Hair Type

Hair Types

Hair Types

Hair type, the single biggest factor that limits your hair style choices

Oprah’s hair guru Andre Walker, a hairdresser and author of Andre Talks Hair!, has been credited with creating a universal language in regards to types of hair. He created a classification system that many people have adopted to describe their different hair types. Andre’s types of hair classification system ranks from 1-4.

  • Type 1 is straight hair.


  • Type 2 is wavy hair and  tends to be coarse, with a S pattern to its shape. There are three type 2 subtypes:


    • (2A) Fine & thin, very easy to handle, blowing out into a straighter hair style or taking on curlier looks with ease.


  • (2B) medium-textured (2B and 2C are more resistant to hair styling and have a tendency toward frizz)


  • (2C) thick and coarse


  • Type 3 is curly hair, is shiny, with soft, smooth curls and strong elasticity. The curls are well-defined and springy. There are two subtypes of curly hair:


    • (3A) hair which is loosely curled and usually very shiny with big curls. The shorter the hair is, the straighter it gets. The longer the hair is the more defined the curl.


    • (3B) hair which has a medium amount of curl to tight corkscrews.


  • Type 4 is kinky hair, hair is very wiry, very tightly coiled and very fragile.


    • (4A) tightly coiled hair that, when stretched, has an S pattern, and generally holds moisture better than:


    • (4B) which has a Z pattern, less of a defined curl pattern (instead of curling or coiling, the hair bends in sharp angles like the letter Z).


Ombre hair color

Hair Type 1 Straight hair

Your hair type can range from the fine blond hair of Scandinavians to the thick, and sometimes coarse hair of Asians and Indians. Straight hair can be texturized with perms, hair setting, and hair care products. Thin, straight hair often benefits from being colored, which adds texture and fullness to each strand.

Very coarse or thick straight hair may be difficult to perm, requiring extra time and additional perming rods in order to achieve the proper final look. Simple, geometric haircuts (like bobs) are a natural for straight hair of any texture. Very straight, thick hair is often resistant to perms-stubborn about taking a curl and likely to need frequent perming to maintain the hair’s new texture.

Celebrities with straight hair type:   Linda Evangelista | Juliette Binoche | Cameron Diaz | Jewel | Uma Thurman Gwyneth Paltrow | Stephanie Seymour | Isabella Rosellini

Sandra BullockHair Type 2 Wavy hair

A wavy hair type is considered by many to be the most desirable. It has lots of natural movement that can be maximized with hair styling products to create different effects. Wavy hair is versatile and can be blown dry into a straight hair look or scrunched for a curly hair effect. Waves make lightly layered hair styles a natural choice. Adding hair high lights or hair lowlights via hair color or shine-enhancing products can maximize the appearance of wavy hair’s gentle undulation. The wavy hair type can also be combed into retro hair styles, such as 20’s looks—very romantic!

Celebrities with wavy hair type:   Michelle Pfeiffer | Lisa Kudrow | Jennifer Aniston | Heather Locklear | Sandra Bullock | Kirstie Alley | Kathy Ireland

Janet JacksonHair Type 3 Curly hair

The curly hair type has great natural body, but can look dull or unruly. To maximize your hair’s potential, choose a layered hair style (long or short) that cuts shape into curly hair. Brilliantines, hair pomades, surface silkeners, and soft hair fixatives can boost curly hair’s shine and calm down too much hair curl.

For very coarse, curly hair (like that of many African Americans), chemical retexturizing via hair coloring or hair relaxing is a good choice. These give your hair style a smoother and more manageable feel. Deep, heat-activated hair conditioners are also important for curly hair, which sometimes has a tendency towards breakage and split ends.

Celebrities with curly hair type:   Naomi Campbell | Mariah Carey | Tyra Banks | Janet Jackson

Angela BassettHair Type 4 Kinky hair

The kinky hair type appears to be coarse, but when examined closely is quite fine, with lots and lots of these strands densely packed together. Kinky hair type that is healthy won’t shine, but it will have smooth sheen. It will be soft to the touch and passes the strand test with ease.

This hair type is the most fragile of all the hair types. The reason for this is that kinky hair type has fewer cuticle layers than other hair types. The cuticle layer is the only protection your hair has from the elements of heat and manhandling. So, your cuticle layer gives less natural protection than other hair types and you need to be careful as to how much damage you inflict on your hair.

Celebrities with kinky hair type: Oprah | Angela Bassett | | Corinne Bailey Rae