Know Your Hair Type

Hair Typing

why use it at all?

Hair typing is definitely not the 100% solution to understanding your hair, but it does provide you with a good starting point. Knowing your hair type will enable you to choose more suitable products and will help provide you with guidance for how you should handle your hair.


What’s Your Hair Type?

find out now!

There are two typesCurly-Hair-Type-Chart of systems that are used to classify our hair, one being being Andre Walker’s Hair Type Classification System and the other is the LOIS system. However, what Black Naps finds to be  the easiest to follow and the most visually descriptive system would be Andre Walker’s hair typing system.

The classification system ranges from straight hair types to curly hair types. Curly hair types include:  3a, 3b, 3c,  4a, 4b, and 4c. The best way to see your true curl pattern is after you have washed your hair and your hair has air dried without product.




Type 4 hair guide

product recommendations + care tips

As you can see curl patterns range from a loose wave  like curl to a tighter curl with little to no definition. For us kinkier ladies you can see that we do not have as much space in between our curls, the pattern is tight with tons of bends in the strand with hardly any curve which makes the hair extremely susceptible to hair breakage, dryness, and damage. 4b and 4c hair types do not retain water as well as 4a hair texture and type 3 hair because the bends in your hair make it harder for your hair to receive the moisture you put into it. However there is hope! Download the free guide for products that are great for type 4 hair and tips that will keep your hair healthy. The products listed are products that I love, use regularly, and played a role in helping my 4c hair grow long. See what I am using! - Ariane (Editor In Chief )

More than one hair type on one head of hair?

it’s highly possible!

It’s quite common for us to have more than one texture in our hair. Your edges may be 4b while the majority of your hair is 4a type. Or you may have 4a hair with some 3c strands for example. Remember no two heads of hair are alike. Hair type systems are good for learning about your hair or what could potentially be best for it, but they are by no means an absolute standard. Use it as guidance and always go by what you know works best for your hair.

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See Also


  1. Aliyah says

    You forget to mention it can be 3c/4a not just 4a/4b. My hair is really frizzy and I have 4a hair with some 3c strands .

  2. Karen says

    My hair is very coarse. It is growing and I do not want to perm it, but I can not find a suitable hairstyle for my face. I have a lot of gray and I want to dye it black, but when I do it turns orange. The last time I tried a brown and it worked, but then later it started looking red. I have a dark chocolate complexion and red is not looking too good on me. My only other solution is to wear it short which looks really nice, but I need suggestions for products to maintain it and keep it healthy. Natural hair is a lot more work than I realize.

    • lisa says

      Hi Karen
      I have a lot of grey also I wanted to just go grey but the grey grows in patchy and is unflattering, I had stopped relaxing my hair for many years when I started roller setting and blow outs it worked effectively to straighten my hair, but my hair grows fast and every two to three weeks I had to dye my roots, I also started having so much breakage- of the newly dyed grey-so I have a lot of flyway and freezies on the crown of my head. Anyway the point: About two months ago I started using henna: The first step I did a whole head henna, my hair was a very dark brown but in the sun it was very red- iloved it but- I also had to address my grey roots which usually come out orange on grey hair from henna- I knew this so I prepared for a two step process: I applied the indigo after the henna process and once my hair was dry-to the orange parts only: I left on for about 25 mins and rinsed it out. No more orange: with natural hair sytles the color blends seamlessly.

      For you If you want black hair naturally: do all over henna, then all over indigo and the longer you leave the indigo on the darker your hair will be. You have to do henna first (or together, which doesn’t work for me) , to treat the grey. Indigo on grey turns blue, but indigo on henna grey turns black or dark brown.

      Hope this helps

  3. LAURIE says

    Hi my hair is very fine and straight to wavy. I have not had a relaxer since 2007. I did the big chop on May 5, 2008 and my hair came back the same way when growing back. So l cut it off again in 2010 and it’s still the same. I can’t get it to curl what should l be doing to it. I refuse to go back to relaxers, but l want curly hair. In testing my hair l guess l fall into the 3a category, although my hair is more on the straighter side. Please give me some tips. Thanks!

    • Staciedae says

      Hey Laurie!

      I would suggest a good ole twist out. I have a complete 2B section that takes up a fourth of my 3B/3C head. It is so frustrating.
      After a good cleansing (and conditioning) slap on some leave-in conditioner, then apply a generous amount of gel to all of your hair. Flat twist/ twist the straighter sections. You can twist all of your hair if you desire. Try yo let it air dry. When you take it out the curl should match the rest of your hair (or be swirly enough to blend). You can also use perm rods to help create a curl on the hanging twist. Hope this helps.

  4. Wanda says

    I cannot figure out my hair type. My hair is very thick and coarse. It does not have a defining wave pattern, and it is not cork-screw shaped. I cannot find many examples of the type of pattern. I am in the process of going natural and trying to research which products would be best to use for maintenance.

  5. djinebs says


    I have a tiny hair with curly. also got lots of hair lose and would wanna know which type of hair I have and how to care for it


    • maggie says

      Shampoo and condition your hair.
      Let your hair air dry.
      You will be able to see your natural hair texture better now that is completely dry.
      Your hair may be 3a/3b or 3b/3c or 4a/4b or 4b/4c meaning that your hair has both textures or is very close to more than one texture.

  6. maria says


    My hair is very Fragile I lose a lot of hair if I wash It or brush , but my hair is very curly. now I want to know is 4b or 4c my hairtype I’m very confused i really dont know

    • Staciedae says

      My hair is normal and not thin. But the best thing for strengthening my tresses is 50% henna and 50% oil masque

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