If you have straight hair, chances are you want curls. If you were born with curly hair, you might envy those friends who have sleek straight hair. It’s just human nature to want what you don’t have, but with new techniques in hair styling you just might be able to have the best of both worlds.
Hair genetics plays a big part if the type of hair you have with curly hair being dominant over straight. If you have a parent with curly hair chances are you do too, but not all straight and curly hair is created equal. In those two categories are different hair types and patterns that make up your hair texture. There are 4 different hair patterns; straight, wavy, curly, and coily. These hair types are further broken down into 3 classifications based on the diameter of your hair shaft; thin, medium, and wide.
This type of hair is shiny and straight with strands that lie flat against the head. Depending on the hair shaft, straight hair can be voluminous or flat.
Straight and Thin
Stick straight hair that never frizzes and has no sign of a curl. This type of hair will most likely not hold a curl. Think Asian ethnicities— that gorgeous, sleek hair, and you get the idea.
Straight and Medium
This type of straight hair can hold a curl. It is the happy medium of the straight hair types.
Straight and Wide
Thicker and coarser, this hair type can frizz even though it lies flat on the head.
Wavy hair lies close to the head in an S pattern. The hair can be anywhere between fine and coarse.
Wavy and Thin
These types of waves are easily straightened and when air dried they have a barely tousled texture.
Wavy and Medium
These waves lay flat at the crown and become S-shaped about midway down the hair shaft. Harder to straighten than thin hair, the strands are thicker and need some taming,
Wavy and Wide
Thick, coarse waves that begin at the roots and tend to frizz. Harder to straighten and keep sleek than the other two types, leave-in conditioners and masks are a great way to tame these waves.
This hair type ranges from loose curls to tight corkscrews which can become frizzy.
Curly and Thin
These curls are loose and shiny. They are the easiest of the curly types to straighten.
Curly and Medium
Coarse ringlets that can be dry, these curls are harder to straighten than curly thin hard and can frizz easier.
Curly and Wide
Tight corkscrew curls that are dense with a lot of volume, this texture tends to frizz. These curls are hard to straighten and keep sleek.
This type of hair is often referred to as kinky and is drier than the other hair types. Texture ranges from fine to coarse or wiry with curls that bunch up when dry. Picture those gorgeous, voluminous Afros and that’s the coily hair we’re referring to here.
Coily and Thin
Dense and springy curls with a pencil-like circumference, this type of hair requires some type of leave-in conditioner to keep curls from frizzing.
Coily and Medium
Tightly wound and dense, these curls can be bent and shaped. With thicker strands, it is easier to stretch out the hair and clump them together for different hair styles.
Coily and Wide
This hair type shrinks up the most when dry and is tightly coiled in a zig-zag pattern. With a dry texture, leave-in conditioner is a must.
Now that you have a better idea of your hair type there are other factors that come into play when determining how to wear and care for your hair, especially if you want to straighten it.
Stretch out a curl and see how quickly it snaps back. Hair that lacks elasticity will not curl back up. This means your hair needs moisture. Choose water based products that will absorb into your hair versus oil based products that will just sit on your hair.
The porosity of your hair determines how quickly your hair dries. Here’s an easy way to find out how porous your hair is. Take a small amount of hair and dunk the tips into a cup of water. If it floats, you have hair that is non-porous, but if it sinks you have porous hair. You can also see this effect when in the bath or pool. So what does it mean to have porous hair? It means it absorbs water and takes a long time to dry. When choosing a styling product, you want to go light because your hair will also suck up the product and get weighed down. For non-porous hair, it will dry faster but a thicker creamy hair product is a better choice.
Most people have more than one curl type. Maybe your hair is curlier at the root, or curlier in the back of your head. Maybe it’s more porous in some areas and less elastic in others. Don’t worry about using different products in these areas, just determine what the majority of your hair is like and go from there.
After learning more about your hair and it’s curl (or lack thereof) the question that you might have is how to achieve the look you want. What if you have straight medium hair (straight hair that can hold a curl) or curly wide hair (tight corkscrew curls) but want shiny big barrel curls that move and bounce? For most hair types, with the right haircut, styling products, and styling tools, you can achieve that look. There are some limitations on certain hair types and what they can do so it’s important to remember that you don’t want to over dry, over flatten, over heat, or over curl your hair on a daily basis or you could end up with damaged hair. Damaging your hair limits your styling, coloring, and cutting possibilities.
Hair length is another consideration when it comes to achieving and maintaining a hairstyle. Curly hair is going to be curlier when shorter. Length will elongate the curl for a looser coil because of the excess weight of the hair. Straight hair often looks better when it’s shorter and is cut with layers to give it bounce and movement.
If you’re going for bangs, your hair type plays a big part in the upkeep and overall look. Those with curly hair may have a harder time keeping bangs straight. A flat iron is helpful in this area as is choosing a product that protects the hair and prevents frizz. Those with naturally straight hair can rock bangs as long as hair is damage free and clean. If you would like to consult a pro visit our High End Salon Virginia Beach, for suggestions or to make an appointment.
Here Are a Few Simple Steps You Can Follow to Get The Most Out of Your Hair Texture.
Keep your hair healthy with regular haircuts and by using products that protect your hair from heat, sun, and humidity. For coarser hair, washing less frequently will allow your natural oils to protect hair strands.
Your haircut will help you achieve the style you’re seeking. Lots of layers in curly hair can be a disaster on a shorter cut, while lack of layers in thick straight hair will result in a lack of movement and won’t allow the hair to hold a curl. Speaking to your hairstylist about your goals is the best place to start. They can recommend the best cut for your hair type while keeping your goals in mind.
You might consider a permanent or semi-permanent change such as a Brazilian Blowout, Permanent Hair Straightening techniques, or a perm. The Brazilian Blowout will make curly hair more manageable and easier to dry straight and keep straight. Some even say, “once you go brazilian, you’ll never go back.” With a Brazilian Blowout, your hair will not dry straight naturally. For that, a more permanent hair straightening solution is required.
For those with straight hair who want some curl, there are a variety of perming techniques that can help you achieve that style. However, keep in mind a perm will not give you curling-iron curls.
Home care is essential to maintaining any style you get at your salon. Shampoos that are sulphate and sodium-free are recommended, As they don’t build up on the hair follicles to weigh them down. Also, go for products that suit your hair type. As mentioned in Step 1, consider changing your hair washing routine depending on your hair type. Curlier and drier textured hair should be washed every three days. This type of hair should still look fresh with fewer shampoos, while thin straight hair requires more frequent washing.
Consider letting your hair go natural every few weeks. For curly hair, use a curling product and let your hair air dry. For straight hair, give your hair a break from the curling iron. Giving your hair a rest every now and then will give your hair a much needed boost and maintain the health of your locks so your styling options stay open.
Every hair type has its advantages and disadvantages. Check with your stylist at Verde Salon and Spa before attempting any major hair change. We will gladly point you in the right direction.