Understand your hair type!

Stuck in a rut of curly hair over info and no routine in place? We’ve been there, we get it and we want to help. Knowing your curly hair type can help you to identify the best routine, products and techniques to ensure you’re giving your locks the ultimate chance to shine. For stylists, it’s even MORE important to give your clients the confidence you are providing a personalised hair care service backed by knowledge and understanding. 


The old 20-year-old system suggested there were 4 categories of hair types with individuals distinctly categorised into one “type”. As a result, manufacturers have since and continue to market products serving one specific hair type. However, research and our extensive knowledge and understanding of curls have proven this to be an outdated theory. General practices, behaviours, and individual attributes are not considered within this theory which fundamentally makes it flawed. To overlook the thickness, porosity, elasticity, density as well as its behaviour and condition it is a huge no-no. No curl is the same and we want to celebrate the wonderfully, individual curly-haired crew by giving you the knowledge and advice to take back control. 


Let’s get back to the fundamental basics that apply to us all:

  • Hair sits in a spectrum of varying types, including thickness, porosity, elasticity, density, curl pattern and more. And each combination has its own set of characteristics, which for hairstylists, are extremely useful to know. 
  • Overall health and condition of the scalp and hair are super important.
  • A 3 stage programme of hair care applies to everyone: Cleanse. Condition. Protect.


Now onto the hair types. We first want to make it clear that you might fit into more than one of these categories (we weren’t lying when we said you are wonderfully individual!).



Wavy curls can vary from light to heavily defined S shape. It tends to appear straight when wet, lies flat against the scalp and between washes can be easily manipulated. Think Zendaya (Spiderman, No way home- 2021).



Coils can be a variety of S or O shaped curls that commonly result in a wavy to corkscrew finish. When the hair is wet it still appears curly, it can double in size from dry to wet and it tends to appear raised when growing from the scalp. The reality check, the coilier the hair, the more it is prone to tangles. The good news, it easily holds styles when braiding or twisting. Think Yara Shahidi (Grownish- 2018) 



Afro hair tends to be the most misunderstood hair length due to it being the curliest of them all. When wet, afros can appear more defined, it can tangle extremely easily yet is wonderfully versatile for twists, plaits and braids. Think Solange (Don’t Touch My Hair!) 



Locs simply are sections of individual hair strands (small, medium or large sections) clumped and tangled around and within each other. Anyone with hair can grow locs, from straight hair to the curliest of all. You would just use different techniques and maintenance methods to achieve it and afro hair tends to be the easiest to loc. You care for the scalp and locs the same way you would do any head in theory (cleanse and condition). but there are key elements and variations you would have to factor into your caring regime.


Getting the best for your curly hair


Curls need a certain level of expertise and knowledge to ensure they are given the best chance to thrive, and stylists and consumers alike can cause more harm than good if they are not treated properly. At Curly By Nature, we want to give the power back to YOU and remove the fear of working with your own or your clients’ curly locks. The information we provided above is generic and there is so much more to learn that can transform your day to day experience with hair. Learn more about our courses specifically designed to equip you to treat those curls with the care they deserve.

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