Tuesday, January 18, 2011

NPPYHR102: Important Things to Know About Your Hair Pt. I - Curl Pattern

Hi Everyone!!!!

Whoosh, I have been so busy in the last few weeks! If you want to check out what's keeping me busy, check out my next "quickie" post and I will let you know what's been keeping me away from you guys! Anywhoo, I hope everyone's year has gotten off to a productive and positive note, as mine has. I am looking forward to great things this year (including SL - My hair has not been SL in a MINUTE, maybe about 4-5 years!)

SO, on to my next topic of conversation. When one first makes the decision to transition to their natural locks, many, many questions arise. One of the biggest questions, perhaps, is where to start in looking for the type of products that work best for your hair type.

Now, when one hears the term "hair-type", they usually think of hair type in terms of an individual's "curl pattern". Knowing one's curl pattern WILL help in your search for what products & ingredients agree with your hair, however, it is not as much of an impact on hair success as a newly natural may think. Now, I know this will be hard to grasp, since curl-pattern "hair-typing" is HUGE in the natural hair community, however, it is important to understand that the curl pattern is not just all that matters when it comes to learning what does/doesn't work for your hair. Please keep that in mind as we learn about curl-patterns and how they help in your natural journey. Another thing to keep in mind is to NOT be discouraged if you do not identify with either of these photos/descriptions that you see described below. A curl pattern is just that - a curl pattern. It describes NOTHING ELSE about your hair other than the pattern of your curl - not the frizziness, hair density, strand size, etc. There is not another head on this planet that has the exact same hair as you. :-)
There are many hair-typing systems out there other than the 2 I've chosen to discuss today. Be sure to extend your research outside of the realms of this blog, as Knowledge is Power!

The L.O.I.S. Hair Typing System
L - If the hair has all bends, right angles and folds with little to no curve then you are daughter L.

O - If the strand is rolled up into the shape of one or several zeros like a spiral, then you are daughter O.

I - If the hair lies mostly flat with no distinctive curve or bend you are daughter I.

S - If the strand looks like a wavy line with hills and valleys then you are daughter S.

You may have a combination of the LOIS letters, possibly with one dominant. If you cannot see one letter over the others, then combine the letters. Example: LO or IL or OS..


The Andre' Walker Hair Typing System - (from Curlz.Biz)

     Type 1: Straight Hair               Type 2: Wavy Hair
       Type 3: Curly Hair              Type 4: Kinky Hair

(read more from Curl.Biz here)

Now, do NOT use these descriptions for ALL aspects of your locks, ONLY your curl "pattern". There are many more aspects to your hair that you must take into consideration when product searching and experimenting with your hair. However, I hope this artical on "curl-patterns" has been helpful to you. Want to continue your knowledge search in curl-pattern typing? Check out these great links: (Some go more in-depth with hair typing including curl-pattern, hair porosity, strand size (density), hair volume, etc.)

All in all, remember: Don't buy too much into the "curl-pattern" hair typing hype when trying to figure out what does and doesn't work for you hair. Look at the bigger picture and learn ALL aspects of your hair in order to determine what works best for YOUR hair. And that knowledge really and truly comes with a combination of learning the different aspects of your hair (porosity level, strand size/density, volume, protein/moisture balance/tightness of coils, etc.) and experimenting. Hope you enjoyed today, see you soon!

***Note: Next, we will go further into learning all about your hair with learning the meaning and importance of hair porosity. Have a blessed day!

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