Different Types Of Curly Hair: Which Type Do You Have?

Did you know that there are different types of curly hair? Well, if you have curly hair, it is time to find out into what category it falls. Find out here.

By RuelB
Different Types Of Curly Hair: Which Type Do You Have?

Different Types Of Curly Hair: Which Type Do You Have?

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Oprah Winfrey’s hairstylist Andre Walker was the first person to classify the different hair textures for the different types of hair. This made it possible for the hair industries to come up with different hair products to cater to the needs of each hair types. Andre Walker was able to divide the hair types into four categories namely type one - straight hair, type two - wavy hair, type three- curly hair and type four- coiled or kinky hair.

These categories made the work easier for those who have curls. However, people later realized that the three different types of curly hairs varied in that, the size and the texture of the curls were different. This realization made the NaturallyCurly further divided the curly hair types into three sub-categories namely A, B, and C. Each sub-category of the curls varied in diameter. 

Determining Different Curly Hair Types


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With this useful knowledge, the shape of hair follicles determines the types of curls. If hair follicles are oval shaped, the hair will have curls, but if the follicles have a circular cross-section, then the straighter the hair will be. The shape of the hair strands formed categorizes the pattern of the curly hairs.

It is common to find some men and women having more than one types of curly pattern. To identify where you lie, you need to soak your hair wet. During this time, the curls are more visible and distinguished. The best thing about determining the type of hairs is to know how to care for it.

The Different Curly Patterns

Curly hairs have different patterns, and they include wavy, curly, and coiled. Wavy curls have a loose texture while curly hairs have a defined texture. The coiled hair types have a spiral pattern that is more distinguished than others are.

Apart from the three types of hairs, there is a kinky textured coil. This type makes the hair appear shorter than it is. It has defined coils that are closely wounded together making the hair have a kinky look. The hair industry came up with charts showing pictures of different types of curls. This useful information has helped many women to understand and appreciate their hairs.

Different Curly Hair Categories of Type 2 Hairs


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The types of hairs that have wavy curls are classified as type 2. The curls lie between straight and curly hairs. Type 2 is easily spotted because it has a defined S shape. The hair roots are straight but gradually gains a wave. This type of hair is hard to notice on men since they often have haircuts. There are also charts with pictures that show the S patterns. However, these types of hairs are prone to frizz.

Therefore, it is important to use good quality lightweight products on these types of hairs. Type 2 hair types portray sheen on the upper part, but as the waves begin, the sheen disappears. Some women who admire type 2 hairs purchase extensions that resemble the S pattern. There are several different types of type 2 hairs namely 2A, 2B, and 2C.

Type 2A Types of Hairs


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This hair types are not straight but not wavy either. The waves are loose but more defined than type two hair types. The roots of these hair types lack volume. Therefore, it is best to use styling products such as an airy, water-based mousse to add volume at the base. This will make the hair look fuller from the roots to the end. Type 2A is also prone to frizz.

With many different hair products on the market, the frizziness is camouflaged easily. Remember to use lightweight hair products. It is normal to find women with straight hairs or short hairs wearing extensions resembling type 2A. It is hard to notice it since they look beautiful and natural in it. If you want to find out you have a type 2A hair type, you can always look for hair pictures locally or online.

Type 2B Types of Hairs

The types of S waves in this hair type are more defined. The waves begin from the mid-length to the end. What makes type 2B hair type unique is that the hair strands are thicker than type 2 and 2A?

Most women put a lot of effort to make it straight. However, it is resistant to styling, and it is easily weighed down by the use of heavy hair products. Ensure you keep it light but strong enough to hold your waves. Just like the other type 2 hair types, it is also prone to frizz.

Most of you might not know this, but the more you keep running your fingers through this kind of hair type the frizzier it becomes. Use anti-frizz stylers to avoid frizz and keep the gorgeous waves in position. If in doubt, you can always access charts with different hair types to determine where you lie. If you admire these types of hairs, you can look for hair extensions that resemble it. Alternatively, a hair stylist can add some waves to your hair; however, it is temporary.

