Ever wondered what a 3a hair type is? Or are you more of a 4?
Hair varies in its structure due to genetic influences, these are inherited and largely linked to where either we or where our ancestry is from.
The main groups of hair are Caucasian, Afro and Asian. This in itself is a clumsy categorisation as we think as Asian hair as black, thick and straight, Afro hair as black and tightly coiled and European hair as every other colour there is and wavy. You only need to look toward South America to explode that myth where hair can be everything from poker straight to loosely coiled.
But ignoring the basic ‘genetics’ of hair type and this crude pigeon holing of hair types, we can focus on the just wave of the hair, and from this you can categorise hair in to many different sub-sets.
Originally a hair stylist called Andre Walker in the 1990 was a regular on the Oprah Winfrey show and he came up with this ‘non-scientific’ hair categorisation which seems to have taken hold (especially with the curly haired people as it shows that afro hair or curly hair is not all the same).
Using the above people can categorise their hair type and use the product/ tools which are appropriate to their use…so, it begs the question. Which one are you?
And then the question, does it matter?
To an extent yes…and no.
Hair is not a living tissue, but can change due to environmental changes and cosmetic products, people with straighter, finer hair will probably find they have to wash their hair more often as if appears more lank, is this bad for the hair?…no.
Does it need washing, no… but we prefer our hair to not look greasy and unwashed and this is why we get so confused by conflicting advice.
People with very coily hair will likely benefit from not washing their hair as much as the oils will calm the hair down and make it look and feel cosmetically better a day or two after washing. But here’s the thing, either way you are right!
Your hair does not ‘need’ to be washed, but it is not harmed by washing it, so the actual answer is, its your hair… you are probably the best person to determine how often it needs washing regardless of the curl.
The exception to this rule is if your scalp is irritated or itchy, then it’s likely you need to wash your scalp more often.
As for what products are best, finer straighter hair will benefit from volumizing products, thicker more unruly hair will benefit from heavier products which calm the hair down…. but you probably know that already!