Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Hair Profiles: Introduction

Hello Naturalistas,

How is your week going? For the coming weeks I will be talking abit extensively on the Different profiles for our hair. I had a bit of knowledge on Hair types based on the Audrey Walker Typing system but I kind just followed the band wagon to say my hair is 4C -___- I decided to do more research and found out a few things.


One thing is sure, Understanding your hair type will make your hair journey less frustrating and much easier. It's not 100% solution to your hair frustrations but understanding your type of hair is a starting point and I am here to help with that. ;)

* Black hair is very complex. No two heads of hair are alike. In fact, hairs on one head may not act alike. That is what makes us unique. But that also can be a challenge to fully understand. Our hair has various curl patterns (3C, 4A, etc.), textures, density, porosity and elasticity. It may seem very complicated, but here is the breakdown:
Curl Pattern
The is the most common system used to describe curl pattern. Essentially, most Black women have curly (3) or kinky (4) hair. The A, B and C refer to the diameter of the curl. (Although some women refer to their hair has “G” or “Z” hair. There is no such thing. They are just using that to emphasize how “kinky” their hair is.) The typing system is helpful with understanding how your hair may look if you copy a particular style. You can also infer that hair that is kinkier will be drier, because the tighter curl pattern makes it more difficult for natural hair sebum to reach the ends of the hair. You should not infer that kinkier hair is stronger. This is false. Hair texture determines hair strength, which I will discuss next.
The Quick and Easy Curl Pattern Guide:
1 = Straight Hair
2 = Wavy Hair
3 = Curly Hair
A = Curl diameter of sidewalk chalk
B = Curl diameter of a sharpie
C = Curl diameter of a pencil
4 = Kinky Hair
A = Curl diameter of a needle
B = Zigzag curl pattern
C = No curl pattern

Texture

Hair Texture refers to the thickness or diameter of the hair strand. Your hair can be fine, medium (normal) , or thick (coarse). Fine hair is delicate –with less protein structure — and doesn’t hold curls well. Fine hair is more prone to breakage, especially if it is also prone to dryness. Medium (normal) has more protein structure than fine hair, but it is more pliable than coarse hair. Coarse hair is a thicker hair strand, holds curls well, but it is less pliable than fine or medium hair.
Density
Density refers to the number of strands on your head. Those with low density hair are more likely to have issues with scalpy twists. High density means you have a lot of hair strands. When you refer to someone’s hair as “thick”, it is normally in reference to density.
Porosity
Porosity refers to how your hair strands retain moisture. If you are having issues moisturizing your hair, this is a very important concept to grasp. Low porosity hair is difficult to get moisture into the hair. Normal (Medium) porosity hair is fairly easy to get moisture into the hair shaft and retain that moisture. High porosity hair has a very difficult time retaining moisture because water enters and leaves the shaft easily. (NOTE: Overly porous hair is normally due to chemical and mechanical damage and is even more difficult to moisturize.) To test your hair porosity, place a shed hair in water and follow the guide below. It is also important to note that hair porosity can change over time due to use of chemicals, heat, and age of hair.
Quick and Easy Guide to Porosity
Low Porosity = Closed Cuticle = Hair floats in water during hair porosity test = Difficult to get moisture into hair
Normal Porosity = Cuticle layer opens enough to allow moisture = Hair take a long time to sink = Easy to moisturize and retain that moisture
High Porosity = Raised cuticle layer = Hair quickly sinks to the bottom = Absorbs water easily
Elasticity
Elasticity refers to the “stretchiness” of your hair, which is how much you hair will stretch and then return to its normal state. If your hair is healthy, when wet, it should stretch 50% or more and return to its normal state. Unhealthy hair may only stretch about 20% when wet. Hair that is not elastic is more prone to breakage. It is also harder to curl with rollers or heat styling tools. To test for elasticity, pull strands from at least four areas of your head. Determine how much it springs break, how quickly it springs break, and whether your hair breaks.
Next week, we would talk about the individual hair types and how you can leverage on your knowledge make your Natural hair journey easier. 
I hope this has been helpful? What is your hair type?
*naturalhairrules.com

7 comments :

  1. Honestly ehn I still don't know. I probably need to see a consultant a.k.a Kemi lewis. Thatz how I decided to be a good geh o nd do me some flat twist outs. If you see the sponge I ended up with ehn o di egwu.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hehe, sawry. Some people can achieve twist out perfection without any issues. I'm not one of those

      Going to Kemi on Saturday :D

      Delete
    2. Hehe, sawry. Some people can achieve twist out perfection without any issues. I'm not one of those

      Going to Kemi on Saturday :D

      Delete
    3. Awww... Sorry!! Lol @ sponge. bettt there is no 'sponge' in the hair types na -____- Maybe as we go along you would find something useful to help you.

      ;)

      Delete
    4. Lool but dnt u think it should be added.....I'm jst saying. Thanks for all d sympathy Berry nd Lola I'm recovering.

      Delete
  2. BTW - very good and informative post.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sponge is the theme for my hair. Twist outs, braid outs, sometimes bantu knot outs have me looking like I visited the electric chair over the weekend. I've sworn off them, won't bother myself with the curl definition stress abeg. Afros, Box braids and twists do it for me.
    Thanks for the post though.

    ReplyDelete

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