Type 2C Types of Hairs


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People who have these kinds of hairs are more susceptible to frizzy. The strands of the hairs are thick and course. The S pattern is definitive, and they start from the roots to the end. The hair strands in type 2C are curly yet wavy. The curly strands are loose and hard to notice. There are times when the strands are easily visible. Other times the waves are more distinguished, but most of the time you will spot the curls, and the waves blended if you know how to look. To avoid getting confused, you can access different curly hair charts to determine your type. Charts containing pictures are better since they will clear any doubt. You can have haircuts often or keep it long, both ways you would still look good.

The Different Curly Hair Types of Type 3 Hair

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This hair type varies from a loose curly hair, floating loops, springy loops, to the tight curls. The hair is curly with bouncy spirals. The spirals vary in density depending with the type of the hair.

However, it has a definite S shape, which is curlier. This curly hair is prone to frizz and dehydration. Therefore, it is best to apply styling products that contain moisture and anti-frizzing agent. Curly hair is known to be temperamental among other hair types, especially when applied too much hair products.

A poor weather condition can also damage curly hair. Due to constant hair damage, some people prefer having haircuts to avoid many visits to a professional hairstylist. Most people do not know the difference between type 3 and type 2C. If you are in such a position, you can easily access pictures online or acquire charts explaining the different curly hair types. There are different subcategories of type 3 hairs namely 3A, 3B, and 3C as follows.

Type 3A Curly Hairs

Type 3A has curly loose hair strands. The strands are bouncy, and they have a definitive S pattern. The patterns are at times visible while other times they are indiscernible. The circumference of the spirals is the size of sidewalk chalk. Poor weather conditions and overuse of the wrong hair products can easily damage type 3A curly hair.

Therefore, it is best to use curl-reactivating products to maintain the bouncy, healthy curly hair strands. Some people prefer making their own curl-reactivating product by mixing a gel, hair oil, conditioner not forgetting water in a hairspray container. In the market nowadays, you will find several hair extensions that resemble type 3A. For those who like adding glamour to their hair, these types of extensions will never go wrong on you. You can also get haircuts at the tip of the hair and still look unique and beautiful.

 Men with type 3A hair, have haircuts often. This does not stop the eyes from distinguishing the shiny sheen curly hair. The curls start from the roots to the end tip of the hair. If you have no clue as to which type of curly hair you have, access charts that contain pictures of different types of curly hair.

Type 3B Hair

Type 3B curly hair has curls a size of a sharpie. The circumference of the curls is smaller than type 3A. Also, the curls are tighter, close, and voluminous. Type 3B curly hair is prone to frizz and drying out.

Therefore, it is advisable to use a moisturizing cream and styling gel to maintain healthy bouncy sheen curls. Ensure the styling gel has a humectant agent to draw moisture to them for a longer period. To achieve effective results, apply the gel when the hair is wet and not frizzy.

With this useful knowledge, there is no need to have haircuts often whenever faced with a frizzy day. To be able to take care of your hair, you need to access charts that contain different pictures of curly hairs to determine where you lie. Women who have short hair can try out these types of extensions. They are many in the hair industry market and of different shades.

Type 3C Hair

Type 3C curly hair curls are corkscrew-like. They have a circumference of a straw. The curls are tightly wounded together with a coarse texture. This makes them appear voluminous and dense. It is best to avoid applying drying hair products. Curly hair experiences frizziness, especially during a bad weather condition. Hence, apply moisturizing products such as Oyin Handmade Ginger Mint Co-Wash to keep the moisture on. It is best to apply on wet hair when the curls are clumped together. This makes the curls dry faster with less frizziness. If you have been experiencing frizziness, apply the moisturizing product instead of getting haircuts all the time. 

