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What is your curl type? 

HOW TO

Wavy, curly, coily or textured:read our guide to discover all about your curl type  

We are used to distinguishing straight or curly hair, but did you know that there are many more types? There are three types of straight hair, wavy hair, curly hair and three of coily or textured hair. If we go beyond the simple distinction between straight and curly hair and go for a more detailed classification, you too may find out that your hair is different from what you think.

 

Curl Patterns

As mentioned above, there are twelve types of hair. Each type is identified by a number – from 1 to 4– that grows progressively as the hair movement increases. Type 1 refers to straight hair, type 2 to wavyhair, type 3 to curly hair, type 4 is for coily and textured hair. Within each category, there is an additional subdivisioninto A, B, C that describes how the curl winds. 

WAVY

2

A B C 

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 CURLY

3

A B C

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COILY

4

ABC

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Shampoo and conditioner for curls 

Caring for curly hair starts with shampoo. Curly and wavy hair tends to get frizzy by nature, but if you use products that are too heavy, it can lose vitality and volume. In your curl care routine, you first need a moisturizing shampoo that gives elasticity and softness. Then follow up with conditioner every time you shampoo your hair, and swap in a nourishing hair mask once a month. To learn more, read our complete guide to the best products for curly hair

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Wavy hair 

Type 2 waves can be very delicate or more evident and develop following an S pattern on lengths.

2A - Wavy and fine hair
The 2A texture is generally flatter at the root, and it becomes softer from the ears down to the ends. Being barely visible, this type of wavy hair that can be straightened easily.

2B - Wavy and thick hair
Your hair is mostly straight at the roots and fall in S bends that are more defined from the mid-length to the ends. It is a medium texture with some frizz especially around the head.

2C - Wavy and full hair
Waves are defined from the roots. This texture is generally thick or coarse and is prone to frizz. 

Styling products for wavy hair 

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Curly hair  

The spirals of type 3 curly hair may range from loose to tight and bouncy. They are almost always prone to frizzing.

3A - Large spiral soft curls
Curls feature big and large spirals. Ringlets tend to be shiny with a well-defined scroll shape.

3B - Tight spiral curls
This type of curl is characterized by spirals that start right off the roots. Curls are bouncy and are halfway between ringlets and corkscrews. They have volume and tend to be coarse and full.

3C - Corkscrew curls
It is thick hair prone to frizz and the curl size if fairly tight, typically with the circumference of a pencil or straw Type C hair is the one with tightest spirals in category 3, yet it’s also the one that tends to feature the largest volume. 

Styling products for curly hair 

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Coily and textured hair 

This hair is commonly referred to as coily and textured hair. It is naturally very dry, thus requiring extra moisture and care. Shafts form small zig-zag curls.

4A - Tiny coils
This type of hair can shorten up to half its length once dried: the width of the spiral does not exceed that of a pencil.

4B - Z-shaped or S-shaped coils
Zig-zag coils that do not form a true spiral, but rather a broken line. Hair is very delicate, with great volume and prone to frizz.

4C - Tight textured hair
These coils have the highest degree of contraction once dried. The spiral is very tight and the hair shaft very delicate.  

Styling products for coily hair 

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6 Comments

6 Responses

Sonya
Sonya

January 15, 2024

I have multiple curl patterns throughout my thick curly, including 3b, 3c and 4a. I love Davines products but have found the need to mix to different to create the best washing, conditioning and styling products for my hair. I think I now have the best Davines ones that work for me. Trying the products from different Davines product lines became a game changer for me. I also live in a dry climate above 7,000 ft.

Chris
Chris

July 11, 2023

The person pictured for coily and textured hair does not have type 4 hair. Please correct the misinformation! As someone with type 4 hair, it’s frustrating to see those with curly hair labeled as someone with coily hair. Accurate representation matters!!

Terri
Terri

May 02, 2023

The person pictured representing type 4 hair, does NOT have type 4 hair. The person pictured for this curl type has a 3c curl pattern. The 4 curl pattern is much tighter than that in the picture. As the child of a beautician who specialized in type 4 hair for over 50 years, and as a woman who has type 4a hair, I am certain that the woman pictured DOES NOT have type for hair. I absolutely love your products! My hair is healthy, well moisturized, and your products keep my curls well defined. I simply ask that you picture someone who truly fits the type 4 curl pattern. Authentic representation matters!!!

Blessings,

Debbie
Debbie

March 17, 2023

I’m a 2a top and 3a bottom

Kristin
Kristin

February 10, 2023

I have 2c (top layer) and 3b hair. Now what?

Susan Brooks druva
Susan Brooks druva

September 27, 2022

These products are the best that I have used especially for curley hair. I found the products searching for cruelty free products

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