Type 1: Straight hair; nothing more, nothing less.
Type 2: Wavy hair; Your hair is wavy if it curves in the "S" shape while laying flat against the scalp, instead of standing away from the head the way curly hair does.
Type 2 subtypes: A, fine & thin; B, medium-textured; and C, thick and coarse. Type 2A is very easy to handle, navigating between straighter or curlier styles is simple. Types 2B and 2C are a little more resistant to styling and have a tendency to frizz.
Type 3: Curly hair; With curly hair, there is a definite loopy "S" pattern. When curly hair is wet, it usually straightens out. As it dries, it absorbs the water and contracts to its curliest state. Those of you with Type 3 hair know all too well that humidity makes curly hair even curlier, or even frizzier. This hair type has a lot of body and is easily styled in its natural state, or it can be easily straightened with a blow-dryer into a smoother style. Healthy Type 3 hair is shiny, with soft, smooth curls and strong elasticity. The curls are well-defined and springy. Damaged Type 3 hair is usually frizzy, dull, hard and dry to the touch, with fuzzy, ill-defined curls.
Type 3 subtypes: A, hair that is very loosely curled like Julia Robert's or Susan Sarandon's is usually very shiny with big curls. The shorter the hair, the straighter it gets. 3B, is hair with a medium amount of curl, ranging from bouncy ringlets (Shirley Temple) to tight corkscrews (Cree Summer). It's not unusual to find both subtypes coexisting on the same head, with the crown being the curliest.
Type 3C: (Which is ME!) Hair with tight curls in corkscrews. The curls can either be kinky, or very tightly curled, with lots and lots of strands densely packed together. Some people refer to this as "big hair". 3C has really really tight curls, like pencil or straw circumference. 3B is like sidewalk chalk or salt shaker circumference, and 4A is like coffee stirrer circumference.
Type 4: Kinky hair; or very tightly curled. Usually, Type 4 hair can range from fine/thin to wiry/ coarse strand texture. Normally, this hair is densely packed to give the appearance of very thick but fragile hair. 4A hair has a clearly visible curl and wave pattern that ranges from pen size curls to pen spring size coils. 4B has a tighter wave pattern and kinks of various size. This texture does not exhibit the shine or silkiness of looser type curls, but instead has sheen, and a soft, almost cotton-like feel.
As with other types of curly hair, showing the true length can be an extra challenge, as the hair may grow "up" or "out" before starting to hang down. In its unlocked/unbraided state, Type 4 hair is known to shrink up to 75% of the actual hair length. Oprah, Whoopi Goldberg and Angela Bassett are all Type 4's.
For more information please visit http://www.naturallycurly.com/
courtesy of www.naturallycurly.com