The best products to use on type 3C hair are Curlicious Curls cleansing cream, which acts as a cleanser. A shampoo such as Pure Curls Clarifying shampoo, an instant conditioner known as Coconut Sublime moisturizing conditioner, and a deep conditioner called Curl Ecstasy Hair Tea conditioner. You can also use a curl cream called Curls Milkshake, curl definer known as Curl Gel-les’c, which makes curly hair have a shiny sheen and lastly a moisturizer that you can apply on a daily basis called Quenched Curls moisturizer.

Type 4 Hairs


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Type 4 is known as kinky hair. Just as the name suggests, the curls are tightly wounded together with a zigzag pattern. Men and women who are blessed with this kind of hair experience dryness. The curly hair is fine and breaks easily. Many people have a notion that this kind of hair rarely grows. However, this is not true. What it requires is a tender and a gentle touch to avoid a lot of breakages. Due to the extreme breakage of hair on this type of hair, it causes an enormous hair loss. If you have such a hair type, ensure you treat it delicately. Wash gently, detangle the curls gently and dry the hair softly. You should also use gentle hair products to avoid excessive breakage.

Type 4 is the finest hair among all other textures. Since it has a higher rate of drying, it needs to be moisturized on a daily basis. Use hair products such as creamy and sulfate free moisturizing cleanser. Add a super hydrating conditioner that contains rich moisturizer as well. Finally, top dress it with styling cream that contains natural oils and butter. In case you want to add more moisture to the curls look for humectants. Stay clear from Petrolatum oils, mineral and heavy waxes. Type 4 hair is further divided into A, B, and C. The best thing about this type of hair is that it is easily notable due to its kinky nature. However, it is always best to use pictures or charts to confirm your hair type.

Type 4A

The curls are compactly close together. The curls make an S coil shape. The coils are spirals but not bouncy. The circumference of the curls is the size of a crochet needle. The curly hair dries very fast hence, requiring to be often moistened.

Those who love the wash and go hair, this is the hair type for you. However, it should often be styled to keep the kinky curls soft. Type 4A can coil up to half of its normal length. This makes the hair appear shorter than it is.

Since type 4A hair type is susceptible to breakage, you need to handle it with care. There are many pictures in the hair industry, which show how this type of hair looks like. Charts are also easily accessible that illustrates the different types of curly hairs. Many people who have type 4A hair often visit a hairstylist for haircuts. However, applying a curling cream that contains a leave-in moisturizer is the simplest way to care for your hair.

Type 4B


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4B hair strands are dense and compacted together. They curls make a letter Z, and the circumference is smaller than type 4A hair. This hair type is also prone to frizziness and dryness. Therefore, it requires applying moisturized cream to keep the curls shiny and health. Type 4B hair is more fragile than type 4A. Hence, you should cleanse gently, rinse softly, and let them air dry. Untangle the curls gently to avoid breakage. Try using coconut oil for untangling the hair and retaining moisture.

Type 4B hair appears fuller on the head. The curls begin from the base to the tips of the hair. They appear to be shorter than they are. This is due to their ability to coil three-quarter of their normal size. You can wash and go as you wish with this hairstyle. Remember to keep this type of hair healthy and shiny by applying moisturizing cream to keep them hydrated all the time.

Type 4C Hair

This is the tightest curly hair that has ever existed. The hair appears voluminous since the curls are densely compacted together. At times, the curls are not visible to the naked eye due to their tight zigzag pattern. This hair type has a similar texture like type 4B hair. However, it is more fragile to hair breakage.

Type 4C experiences a higher percentage of shrinkage than the other type 4 hairs are. The best thing with this kind of hair is that it has versatile hairstyles to try. To care for this kind of hair, apply a generous amount of leave-in moisturizer to maintain a glossy sheen.

These types of curly hairs may not answer all your questions, but they will give you a starting place. You will be able to comprehend why some curls behave the way they do, while others do not. You will also know how to care for them by maintaining a glossy look. Having haircuts and applying the right hair products for each texture is the right way to start. Remember, having curls is a blessing, and not all blessings are the same.

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