can identify your hair type by the shape of your hair strands, whether they kink, curve or look like spirals. The best time to identify your hair type is when your hair is wet when it is not influenced by products.”

 

Examine a few hair strands from different positions on your head and see which category your hair falls into. Know that most people have at least two different hair textures so when you examine yours at the front it may be a 3B while some parts of it at the back of your head is 3A. However, the major part of your hair will fall into one category so you can file your hair under that category. Knowing your hair type is the starting point to finding the right products and styles for your hair.