Thursday, 12 September 2013

What ARE you??: Understanding your Hair Type

Sideshow bob anyone?

There is a huge misconception among new naturals that just because your hair looks a certain way, then it is a certain hair type. 

Hair typing has reared it's ugly head many times since I went natural and I can only say that, with time, I learned that it is really not that serious.

I have also learned that there are other things that are much easier to figure out and which will better determine how your hair looks and responds to products and techniques. Like strand width, hair density (basically how much you have on your head) and curl pattern. 

Strand width
I had a really good (really expensive) hairdresser in the UK who told me I had fine hair. I was shocked! All my life I, I had grown up hearing people tell me how thick, coarse and hard my hair was and that I needed super duper strength relaxer to tame it. And here was this man telling me it wasn't and I didn't! Say what?! Gimme my money back, fool! But he put a gentle relaxer on my head and bam! Best relaxer I have ever had. Hands down. Even better than M.I.A Hairdresser. 

So I started the journey knowing my hair strands were fine. 

Hair density
Now I always believed I had a lot of hair on my head, but part-lines have taught me otherwise. I do not have the type of hair that once I undo my twists, *poof*, thick looking hair. I have to spray and/or pick my roots to hide part lines. Also, as my hair has grown longer, this has got harder and harder to do. 

The only 'but' I have in this is that I only recently stopped breastfeeding so I am hoping my hair density will increase as my hair recovers from post-partum shedding. 

Curl pattern 
Oh curl pattern. The bane of the entire first three months of my healthy hair journey. 

I watched YouTube video after YouTube video and everyone had...CURLS. And I wanted them. And I thought I, too, could achieve them. If I just had the right (fill in the blank) *technique/product/tool/application method. I raked, shingled, prayed, smoothed, Denman-ed and washed and went but no! I bought every single holy-grail product I could lay my hands on, but no.

I did not. Have. A curl pattern. There you have it. Zero. Zilch. Niet. Nada. Hakuna curls hapa. 

And you know what? That's ok too. Because all those months trying hadn't been for nothing. I had learned how to care for my hair, how to moisturize and seal, how to co-wash and twist, what tangled my hair and gave me SSKs and what didn't. And I learned acceptance, that would eventually lead to love. 

So here's my question, what are YOU??

This is a large topic that will be covered in a separate series of posts starting here.


  1. oh I love your posts!!!can't wait for go girl!I can TOTALLY relate with curl obsession but I've accepted my hair as is and I <3 it!

  2. Thanks Lydia! When I stopped curl chasing, I really started appreciating my hair texture and all the amazing things it can do.

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  4. Funny & lovely post. My hair type, depends on the section of the head, weather of the day and product of the day.

  5. Hi Nina came across a link to this blog on Tricia's Naturals.I am in the process of transitioning to natural hair (started in Dec 2013) from relaxed hair.I am experiencing information overload & confusion.I just want to know the do's & dont's when transitioning cause I am mostly braiding & I don't want to have the big chop.I feel like giving up & just going back to relaxing.Please help me.Thank you