A lot of us probably haven’t even thought about hair types or even know what I am refering to..Well before I became natural I had no idea what it was either. I would read articles and people would say “I have 3b hair” or “what sdo you use for 4b hair?” and while reading those articles blank expressions would be on my face. I was clueless. Well I’d like to take this time to share with you the world of Hair Typing.
The Andre Walker System
This is by far the most known system for hair typing..it was amongst the first..Andre Walker is a stylist and a author of a book in which he talks about hair. I found an article from Diaspora Hair’s website and I’ll summarize the information below.
There are four types that comprises the AWSystem, classification 4 to 1
Type 4 refers to tightly coiled hair. (This is what I personally refer to as Afro-textured hair). This hair type tends to be driest and needs a lot of moisture. It is similar to type 3 but just more tightly coiled/curled. It is very fragile. The hair appears to be coarse when in fact it is very fine but tightly coiled together. Type 4 hair that is healthy won’t shine, but it will have sheen. It will be soft to the touch and will pass the strand test with ease. It will feel silkier than it will look shiny. This hair type has two subtypes: 4A and 4B.
4A hair is tightly coiled but when stretched has a s-curl patten to it.
4B hair is a Z-patterned hair type.. It does not hold moisture as well as 4A and it is wiry in texture.
Type 3 refers to a combination type..When this hair type is wet it appears to be straight, but when dry it curls up in coils or ringlets. Humidity makes this hair type curl up even more and also get frizzy. This texture/type of hair is easily styled in it’s natural state. When Type 3 hair is healthy it is super shiny and has very strong elasticity and moldability. The Type 3 family has 2 subtypes: 3A and 3B
3A hair is very loosely curled and shiny with big curls.
3B hair is medium curls to tight corkscrews that are super clumped to each other.
Type 2 refers to an unusual pattern..It is seen mainly in my opinion on Spanish women. It is hair with a curl pattern of S.. It has subtypes of A, B and C.
2A is hair that is fine and thin with an S-curl pattern
2B is hair that is medium heavy with a S curl-pattern
2C is thick and coarse hair with a S-curl pattern. The 2A hair is easy to blow dry and comb, where as 2C is less prone to styling and frizzes a lot.
Type 1 refers to straight hair, more commonly found on Asian and Caucasian women and men.
This system is the most renowned however many have found that they do not fall into this category specifically so another system what developed called LOIS.
Comprehensive Curl-Type Charts:
This system was created for those who rather to not use the Andre Walker system. It was developed by the people of OurHair.net. It is a little more in depth and offers a lot more choices to narrow down exactly what hair type you have.
L–this is where hair has all bends, right angles and folds
O–this is hair that rolls up into the shape of a zero or small O’s.
I–the hair lies flat with no distinctive curl pattern.
S–-this type looks like a wavy line with hills and valleys.
Now on to the fun part..even more classification. On a side note, if you found that you fell into more than one of the LOIS choices, you can combine them, LO, OS, IS, LI, it is advised to only combine the dominant two. Back to more classification using LOIS:
Find your strand size:
The size of half of a piece of everyday sewing thread is around medium size of one strand of the human hair. If your hair falls thicker than that then your hair size is thick. If it falls smaller than the size of half the thread then it your hair is fine or thin.
Fine your Texture: (Shine refers to a sharp reflection of light while sheen refers to a dull reflection of light);
Thready: this texture has a low sheen and a high shine when the hair is taut (braided, plaits, twists), and has a low frizz. It gets wet easily but dries very quickly.
Wiry: this texture has a sheen that sparkles, and has a low shine and low frizz. Water bounces off of it, and the hair never seems to get fully wet.
Cottony: this texture has low sheen, high shine when held taut, and has a high frizz factor. It absorbs water quickly but does not get completely wet at very quick speed.
Spongy: this texture has a high sheen with low shine. It has a frizz that usually looks quite tight and fuzzy. It absorbs water before it gets completely wet.
Silky: this texture has a low sheen, a very high shine and either a lot or low frizz. It gets easily wet in water.
I hope this has helped many of you discover what hair type you have..Soon I will post on what I have found works best for the hair types.
Peace, love and happy hair growing!! Stay blessed and Afroniquely You
~Hope you enjoyed and found this helpful