Identifying Texture: Straight, Wave, Curl and Coil
Identifying your texture is your first step to knowing how to appropriately style your hair in it's natural state. Also breezing through all the different types of textures out there you will quickly realize no two heads of hair are alike. The information below will get you the most out of styling your hair in a wet to dry set. I have included styling methods, styling products and all the tips you'll need to style your texture! Or book a blow out or style and let me do it for you!
Hair Texture has been broken down into 4 types and three sub-types.
Straight, Wave, Curl & Coil.
Curl or wave can be used interchangeably and there are many different textures. Several different textures can exist on one head alone, which needs to somehow look cohesive, or not, when you are wearing your style. What is your curl texture? Are you envying someone with a different curl texture than yours and then wondering why your failing? Understanding your curl or wave pattern will help you discover the best styling techniques and products that work for you.
Texture 1 | Straight
Hair that is fine to coarse and thin to thick in diameter with no bend that lays close to the head.
This hair texture can get oily and flat fast. I suggest a light emulsifier like, Verb Hydrating Wash in dry climates or Verb Volume Wash in humid climates. Everyone with straight hair texture should have a dry shampoo or hair powder, I like Lulu Organics hair powder. This will give your hair a lift from the base and keep shiny at bay. I also love to apply liberal amounts of volumizing styling spray from roots to ends like Verb Volumizing Spray. This can be applied wet or dry. Also for something grittier try Hair Story' LIft just at the roots for a lot of volume that doesn't build up on the hair overtime.
Texture 2 | Wavy
Bendable, fine to coarse hair with a definitive 'S' pattern that lays closer to the head.
2A. Fine, barely-there tousled texture. Very easily straightened and lacking volume at the root.
2B Flat at the crown. Defined S-shaped waves starting midlength.
2C Thick, coarse waves that are more susceptible to frizz. Well-defined S pattern beginning at the roots.
Texture 3 | Curly
Loose, buoyant loops to tight, springy corkscrews.
3A Shiny with large, loose curls that are about the size of a piece of sidewalk chalk
3B Coarse, springy ringlets with a circumference similar to a Sharpie marker.
This hair texture can get dry, so look for styling gels or creams that have humectants in them to attract moisture to strands. Try Verb Curl Cream, apply to wet hair and allow hair to set, untouched until dry. This way you’ll get definition without frizz.
3C Curls are tight corkscrews that range in circumference from a straw to a pencil.
Strands are densely packed together, giving way to lots of natural volume. so as not to dry out your hair
Frizziness can be an issue with this type, so use a sulfate-free, creamy cleanser. layering a mousse, over a styling cream when the hair is sopping wet to allow curls to clump together and dry faster.
Coily hair, commonly referred to as Afro-textured or kinky hair, is naturally very dry and spongy in texture and can be soft and fine or coarse and wiry. Strands form very tight, small curls of zig-zags right from the scalp and are prone to major shrinkage.
4A Dense springy, S-patterned coils that are the circumference of a crochet needle. Look to Skai Jackson if you have this texture type. If you're a fan of wash and gos, styling should be done more frequently to keep this coily texture popping with soft, pliable strands. A curling cream with a leave-in moisturizer is a must for adding more moisture to daily wash-and-go styling. Hair Rules Kinky Curling Cream and Hair Rules Nourishment Leave In Moisturizer are his go-to cocktail combo.
4B Strands are densely packed and can bend in sharp angles like the letter Z. “Issa Rae has beautiful coily 4B hair. I love that it can be shaped in many different ways,” says François. “My PureFro Moisture Spray is all that you need to keep coils and kinks refreshed and hydrated between shampooing, or as a style quick-pick-me-up during the day.” Dickey prefers styling creams, like Crème of Nature Coconut Milk Curl Hydrating Curling Cream, for this hair type because they are thicker and are great for palm-rolling or shingling, two type of product distribution methods that stretch out coils and clump them for greater texture definition and elongation.
4C Similar to 4B, but the tightly coiled strands are more fragile and have a very tight zig-zag pattern. This stunning hair type experiences the greatest amount of shrinkage, up to 75% or more. Concerns for these tight-coils are shrinkage and dryness. Use a liberal amount of leave-in moisturizer with the first ingredients being shea or cocoa Butter. Castor oil is also a great natural moisturizer and sealant for this very dry texture.