View Full Version : Hair Type Help for a Newbie!

January 30th, 2013, 11:04 AM
Hi Everyone,

I have to say a big thank you for all the information! I am learning so much from everyone!

The one thing i cannot seem to find is a data base of hair types or a good way to determine your own? I air dried my hair after shower, sitting in proximity to fireplace. I didn't comb it or anything. Hope i did right.

In a pony i have 3 inches girth, fluffy, It curls average, and i would say medium fine? IDK?

Am i a "1b":confused:

Thoughts, guides and opinions are welcomed!


PS- Growing out my golden hair to my virgin ash blonde & then on my way to WL hair!!!


January 30th, 2013, 11:26 AM
I had the link saved for the hair typing guide here on LHC but it's an article and the articles section is unfortunately down at the moment :( That I really found was the easiest way, with pictures and descriptions of every hair type.

I agree with you though that your hair looks like 1b.
Good luck with the growing! :)

January 30th, 2013, 11:38 AM
Looks like 1b to me! Unless you used a bunch of really heavy conditioner before this picture was taken - that'll tend to straighten hair and not show the "real" texture. Does it get wavy when it's humid? Have you ever seen defined "S" patterns anywhere in your hair? If so, you might be closer to the 1c side of things.

January 30th, 2013, 11:52 AM
Thanks Nebulae, I hope it get restored!

Zabeth, In humidity it does not get wavy and at most i have seen kinks and the hem flipped. Although i conditioned it today... I will definitely try again, any recs on getting a pure result????

January 30th, 2013, 01:01 PM
Welcome, bobaerose. I agree with 1b.

January 30th, 2013, 01:12 PM
I'd go with 1b/1c for now. Since you mention your hair is dyed and since your hair is still in the APL to BSL range, it's going to be very difficult to get a clear idea of whether you're a 1b or a 1c for a while. Dye can affect your wave structure, and a 1c wavelength is so long that you might not have more than 2 visible wavelengths til you're in the BSL to waist range. The 1c S waves are also very hard to see due to the really long wavelengths. It's really easy to pass them off as highlights or braid waves or "flicks". We can pretty easily rule out 1a tho, since your hair is not stick straight :).

Even more annoying, depending on how you tend to care for your hair now, it may be that your products, wash methods and air drying methods are tending to produce a maximally straight effect. Curls are really fragile, and even if you are sure you're super gentle with your hair, it's entirely possible for hair to look as straight as yours when air dried and in reality be on the border between wavy and curly. It may sound nutty, but it happens a lot more often than you might think.

The standard newbie advice is to start experimenting by using more conditioner. The condition wash condition or CWC method is a really good way to start on that while using the products you already have. If you find that works well for you and it brings out more visible wave, then it's totally reasonable to look into more curl friendly products and methods next time you need hair stuff. Even if your hair doesn't wind up with more visible wave, it's a good idea to look into curl friendly methods to get ideas for how to be gentle with your hair. While my hair is only 1c for curl level, it's very fine, dry, fragile and split prone, and curl friendly methods really help with those issues.

January 30th, 2013, 01:14 PM
Welcome to LHC! :)
I agree with 1b as well!

January 30th, 2013, 01:36 PM
I've read that the way to take an "official" hair typing picture is to do your regular clarification and not use anything else. Other than that you were spot on - air dry without any combing or manipulation of any kind.

When I did this, I noticed a definite body wave in the nape area, bumping me from 1a to 1b (below that wave my hair is PIN STRAIGHT). Also remember that this isn't an exact science. It's totally possible for you to be textbook 1b one day, and then notice some 1c action the next. This is part of what I think is so cool about our hair - no one has the same hair as anyone else, and no one has the same hair two days in a row!

January 30th, 2013, 03:59 PM
Thanks for all the info, I have a feeling I will be a 1b even we virgin color back. We shall see!

January 30th, 2013, 06:31 PM
Bobaerose, you look like 1b to me as well. Also, 3" ponytail circumference would put you at medium thickness. Medium or fine texture depends on the thickness of the individual hairs and if yours is really small that would make you a fine hair. Maybe post a pic of indiivdual shed hairs to help us determine what your texture is. Also, I know it doesn't agree with what Zabethbartsch says, but it's better to do hair typing on hair that's been washed with your normal routine (minus any styling products). That way you know what hair type you're dealing with on a daily basis. While clarifying (washing hair with non-silicone shampoo) may reveal more textures in your hair, since you wouldn't be clarifying every single wash day it wouldn't do much good doing hair typing on hair that's been stripped of all moisture. Plus, when I had my hair typed, if it was clarified I would have all over the map and my hair just gets big and poofy and frizzy without any conditioning.

January 31st, 2013, 03:40 AM
biogirl87 are you saying do not condition? Just shampoo(no cones) ???

February 1st, 2013, 08:29 AM
biogirl87 are you saying do not condition? Just shampoo(no cones) ???

That sort of wash would be the clarifying wash that's often recommended as part of hair typing. That can be a very helpful step on hair up to about 3a, since some wavy hair responds well to a routine that alternates between dry and moisturizing.

What biogirl was suggesting is that you wash your hair the way you'd normally do it. A lot of type 3 and type 4 hair simply *can't* do a shampoo only wash, and they'd have snarls and dreadlocks if they tried.

I tend to view hair typing as a work in progress. The first few attempts will probably be somewhat off, and that's ok. If a shampoo only wash is doable, I think it's a good idea to try. I also think it's good to try a super moisturizing routine and see if your hair changes. As you experiment, you'll get an idea of the range of stuff your hair can do. As you get comfortable, you'll figure out your maximum possible wave or curl level, and the minimum. And you'll hopefully work out a routine that works well for protecting your hair and is easy to maintain enough that you stick to it.

I type myself as a 1c. If I'm going full on with Curly Girl style washing and conditioning, and I style my hair with conditioner, curl creme and gel using wave friendly techniques, I get waves that look like the before pictures most curly brands use for a 2a. If I don't use styling products and techniques to enhance my waves, I end up with hair that only someone who geeks out about curly hair would recognize as wavy. This wave level is pretty consistent whether I clarify or not, which is why I type myself as 1c. My hair is S waves and nothing but, but they're super duper loose, and most people would describe it as pin straight. With basically no special effort tho, I can get a 1a look that would fool even someone who geeks out about curly hair. All I have to do is finger comb my hair.

So on my hair, 1c is a pretty good descriptor. If I'm talking to non-hair geeks, I describe it as "barely wavy".

It's not unusual to have a range like this. Most 3a hair will only look 3a right after it's washed and air dried, and if they don't rewet it every day, as they go through a wash cycle it will look straighter and straighter each day. This is normal, and it doesn't mean they're not a real 3a.